Super Mario Backpack Buddies
The Super Mario Backpack Buddies is a series of figurines produced by Paladone, a United Kingdom-based company, and distributed by UCC Distribution. All of them come with large plastic keychains, intended to be attached to backpacks, and they are sold in blind bags, meaning that buyers do not know which figurine they are purchasing until they open the bag. There are two lines of figurines based on the Mario franchise, with one based on the main Super Mario series and the other based on Mario Kart 8. Both feature eight characters: Mario, Luigi, Wario, Princess Peach, Donkey Kong, Yoshi, Toad, and Koopa Troopa for the main line/Bowser for the kart line. Gold Mario is a rare figurine that has a one-in-forty-eight chance of appearing. The original concept came about after Paladone pitched a series of unrelated ideas to Nintendo, who then told Paladone that UCC Distributing was interested in creating an official line of Nintendo-based keychains. This resulted in four separate series of Backpack Buddies: including the two Mario lines, the Legend of Zelda series and the Animal Crossing series are being distributed as Backpack Buddies. A line based on the Cat Mario form and its variants is also planned for 2017.