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Vanilla Fortress
Level type Fortress
Entrance Vanilla Secret 3
Exit Butter Bridge 1
Secret Exit None
Time at Start 300

The Vanilla Fortress is the only underwater fortress in the game.


  • The Fishbone isn't really a problem; it just swims forward. As well, the water makes it easier to avoid the Ball and Chain since you can just swim around it.
  • At the bottom there's a passageway that only Small Mario can take. It might seem like a shortcut, but it's not. Don't bother with it.
  • You can get a feather from the ? block.
  • The Dry Bones here are a bit more dangerous; they will throw bones at you which you must avoid. They're accompanied by Bony Beetles that are harmful if landed on. Cape Mario can just use his cape to get rid of these threats.
  • Some of the ceiling spikes fall down if you come near them, and they will hit you if you carelessly swim into them. Swim carefully and let them fall down before you cross the area.
  • Enter the pipe at the end to get to the second area.
  • If you for whatever reason took the first pipe only accessible as Small Mario, you will end up here. Otherwise, you will appear in the next section of the map.
  • Be extra careful around Thwomps. Swimming is slower than running, but the Thwomp moves just as fast underwater as he does outside.
  • You will be given the choice of taking the upper or lower path. The upper path just has a few Ball and Chains and a few Fishbones, while the bottom path has a bit more variety in enemies. No matter which path you take, you should grab the mushroom (it will be a feather if you somehow are already Super Mario) from the ? block.
  • This is where you will appear if you took the other pipe at the end of the first area.
  • There's a secret 1-up gained by swimming counter-clockwise around one of the gray blocks starting from 6 o'clock.
  • Grab the mushroom at the end if you need it, then enter the red door to reach the mini-boss of this area.

Mini-boss: Reznor[edit]

  • Reznor is four dinosaurs standing on a rotating set of platforms. They attack you using fireballs and you need to defeat them by hitting their platforms from below. Their fireballs are slow and easily avoided.
  • However, once you defeat two of them, the floor starts to break away and you will need to stand on the platforms so you don't fall into the lava. From here, you will need to somehow manage to get rid the remaining ones.
  • Once Reznor is defeated, you will march on to the Twin Bridges area.