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Tatanga in Pagosu, Super Mario Land
Full name Tatanga the Mysterious Spaceman[1]
Species Alien
First appearance Super Mario Land (1989)
Latest appearance Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (spirit cameo) (2018)
“I am not interested in what Mario would do! Tatanga does as he pleases!”
Tatanga, In the Palm of Your Hand...

Tatanga (also known as Tatanga the Mysterious Spaceman[1]) is an alien invader from an unknown planet. Although feared as an invader, outside of his spacecraft he is only a meek purple alien. During the events of Super Mario Land, Tatanga captures Daisy, the princess of Sarasaland, and orders his armies to guard the land's four kingdoms. Tatanga is also the first extraterrestrial main villain to appear in the Mario franchise.


Super Mario series[edit]

Super Mario Land[edit]

Tatanga in Pagosu, from Super Mario Land.

Tatanga makes his debut appearance in Super Mario Land. Appearing out of a large black cloud, he invades Sarasaland and captures Princess Daisy while hypnotizing the inhabitants of Sarasaland. With them under his control, he has the most powerful of his new minions guard the four kingdoms of Sarasaland - the Birabuto Kingdom, Muda Kingdom, Easton Kingdom, and Chai Kingdom. When Mario defeats the hypnotized creatures and liberates all four kingdoms, Tatanga engages with him in air combat in a last-ditch effort.

During the climactic battle, Tatanga fights in his war robot, Pagosu, while Mario fights in his airplane, the Sky Pop. Mario has to fire his missiles at Pagosu while dodging its big projectiles, which immediately split into three small projectiles upon being fired. After twenty-five hits, Pagosu is destroyed, and the player gains 5000 points. Immediately afterward, Mario rescues Princess Daisy and peace is returned to Sarasaland.

One of Tatanga's most notable minions is the Honen, who, according to the game's instruction manual, is the skeleton of a Torion after being eaten by Tatanga.[2]

Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins[edit]

Tatanga in a smaller spaceship
Tatanga, from Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins.

Tatanga, known only as the "Alien" in preview material,[3] reappears as a boss in Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins. Although his role in this game is not as significant, he does play a part. While Mario is distracted fighting Tatanga in Super Mario Land, Wario takes over Mario Land and occupies Mario's castle. After Tatanga's initial defeat, he is given one of the 6 Golden Coins by Wario, and then sets up a base in the Space Zone.

During Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins, Mario tracks down Tatanga, and the two fight for a second time. However, in this battle, Tatanga fights with a different, smaller spacecraft, capable of shooting energy weapons and dive-bombing Mario. When he descends for his dive-bomb attack, Mario must jump on top of the vessel to land a hit. After three hits, or six fireballs, Mario defeats Tatanga and recovers the Golden Coin of Space Zone. Like all other bosses except Wario, Tatanga falls off the screen upon defeat, though his spaceship simply disappears before he falls. While falling, his full body is shown, being notably shorter than Super Mario.

The Perfect Edition of the Great Mario Character Encyclopedia indicates Tatanga became Wario's henchman to get revenge on Mario for ruining his scheme to marry Daisy.[4]

Unlike the other bosses featured in Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins, Tatanga does not appear in Nintendo Power's Mario vs. Wario comic, despite being perhaps the most major boss next to Wario, given his status as Super Mario Land's antagonist.

Super Mario Bros. & Friends: When I Grow Up[edit]

Tatanga's cameo in Super Mario Bros. & Friends: When I Grow Up

Tatanga makes a cameo in Super Mario Bros. & Friends: When I Grow Up, piloting Pagosu in the Astronaut coloring page.

Game Boy[edit]

Tatanga as he appeared in the comics.

Tatanga appears as the villain in the Game Boy comic books spun off from the Nintendo Comics System, produced by the company Valiant. In the comics, Tatanga lives in an alternate dimension that exists within a Game Boy. He hypnotizes Herman Smirch, a human from New Jersey, while playing Super Mario Land, causing the man to release Tatanga from the Game Boy. Upon arriving on Earth, Tatanga hopes to conquer the planet and rule it with an iron fist. He is released several times, each time attempting to conquer an Earth monument, such as Walt Disney World, the World Trade Center, or the Great Wall of China. However, Mario is always released from the Game Boy as well to thwart his schemes and bring him back to the Game Boy dimension.

In the miniseries, Tatanga's relationship with Daisy is similar to the one between Princess Peach and Bowser, in that he appears to genuinely love the princess, with several of his attempted conquests being done solely in an attempt to impress her. Additionally, in this series he is considerably bigger and more muscular than in the games, has more pronounced fangs and claws, and wears a black uniform. His Pagosu is also able to assume a more humanoid form, making it resemble battle armor.

