Best of Princess Peach

Princess Peach is one of the most popular Mario characters and she’s recently getting her own game on the Switch called Princess Peach Showtime!  And that’s not even the first time she’s gotten her own game either!  And even though she spends much of her time as a damsel in distress waiting for Mario to save her, there are plenty of other times when Nintendo lets her shine and be a hero.  So in honor of her new game, I thought I’d go back and look at Princess Peach’s best moments.

Super Mario Bros. 2

It really didn’t take long for Peach to become a playable character and be a hero.  Only the second game in the Super Mario Bros. series, in fact.  Now granted, everyone knows the Super Mario Bros. 2 wasn’t the TRUE sequel and it was only released in the US at first because the actual sequel was just a harder version of the first game. But I still consider it to be a true legit Mario game because the game it was based off of, Doki Doki Panic, was still developed by Shigeru Miyamoto and used a lot of the ideas he wanted to implement in the next Mario game.  And now many of the enemies in the US Mario 2 are staples in the series.  And here’s an unpopular opinion I have: I enjoyed US Mario 2 more than Mario 3.  Granted, I still think Mario 3 is a masterpiece, I just liked the other one better for some reason.  Anyway, US Mario 2 did a lot to enhance Princess Peach’s personality.  She finally looks like her artwork now, because if you’ve ever saved her in the original game, you know she looks totally different!  This was the game that also gave her the skill of floating for a bit after a jump.  Perfect for novice 2D platform gamers and I certainly used her and Luigi a lot as a kid.  Since I’m a bit better at 2D platformers now, I mostly use Toad.  But anyway, this game did a lot to further the princess’ presence.  Although back then, she was still called Princess Toadstool in the US.  She was always called Princess Peach in Japan, but it took until Mario 64 before she was ever called that here.

Super Mario RPG

This game is novel for many reasons.  It’s the first Mario RPG, obviously.  But it’s also a big deal that it was made by Square.  And Princess Peach is one of the characters you can have in your party.  At this point, it was still pretty rare to have Peach be playable in games, so this was novel, too.  And she’s one the best characters you can have.  She has an awesome move called Group Hug that heals most everyone’s HP as well as cures all status effects!  And some of her attacks are pretty funny, too, as she uses slaps, fans, a frying pan, and even bombs!

Multiplayer Madness

Ever since the Mario sports games on the N64, Peach has always been a staple character you can play as, whether it be Golf, Tennis (which was actually first on the Virtual Boy), Baseball, Soccer, and more!  She was also there from the beginning in Super Mario Kart on the SNES.  She’s been playable in every Mario Party game, and was even a fighter from the second game onward in Super Smash Bros.

Paper Mario Series

The second big Mario RPG series was Paper Mario.  Even though Peach wasn’t in your party in any of those games but one, and was captured by Bowser or some other enemy most of the time, the first two games let you play as her in certain spots.  Paper Mario on the N64 and Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door on the GameCube had spots where you could control Princess Peach and it showed that she didn’t just wait around for Mario to save her.  I won’t go to any more details about those since we are getting a remake of The Thousand Year Door this year, but those spots where you could play as her were pretty neat.  And then there’s Super Paper Mario on the Wii.  This game combined RPG aspects and visuals from the Paper Mario series and put them into a 2D platformer.  Here you’ll eventually get to play as Peach and use her floating skills to bypass obstacles.

Super Mario 3D World

This was originally on the Wii U but was ported to the Switch, and is also kind of a sequel to Super Mario 3D Land on the 3DS.  It’s a fixed camera 3D platformer and Peach is playable in this one and even has her float jump move from Mario 2.  But one cool thing about this game is that in the beginning story section when Bowser comes out of a pipe to reveal his latest evil plan, do you know who jumps in the pipe first to go after him?  No it’s not Mario!  It’s Peach!  She jumps in first without hesitation to chase Bowser!

Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle

I’m not really big into strategy tactical games, but one way to get me to try one is to put Mario characters in it and then also mix them with Rabbids characters for some extra weirdness.  The game was pretty humorous, but ultimately my tastes in games won out and I didn’t really like it and never finished it or even got the sequel.  But Princess Peach is playable in it and there’s even a Rabbid Peach who is obsessed with taking selfies on her cell phone!

Super Mario Bros. Wonder

The latest game in the Super Mario Bros. series has a lot of playable characters, including Peach.  She doesn’t have her float jump here, as that’s reserved for a badge skill you can get.  But she can still turn into an elephant just as good as the rest of them!  There’s one cute online video that Nintendo used to advertise this game and it showed Bowser giving Peach a single flower.  But then she turns into an elephant and Bowser puts away the flower and gives her a bouquet instead!

Super Mario Odyssey

This next paragraph has spoilers, so if you don’t want that, just skip this one.  Anyway, even though Peach spends most of the time in this game captured by Bowser, it’s the ending that lets her shine.  At the end when Mario and Bowser are both begging for her to marry one of them, she gets a bit overwhelmed but finally has enough and shoves them both out of the way, shouts “Enough!” and goes on her way leaving them behind.  You can then see her in the other levels vacationing and in different outfits.

