The Power Balloon, sometimes shortened to P Balloon or P-Balloon, is an item introduced in Super Mario World. It can be found in four levels: Donut Secret 1, Donut Secret 2, Forest of Illusion 1, and Tubular.
The item's effect is to make whoever picks it up swell up like a balloon and become Balloon Mario or Balloon Luigi, causing them to hover in the air. They will gradually float upwards if not moved by the player, but are capable of moving in any direction for a limited amount of time. During this time, Yoshi cannot be ridden. Mario or Luigi will start to puff in and out when the item is about to wear off, and when it does they return to normal size and drop out of the air. The level Tubular in the Special Zone requires the player to continually pick up new Power Balloons to maintain flight while they make their way across the level. If Mario or Luigi pass through a Giant Gate while under the effects of the Power Balloon, they will gain a bonus Super Mushroom.
The Power Balloon made three appearances in the Super Mario World television series, most notably in the episode "Mama Luigi" where Luigi uses it to float safely down a chasm. Later in the episode, Mario uses it to re-inflate Luigi back to his normal shape after he was flattened. In the series, the Power Balloon is referred to as a magic balloon. It also appears in another episode, "Gopher Bash".
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