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    Single Character Challenge FAQ by Amazing Ampharos

    Version: 1.0 | Updated: 08/25/07 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    Super Mario RPG Single Character Challenge FAQ
    I. Introduction
    Hello and welcome to my FAQ on the Super Mario RPG Single Character Challenge.
    The goal is quite simple. In this challenge, the player shall beat the game by
    only using one character. Which character to choose is entirely up to the
    player. There are a few rules, and they are as such:
    1. In battle, only the chosen character may take action. The other characters
    must use either of the two effectively useless items Goody Bag or Mystery Egg.
    Before these items are obtained, the other characters must defend every turn.
    You may make no effort to heal or stat increase the other party members either
    in or out of battle. The other characters may not equip anything at all. They
    may only be healed as part of full party restoration outside of battle from
    either Mushrooms in chests or a stay at an inn. To be clear, this includes the
    "Run" command. Only the single character may attempt to flee from battle for
    the party. This also includes timed defense. You must not press a button to
    guard with other characters. Just let them take the full hit. Both of these are
    inconvenient, and nobody is watching. You can cheat if you want, but don't brag
    about your accomplishment if you cheat during the challenge!
    2. Priority for other party members must be given to those with the worst
    defenses. Mallow shall always be in the party, and if another dummy character
    must be chosen, it shall be Toadstool. Geno is also fine as the second
    character depending on levels and such; just don't use Bowser.
    3. The following items are simply too good and are banned in order to maintain
    a fair challenge: Super Suit, Attack Scarf, Star Egg, Lazy Shell (armor), Red
    and EXP Booster.
    4. Before the single character is obtained, the game may be played in any
    manner that the player chooses. Levels should be kept reasonably low. This
    obviously does not apply if your single character is Mario.
    5. There are two boss fights in which exceptions must be made. These are the
    Bundt and Valentina boss fights. In the second stage of the Bundt fight, the
    candles on the cake must be extinguished by using a physical attack against
    them. At the end of every round, one is re-ignited, and Bundt attacks. Clearly,
    one character fighting alone cannot possibly win as his work is undone every
    round. For this fight, the player may equip the other two characters with armor
    and use them to clear the second form. The single character must still be the
    only one to take action during the first and third stages of the fight, and
    once the third stage begins, the other characters may no longer be healed.
    As per Valentina, the problem is that one character is abducted by Dodo at the
    start of the fight. This character must battle Dodo alone, and then the other
    two party members must fight Valentina. Once both have taken enough damage, the
    two parties shall reunite. The single character must remain in battle with
    Valentina as this is the much harder battle. Do not place the single character
    in the middle of your formation upon entering this battle. For the purposes of
    fighting Dodo, a character of your choice may be equipped and placed in the
    middle slot of the party. After the two groups reunite, this character may no
    longer take action or be supported.
    I know those rules can sound intimidating and somewhat contrived, but it really
    does lead to a very interesting and fun challenge. I can personally verify that
    this can be completed with every character without power leveling. I would not
    suggest this to someone who has yet to complete the game, and, as such, I will
    be spoiling the game's plot randomly throughout the guide. If you do not wish
    to be spoiled, just stop reading right now, beat the game normally, and then
    come back.
    II. Table of Contents
    I. Introduction
    II. Table of Contents
    III. Meet the Characters
    IV. General Tips
    V. Walkthrough
    VI. Jinx
    VII. Culex
    VIII. Other Challenges
    IX. Contact and Credits
    III. Meet the Characters
    Yes, yes, we all know who the characters are.  We have Mario, Mallow, Geno,
    Bowser, and Toadstool. However, how well do you really know them? This is not
    going to be some lame plot driven explanation. Prepare yourselves for a real
    analysis from a gameplay perspective.
    1. Mario
    Mario is character you begin the game with and is also quite possibly the best.
    He has average stats all around with a well above average physical attack, and
    his Jump line of spells is incredible. However, he has no real options beyond
    all out attacking when it comes to his spells, and as such, he must rely on
    items for support in any battle that he cannot quickly win.
    As a solo character, Mario should do extraordinarily well against bosses due to
    his obscenely powerful single target attacking options. However, against
    generics, he is, for the most part, confined to single target attacking which
    will cause him to take a good amount of damage. A Mario challenge should always
    keep a healthy supply of Mushrooms in the inventory. For the stronger bosses,
    Energizers, Bracers, and Yoshi-Ade could prove to be a great help. Mario is
    very conservative in terms of FP use so you will not need to carry many syrups.
    In terms of equipment, Mario has great options. He gets new, powerful weapons
    frequently. Most of these are pretty standard, but his Masher and Lazy Shell
    weapons deserve special note. These are both very powerful when you get them,
    but they have the quirk of having a large degree of random damage variance.
    This is not bad as it helps as often as it hurts, but just know that they are
    not reliable. His armor is "tier 1" which means that it gives higher bonuses
    than some other characters get. He gets a few unique accessories, but the only
    one which is interesting to us is the Jump Shoes. The Jump Shoes give a few
    minor stat boosts, but more importantly, they allow his Jump type spells to be
    effective against all enemies. This is incredibly handy, and, as such, the Jump
    Shoes should be equipped for most of the game.
    Mario's Jump special is, in my opinion, the best special in the game. It seems
    weak at first with a mere 25 magic power, but for every two times it is used,
    the power increases by 1, ultimately capping out at 152 magic power! 255 uses
    seems like a lot, but if Jump is used constantly with Mario as the only
    character attacking, this number is very obtainable fairly early in the game.
    For only 3 FP, there is really no reason not to spam this technique. This is
    what makes a Mario challenge so fast paced and overall easy.
    Fire Orb, on the other hand, is not so good. If you are very good at the timing
    command, you can deal more damage than the low 20 magic power would seem to
    suggest, but except for very early in the game, it cannot compete with Jump
    for damage. However, very early in the game is the time at which Fire Orb's 5
    FP cost will be the most restrictive. Jump Shoes allow Jump to be effective
    against otherwise resistant enemies so the different element is no aid. Still,
    Fire Orb is invaluable against one particular early game boss who is weak to
    fire so you cannot completely disregard this special.
    Super Jump is another great special. 45 magic power is not so bad, and the
    damage builds up quite a bit as you bounce over and over again. In order for it
    to be stronger than a maxed out Jump in general, you will need about 50
    bounces. If you are unable to do this, stick with Jump. Jump is also less time
    consuming and overall easier to do. Jump's lower FP cost is also attractive.
    Ultimately, which you use in a difficult situation is up to play style, but
    both are great choices. It should be noted that the game caps the number of
    bounces at 100.
    Super Flame is useless. 9 FP is beginning to get expensive, and there is no
    way you can press the button enough times to keep up with Jump and Super Jump.
    You might as well forget that Mario even learns this useless special.
    Ultra Jump is Mario's last good special. Against a single target, it is an
    improved version of Super Jump. You need, on average, about 30 bounces to equal
    a maxed out Jump. However, against multiple targets, Mario will randomly spread
    out the damage. If you are very, very good at bouncing, this can be beneficial,
    but in general, it is a detriment as no enemy will be hit enough times to equal
    fatal damage. This really limits the versatility of Ultra Jump. 11 FP cost is
    also unpleasantly high, but it is bearable. It should be noted that, as with
    Super Jump, the game will not allow you to bounce over 100 times.
    Ultra Flame is to Ultra Jump as Super Flame is to Super Jump. That being said,
    Ultra Flame is completely useless. 14 FP cost certainly does not help.
    Overall, Mario's challenge is very fast paced and easy.
    2. Mallow
    Mallow joins the cause very early, but unlike Mario, he is not so good. He is
    an all out mage which is a fairly limiting role. Needing FP in order to be able
    to function well is bad. His rather horrible HP and defense will leave him
    needing to heal more often than all of the other characters. However, here is
    where his first bright point comes. He learns a healing spell at level 3.
    One big issue to note is that, for much of the game, Mallow will be limited to
    "thunder" elemental spells for attacking. Therefore, enemies that resist
    thunder can only be killed by his mediocre physical attack. Expect many long
    battles in Mallow's challenge.
    Mallow's ability to heal renders Mushrooms obsolete. Do not carry Mushrooms in
    your inventory in Mallow's challenge. Syrups are a better investment, and as 
    such, Mallow should keep a healthy supply. Running out of FP is death, and
    syrups are cheap. Be sure to never let yourself run out of FP. Later in the
    game, Mallow will find Bracers mandatory for boss battles with Energizers being
    potentially helpful. Yoshi-Ade is the best for this purpose, of course.
    One good point about Mallow is that he gets good equipment. While none of
    Mallow's weapons are particularly special, they all give decent boosts. He has
    "tier 1" armor just like Mario so he is at least well protected. He does not
    get anything special as per accessories, but due to his reliance on specials,
    he will especially favor the Wake Up Pin and Safety Ring. His ultimate weapon
    is in the 6 door section of Bowser's Castle, but luckily, it is not in a battle
    Mallow's Thunderbolt special is your salvation early in the game. It is weak in
    general, but earlier on, it will be decent. The fact that it hits all enemies
    will make random encounters early in the game very easy indeed. It eventually
    gets too weak to be your first line of defense, but at the low FP cost of 2, it
    never becomes completely useless.
    HP Rain is the central spell to Mallow in this challenge. I won't lie to you; a
    lot of bosses come down to using this every turn until they run out of FP. 2 FP
    for a very large portion of your health recovered is a great deal. I mean, it's
    healing! Obviously it's great.
    Psychopath is great novelty. When you time it, you see some funny lines. Alas,
    it is not practically useful in any serious capacity. However, if you are
    really curious about a boss's remaining health and have a spare turn, it does
    not hurt to check.
    Shocker is your big single target attack. 60 magic power is fairly strong after
    all. 8 FP is a bit too high to spam, but it will let you eliminate some
    otherwise scary bosses very quickly.
