- This article is about the spiked iron ball appearing in numerous Mario platformers. For the obstacle from Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins, see spiked ball (Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins). For the overworld move in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story, see Spike Ball (move). For the recurring Clear Pipe obstacle, see spike ball (seed).
- Not to be confused with iron ball.
Artwork of a spiked ball in New Super Mario Bros. Wii
|First appearance||Super Mario Bros. 3 (1988)|
|Latest appearance||The Super Mario Bros. Movie (2023)|
Spike Balls, also referred to as Spiked Balls (sometimes lowercase), are iron balls with silver or white spikes that first appeared in Super Mario Bros. 3. They were originally spat out and thrown by Spikes and used by Ptooies, but they can later be found independently. They mainly appear in castle levels, where they roll around and destroy other obstacles. Spinners are a variant of Spike Balls, which hang from chains and swing in various motions. Stone Spike Balls are spat out by Stone Spikes instead of the metal balls, which have the same effect. Another form of the Spike Ball is the Giant Spiked Ball, which is a larger version of the Spike Ball. It has similar features but causes the destruction on a larger scale. Spike Balls can usually be defeated with Invincible Mario; however, in some games, the use of the Super Star only prevents damage to Mario.
Super Mario series
Super Mario Bros. 3
Spiked balls first appear in Super Mario Bros. 3, where they are approximately the size of Spiny Eggs. They are spat out and thrown straight left or right by Spikes, as well as continuously blown into the air by Ptooies. In this game, the player can jump on Spikes even if they are holding a spiked ball.
New Super Mario Bros.
In New Super Mario Bros., since Spikes are absent in this game, Spiked Balls are always seen rolling along the floor from off-screen, though they may also roll in a half-pipe motion between two hills. The game also features Giant Spiked Balls. They, like their smaller counterparts, are almost indestructible, except to Mega Mario or Mega Luigi. They act similarly to the iron balls in Super Mario 64. They are usually found in castles and can also destroy anything it rolls over, including the smaller Spiked Balls.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii
New Super Mario Bros. Wii features Spikes throwing spiked balls, as well as introducing the Stone Spike to throw stone spiked balls. In this game, spiked balls thrown by Spikes cannot break bricks. Giant Spiked Balls are found only in the World 8 where they appear in World 8-2. Giant Spiked Balls with shorter spikes and active fuses appear in World 8-, where Bowser Jr. uses them as exploding weapons against Mario. However, Mario can use them against him by Ground Pounding the ground to throw them into the Koopa Clown Car three times.
Super Mario 3D Land
Both spiked balls and giant spiked balls return in Super Mario 3D Land. They function very similarly to the preceding games. They can be destroyed by Statue Mario and invincibility. Due to the absence of Spikes, both variants are generated from a cannon, a hole in the wall, or a black hole-like hole, the last of which disappears after generating a spiked ball and reappears after a few seconds to generate another.
New Super Mario Bros. 2
In New Super Mario Bros. 2, both spiked balls and giant spiked balls reappear. A pair of very large spiked balls appear in World Mushroom-. Similar to New Super Mario Bros., they are always seen rolling from off-screen due to the absence of Spikes in this game. Ice Balls appear in World 4-1. Spiked balls can be found in World Mushroom-A, and a giant spiked ball helps Mario obtain a Star Coin. Spiked balls also feature in the battle against Morton Koopa Jr., where Morton fires them from his wand to attack Mario/Luigi.
New Super Mario Bros. U
New Super Mario Bros. U sees the return of both Spikes and Stone Spikes with spiked balls. They can now throw the spiked balls straight down rather than just left or right as they did in previous games. Regular spiked balls alone are replaced by Grrrols.
Super Mario Run
In Super Mario Run, spiked balls appear in the level Land of Spikes. They are mainly thrown by Spikes like in previous games; some spiked balls spawn independently, though ahead of a Spike's position, appearing as though they were produced by the Spike. During the final battle, Bowser's Koopa Clown Car spits out giant spiked balls, which can destroy certain platforms.
Super Mario Odyssey
Spike Balls, described as cannonballs by Prima Games, return in Super Mario Odyssey, where they only appear being released by a Yoofoe during its fight. Shells that act similarly to Spike Balls appear in the Seaside Kingdom.
