Super Mario Bros. 3/Advanced Techniques

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The basics covered in Controls are just the start of what Mario and Luigi are capable of. On this page, you'll learn about a few extra moves and tricks that they can perform to get the best of Bowser and his cohorts.

Movement techniques[edit]

Diagonal jumping
Some blocks are in difficult-to-reach places. If you wish to hit a block (visible or invisible) that has no solid platform beneath it, you must stand on the corner of an existing block, and jump up diagonally to hit your target.
Slide under
When running, press Down dpad on the control pad to squat and your momentum will help you slide through small gaps. This is even more effective when you're on ice because you don't need to time your squatting so carefully.
Jump around corners
If you are standing on a single block platform, and would like to rise to another block directly above you, stand on the corner of the lower block. Jump up and use the control pad to bend your jump around the higher block so that you land on top.
Jet coaster jump
Diagonal slopes are not just fun to slide down, they can also be used to launch you to new locations. On slopes which have small ramps at the bottom, you can slide down and make a last-second leap at the bottom for an extra high jump.
Jump and squat
To get into narrow passages, get a running start and at the last second before you jump, press Down dpad. You'll squat and jump into the passage. You can also fly while squatting if you time it just right.
Dash over small gaps
If you accelerate (run while holding B button) over small pits and holes, you can make it over them without jumping. This can sometimes be faster and safer than jumping.
Free fall jump
When you're on an overhang, and you need to get under it so that you land on a platform directly below, jump up high into the air, and use the control pad to change your trajectory mid-fall.
Shells can clear blocks
When you have a lot of blocks that need to be cleared quickly, sometimes a well-placed Koopa will do the trick. Kick or release a Koopa shell at the right time, and you will find that they make excellent block removers.

1-Up techniques[edit]

The oscillating Koopa technique
Have a Koopa do the dirty work of collecting points and 1-Ups for you. When an endless number of enemies, such as Lakitu's Spinys or some Bullet Bills, are coming at you, kick a Koopa shell so that it goes back and forth between two obstacles. Quickly find a safe spot to stand in. As the enemies attack, they'll be knocked out by the Koopa and you'll earn points and eventually 1-Ups.
The Goomba stomp technique
If you stomp several enemies in a row without touching the ground, you'll gain more points for each one. After the ninth enemy, you'll start getting 1-Ups. To accomplish this maneuver, you need to be in Raccoon or Tanooki form and you must be in a place where there is an endless supply of enemies, such as a Goomba generating pipe, or a room full of resurrecting Dry Bones.
The Vine method
In a variation of the Goomba stomp technique, stomp an enemy and jump onto a vine or a rotary lift. When the enemy recovers, stomp him again and leap back onto the vine. Touching the vine or lift doesn't count as touching the ground, so you'll keep racking up points and eventually 1-Ups. It's difficult but it works.
Multiple 1-Ups/200+ coin stages
Some stages have multiple 1-Ups or hundreds of coins. In these worlds, you can collect all the 1-Ups or all the coins and then lose your life intentionally so that you can go back and do it again. Your lives will go up by at least one life every time you try.
Consistent Star Cards
If you enter the black zone at the end of a stage at P-speed and touch the Card Panel without slowing down, you will always receive the Star Card. Getting three of those in a row will grant you five 1-Ups. In stages where you emerge from a pipe just before the end zone, you will have just enough time to hit P-speed before the Card Panel comes into view. Make sure you don't slow down, don't miss your jump and hit the Card Panel from the left side.