Super Mario (Kodansha manga)[edit]

Tatanga introducing himself

Tatanga appears in the Super Mario gag manga by Kodansha, which depicts the events of Super Mario Land. He is seen doing many of the things described in that game's instruction manual, such as abducting Daisy, hypnotizing enemies, eating a Torion, and trying to make Daisy marry him. Tatanga later appears during a tennis tournament as Bowser's tennis partner.

After his defeat by Mario's Sky Pop, Tatanga applies for a job as Wario's henchman to get revenge on Mario. When Wario casts a spell to make Daisy evil, she then becomes recipient to Tatanga's affection. Tatanga attempts to marry the now evil Daisy, taking her to the moon for the ceremony, where there are other aliens like himself. However, Mario breaks the spell, leading to Daisy again rejecting Tatanga, leaving him reduced to tears.

While a villainous figure, Tatanga is also depicted as comical, particularly in his genuine crush on Daisy. A recurring gag is for characters to be disappointed by Tatanga's short height. In the manga, he is given a more detailed design as opposed to the game. He now has a frilled black uniform, a cape, batlike ears, a belt with the letter T on it, and an entire mouth full of fangs.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate[edit]

Tatanga makes an appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as an Advanced-class Shield-type primary spirit with two support slots. It simply raises the user's power without granting any special effects. The spirit's puppet fighter is Morton, who starts the battle with a Super Scope, on the Battlefield form of the Mario Galaxy stage. Tatanga is also mentioned in the Palutena's Guidance for Daisy, where Pit and Palutena discuss Daisy's history; Pit ends up dismissing Tatanga as little more than a cheap substitute for Bowser to kidnap a princess and kick off the plot.

References in other games[edit]

Tatanga is mentioned in Princess Daisy's bio in the game Mario Superstar Baseball and her trophies in Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. Brawl. He is later mentioned in Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games.[citation needed]

While Tatanga's homeworld and the name of his species are not revealed, what may be another member of his race appears as a boss in the SNES version of Wario's Woods, named Katsini.

Profiles and statistics[edit]

Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten[edit]

出身 不明
性格 小心者
登場ゲーム ランド1、 ランド2

Place of origin: Unknown
Disposition: Timid person
Game appearances: Land 1, Land 2
Now Wario's lackey?
"I'm the Mysterious Spaceman Tatanga. In Mario Land, I took over Sarasa Land and tried to take Princess Daisy as my queen, but Mario got in my way. This time I'll get in his way!"

Super Mario Land[edit]

  • 3DS Virtual Console manual: "This unknown monster appeared suddenly from deep space. He pilots the robot Pagosu and attacks with scattered rockets."

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate spirit[edit]

Name Image Series / game Type Class Strength / effect(s) How to obtain Spirit battle
Opponent(s) Battle conditions Stage Song
Tatanga Tatanga in Pagosu, Super Mario Land Super Mario Series Primary (2) Advanced Shield Spirit Board Morton Mario Galaxy (Battlefield) Underground Theme - Super Mario Land

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese 宇宙怪人タタンガ[5]
Uchū kaijin Tatanga
Mysterious Spaceman Tatanga
Dutch De Mysterieuze Ruimteman Tatanga[6] The Mysterious Spaceman Tatanga
French Tatanga
Tatanga, monstre mystérieux de l'espace
Tatanga, mysterious monster from space
German Tatanga, der rätselhafte Raumfahrer Tatanga, the enigmatic spaceman
Italian Tatanga
Tatanga, il mostro dello spazio[7]
Alieno[8] (Super Mario Land 2)
Tatanga, the space monster
Russian Татанга
Spanish Tatanga
Tatanga, el ser del espacio
Tatanga, the Being from Space


  1. ^ a b Super Mario Land English instruction booklet, page 17.
  2. ^ Super Mario Land English instruction booklet, page 15.
  3. ^ Nintendo Magazine System (AU) Issue #5, page 55.
  4. ^ Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten. Page 32. 「オイラは宇宙怪人タタンガ。マリオランドでサラサ・ランドをり、デイジーにしようとしたらマリオに邪魔されちまった。今度はオイラが邪魔をしてやる!」 ("I'm the Mysterious Spaceman Tatanga. In Mario Land, I took over Sarasa Land and tried to take Princess Daisy as my queen, but Mario got in my way. This time I'll get in his way!")
  5. ^ Super Mario Land Japanese instruction booklet, page 21.
  6. ^ Club Nintendo (Netherlands) Classic, page 9.
  7. ^ Super Mario Bros. Enciclopedia; pag. 46
  8. ^ Club Nintendo (Italy) Numero 1 - 1993, page 24.