    Snowy is a handy, if limited, spell. It does fairly decent, though hardly
    great, ice damage to all targets. Ice is a very exotic attacking element, and
    this is a boon in some fights. It can help against potent groups of generic
    enemies, but 12 FP is a bit much. Don't get me wrong; Mallow will find this
    very useful. It's just not quite as awesome as Shocker.
    Star Rain is a spell you won't be using much. The main reason for this is that
    Mallow does not learn Star Rain until level 18. Star Rain gains 15 magic power
    in exchange for costing 2 more FP and losing the ice element in comparison to
    Snowy. It's useful against late game generics against whom Snowy was not
    adequate. Otherwise, it's no big deal. On a positive note to the player, Star
    Rain is easier to get a perfect timing on than Snowy, and it gets a 2X
    Overall, Mallow's challenge tends to be very slow paced with a lot of spell
    3. Geno
    Geno joins up right at the start of the Bowyer boss fight, and right from the
    start you notice that he does not seem as durable as you might hope. As the
    game goes on, it gets better, but his lack of defenses will be your single
    biggest concern for most of this challenge. Geno lacks self healing, but he
    does have the distinction of being the only character who can boost his stats
    without the aid of an item. Geno Boost is learned early, and it is the central
    special for this challenge. Geno also has the good fortune of being offensively
    powerful, and his wonderful 30 speed comes in handy frequently.
    Geno excels at killing enemies with his basic melee attacks so syrups are not
    really needed, but if you choose to carry and use them, you will be rewarded
    as Geno can use his FP to wipe out generics very efficiently. Mushrooms are
    obviously a must as they are your only source of healing. Geno does not need
    buffing items of any sort so he can either dedicate more room to standard
    healing items or try to take advantage of his speed to use item attacks at the
    start of generic encounters. Yoshi Cookies are especially handy, and he can use
    them in combination with the Zoom Shoes and Work Pants to harvest Kerokerocola
    from Shy Rangers far before any other character can easily acquire
    Unfortunately, Geno has second rate equipment. His weapons give lesser boosts
    than those that Mario, Mallow, and Toadstool have, and his armor is "tier 2".
    Other than feeling sorry about it, there's not a whole lot the player can do
    about this, but it does extend the usefulness of the universal armor Work Pants
    on Geno. As per accessories, Geno will be a big fan of the Safety Ring. His
    poor durability was a problem for him from the beginning, and that protection
    against those specials is handy. Earlier on, Geno will put more consideration
    into the Amulet than most. He can afford the speed drop, and he really will
    like the defensive bonuses it provides. Also, Geno has the unfortunate problem
    of his ultimate weapon being in the 6 door section of Bowser's Castle in one of
    the combat areas. It will not be easy to obtain.
    Geno Beam is a fairly solid special. It is not particularly powerful, but it is
    not really weak, and 3 FP is a cheap cost. With perfect timing, the power can
    be doubled as well so it really is quite solid. Geno mostly favors his physical
    attack over this, but against his defensive enemies, Geno is very thankful for
    this. Also, while Geno does tend to rely on his physical later in the game,
    early in the game, he will use this as his main method of attack. The earlier
    half of the game is not a difficult time for Geno, and this is largely the
    Geno Boost is your bread and butter. For 4 FP, you boost both your attack and
    defense. Boosting is very powerful in this game; it roughly multiplies all
    damage output by 1.5 and cuts all damage you take in half. That's very, very
    good. This will be your first move in every boss fight, and against any generic
    you can't quickly and easily defeat, this will also be your first move. There
    is no limit to the usefulness of this special.
    Geno Whirl is an interesting special. It seems weak at first, but if you score
    a timed hit, it does 9999 damage. Obviously, this does not work on most bosses,
    but it is very handy against stronger generics. It also does happen to work on
    Exor so Geno has one fewer late game boss to worry about than everyone else. I
    won't claim this is ridiculously useful as 8 FP is a bit pricy for what it
    does, but it certainly does help from time to time. I have been informed that
    some people find timing this special difficult. Press "Y" soon after the blast
    moves off-screen.
    Geno Blast is limited in use like most spells like it, but it can be a handy
    generic killer. Like Geno Beam, you can double its power with perfect timing so
    it's a bit stronger than it might seem. You can use it to take out groups of
    generics, and it's handy against a few bosses. In the end, it's definitely very
    Geno Flash is not so handy. You learn it very late in the game, and it is not
    much of an improvement over Geno Blast. The 16 FP cost tied to it makes it the
    most expensive special in the game, and the effect is certainly not the best.
    You might find it handy in working toward Geno's ultimate weapon, but for other
    purposes, just forget this special.
    Overall, Geno's challenge tends to be very offensively oriented with lots of
    focus on stat boosting.
    4. Bowser
    Bowser is a very unfortunate character. Many new players see his power and
    instantly grow to love him. However, in truth, he is a very weak character.
    Many experts view him as the game's worst character. His HP and defense are
    indeed solid though not really incredible, but his poor weapons make his attack
    merely average. He has almost no magical abilities at all, and that includes
    the very pivotal magic defense stat. Bowser is also the game's slowest
    character so get used to going after the enemy frequently.
    Bowser will want Mushrooms in droves, and he'll crave for the Max Mushrooms
    early due to his high HP. Syrups are not particularly useful for him; he will
    rely almost exclusively on his melee attack for damage. Having some FP for
    Terrorize is handy so maybe carrying a single syrup for an unexpected FP
    shortage wouldn't be a bad idea. Like most characters, he will be happy to have
    stat boosting items as well.
    In terms of equipment, Bowser is a catastrophe of a character. His weapons are
    very weak, and his armor gives useless boosts. For almost the whole game, you
    will want to keep the Work Pants equipped. Only once you obtain the Heal Shell
    in Bowser's Keep will you want to consider removing those Work Pants. For
    accessories, he will really love the Amulet and Safety Ring as they reduce the
    threat of magic attacks, and magic attacks are very bad news for Bowser in
    general. In terms of killing generics, Bowser will also be a bigger fan than
    most of the Troopa Pin. His ultimate weapon is behind a battle room in the 6
    door section of Bowser's Castle. It also happens to be the one that ends with
    one of those unpleasant fake treasure chest enemies, but at the very least, he
    does not have to face the 6 Shaman party. Since he relies on his physical
    attack so much, he will really want to obtain the Drill Claw.
    Terrorize is Bowser's only good special. It's weak and costs 6 FP which isn't
    really cheap, but it has a chance to inflict fear. The enemy being under fear
    is basically the same thing as you having both boosted attack and defense. Be
    sure to take full advantage of Terrorize whenever the enemy is both vulnerable
    to fear and not easy to defeat. This is also your cheapest option to kill Dry
    Bones which is important to keep in mind. One last note is that it has a 90%
    chance of inflicting fear, but enemies with higher magic evasion stats (an
    obscure, hidden stat that pretty much is only used to determine this) will be
    frightened less often.
    Poison Gas is useless. Poison is a weak status ailment, and the actual damage
    from the special is pathetic. Just forget that Bowser even learns this. I
    suppose I'm obligated to inform you that the likelihood of poisoning the enemy
    works the same way that fear did on Terrorize. Of course, even if you always
    poisoned them, this would still be useless. As I said, forget this special.
    Crusher is actually just a more FP costly, non-elemental version of Shocker. It
    sounds good, right? The bad news is that you use Bowser's pathetic magic attack
    stat. You'll actually be using this against enemies with very high physical
    defense, but in general, you should try to avoid it.
    Bowser Crush is a very sad special. By mechanics it's a slightly weaker version
    of Geno Flash, but then you remember that you're using Bowser's magic attack
    stat. Refrain from using Bowser Crush.
    Overall, Bowser's challenge tends to be all about trading blows and having the
    resources to survive it.
    5. Toadstool
    Toadstool is the last character to join your party, and she is the other
    candidate for the title of the best character. She has a wide array of healing
    techniques, and none of her stats are bad. Unfortunately, her focus on healing
    gets to be a bit much when she plays by herself. Her great ability to support
    the party is useless when you're not allowed to use the rest of the party, and
    she finds her lone offensive options very limited. With Toadstool, battles will
    not be questions of if you can win. They will be questions of when you will
    finally win.
    Toadstool will want mostly Syrups in her inventory, but stat boosting items are
    always good. To speed up battles, Toadstool will especially favor Energizers.
    Don't even think about carrying Mushrooms with her; that would be very foolish.
    On an interesting note, Toadstool is the only one who can upgrade the Mystery
    Egg to the Lamb's Lure and the Sheep Attack. This can quickly end battles, but
    you will not gain experience. Do it if you want, but it is not really worth the
    effort since you can always run away the ordinary way. Also, item attacks are
    extra useful for Toadstool so it would be wise to carry a few Fire Bombs and
    Ice Bombs.
    Toadstool does at least get some very solid equipment. Her weapons give good
    boosts, and her armor is "tier 1". She also has a unique ultimate weapon in the
    Frying Pan. It is more powerful than standard weapons, but it has a greater
    degree of random damage. Regardless, Toadstool will want to have it as soon as
    possible and will want to use it constantly. As per accessories, she can heal
    status effects with Therapy so she has no concern about enemies that just
    inflict poison and fear. That frees her up to use stuff like the Rare Scarf in
    a few cases.
    Therapy is by far the best spell Toadstool gets for this challenge. It heals
    her either fully or very close to it, and it cures her of status effects. Many
    battles will come down to just using this every other turn while slowly wearing
    down the foe. Really, there is no limit to the usefulness of healing.
    Group Hug is one of the best specials in the game ordinarily, but healing your
    allies is against the rules. This special is totally useless in this challenge.
