Super Mario's Wacky Worlds
Developer(s) NovaLogic[1]
Publisher(s) Philips Interactive Media[2]
Designer(s) Marty Foulger
Programmer(s) John Brooks
Silas Warner
Artist(s) Nina Stanley
Platform(s) Philips CD-i
Release date(s) Cancelled
Genre(s) Adventure, platform

Super Mario's Wacky Worlds is a cancelled Mario platform video game in development by NovaLogic for the Philips CD-i system. The game was designed to be a sequel to Super Mario World, a Super NES game released in 1990, that took advantage of the system's hardware. While an early prototype of the game received positive feedback from Nintendo[citation needed]

, the game was cancelled due to the declining sales of the Philips CD-i system.


NovaLogic, the developer of Super Mario's Wacky Worlds, was hoping to be hired by Nintendo.[3] Then helping Nintendo with the Super NES CD-ROM Adapter, Philips had the rights to make games with Nintendo characters for their CD-i. It was suggested to NovaLogic by a Nintendo sales executive that simple Super NES games could play on the CD-i, sparking the idea of putting a follow-up to Super Mario World on the system. Developers Silas Warner and John Brooks were drafted as the game's designers, and worked 24 hours a day for two weeks on the game, finishing only a part of one level to present to Nintendo.[1] Nintendo was impressed, but because of poor CD-i sales was forced to cancel the game.[citation needed] [4] It also faced complications due to multiple designers leaving to work for Electronic Arts.[5] This ended the CD-i career of Warner, who had expected Nintendo's reaction. Other developers such as lead artist Nina Stanley stayed with the project.

Though the developers were highly enthusiastic about making a traditional Mario game (partly to clear their reputation surrounding Nintendo-licensed characters), NovaLogic hoped to use as little money as possible on the project, which was mostly executed with the intentions of making a small amount of profit while games such as those of the Comanche series had focus. Version 0.11, the game's final prototype (a pre-alpha), was finished on March 3, 1993 after the project had about a year of work. Approximately 80% of the game's art, 95% of its design, and around 30% of its code was finished.[citation needed]

The prototype contains music taken from Super Mario World and no sound effects besides the jumping sound.[6] This seems to be an early placeholder, as the idea for the final game was to take advantage of the disc format and use a flexible audio range rather than port unimproved synthesised sound.[3]

Accurately capturing the sprites of Super Mario World was difficult for the Wacky Worlds development team, since the CD-i had a different sprite-making style than that of the SNES.[6] To create their characters, they actually pirated their designs from Super Mario World,[3] producing Mario, as well as several Koopa Troopa variations based on the Super Mario World sprite. These Koopa Troopas come in various different designs, including a Greek Koopa, knight Koopa, eskimo Koopa, and vampire Koopa. The development team also sprited an enemy of their own creation, a walrus.[7] The backgrounds were all hand-drawn by the development team.[6][3] The levels are based on real-world locations.[8]


Super Mario's Wacky Worlds Greek 1

Mario in the first stage of the prototype, Greek 1.

Mario can only walk and jump, though swimming and sliding may have been included in time.[3] Enemies are also not programmed correctly; they disappear when Mario ends up above them, suggesting incomplete stomping attempts.[6] Enemies cannot harm Mario, and are stopped in their tracks if touched, even if it means ending up floating in the air. Mario also can't die when he falls into a pit. Instead, he floats on it.[9]

Level progression is not explicit, but can be pieced together by the selectible stages. Most worlds have two or three levels, the first of which end with Warp Pipes (or similar things, such as the Trojan Horse in Greek 1), whereas the last most often has a stylized "M" object holding tape. Both "M" marks and Warp Pipes are non-functional,[6] so one must restart their CD-i or emulator to exit a level.[3]

Impact and releaseEdit

Three prototypes are in circulation, one of which was sold on the online auction website eBay for $1,000.[3] A certain prototype, perhaps the same one as that sold on eBay, has been leaked to the internet in ISO form and can be played both on emulators and as a burnt disc on an actual CD-i.[6][10] Kombo wrote that the game paled in comparison to Sonic CD (another platformer sequel released on a CD-based platform), and criticized the real-world setting as not befitting the "Wacky" monicker. He suggested that its cancellation helped avoid a Wand of Gamelon situation.[8] GamesRadar writer Tom Goulter compared it to a fan game, stating that while it was an impressive effort, the CD-i's limitations made it fortunate for him that it never surfaced.[1] Joystiq's Justin McElroy felt that the game would have been better off to have not been rediscovered. He felt that the real-world settings like Egypt were an odd choice and that it was not a worthy successor to Super Mario World.[11] Digital Spy's Mark Langshaw felt that the limited sprite count and the CD-i's pointer controls would have tarnished Super Mario World had it been released.[12]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Goulter, Tom (January 29, 2011). "The worst games you never played". GamesRadar. Retrieved May 26, 2019. 
  2. "Company Bio: Philips Interactive Media". GameSpy. Retrieved May 26, 2019. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 Sidewalk CD-i Playground (Accessed on 6-19-08)
  4. Langshaw, Mark (April 22, 2011). "Retro Corner: 'Super Mario World'". Digital Spy. Retrieved May 26, 2019. 
  5. East, Tom (April 10, 2009). "Rare Mario games". Official Nintendo Magazine. Archived from the original on January 7, 2011. Retrieved June 13, 2019. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 Quebec Gamers Script error (Accessed on 6-19-08)
  7. Mario Fan Games Galaxy (accessed 6-19-08)
  8. 8.0 8.1 "Super Mario’s Wacky Worlds Footage Revealed". Kombo. May 4, 2012. Retrieved May 26, 2019. 
  9. YouTube (accessed 6-20-08)
  10. Gerardi, Matt (September 17, 2014). "Read This: A peek into the making of a lost Mario game". The A.V. Club. Retrieved May 26, 2019. 
  11. McElroy, Justin (September 7, 2009). "Super Mario's Wacky Worlds should have stayed buried". Engadget. Retrieved May 26, 2019. 
  12. Langshaw, Mark (May 29, 2011). "Feature: Lost Levels: The Best of Vapourware". Retrieved May 26, 2019. 

External linksEdit

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