Super Mario Maker 2
In version 2.0 of Super Mario Maker 2, Spike Balls are thrown by Spikes in all level themes except the snow theme, where they are replaced by snowballs, and can also be placed as a separate object. They fly forward in the Super Mario Bros. and Super Mario Bros. 3 styles similar to the latter style's original game, though if they fly towards the ground, they will start to roll. In the Super Mario World, New Super Mario Bros. U, and Super Mario 3D World styles, they roll along the ground. They can be spin-jumped on, activate ? Blocks, POW Blocks, and ON/OFF Switches, can be eaten and spit out with Yoshi, and act as weight on Seesaws in the latter two styles. Giant spiked balls thrown by Mega Spikes can break through blocks. Since they did not appear in Super Mario Bros., Super Mario World, and Super Mario 3D World, new sprites are made for them. They can also be tossed by Lakitus for the first time since Yoshi's Story.
Wario Land series
Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3
Spiked balls appear again in Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3, where they are preponderant in the Parsley Woods. This game marks the first time spiked balls are seen rolling towards the player. They plummet from the trees' thicket when Wario approaches before rolling along the ground, though one spiked ball falls straight down and disappears off-screen. When they reach the end of the ground, they fall straight downwards and then continue rolling if they land on more ground. In this game, spiked balls stop immediately when they hit a wall, and fall off the screen. They also sometimes cause the screen to shake when they land, freezing everything on screen in place for a moment.
Wario Land: Shake It!
Spiky balls in Wario Land: Shake It! only appear in the form of enemy attacks, shot by Shortfuse, Crackpot, and Boomdinero. Though two of these enemies represent the cannons seen in various Super Mario titles, the spiky balls are used in place of cannonballs as their spikes are meant to be clear visual indicators that they cannot be touched or jumped on.
Spiked balls also appear as obstacles in Wario World. They appear in the various obstacle courses found inside wooden and steel trapdoors, and are also used as weapons by several enemies and bosses in the game. Hawks and Hōhō drop them, and the Sandworm also spits spiked balls at Wario as one of its attacks. In this game, they are colored dark blue and have long spikes of the same color.
Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island / Yoshi's Island: Super Mario Advance 3
Spiked balls appear in Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island, being tossed by Mace Penguins. They only appear in BLIZZARD!!!, as well as Endless World of Yoshis in the remake. In these games, spiked balls are colored white with yellow spikes.
Yoshi's Woolly World / Poochy & Yoshi's Woolly World
Luigi's Mansion series
Spiked balls appear in Luigi's Mansion and its remake, where they appear in King Boo's battle. The Bowser suit rolls them two of them at a time, and after several seconds, they flash red and then explode. Luigi must suck one up and hit Bowser with it to expose King Boo.
Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon
Red spiked balls and giant spiked balls appear in Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon, where they appear in King Boo's battle. They roll around the tilting arena toward Luigi, who must avoid them.
Luigi's Mansion 3
In Luigi's Mansion 3, Spike Balls appear in the final boss battle with King Boo. In one of his attacks, King Boo throw Spike Balls into the air that fall back onto the Rooftop, breaking and revealing multiple bombs that are about to explode. If a Spike Ball hits the player, they lose 20 HP.
Mario Party series
Mario Party 4
Mario Party 6
Mario Party 9
Spiked Balls appear in several minigames in Mario Party 9. In the minigame Bumper Bubbles, players must try to collect balloons while avoiding Spiked Balls that fall onto the screen from above; hitting a Spiked Ball results in a player's bubble popping, which causes all their balloons to be released and the player to fall offscreen. Spiked Balls also appear in the minigame Tumble Temple, in which the players must avoid the Spiked Balls and giant spiked balls that roll through several pegs from above; hitting one results in that player being eliminated. Additionally, in Chain Event, players must slide down chains, flipping from one side to the other to avoid Spiked Balls. The player must do the opposite of said objectives when playing Tumble Temple and Chain Event as a Reverse Minigame from a Bowser Space. The minigame Spike-n-Span also involves one player hitting the platform above to roll a Spiked Ball in the direction of the other players. Giant spiked balls are also in Spike Strike, where the player must use a hammer to send them back at the large Spike.