    Sleepy Time can be handy if you can get 16 rotations. You get to put all foes
    to sleep, and at 4 FP, it's a very cheap special. Sleep is a useful ailment; it
    renders the enemies helpless until you choose to strike. Use of this is
    certainly optional, but it does not hurt.
    Come Back is also useless in this challenge. If your allies die, you are not
    allowed to revive them. For obvious reasons, it is impossible to revive
    You can just forget about Mute. For one, there's the minor detail about it
    locking the game against enemy parties of 6 if you get the perfect timing. That
    aside, blocking the enemy from casting is hardly a fantastic ailment.
    Psych Bomb is like so many other target all specials. It comes too late, and
    the effect is not so great anyway. It is somewhat handy as it is her only
    offensive spell, but don't expect to get a lot out of it. The good news is that
    it will not wake up enemies you put to sleep with Sleepy Time.
    Overall, expect Toadstool's game to be very tedious but also very easy.
    IV. General Tips
    This section is here to tell you a few things that every challenge player
    should know. Memorize all of this before starting, or at the very least use
    this as a reference.
    Flower Tabs, Flower Jars, and Flower Boxes not only increase your maximum FP,
    but they also totally refill your FP. A good strategy is to not use them until
    you are low on FP so you can use many FP consuming moves while transversing
    dungeons. Be sure to use them all before any boss fight as you cannot use them
    while in battle, and running out of FP against a boss while you have flower
    items in your inventory is somewhat ridiculous.
    Stat boosts do not stack, and they are considered a status effect. The "Attack
    Up" status effect can be inflicted by getting an "Attack Up" flower from a
    defeated enemy, using Geno Boost, equipping the Troopa Pin or Quartz Charm, or
    using the items Energizer, Power Boost, or Yoshi-Ade. "Defense Up" can be
    inflicted by getting a "Defense Up" flower from a defeated enemy, using a timed
    Geno Boost, equipping the Ghost Medal or Quartz Charm, or using the items
    Bracer, Crystalline, or Yoshi-Ade. "Attack Up" causes all of your attacks,
    physical, magical, and item, to do about 1.5 times as much damage. "Defense Up"
    causes you to take about half damage from all attacks. The enemy can gain these
    status effects by using Vigor Up! for an attack boost or Valor Up for a defense
    boost. If any character or enemy in battle has the fear status effect, all
    damage calculations will act as though the opposite party has both "Attack Up"
    and "Defense Up". Fear has priority over status changes; the two do not stack.
    If you have the "Attack Up" or "Defense Up" statuses and then become feared,
    they will do nothing as long as the fear persists. If you are cured of fear,
    you will then regain the benefits of your boosted stats without having to boost
    them again. Also, the status effect of mushroomization and the defend command
    in battle both cause the game to treat your character as under the "Defense
    Up" status. Lastly, the enemy special Shredder removes "Attack Up" and "Defense
    Up" from all your characters. This is very dangerous, but only Culex and
    Smithy's Invincible Head know this technique. If you were gaining your stat
    boost from a piece of equipment and have Shredder used on you, the stat boost
    will be gone and will not come back unless you use an item or Geno Boost.
    Be sure to grab every Flower and frog coin you can during the main course of
    the game. I'll point out the location of each and every one of them during the
    walkthrough. Having a lot of FP makes the game a lot easier, and frog coins are
    somewhat tedious to harvest at endgame. It is best to get what you can on your
    When leveling up, be sure to follow "the rotation". If your level is divisible
    by three, choose attack as your level up bonus. If it is one less than a number
    divisible by three, choose magic attack. If it is one more, choose HP. This is
    important as every character in a single character challenge will need to use
    all of their stats. Even Bowser needs his magic, and even Mallow needs his
    physical attack. However, it might be worth it to take attack on the levels at
    which Bowser would ordinarily take HP. He only gains 3 HP on the big HP levels,
    and 1 attack and 1 defense is overall probably worth more than that. Still, HP
    is valuable, and Bowser already did take too much damage from magical attacks.
    Likewise, Toadstool could consider dropping her magical levels for HP as she
    gets a fairly healthy 5 HP bonus even when HP is not the big level up, but you
    could argue the benefits. You also should never select HP if your character is
    over level 20 with the possible exception of Bowser, but this guide will assume
    that your final level against Smithy is level 20. Therefore, the reduced gain
    of HP at those high levels is of no importance. This guide will also assume
    that you religiously follow the rotation. You might be able to gain slightly by
    violating it, but be sure you know what you are doing. Otherwise, you might get
    stuck late game against an unwinnable boss and be forced to power level.
    Timing is everything! If you can't get a timed hit on your attacks nearly every
    time, battles will be a lot harder. If you have trouble timing a certain
    special, stop by a save point and practice a bit. Timing commands are easy
    after you have done them a few times, and this guide will assume that you are
    doing the boosted damage. Timed defense is a bit harder. Enemy attacks have a
    wide variety of animations, and to make things even more complicated, some
    attacks are unblockable. It is nearly impossible to perfectly defend against
    all attacks, but do your best to guard as much as possible. On that note, there
    are two kinds of timed hits with both attacks and defense. Correct timing will
    cause some extra damage and reduce the damage the enemy does. Perfect timing
    does even more extra damage and will totally nullify all damage the enemy does.
    Strive for perfect timing; it will save your life many times over. Also,
    getting freebies from item usage is a timing command. Try to press the button
    just as the item finishes being used. It's not easy to do, but getting free
    items helps a whole lot.
    Status effects last three turns, and this works both ways. Don't freak out if
    you get mushroomized, and remember to use Terrorize again when the fear wears
    On specials that require you to rotate the control pad to achieve the timing
    command, that would be Snowy, Terrorize, Poison Gas, Sleepy Time, and Mute, you
    should repeatedly hit left and right instead of actually rotating. The way the
    game counts rotations makes that the most efficient way to get as many as
    Some of you will want a recommendation about which character to use. Well,
    I can do that. Mallow and Bowser are the best characters to use in my opinion,
    and Geno is pretty good too. Mario's challenge is just too easy, and
    Toadstool's is just too tedious. Geno's is really sad early in the game, but
    it does end up being quite nice later in the game. Of course, the whole thing
    is ultimately a personal decision, and this guide will cover all five
    V. Walkthrough
    Okay, I'll start by saying that I really shouldn't be writing a section of 
    strategy for the section of the game before Mallow joins. I just want this to 
    be complete. If you really need this help, you should not be attempting a 
    challenge run.
    Dungeon 1 - Bowser's Keep 1
    Okay, after that lovely introduction, we find ourselves in Bowser's Keep. Now,
    the enemies aren't in an experience or coin giving mood today so it would be
    wise to not bother fighting. You can if you want; it's not like anything here
    is a threat, but it's a waste of time. Anyway, after running forward a bit,
    you'll encounter your first forced fight.
    Forced Fight - TerrapinX4
    Okay, if you don't choose the defend command, it's impossible to lose this 
    fight. Anyway, start off by using Jump on three of them, and then take out the
    last one with a physical attack. We might as well use all of our FP while in 
    Bowser's Keep as that will power up Jump a bit. If you don't feel like it,
    well, don't. It hardly matters.
    Okay, now we get to run forward a bit more, and we encounter the game's first 
    boss. We even get fully healed. It's...
    Boss 1 - Bowser
    Okay, as you doubtlessly already know, the trick is to attack the Kinklink and 
    not Bowser. Two timed Jumps will destroy it. Failing at that, physical attacks 
    take it out quickly. If you lose, I really, really suggest trying a different 
    game. If you're in the mood to squeeze every bit of Jump power out of Bowser's
    Keep as possible, feel free to use Jump once on Bowser before going after
    Now comes the fun part where you get to run back and forth and deal with 
    talking. Save without Toad telling you to; it slightly reduces the amount of 
    this nonsense you have to put up with. Either way, it ends with you on your way 
    to Mushroom Way, and you have 4 Mushrooms as long as you had the prudence to
    refuse to listen to that item tutorial. Doing the timing tutorial has no impact
    on the game, but it's tedious so I'd skip it.
    Dungeon 2 - Mushroom Way
    Goomba - Anything kills him.
    Sky Troopa - A single Jump kills him.
    Spikey - Avoid him as he's quite strong for now. Two timed physicals will take 
    him out otherwise.
    This place is really easy, but the treasures you can get here will help you for 
    later. Also, in terms of fighting, I like to pick on Goombas until I level 
    Mario up to level 2. You really don't have to as the next boss is pretty much 
    the same at level 1 as at level 2, but it's nice to be a bit stronger.
    In the first room, there are two chests. The first has 5 coins, and the second 
    has 8 coins. More importantly, Toad seems to have fallen victim to a Goomba. 
    Being of the chivalrous sort, you are doubtlessly going to help him. Defeat the 
    fearsome group of two Goombas, and Toad will gratefully reward you with a Honey 
    Syrup. Hey, that would cost 10 coins otherwise!
    The next screen is a bit more important. Kill the Goomba on the flower, and you 
    can reach the cliffs. The chest on the southwestern cliff has a valuable 
    Flower, and Toad has been abducted again on the northeastern cliff. Save him 
    from a Sky Troopa to earn yourself a Flower Tab. Awesome! The other chest in 
    this room contains a handy full heal Mushroom. Use it once you feel that you 
    are ready for the boss.
    On the next screen, avoid the Spineys and rush to the end. Here, you discover 
    that Toad has, shockingly, been captured again. This time, you have to deal 
    with some Hammer Brothers. Now, you see, this is why being a hero isn't as 
    awesome as advertised. You think you're on a quest to rescue a princess, and 
    you get stuck fighting battles for some mushroom man.
    Boss 2 - Hammer Brothers
    Okay, these guys actually can kill you if you're careless and/or enter the 
    battle injured. Their "Hammer Time" special is quite strong for this point in 
    the game, and if you constantly fail to get timed defense, your health could 
    get low. If at any point in this fight you are very injured, use a Mushroom to 
    heal. Usually they die before you need to, but there's no sense in redoing 
    Mushroom Way over such a cheap and disposable item.
