Super Mario Bros. Wonder devs had over 2,000 ideas for the game, including the addition of an enormous live-action Mario that didn’t make the cut

Mario seen powering up with a Super Mushroom in Super Mario Bros. Wonder.
(Image credit: Nintendo)

It’s been revealed that during its development, the team behind Super Mario Bros. Wonder generated over 2,000 ideas for the game, including one from its sound director that would have added a huge live-action Mario to the game who said “boing” to himself. Unfortunately, that didn’t make the cut. 

In a new Ask the Developer interview posted on the official Nintendo website yesterday (October 17), members of the Super Mario Bros. Wonder development team spoke about how they came up with a new game “full of hidden surprises and wonders”. Game designer Koichi Hayashida explained that he wanted to apply some of the ideas behind the creation of 3D Mario games to Wonder, despite it being a 2D game, since the 3D titles are “a ‘toy box of ideas”. 

“With these things in mind, we decided to have an idea-sharing session,” Hayashida said. “Everyone from programmers to designers and sound designers joined in and wrote down gameplay ideas on sticky notes, which could be unrelated to their field of expertise, and we made prototypes on the spot. There were just so many ideas. Before this interview, I counted the number of sticky notes we had, and there were over 2,000!”

During this process, the team generated ideas such as the bending Warp Pipes that can be seen in the game’s first trailer, and after lots of prototyping, ultimately discovered what director Shiro Mouri referred to as the “core” of the game. He noted: “This is a rather drastic approach, but first, you've got to take everything to the extreme. If you think you've gone too far, you can make adjustments later.”

Speaking of going to the extreme, the aforementioned live-action Mario idea was generated by Wonder’s sound director, Koji Kondo, who explained: “I shared the idea of an eight-heads-tall, life-sized, live-action Mario humming along with the background music as he goes along. [...] When he jumps, he says to himself, ‘Boing!’ ...The idea was never used, though. I felt I had to take the lead in going to the extreme.”

I don’t know about you, but if Wonder ever receives DLC later down the line, I know what I want to see.

Super Mario Bros. Wonder is one of this year’s most exciting upcoming Switch games, but if you’re looking for something to play right away, be sure to check out our list of the best Nintendo Switch games.

Catherine Lewis
News Writer, TechRadar Gaming

Catherine is a News Writer for TechRadar Gaming. Armed with a journalism degree from The University of Sheffield, she was sucked into the games media industry after spending far too much time on her university newspaper writing about Pokémon and cool indie games, and realising that was a very cool job, actually. She previously spent 19 months working at GAMINGbible as a full-time journalist. She loves all things Nintendo, and will never stop talking about Xenoblade Chronicles.