Mario Party 10
Mario Party: The Top 100
Mario Party Superstars
Spike spheres reappear in Mario Party Superstars, reprising their roles in the Mario Party 6 minigame Pit Boss.
Super Princess Peach
These balls take two forms in Super Princess Peach. Spikes and Mad Spikes use larger versions, referred to as iron balls, which resemble their appearance in Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island, except the former is blue and the latter is red. Ptooies and Glad Ptooies use smaller versions, referred to as simply balls, which resemble their appearance in Super Mario Bros. 3. A Glad Ptooie will toss its ball up a few times, and then it will toss it over to another location and run over to it. Bowser 2 also drops a green version of an iron ball from the ceiling as an attack.
Mario & Luigi series
Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time
In Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time, the Elder Shrooboid, the boss of the Star Shrine, uses a spiked ball in one of its attacks. One of the Bros. has to hit the spiked ball with their hammer, or else it will slam into them and cost lots of HP. However, if one of the Bros. does hit the spiked ball, it will fly off into the sky and the Elder Shrooboid will be vulnerable to jump attacks for a brief period of time. In the second phase, however, when the spiked ball hits the Shroob saucer with the timer, the timer resets. The Shroid, an enemy from Toad Town, also uses a spiked ball in one of its attacks. It consists of the Shroid calling a Shroob saucer into battle, which then gives the Shroid a spiked ball. This ball will either have "M" or "L" printed in it, which indicates the brother at whom the ball will be thrown. However, if the Shroid is malfunctioning, its attacks are reversed (i.e. an "M"-printed ball will land on Luigi, and vice versa).
Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam
Flat, disc-like Spiked Balls appear as part of the boss transition animation. In the E3 2015 demo build. These Spiked Balls were not flattened.
Paper Mario series
Paper Mario: Sticker Star
In Paper Mario: Sticker Star, Spike Balls appear as a projectile thrown by Spikes, where their spikes are aesthetically brown. They are also dropped by Spikes as a sticker when defeated. When used in battle, Mario will toss a Spike Ball ahead, dealing moderate damage to all grounded enemies.
The Spike Ball can also be placed into the Sticker Museum as #89, alongside other enemy-based stickers.
Paper Mario: Color Splash
Once more, Spiked Balls return in Paper Mario: Color Splash, where they are thrown by Spikes, but they have a different design from that of Paper Mario: Sticker Star, since the spikes are now white rather than brown. Ptooies also use Spiked Balls in the game, and they can attack by shooting the Spiked Ball at Mario.
Paper Mario: The Origami King
Normal spiked balls make a minor appearance in Paper Mario: The Origami King, where they are thrown by the temporary Spike partner in Autumn Mountain during its main attack, Up-Chuck. These spiked balls deal 25 damage to enemies in a straight line provided the attack does not fail. Origami spiked balls also appear more commonly, thrown by origami Spike enemies. The normal spiked ball itself has the paper outline from Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, while the origami spiked balls themselves resemble their Sticker Star and Color Splash appearances.
Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
Mario Sports Superstars
In Mario Sports Superstars, Spiked Balls appear as obstacles in boss battles.
Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle
In Spooky Trails, a level from Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, many Spiked Balls lie scattered across the Underwater Village, with one encountered earlier in Spooky Square. Although they are mainly used for decoration, Beep-0 remarks the one in Spooky Square, expressing that he hopes it stays put and does not cause more trouble than he and the other team members already have.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, spiked balls appear when Piranha Plant uses its neutral special Ptooie, based on the spiked ball-blowing enemy of the same name. Piranha Plant blows a spiked ball up and down and can launch it to the left or right.
Mario Golf: Super Rush
Spike Balls reappear in Mario Golf: Super Rush as obstacles produced by Spikes in Spiky Palms and can hit players during Speed Golf. In Target Golf, one of the possible golf balls that players can obtain is also a Spike Ball, except it is smaller as to be used like a golf ball. It is able to stick in place, as it resists running (bouncing or rolling after the ball lands), thereby making it likely to land on the carried spot (the spot that the ball lands the first time).
Tribe: Mecha clan
Game appearances: Land 3
The big iron ball that arrives all of a sudden
Gorō is a large iron ball covered in spikes. It suddenly falls from above and rolls around with an earth-shaking sound. You cannot knock it down, so avoid it by making a big jump.