    Anyway, start off by using Jump on one of them. If you have powered up Jump a 
    lot, it will kill. Odds are that it won't. Continue by using Jump on the other 
    Hammer Brother. Then use Jump on either of them, and this will kill. Now the 
    survivor will waste his turn using Valor Up. This ordinarily is annoying since 
    he now takes half damage, but his health is already low from that Jump! Another 
    Jump will finish him nicely just as you run out of FP.
    Whew, that wasn't so bad. The bosses were so kind as to drop a valuable Flower 
    Jar. 3 FP is really big at this stage of the game. Also, Toad gives you a 
    Hammer that formerly belonged to your felled foes. Be sure to equip that; extra 
    attack helps. That's it for Mushroom Way; proceed onward and outward to the 
    Mushroom Kingdom.
    ***Mushroom Kingdom***
    Okay, the game is on for real now. You can save in the inn if you want; there's 
    a minor permanently missable treasure ahead. Either way, head to the palace. 
    Toad will run off to meet the Chancellor so do the logical thing and ride on 
    his head. Before he goes in the first door, jump onto the ledge above the door 
    and then jump around up there to find a hidden chest with a Frog Coin. Frog 
    Coins are nice, and this is your only chance to get this one. It's not 
    devastating to miss it or anything, but it's annoying to never be able to get 
    perfect hidden chest completion because of this one. Anyway, proceed to the 
    throne room, listen to the Chancellor's incessant babbling, and walk out of 
    there with a Map for your trouble. Before leaving the castle, be sure to stop 
    to do some looting. The vault guard will let you into the basement, and he'll 
    explain what some common treasures are by giving you them. The chests contain, 
    from left to right, 10 coins, a Flower, and a Mushroom. Hey, that's not bad. 
    Head to Toadstool's room and inspect to the left of the chair for a somewhat 
    funny scene that ends in you getting a free Mushroom. Once you've done all 
    this, leave the palace.
    Now here's where the whole challenge has a chance to begin. After watching some 
    running and (failed) jumping and doing some talking, Mallow joins your merry 
    quest. If you're doing the Mallow challenge, rejoice as your hero has arrived. 
    If not, well, he does a nice job of lying dead on the floor.
    Now is the time to stop by the item shop. Before doing any actual shopping, 
    head into the basement to claim the two hidden chests that each have a Flower 
    in them. FP is valuable, and getting two of it is always important. The second 
    one requires you to jump off the NPC's head in the eastern corner of the room 
    if you didn't know. Anyway, talk to the shopkeeper to get yourself a free Pick 
    Me Up (2 coins when sold!) and the chance to do some shopping.
    Mario - Buy the Shirt and Jump Shoes. Jump Shoes are too useful to pass up.
    Mallow - Buy Pants and the Antidote Pin. Spend the rest of your coins on
    Honey Syrup.
    Anyway, now you can do some more talking, and it all ends with you getting to 
    chase down Croco. Onward to the next dungeon!
    Dungeon 3 - Bandit's Way
    Okay, this place can be serious business if you aren't prepared. Mario 
    shouldn't have too much trouble, but Mallow can really get smacked around. Be 
    sure to be at level 3 before the boss; Mario does better that way, and Mallow 
    has a very likely unwinnable fight at level 2. Even at level 3, Mallow has a
    very hard fight.
    Goomba - Again, literally anything kills them.
    Sky Troopa - There is zero reason to fight them. Jump and Thunderbolt kill if
    you do fight them for some strange reason.
    Spikey - Mario should OHKO them with the Hammer. Mallow should go for 
    Frogog - He's very defensive. Mario needs a Jump to Hammer combo to kill him. 
    Mallow should exploit his thunder weakness.
    K-9 - Avoid them as you could be forced to fight a very dangerous K-9 + 2 
    Frogog group. If you find yourself fighting them, Mario should Jump while 
    Mallow should go with the Thunderbolt strategy.
    In short, Mario uses the Hammer against the weak and Jump against the strong. 
    Mallow just uses Thunderbolt until everything is dead.
    At any time, if you are too drained to go on, you can retreat to Mario's Pad 
    for a free heal. Anyway, on the first screen of this dungeon, there's nothing 
    to do but fight and save. Proceed onward when you've had enough of both.
    The second screen at first appears to just be worth 3 coins. That's nice, but 
    we can do better. Get on the spinning flower at the end and lead to the purple 
    flower. Oh, what's that? Oh my, we seem to have found a free Kerokerocola. This 
    is the best healing item in the game; save this thing for later.
    The third screen is pretty uneventful. A K-9 guards a chest here, but it just 
    contains a Mushroom. Ignore it if you will. Don't fight here if you're fairly 
    close to a level up.
    Screen 4 of this dungeon is the focal point. Those two chests contain very 
    handy items. The one Croco wanted so badly would have spelled the end of your 
    adventure for sure if he had gotten it; it's a Star! Snag it and run into as 
    many of the K-9 as possible. Mario and Mallow should both level up before the 
    star runs out. If they don't, you need to do a little more fighting. The other 
    chest here contains a Flower; be sure to get it.
    The last screen has the boss, and the chest is a Mushroom to ensure you're at 
    full health for the fight. However, before you get to the Croco bashing, be 
    sure to check your FP. You should have 19 FP at this point. If you have less, 
    you missed something. If you missed Toad's Flower Tab, you're out of luck. If 
    you missed something else, go back and get it now! I'd also backtrack to the 
    save point and save before this fight; Croco is a much more serious boss than 
    the previous two.
    If you are Mario, you should be fine as is. If you are Mallow, make sure you go
    back to the Mushroom Kingdom and buy as many Honey Syrups as you can afford.
    Don't hesitate to sell Mario's Hammer to afford this.
    Boss 3 - Croco
    Mario strategy - This fight is not too bad really. Croco is weak to fire, and
    he even will not take his turn after the first time you use Fire Orb. It should
    only take 4-5 uses of Fire Orb to finish Croco off. If your health gets low,
    use a Mushroom. You will have to use the Honey Syrup you got from Toad in
    this fight, but that should not be a big deal. Enjoy as they will not all be
    this easy!
    Mallow strategy - Okay, much unlike with Mario, this fight is very hard. It's
    very, very hard. You will need luck, and you will need skill. Don't even think
    of trying this fight if you are not at level 3 with both Pants and the Antidote
    Pin. You will need lots of Honey Syrup in this fight. You could probably skimp
    by with 4 of them if you are lucky, but you will want more. Croco has two
    attacks. 2/3 of the time he will do his basic physical attack. This will do
    10 damage to Mallow, and it can be blocked. Obviously, a standard block will
    reduce the damage to 5, and a perfect guard will prevent all damage. 1/3 of the
    time he will use his bomb throw attack. This does 15 damage, and it is
    unblockable. You will need some luck in this fight as Croco needs to use that
    bomb throw attack as seldom as possible. Your only real way of damaging Croco
    is to use Thunderbolt. This deals 17 damage. Croco has 320 HP, and once he is
    injured enough, he will heal himself with a Weird Mushroom. This heals 60 HP
    and causes Croco to skip his next turn. This means that you will have to hit
    him with 23 Thunderbolts. All you can really do is attack with Thunderbolt and
    heal with Mushrooms when your health gets low. When you run out of Mushrooms,
    use HP Rain instead. If at any time you have a turn in which you do not need
    to heal and have 10 FP missing, use a Honey Syrup. Depending on your skill with
    timed hits and your luck, you may or may not defeat Croco before exhausting
    your resources. You can accept using all of your regular items in this fight,
    but you will probably want to save the Kerokerocola. As I said earlier, these
    will be very rare up to the end of the game, and it's the best healing item in
    the game. If you are about to lose, try using it and go for a freebie. If you
    get the freebie, press on, but if you don't, reset. Do not be ashamed at all if
    you lose this fight as it is quite difficult. The game does get easier after
    this, and either way this is a very winnable fight.
    After Croco falls, he drops a Flower Tab and a Wallet. The exit to this area
    then appears. Jump on the warp, and then head back to Mushroom Kingdom.
    Dungeon 4 - Invaded Mushroom Kingdom
    What's this? The sky is dark, and there are Shy Guys on pogo sticks everywhere.
    Is it a wild party to which we were not invited? Sadly, no. These clowns
    decided that it would be a good time to invade the Mushroom Kingdom. Now, we
    can't have that so we're going to kick them out. On a related note, we're going
    to be sure to exploit this opportunity to get some valuable items and
    experience points. After all, isn't that what being a hero is all about?
    Shyster - These are the only enemies here. Mallow should use Thunderbolt to
    take them out. It will take two to clear a party earlier, but as you level up
    you will gain the potential to take them out in one strike. Mario must kill
    them one at a time with either two Hammer blows or one Jump.
    These enemies are really not hard so you should spend some time fighting them.
    You'll want to be at level 4 for sure for the next boss, and if you are feeling
    insecure, it would not be a great crime to go to level 5. Personally, I would
    suggest fighting all of the "stationary" Shysters. That means that you ignore 
    the constant stream of them that travel from the throne room to the town's
    southwestern exit, but you fight all the rest.
    Start off by clearing out the main body of the town. Mostly you just get
    thanks (and 10 coins!), but the blue guy will notice the Wallet you got from
    Croco. Apparently this is his Wallet. If you wait to return it to him, you can
    get a Flower Jar later. However, returning it now gets you a Flower Tab now. 1
    FP now is probably worth more than 3 FP later so I would return it now. You can
    also get the Flower Jar later; don't worry about it and just do the right
    Once you've cleared out the main body of the town, head into the house on the 
    town's western edge. This house has been invaded by Shysters. Save the people
    by slaying all the Shysters to be rewarded with another Flower Tab. Once this
    is done, there's not much to do in outside of the castle. You can head to the
    item shop at any time to do some shopping, and Mallow will likely want to buy
    some more Honey Syrup. Otherwise, head into the castle.