Super Princess Peach

Like I said earlier, Princess Peach Showtime isn’t the first time she had her own game.  On the DS there was Super Princess Peach.  It was a pretty standard 2D platformer, but Peach could use a talking umbrella named Parry to attack enemies, guard, and float after a jump.  On the bottom touch screen, you could choose from four different emotions to give Peach some special powers.  Anger set her on fire and let her burn things.  Sadness made her cry a river of tears.  Happy let her fly, and calm let her heal herself.

This game got a bit of flak because people said it was sexist that this game starring a lady who used emotions as a major part of the gameplay.  But I don’t think they were looking at the whole picture.  Princess Peach is on a quest to save Mario, Luigi, and Toads from Bowser, who kidnapped them and took them to his vacation villa on Vibe Island.  This island is magical and enhances anyone’s emotions to give them special powers.  So it’s not just Peach that’s affected by this.  A sad Goomba can run at you crying.  An angry Hammer Bro. can throw hammers faster.  Even bosses use emotions as attacks.  So she’s not being singled out here.  Also, who says being emotional and sensitive is a bad thing?  I think that’s what makes the world go round and keeps us non-sensitive types in line.  So I think it’s something that we can celebrate within reason.  But if you still think I’m being sexist by saying that, than I apologize.  I just don’t think it’s as bad as some make it out to be.

The other notable thing about Super Princess Peach is that it was made by Tose.  Tose is a Japanese game developer that is kind of the workhorse of the industry.  They’ve helped out in a lot of games, and often go uncredited.  This is one of the few times they got credit.  They also got credit on their other 2D platformer series: The Legendary Starfy.  That was another cartoony 2D platformer that was like a mix of Kirby and SpongeBob.  We only got one Starfy game in the US, but Japan got three on the GBA and one other one on the DS.  They’re really fun games as well and Starfy even makes a ‘blink and you’ll miss it’ cameo in Super Princess Peach.  All in all, I think Super Princess Peach was a pretty darn fun game.

Super Mario Bros. Movie

They really let Princess Peach shine here because she fights alongside Mario through most of the movie.  It’s Luigi that gets captured here.  While I hate that Luigi gets less of the spotlight this way, it kind of makes sense for the plot of the movie because if Mario goes to this strange new world to rescue someone he doesn’t even know, why would he do it?  But if he goes to rescue his brother, who he already knows and loves, then that makes more sense.  This movie won’t win any awards for plot or story or anything like that, but it’s still a fun and entertaining romp if you just turn off your brain for a bit.  And that’s OK.  A must see for Mario fans.  We won’t talk about that live action movie they made in the early 90s.  That one didn’t even have Peach in it anyway.  I think it was Daisy instead.

Mario cartoons

Princess Peach was also featured a lot in the Mario cartoons from the late 80s and early 90s.  Granted, she was called Toadstool back then.  First there was The Super Mario Bros. Super Show, which was based off of the first and second games, but also put them in movie, TV, literature, and other parodies.  The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 came next, and it was probably the best of the three cartoons.  Then came the Super Mario World cartoon and that was the worst.  I love how in the Mario movie, they use the rap from the cartoon and the voice of the lady in the commercial is the same voice actress as the Princess from the cartoon as well!

Super Nintendo World

At Universal Studios in Hollywood, they have an area of the theme park based around Mario games.  I went there last year, and if you haven’t read about it already, you can by clicking here.  They have walkaround characters that you can get your picture taken with, and the neat thing is they put voice clips in them so it seems like they are talking.  Mario and Luigi will say stuff like “Smile and say ‘Luigi’” and “That-a was pretty good!”  When I got my picture taken with Princess Peach, she asked, “Are you enjoying your stay in my kingdom?”  But my favorite part was when a little girl would walk up to her, they’d have a voice clip that had her say, “Oh look, another princess!”  I thought that was cute.  They also had a Princess Peach cupcake in the café, but I didn’t get that.  I should also mention that Peach is my mom’s favorite Mario character, and at the souvenir shop I got her a zipper pouch that had Peach on it and said Super Nintendo World.

Princess Peach Showtime

And finally, we come to her most recent game.  As of this writing, I haven’t played this game yet.  But by the time I decide to post this, or by the time you read it, I may already have played it.  It just depends. Anyway, in this game, Princess Peach attends a play but a baddie takes over and Peach must save the day.  From what I can tell, this looks like a fixed camera 3D platformer where you are on a stage setting and Peach can don different outfits that give her different skills.  Depending on how much I like the game, and how much time I have, I may even write another blog about her different outfits or what play stages there are.  But no matter what, I’m sure looking forward to playing it at least!

And that’s all for now.  In the comments section, let me know what your favorite Princess Peach moments are.  Later!

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