Paper Mario: Sticker Star
- Item description: Sometimes dropped by Spikes. Provides a spiked ball that can be thrown at a single foe. Doesn't reach high-flying foes.
- Sticker Museum description: A spiky steel ball horked up by a Spike. This bad boy deals bonus damage for a well-timed throw.
A Spiked Ball in New Super Mario Bros.
In-game model render of a spiked ball in Super Mario 3D Land
Spiked balls in New Super Mario Bros. 2
Artwork of a spiked ball in Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
Super Mario Maker 2 (Super Mario Bros. style)
|Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker||content/ObjectData/NeedleBall.szs||NeedleBall||Needle Ball|
Names in other languages
|Japanese||シューリンガン (Super Mario Bros. 3 / Paper Mario: Sticker Star / Super Smash Bros. Ultimate / Super Mario Maker 2)
ゴロー (Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3)
トゲのついたボール (Mario Party 4)
Toge no tsuita bōru
いがいがスパイク (Wario World)
トゲトゲのボール (Mario Party 6 and Mario Party Superstars)
Togetoge no Bōru
てっきゅう (Super Princess Peach, Spike version)
タマ (Super Princess Peach, Ptooie version)
トゲ鉄球 (New Super Mario Bros. series and Super Mario 3D Land)
トゲトゲボール (Mario Party 9)
トゲボール (Mario Party 10)
|Based on the Japanese rakugo folktale Jugemu, from which the Japanese names of Lakitu (Jugemu) and Spiny Eggs (Paipo) are also derived|
From「ゴロゴロ」(goro-goro, onomatopoeia for rolling) and possibly "roll"; shared with Grrrol
Ball with spikes
Spiked iron ball; refer to Giant Spiked Ball
Spike Ball; shared with mine and spike ball
|Transliteration of the Japanese name. “殊力钢” can also mean "specially powerful steel".|
|Chinese (Traditional)||刺刺球 (Mario Party 9)
Cì Cì Qiú
殊力鋼 (since Paper Mario: Sticker Star)
Transliteration of the Japanese name. “殊力鋼” can also mean "specially powerful steel".
|French||Boule Spikante||From "spike" and "boule piquante" (spiky ball)|
Palla accuminata (later games[which?])
|Portuguese (NOE)||Bola de espinhos||Spike ball|
|Spanish (NOA)||Bola de Picos
Bola Espinosa (Super Mario Maker 2)
- Nintendo (December 2, 2019). Super Mario Maker 2 - A Legendary Update - Nintendo Switch. YouTube. Retrieved December 14, 2020
- Walsh, Doug, and Joe Epstein. Super Mario Odyssey Prima Official Guide. Page 107.
- Stratton, Steve. Wario Land: Shake It! PRIMA Official Strategy Guide. Pages 12 and 13.
- Yoshi's Story official website. Archived October 9, 1999, 11:22:47 UTC via Wayback Machine. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
- Official Yoshi's Story Player's guide. Page 76. Archived September 12, 2018, 01:13:31 UTC via archive.org. "Gabon has unlimited rocks to roll, so Yoshi will have to eat or egg him to stop the avalanche"
- GameXplain (Jun 16, 2015). Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam - Petey Piranha Boss Fight w/ Direct Audio (E3 2015). YouTube. Retrieved November 16, 2021.
- 「パーフェクト版 マリオキャラクター大事典」 (Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten). Page 85.
- Shogakukan. 2015. Super Mario Bros. Hyakka: Nintendo Kōshiki Guidebook, Super Mario Bros. 3 section. Pages 35 and 37.
- 「ワリオワールド任天堂公式ガイドブック」 (Wario World Nintendo Kōshiki Guidebook). Page 18.
- Shogakukan. 2015. Super Mario Bros. Hyakka: Nintendo Kōshiki Guidebook. Pages 119, 150, 185, 200, and 209.
- Official Chinese website for Mario Party 9. Retrieved February 12, 2020.
- Nintendo Portugal (December 2, 2019). Super Mario Maker 2 - A Master Sword, novas peças para níveis e muito mais! (Nintendo Switch). YouTube. Retrieved January 10, 2021.