    The boss is in the throne room, but there's treasure to be had here. Head to
    the eastern side of the castle first, and you'll discover that the vault guard 
    has fled to the guest room. Talk with him to receive the Wake Up Pin, a
    valuable accessory that will serve you very well on this adventure. Mallow
    should equip it immediately, but Mario will just want to hold it in reserve.
    The vault's treasures have also been restored so you can get the 10 coins,
    Flower, and free heal out of there. After you're done on this side of the
    castle, rescue Toad in the central room. He'll thank you and then head off
    for Toadstool's bedroom.
    Follow Toad and smash all opposition that dare stand before you. There's a fair 
    bit of fighting, but in the end you get the chance to assure the scared
    mushroom men that you have the situation under control. Doing as such nets you
    a Flower Tab. Being funny and telling them they are doomed gets you nothing.
    You can also heal by talking to the elderly woman here, and there's a save
    point that seems to have materialized since the last time you were here. Either
    way, once you have everything and are done fighting in the castle, heal, save,
    and head to the throne room for your next boss fight.
    Also, be sure you have a few Honey Syrups. Yes, that goes for Mario too. Mario
    will actually probably need more. 4 Honey Syrups should be enough.
    Boss 4 - Mack
    Mario strategy - Start off the fight by using Jump on three of the Bodyguards.
    This will prevent Mack from ever leaping from battle, and one Bodyguard who
    will quickly run out of FP is no threat. After that, just use Jump on Mack
    every turn. You will likely need to use both Mushrooms and Honey Syrups during
    this fight as Mack is fairly potent. Still, you should be able to win
    relatively simply. Just don't dawdle at the beginning of the fight as Mack will
    leap away if you do, forcing you into a long and arduous attrition. However,
    even if he does leap away, the fight is still very winnable. In that event,
    just use Jump on the first two Bodyguards, two physicals to kill the third, use
    the opportunity of just one Bodyguard being in battle to heal if needed, use
    two physicals to kill said Bodyguard, and then use Jump on Mack until he leaps
    again. Repeat this process until Mack dies. Still, the first method is
    certainly much easier so you should just do that.
    Mallow strategy - The good news is that Mack is weak to thunder. Well, that 
    being said, is there any question as per the strategy? Use Thunderbolt every
    turn, and heal with Honey Syrup if you run out of FP. Use HP Rain if you get 
    low on HP. Later in the fight, Mack will begin using his turns to replenish his 
    Bodyguards. This makes things easier as it's really a waste of his turns.
    However, unless you leveled Mallow up to level 5, you will require two strikes
    to kill the Bodyguards. If you have a lot of trouble, fight a few extra enemies
    and get to level 5. That makes the fight really easy.
    Now we get to see some scenes, and we now have the first Star Piece! Awesome, I
    always wanted one of those. Anyway, it seems like the next destination is the
    Kero Sewers. Before you leave, be sure to stop by the item shop and trade
    Mallow's old coin for a Cricket Pie. This lets Mallow actually get a weapon
    later, and even if you're not doing Mallow's challenge, this is valuable as the
    game won't let you go to Star Hill much later if you don't do this. Hey, it's
    better to get it out of the way, right? You should also take this chance to
    restock on items. Mario will be very unhappy if he runs out of Mushrooms, and
    Mallow is perpetually thirsty for Honey Syrup. Hey, even Mario won't mind
    having a Honey Syrup or two lying around the inventory. FP is nice to have.
    Anyway, once all that business is finished, head to your next dungeon.
    Dungeon 5 - Kero Sewers
    Okay, linear is not the best word to describe this place. There are doubtlessly
    many ways through this dungeon; I'll be offering the simplest. Feel free to
    Rat Funk - Mario can take him out with physicals; Mallow won't have much 
    trouble with Thunderbolt.
    The Big Boo - Mario can go with either a physical attack plan or Jump; Mallow 
    sticks with Thunderbolt.
    Shadow - Mario should definitely use Jump to take these out in one hit. Mallow 
    just has to slug away with Thunderbolt.
    Hobgoblin - Mario uses Jump, and Mallow uses Thunderbolt.
    Goby - Mario will be fine with just physicals; Mallow exploits their thunder
    weakness with Thunderbolt.
    Yeah, if you didn't notice, you deal with most enemies the same way here. You
    don't really need to fight much here; the Star in a chest gives plenty of EXP.
    You should be at level 5 for the boss, but if you fought as much as I suggested
    in Mushroom Kingdom, it shouldn't be a problem. If you really want to fight,
    pick on the fish. They are the easiest enemies here since they don't use status
    effects. Mallow especially does well because of Thunderbolt hitting a weakness.
    Start off by following Mallow into the pipe, and then take the straight path
    onward. In the next room, enter the pipe immediately to your right. From there,
    push on straight ahead, and in the next room, you will be able to jump down. Do
    so, and then hit the treasure chest in here. Be sure you're ready for a fight.
    It's actually an optional boss so I'll include strategies for characters you
    don't have yet just in case you wanted to go back and fight it. I would just
    beat it right now personally.
    Optional Boss 1 - Pandorite
    Mario strategy - 2 Jumps should do it in. This is a joke.
    Mallow strategy - Okay, I should say right now that you don't really have to
    fight this thing. It's very hard right now. It has 300 HP, and it resists
    thunder. Yes, that's right. Your only recourse is to rely on pure physicals.
    Really, that's the simple plan. Hack away with your physical attack, and heal
    with HP Rain as you need to. You will win eventually.
    Geno strategy - Geno Beam will very quickly overwhelm it. Heal with Mushrooms
    if your health gets bad.
    Bowser strategy - You're going to be quite over leveled for this. Really,
    any offensive action you take will quickly break this foe. Basic physicals
    are the best bet.
    Toadstool strategy - Again, you're really over leveled. Just smack it around
    with physicals for a fast win.
    Defeating this foe will earn you a Trueform Pin and a Flower Jar. You can then
    enter and exit the screen to extract 50 coins from the chest. That's pretty
    cool. Either way, progress along the only possible path through a bunch of
    water until you're back in familiar ground. Then work your way back to where 
    you jumped off and instead continue up along the ledges. Be sure to grab the
    chest with the Flower on your way. After going through another pipe, you'll be
    next to another chest with a Star in it. Grab the Star and kill as many enemies
    as you can. You will want to run through the next pipe to the southwest as the
    Star lasts, and then rush along through the row of Rat Funks to another pipe.
    From here, you'll jump over a Rat Funk to yet another pipe, and then finally
    the maze will begin to end. You hit a switch which drains the water, and then 
    you go back through the pipe from which you came. Just jump down where the
    water used to be, and then exit through the pipe to the south.
    Okay, this is the last screen before the boss. Save first, and leave that easy 
    to reach chest alone. Lure a Boo to the raised edge in the north edge of the 
    room, and jump on it to begin a battle. Then flee the battle and use the Boo as
    a platform to reach the higher ledge. The pipe up here leads to Land's End, and
    you can't do anything there yet. However, the chest contains a Flower. Don't
    worry; it will still contain Cricket Jam when you return here much later in the
    game. Either way, jump down and save again. You can use the Mushroom in the
    chest if you want, but Mallow players will want Mario to be as injured as
    possible before starting the next boss fight. Once you're ready, head through 
    the easy to reach pipe and initiate battle.
    Boss 5 - Belome
    Mario strategy - First of all, be sure to have the Wake Up Pin equipped. Belome
    can put you to sleep. Otherwise, the battle plan is simple. Hammer away with
    Jump, and Belome will fall very fast. It's neither difficult nor complicated.
    It goes without saying that you should heal with a Mushroom if you get very
    injured. Well, I guess it has been said, but odds are, the situation will not
    occur. Odds also are that you wouldn't be able to either way because Belome
    likes to turn you into a scarecrow.
    Mallow strategy - Be sure you have the Wake Up Pin equipped, and make sure that
    Mario is near death's door entering battle. Start the battle by stalling with
    the defend command and HP Rain until Mario is dead. The reason for this is that
    if you damage Belome too much while Mario is alive, Belome will swallow Mallow.
    Actually, Belome might swallow you anyway. Really, enter the battle with Mario
    very near to death. Since you're doing a Mallow only challenge, getting
    swallowed is the equivalent of a Game Over. Once Mario is dead, it's very
    simple. Fire away with Thunderbolt to exploit Belome's weakness, and heal with
    HP Rain if your health gets low. Be sure to heal with Honey Syrups sooner
    rather than later as Belome is able to turn you into a Scarecrow which will
    disable your ability to use items for a few turns. Just keep hammering away; he
    won't last too long.
    After that fairly easy boss is fallen, there's a brief cut scene, and you are
    thrown onto the Midas River. The Midas River is a minigame you can play to
    win some frog coins. Even better, there are some Flowers hidden on the river.
    The first game is both free and mandatory so have at it. I'll assume that you
    understand the game's rules, and if even if you don't, Toad will explain. The
    two flowers are in caves you enter by bumping into the rocks on the falls. The
    first one with a flower is to the left after the very first fork, and the other
    one is to the very bottom right of the waterfall. The second section of the
    Midas River is just barrel jumping, and there's nothing interesting.
    Once you finish the river, you'll get the NokNok Shell, a new weapon for Mario.
    You can redo the river if you want to earn more frog coins, but there's no
    reason to rush into it. You have enough frog coins for now, and this is not a
    very efficient way to harvest frog coins in general. Proceed to Tadpole Pond to
    continue your quest.
