Tower of the Wing Cap

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Tower of the Wing Cap
Mario on the Tower of the Wing Cap
Mario in the Tower of the Wing Cap
Area Tower of the Wing Cap (N64) / ? Switch (DS)
How to unlock 10 Power Stars (14 in the DS remake)
Stars Super Mario 64:
Star icon in Super Mario 64
Super Mario 64 DS:
Star SM64DS.png

The Tower of the Wing Cap, called the Wing Cap Course in the original message that appears upon the player entering and the Wing Cap Tower in Australia's Nintendo Magazine System,[1] and simply labeled ? Switch in the DS remake (although "Tower of the Wing Cap" was still in use by Prima Games),[2] is a castle tower in the sky that contains the Wing Cap Switch, appearing in Super Mario 64 and Super Mario 64 DS. The entrance is located on the first floor of the Mushroom Castle. Once the player has collected ten Power Stars (14 in Super Mario 64 DS), sunlight shines down from the ceiling onto the rug in the center of the room. If Mario stands in the sunlight and looks up, he will be transported to the level. The cloud pattern on the ceiling can also be seen on the second floor in normal paintings that Mario cannot enter, and even later in the entrance holes of Rainbow Ride and Wing Mario Over the Rainbow. Although the sunlight disappears once the red switch has been activated, Mario can still return to the level by standing in the same spot and looking up.


Map of Tower of the Wing Cap
Map of ? Switch in Super Mario 64 DS

In Super Mario 64, Mario immediately appears in flight as Wing Mario. 47 Yellow Coins are found in the air, including four rings of eight Yellow Coins with two Red Coins in the middle of each ring. Upon landing on the tower, Mario is able to press the Wing Cap Switch, which in turn makes all the red blocks solid. A Power Star can also be found here after the player collects the eight Red Coins. This is the only location that Mario enters as Wing Mario; in other courses, he must collect a Wing Cap from a red block and either launch from a cannon or triple-jump to take off.

In Super Mario 64 DS, the red switch is changed from a ! Switch to a ? Switch, and its corresponding blocks are changed from ! Blocks to ? Blocks. In addition, only Mario is granted wings upon entering; if any characters other than Mario access the course, they will still flip as they normally do during a course intro but plummet into the abyss, which will promptly transport them back into the castle.

When Mario accesses the ? Switch course for the first time, it is mistakenly described as the "? Switches of Rainbow Tower" despite only one such switch existing in this version.

If the player falls below the stage, they will be returned to the castle lobby with no life lost.


Wing Mario in the Tower of the Wing Cap of Super Mario 64
Mario on the tower

There is only one Power Star to collect in this area. Its mission is called Flying for Coins.[3] Using the wings that he is granted upon entering the level, Mario must fly around the area and collect the eight Red Coins floating in the air in the four compass directions. The Red Coins are found in pairs. Due to the fact that Mario slowly loses altitude while flying, he will have to reenter the level and try again if he drops below the point where the coins are. Additionally, each pair of coins going counterclockwise starting from the eastern side of the tower is lower than the last, meaning that it is most efficient to start with that pair while going in that direction. Once all the Red Coins are collected, the Power Star appears at the Star Marker on top of the tower.

Names in other languages[edit]

Super Mario 64[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese はばたけ!はねスイッチへ
Habatake! Hane Suicchi e
Hane no Suicchi no Kōsu
Flap! To the Wing Switch

Wing Switch Course
Chinese 飞行帽之塔
Fēixíngmào Zhī tǎ
Tower of the Wing Cap
French Interrupteur de la tour ailée Switch of the Winged Tower
German Roter Schalterpalast Red Switch Palace

Super Mario 64 DS[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese びっくり!ハテナスイッチ
Bikkuri! Hatena Suicchi
Hatena Suicchi no Reinbō Tawā
Surprise! ? Switch

? Switch of Rainbow Tower
Chinese 令人惊奇的?开关
Lìngrén Jīngqí de ?Kāiguān
The Surprising ? Switch
French Interrupteur ? ? Switch
German ?-Schalter ? Switch
Italian Torre Arcobaleno
L'Interruttore ?
Rainbow Tower
The ? Switch
Korean 깜짝!?스위치
Kkamjjak! ?-Seuwichi
Surprise! ? Switch
Spanish El Interruptor ? The ? Switch

References in other games[edit]


  1. ^ Nintendo Magazine System (AU) Issue #54, page 63.
  2. ^ Knight, Michael. Nintendo DS Pocket Guide. Page 358.
  3. ^ M. Arakawa. Super Mario 64 Player's Guide. Page 45.