    ***Tadpole Pond***
    There's not a whole lot to do in Tadpole Pond until you speak with Frogfucius
    so you should hurry and do that. Just step on the gray stone near the entrance,
    and the rest is obvious. Once you're done with all that long talking, including
    the shocking revelation that Mallow is not a tadpole, you will be ready to take
    care of business around the pond. First of all, talk to Frogfucius again, and
    he'll trade your Cricket Pie for a Froggie Stick. This is a weapon for Mallow.
    Those doing the Mallow challenge can rejoice as Mallow's physical attack just
    improved a fair amount. Even if you aren't doing his challenge, you'll have to
    make this trade eventually in order to go to Star Hill much later in the story.
    To the left of the entrance, you'll find a few shops. The Frog Coin Emporium
    is the first place at which you can spend your frog coins, and the options are
    very nice. You can buy Sleepy Bombs for one frog coin, and you can get
    Energizers and Bracers for two frog coins. You won't be needing any of these
    for quite a while, but you'll be wanting to have Bracers eventually as they
    help you survive in boss battles. Buying one now would not be a horrible idea.
    The other shop is the Juice Bar. It is ordinarily very useful as it is the
    place to go to get the full party healing items. Alas, we have little use for
    these. Still, as you complete the Toadofsky side quest on the right side of
    Tadpole Pond, it starts selling powerful healing items ahead of your chance to
    have equivalent Mushrooms. For instance, if you play this song for Toadofsky
    right now, you will be able to buy 80 HP healing Elixirs:
    So La Mi Re Do Re Do Re
    You can do it or not; you really don't need to do this side quest. It's nice to
    do sooner or later anyway as the final drink you can buy is Kerokerocola. On
    a related note, if you absolutely cannot win the Yoshi Races and are doing
    Mario's, Geno's, or Bowser's challenge, you will need to do this side quest.
    As you start to get deeper into the story, Mid Mushrooms will begin to be weak.
    If you cannot harvest Yoshi Cookies to get Max Mushrooms, Megalixirs will be a
    workable alternative. I would heavily, heavily suggest that you plan on winning
    the Yoshi Races as the chance to harvest Max Mushrooms is only the beginning of
    the rewards, but that minigame is very hard for some people so I'm noting an
    inferior but workable alternative.
    Once you are finished with business here, proceed to Rose Way.
    Dungeon 6 - Rose Way
    I don't even know if dungeon is the right name for this place. There is no
    boss, and the whole area is very fast and easy. Still, it's an area with
    enemies so I'll treat it seriously. Also, I haven't stressed it yet so I'll
    stress it now. Mallow should wear around the Wake Up Pin even though the
    Trueform Pin gives better stat boosts. Sleep and Mute are both very bad status
    effects for Mallow, and there are enemies here that can do that.
    Shy Guy - Mario should Jump on them. Mallow does well with Thunderbolt.
    Starslap - Mario is fairly likely to kill in one hit with the NokNok Shell.
    Mallow gets to exploit their thunder weakness.
    Crook - They are both fast and likely to run so fighting them isn't too likely
    to be a serious problem. If you really want to take them down, Mario can easily
    kill with a physical, and Mallow should try Thunderbolt. I wouldn't worry about
    Arachne - Mario uses Jump, and Mallow uses Thunderbolt. These guys are strong
    with high HP, but they have horrible magic defense.
    Snapdragon - Mario can use Jump followed up by a physical. Mallow is stuck
    using his physical attack. These are really annoying to fight so you should
    probably run if there's more than one of them.
    You really don't have to fight much here. You will want to be at level 6 for
    the next boss, but he isn't until the end of the next dungeon. You can fight a
    little now and less later, or you can fight more later. I prefer to do more
    fighting here than in the next dungeon, but it's ultimately your choice.
    Start off by riding the forced platforms forward, and when given choices, veer 
    off to the left. You'll end up in a side room that contains a few Shy Guys
    riding platforms. Slay the Shy Guys to be able to claim the frog coin in the
    chest. Backtrack to the main room, and then take the first platform switch you 
    get to head south to a Flower. Switch platforms again to ride to an exit to the
    Follow the only path until you get to ride some more platforms. You can hang
    around here to get some free coins, but if you want to leave as quickly as
    possible, just switch platforms at the first chance and ride to the next exit.
    In the next room, you'll find 5 chests with Shy Guys on top. The top chest
    contains a Mushroom; the others all contain 5 coins. Do as you will with them,
    and then proceed to the next screen. Watch a bit of a scene with Bowser here,
    and then leave Rose Way. Do note that you can return to the screen with all the
    chests infinitely for more coins. If you are running low early in the game,
    come back and restock. Odds are you will never need to do this, but it's nice
    to keep in mind.
    ***Rose Town***
    Things are not well in Rose Town. You witness this firsthand as a random NPC
    gets shot in the skull with an arrow. Well, there are a few things to do here.
    First of all, enter the item shop via the chimney to get a Flower in a chest.
    You can find a frog coin in an hidden chest in the northwest corner of the
    shop as well. The next order of business is to do some shopping.
    Mario - Trade in your Shirt for a Thick Shirt. Pick up a Fearless Pin for
    Mallow - Trade in your Pants for Thick Pants. Sell any Mushrooms you have. Be
    sure to snag a Fearless Pin, and equip it for a nice little defense boost.
    You get a fairly ludicrous surplus of Mushrooms in the Forest Maze. Yes, you
    get actual inventory item Mushrooms. Don't worry about running out of
    Mushrooms. Mallow will not be using Thunderbolt to fight the next boss so don't
    worry about having a lot of Honey Syrup. You shouldn't have used much since you
    last stocked up in the Mushroom Kingdom. This is the last serious dungeon until
    you get something better so if you have 3 Honey Syrup, you should not bother
    with more.
    Geno players who are thinking ahead might be worried about preparing for the
    next boss. Don't worry at all. The Mushrooms you find in the Forest Maze are
    enough to let you subsist. Picking up a Fearless Pin for later would not be a
    terrible idea, but it doesn't matter at all if you get it now or after the
    This is obvious, but you can sell equipment for characters you don't use if you
    want. Feel free to sell the Froggie Stick if you are not using Mallow, for
    instance. I prefer to hold onto all of these things, but they have no use to
    you. I won't mention this again.
    After this, head to the house in the northwest corner of town. Do not talk to
    the man outside. Simply jump off his head into the house, and then take the two
    Flowers in the chests. Do not do anything else inside. Simply leave and head to
    the inn. The reason you are being so non-interactive is that what you do with
    this house changes what the prizes are in a room deep in the Forest Maze. Doing
    this is what gets you the best prizes. Either way, that was indeed the last
    order of business so head to the inn to see a nice scene that introduces us to
    Geno. Hey Geno, why do you have to run off like that? Couldn't you join our
    party now?
    Dungeon 7 - Forest Maze
    First of all, it's time for another FP check. I had 35 FP going into the Forest
    Maze. If you have less, that's okay, but if you're missing more than 2 or 3 FP,
    you have a problem that you can probably still fix.
    Wiggler - There is no reason to fight these guys at all. If you must, Jump and
    Thunderbolt are, unsurprisingly, the way to go.
    Amanita - Mario can take him out with one physical hit. Mallow should stick to
    the Thunderbolt plan, but these are weak so his physicals are not so bad.
    Rat Funk - Mario uses his physical; Mallow uses Thunderbolt. Being reused
    enemies, they aren't that big of a threat.
    Buzzer - A simple physical from Mario or Thunderbolt from Mallow is a sure
    thing kill. Unfortunately, they are fast, and they will do their damage before
    you can stop them.
    Octolot - Mario should be aggressive with Jump while Mallow is stuck with his
    old plan of Thunderbolt spamming. These guys are not very friendly.
    Guerrilla - These things are somewhat similar to the Arachne on Rose Way. They
    are strong, and they have high HP, but their magic defense is pretty horrible.
    Punish them with Jump and Thunderbolt.
    So, despite the wooded setting, nothing really changes. Mallow is still
    abusing Thunderbolt, and Mario is still wanting to rely on Jump. You really
    don't need to fight much here. You'll want to be at level 6 for the boss, and
    it wouldn't be a crime to do a little extra fighting on top of that. This way,
    you'll be about at the same level Geno is when he joins. That's not really
    important at all I suppose, but it's a good indicator that you're at an
    appropriate level. By the way, if you didn't know Geno joins here, the previous
    paragraph contained spoilers.
    Anyway, start off your adventure in the forest by grabbing that Mushroom to the
    side of the path. There are a lot of Mushrooms like that scattered around the
    forest. Sometimes they reveal themselves to be Amanitas, but they are somewhat
    more frequently real Mushrooms. Harvest them until your inventory is bulging;
    there's no reason not to fill up now. Also, while you're on this screen, jump
    in the northwest corner. Surprise, you got a Kerokerocola!
    Now, as the name of this place doubtlessly suggested to you, this place is
    pretty linear at the start. So just follow the only path until you find
    yourself recently emerged from the underground. Run straight left into a corner
    and jump to find a hidden chest with a frog coin. There are four more hidden
    chests here too; apparently solid wooden chests have a high probability of
    being invisible in forests. 
    Either way, proceed onward on the only possible path until you are in an area
    with seven stumps. Hey, it's not so linear after all! Now, only three stumps
    here have anything in them. The bottom right one is our first stop. Head in,
    go to the biggest spot of light, and jump around. You will find a chest with
    a flower. Now head to the middle left one and jump around in the corner
    immediately northwest of the trampoline to find the game's only completely
    empty chest. Well, I suppose you don't have to get it, but don't you want the
    novelty? Anyway, the last stop is the stump that will let us proceed in the
    dungeon. The far back stump contains a sleeping Wiggler. Hop behind him and 
    jump around to find a hidden chest with another Kerokerocola, and then smash
    into him to be thrown out of the stump while simultaneously revealing a path
    deeper into the woods.
    Go back to following the only path through this shockingly linear forest until
    you come to a save point. The corner to the right of the save point contains a
    very rare Red Essence in a hidden chest. These are brokenly cheap items which
    appear on the banned item list so sell it. After doing some good old fashioned
    saving, head to the next screen which is, shockingly at this point, a maze.
    The rest of this dungeon is a maze in which you must follow the correct series
    of exits to get anywhere. Start off by exiting via the west, south, south, and
    then west exits to reach a hidden item room. The far back chest yields a nice
    Mushroom in a chest (you know, the ones that automatically fully heal you), and
    the other four chests give up 3 Flowers and a frog coin. Hey, that's pretty
    awesome. Retreat back to the save point by going south in the maze, save, and
    then enter the forest and follow Geno. You have to exit east the one time you
    can't see him. Really, it's pretty simple.
    Now, before you finish the whole following Geno thing (you'll know it's the
    last one because he'll look shocked), you have to manage your equipment. Mario
    and Mallow should both have the Wake Up Pin equipped as the boss here can use
    sleep techniques. Also, if you are doing the Geno challenge, it begins now.
    Geno automatically joins up at the start of the boss fight before you can go to
    the status screen. On that note, if you are doing his challenge, totally
    unequip Mario and Mallow before initiating the fight.
    Boss 6 - Bowyer
    Preface: manipulating the button locking - Bowyer's button locking is really
    annoying, but the secret is that it's not random at all. If you follow the
    rules of the challenge, it's impossible for him to lock A. Yep, you're assured
    the chance to use your physical attack. As per Y versus X, it all depends on
    what you do during those two turns between lock switches. I could go into a
    long winded explanation, but I'll stick to the short one. If you use either
    two physical attacks or one physical attack and one magic attack, Bowyer will
    lock Y. Otherwise, he will lock X. Note that "magic attack" does not include
    HP Rain. Mallow mostly doesn't need to think about this, but Mario and Geno,
    if ignorant of this, will likely perish as they discover that the X button is
    perpetually locked. Be sure to use these tactics to unlock X when you need to
    use a Mushroom.
    Mario strategy - It's all about Jump. Odds are that you'll finish him before
    he has a chance to finish with your allies. If you are really comfortable at
    getting high numbers of hits, Super Jump wouldn't be a bad choice either. It's
    hardly an easy way to win, but it's technically more effective.
    Mallow strategy - I have some bad news. Bowyer is immune to Thunderbolt. What
    does that mean for the battle strategy? Well, if you can't kill him with
    Thunderbolt, you must use your physical. The damage tends to be in the upper
    20s with the Froggie Stick which I really, really hope you got when I told you
    to. Bowyer has 720 HP. He is not very likely to kill you in this fight at all,
    but it will be tedious. Heal with HP Rain if your health gets low, and if you
    run out of FP, use some of those Mushrooms you got in the forest. I guarantee
    you have enough to spare. There's really nothing else you can do; this is one
    of the more boring boss battles. At the very least, it's very easy.
    Geno strategy - Blast away with Geno Beam. You have quite poor defense at this
    point due to the whole no armor thing. If you let X stay locked for too long,
    you could lose. Bolt does massive damage to Geno after all. Heal with Mushrooms
    when you can; Bowyer won't take a whole lot of punishment from you at least.
    Geno Beam does 60 damage, and your physical will do 30 or 40. That wears out
    Bowyer's 720 HP pretty fast. Also, due to Geno's poor defenses right now, you
    might want some info about Bowyer's attacks. He will use his physical attack
    or the sleep move when Y is locked, and he'll use Lightning Orb, Bolt, or his
    physical when X is locked. He won't attack immediately after locking X. Since
    Bolt is his only really powerful attack, this is quite good to know. It's only
    1/6 when X is locked too which is nice. The bad news is that if you get unlucky
    he could lock X and use Bolt all while you're asleep, but that's not likely.
    Meh, you had no chance to prepare for this fight. Luck being involved a bit is
    Regardless of who got to do the smashing, Bowyer will leave you a Flower Box,
    and after Geno finishes introducing himself and explaining the quest you've
    unknowingly been on, you'll get the second Star Piece. Hey, those are pretty
    nice to have. Either way, return to Rose Town.
    First of all, stop by the inn and speak with Gaz. The bad news is that you have
    to listen to more talking. The good news is that he gives you a Finger Shot for
    your trouble. This is Geno's first weapon; it will be handy. Also, from now on,
    you can stay at the inn in Rose Town for free. It sure beats going all the way
    back to Mario's Pad so be sure to take advantage of it.
    Buy a Fearless Pin now if you don't have one already. It will be quite helpful
    down the road. It's the best defensive accessory you will have for a while
    anyway so equip it if you're using Mallow or Geno. Mario should go back to his
    Jump Shoes, though the Fearless Pin isn't bad on him either.
    Head to the house in the northwest corner of town and let the poor man in.
    Admit to your thievery, and he'll reward you with a frog coin. Jump around on
    the bed upstairs for another frog coin. Hey, I'm not one to object about 2 free
    frog coins. However, that concludes business in Rose Town. Pass over the Pipe
    Vault for now and head to Moleville.
    We have exactly one thing to do in Moleville right now. Head to the item store
    and do some shopping.
    Mario - Buy the Punch Glove and Work Pants. Sell most of the Mushrooms you have
    and buy Mid Mushrooms. You will want about 6 of each. Ditching some of those
    Honey Syrups for a Maple Syrup or two wouldn't be awful. I would suggest buying
    exactly one Able Juice, but you'll have to get it at Rose Town instead of here.
    Mallow - Buy the Cymbals and Work Pants. Sell all of your Mushrooms, and stock
    up on Maple Syrup. This will be a big item for you for the rest of the game.
    Geno - Buy the Work Pants. Sell most of the Mushrooms you have and buy Mid
    Mushrooms. You will want about 6 of each. You might want to pick up a Maple
    Syrup or two as well.
    Bowser/Toadstool - I'm including them just so I can get another chance to say
    this. Buy Work Pants! If you're doing the Bowser challenge, they will be your
    main armor for most of the game. Even if you're doing some other challenge,
    they will help you outspeed Shy Ranger later, and they are nice to have in
    Nimbus Land. Seriously, a pair of Work Pants needs to have a permanent spot
    in your inventory.
    Once you're done buying a nice pair of Work Pants (and other, less important
    items), you have a choice. You could push onward or go to the Pipe Vault. I
    would suggest going to the Pipe Vault if you are doing Mario, Mallow, or Geno's
    challenges, but wait to head there if you intend to do Bowser's or Toadstool's
    challenge so you can clear it out with them. Regardless of what you do, I'm
    putting the section for this place right now.
    Dungeon 8 - Pipe Vault
    Goomba - Well, any attack killed them back on Mushroom Way. What do you expect?
    Spikey - These guys are jokes by now. Hit them with anything for a quick kill.
    Frogog - He won't always die to anything even now, but he won't be much of a
    threat. Mallow should use Thunderbolt, but Mario and Geno might as well stick
    to physicals.
    Sparky - They have a lot of HP. They have really high magic defense so use
    physicals to take them out.
    Piranha Plant - Mario should use Jump, Mallow should use Thunderbolt, and Geno
    should use Geno Beam. They have even more HP than the Sparky.
    Shy Ranger - He is guaranteed to be faster than you, and he always runs on the
    first turn. You can't do anything with him now, but remember him for later.
    I would suggest not fighting at all here. The experience is not all that good,
    and since this is an optional area, it's not really built into the natural
    progression of leveling. The Moleville Mines are decent for training, and
    Booster Tower is even better. There's just no need to fight here.
    Start off by going on the very linear path until you reach a room with a lot of
    pipes in sequence. In here, go in the pipe immediately in front of the pipe you
    enter from. Now jump right before the overhang, and a yellow platform should
    appear. Jump around up on top to get a Flower and two frog coins. Now run back 
    under the overhang, grab the coins, and while running at the seemingly
    impossible frog coin, hit down at the last moment. Mario should do an
    interesting ducking motion, and you'll get the frog coin. Proceed through the
    After this, go through the next pipe northeast of you to find a mole man next
    to a square of pipes. It's a minigame! I'll assume you know the rules, and if
    you don't, the NPC is happy to explain. Either way, try to set the high score
    by as narrow of a margin as possible. The first time you want to get 20 points,
    and you want to get 2 more every subsequent time. The first prize is a Flower
    Tab, and the second prize is a Flower Jar. Every win after that is just worth
    a frog coin, but it's not a horrible way to get a frog coin or two.
    Once you're finished with that, exit to the north, take the next pipe to the
    north, and then follow the straight linear path. There's a chest on the way
    with a Flower. The chest that seems really dangerous to hit contains 20 coins.
    Odds are you will make money in going for it so have at it.
    Anyway, once you're finished with that place, you'll find yourself on Yo'ster
    Isle. This is a very useful place. Start off your time here by jumping around
    behind the save point for a hidden chest with a frog coin. Then save up and
    get ready for the Mushroom Derby.
    Okay, if you're like me, you think the Mushroom Derby is really hard, and you
    really don't want to do it. Now, I wish I could tell you to skip it, but it's
    one of the most rewarding minigames. Winning this race gives you access to
    Yoshi Cookies which are essential to ensuring a steady supply of Max Mushrooms
    as you get into the later part of the game. Even if you don't go for Max
    Mushrooms, you can very easily use these to harvest Yoshi Candy which is
    a slightly better alternative to Mid Mushrooms. Yoshi Cookies are also a part 
    of the fastest way to harvest Kerokerocola which Geno gets access to fairly
    early. Once you beat Bundt, a Yoshi baby will appear on the island, and if you
    feed him enough cookies, he will give you items. Notably, you can get Yoshi-Ade
    which is the ultimate stat boosting item.
    I'll make it even more clear. Here are the good items you can harvest from
    Yoshi Cookies. I ignore the Bowser's Keep 6 door section for this so that might 
    be an extra location, especially for fighting the permanently disappearing
    Nimbus Land monsters:
    Max Mushrooms: Sackit (Star Hill, Bowser's Keep 2), Fink Flower (Bean Valley),
    Ameboid (Factory)
    Royal Syrup: Forkies (Bowser's Keep), Orbison (Nimbus Land), Shaman (Nimbus 
    Land), Shogun (Land's End), Stumpet (Barrel Volcano)
    Fright Bomb: Blaster (Booster Tower), Chow (Land's End), The Big Boo (Kero 
    Rock Candy: Jawful (Nimbus Land), Puppox (Factory)
    Ice Bomb: Muckle (Nimbus Land), 
    Muku Cookie: Mukumuku (Star Hill)
    Fire Bomb: Pyrosphere (Barrel Volcano), Sparky (Pipe Vault)
    Kerokerocola: Shy Ranger (Pipe Vault)
    Yoshi Candy: Any resistant enemy. Goomba (Mushroom Way) is the easiest one.
    Normally, these items are difficult to harvest or, in the case of Max
    Mushrooms, only available at the very end of the game. However, with good use
    of Yoshi Cookies, you can have much more plentiful supplies. I will assume that
    you harvest Max Mushrooms if you are doing the Mario, Geno, or Bowser
    challenges. If you absolutely cannot win the race, Megalixirs which will soon
    be available at the Juice Bar will have to be an inferior and very expensive
    Now that you're convinced that winning the race is pivotal to your future
    success, let's focus on the race. As someone who is awful at the race, I can
    say that the trick is to not really use your ears so much. Work in practice
    until you have a timing down that gets you moving fairly fast. Now focus on
    tuning all else out and just pressing the buttons in that timing. During the
    race, use all three of your cookies to ensure success. Cookies are plentiful
    after you win so don't worry about wasting them. It might take a few tries, but
    there's no penalty for losing. Once you win, save and then work on building up
    a nice stash of Yoshi Cookies. Never race on Yoshi; choose to watch every time.
    Bet the maximum number of cookies, and reset the game if you lose. If you win,
    save and keep going. Do this until you have a good number of cookies saved up,
    but you really don't have to build much of a stash. There's not much to be done
    now with the cookies, but you can get some Fright Bombs if you really want
    them. You won't need Yoshi Candy now, and being of the lazy sort, I advocate
    using Mid Mushrooms until you pass 80 total HP. However, it's a generally good
    healing item so feel free to harvest as many as you want and/or need. I
    personally would not carry any Yoshi Cookies until you are ready to go to Star
    Hill, but they are generally useful so it's not an awful idea to bring a few
    Once you are finished with the Yoshi nonsense (for now at least), head to
    Moleville where the next dungeon awaits.
    Okay, if you followed my advice earlier, you've already done the shopping in
    Moleville and picked up a fine pair of Work Pants, but if you went to the Pipe
    Vault before ever stepping foot in Moleville, do not forget to make a stop by
    the shop. Either way, there's very little to do in Moleville before the dungeon
    is cleared so you might as well hop to it. Enter the mines at the town's
    northern edge, and after some scenes and some talking, a few mole miners will
    tell you to hop on up to the old entrance. Follow their instructions to enter
    the dungeon proper.
    Dungeon 9 - Moleville Mines
    Moleville Mines is a very substantial dungeon. It's fairly long, and it's the
    first dungeon with two real bosses. Luckily, the enemies around here are mostly
    pretty easy so you should be able to earn some precious experience points here.
    Note that Mario really needs to be wearing his Jump Shoes as some of these
    enemies are immune to Jump otherwise. Status effects are not really an issue
    here so Mallow and Geno might as well take the extra defense from the Fearless
    *From this point on, if I say "attack with standard magic", I mean to have
    Mario use Jump, Mallow use Thunderbolt, and Geno use Geno Beam.*
    Magmite - He has great defense but poor HP and magic defense. Standard magic
    works very well here, but note that he is immune to Jump. Do not forget the
    Jump Shoes on Mario!
    Bob-Omb - Magic is the way to go here, but if you are worried about a fight
    with them, feel free to just defend every turn. Their only means of attack is
    Sparky - Their high magic defense and horrible physical defense make this a
    simple choice. Use physicals to take them out.
    Cluster - Watch out! These guys can use "Psyche!", an instant death technique.
    They will only use this if they are attacked by a special attack and survive.
    Mario and Geno should use magic anyway as they will kill in one hit, but Mallow
    should use physicals against them as Thunderbolt will fail to kill in one hit.
    Enigma - This guy is not particularly common. Jump will tear him to shreds,
    and Geno does well with Geno Beam. Mallow might as well stick to physicals.
    Crook - They give up Flower Tabs when you fight them here so just go all out
    with magic.
    Fight as much or as little as you like really. Bowser joins at level 8 fairly
    soon after this dungeon so that is not a bad target for then. There is a Star
    here, and there are two bosses. You are likely to gain a lot of experience
    with a surprisingly small amount of fighting. That being said, I'd fight a
    fair amount here. You will want to be at level 7 at the end of this, and you'll
    want to be a good amount on your way to level 8.
    The first room is simple; just run right through it. In the next room, you'll
    see a treasure hunter who is useless to you now but quite handy later in your
    adventure if you plan on doing the Toadstool challenge. Either way, head into
    the next room, and you'll see a trampoline. Hmm, we should probably jump on it.
    Just be sure that you're ready for a good deal of fighting once you do.
    Well, it seems like the trampoline was a trap, and Croco has gone back to his
    old habit of stealing your coins. This time, instead of stealing one rare coin,
    he is stealing all of your coins. Eh, coins are plentiful. He can have them.
    What? We're supposed to chase after him, and we can't progress in the dungeon
    if we don't? Boo! Well, whatever, it looks like we have to make trouble. Chase
    Croco, but don't try to catch him too early. His minions will be hiding along
    the way. Initiate fights with them to win a Flower Tab per fight. Be sure to
    get all three of them. Flowers are precious after all.
    Boss 7 - Croco 2
    Mario strategy - I shouldn't have to tell you what the basic plan here is. Spam
    Jump, and he will go down very fast. Yes, he is weak to fire, but by this
    point, Jump will do much more than Fire Orb (if you have Super Flame, you are
    massively over leveled and will win easily no matter what). He steals your items
    when he has taken more than 350 damage so be sure to heal up with a Mid
    Mushroom then if you need to. That also causes him to transition from using
    unblockable bombs to blockable random thrown enemies so don't worry about the
    item loss so long as you are in good health. Of course, as always, Super Jump
    works as a substitute for Jump if you are a master of consecutive jumping. He
    is surprisingly difficult if you are still at level 6; being at level 7 reduces
    the luck you need considerably.
    Mallow strategy - Okay, much as with the last Croco, Mallow will have the most
    trouble with this guy. You won't be doing much damage to him, but at the same
    time, you have HP Rain. Even though he steals your items, you can afford to
    stall out the battle a bit. Mallow can take a much better beating now than he
    could back on Bandit's Way. Remember, Croco steals your items when he drops
    below 400 HP out of his total of 750 HP (he also trades the devastating bombs
    for the blockable "Chomp" attack). Be sure your FP is full before you knock him
    below that point. Use the Cymbals to attack in general; Thunderbolt will do
    really sad damage to him, and you wanted to conserve the FP for HP Rain anyway.
    If you find this fight too hard, don't feel too bad about leveling up to level
    7 for it. That's the level you'll need to be able to survive two of the bombs
    at full health which will greatly speed up the first stage of the fight. An
    alternative option is to use a Bracer; that will make this a very easy fight.
    Geno strategy - Geno Beam will do more damage than your physical so just let
    fly with that. Keep track of the damage you do as well. Croco steals your items
    when you knock him under 400 HP. He has 750 HP total. Be sure you use Mushrooms
    to be at full or near full health before knocking his health below that point,
    and be sure you have plenty of FP to finish the job quickly. The good news is
    that losing your items has a second effect on the battle; he replaces his bomb
    throw with the "Chomp" command. It's more powerful, but it can be blocked. The
    battle is really simple; it's all about timing commands. If you can time
    defense, the fight will go simply. If you can't, it will not be so simple. It
    takes very little fighting before Croco to reach level 7 with Geno; if you have
    trouble at level 6, just let yourself level up.
    Hmm, that was much easier than you thought it would be, wasn't it? I told you
    this place was not that hard. Did you have the luck of seeing the glitch that
    happens if Mallow is dead when Croco steals your items? Did you get incredibly
    lucky and get the rare Flower Box drop (don't reset if you didn't)? Anyhow, you
    have a Bomb now. Progress to the left as far as you can, and you'll meet up
    with just the mole who knows how to use it. He'll blast the wall that leads
    ahead, and you naturally are going to be left to do all of the real work.
    In the next room, take the lower door and run along the lower track. An event
    with a Shy Guy in a mine cart happens, and you are a frog coin richer because
    of it. After that, take the upper door, skip the two Bob-Ombs, and hit the
    chest. Oh boy, it's the Star! Take out as many enemies as you can with it,
    naturally. After the Star, the path is quite linear. The next chest you see
    will contain a large number of coins. At the save point, be sure to get the
    chest farther ahead first. It contains a Flower, and the chest right next to
    the Save Point has a Mushroom. Hmm, there couldn't be a boss in the next room.
    Boss 8 - Punchinello
    Mario strategy - The bad news is that Punchinello can both inflict fear and
    is immune to jump. That means that you have to choose between status protection
    and your main method of damage. I'll make this easy for you. Wear the Jump
    Shoes. If you have that Able Juice I told you to get earlier, you can just heal
    the fear easily. Punchinello doesn't have enough FP to use Sand Storm twice.
    Even if you don't have the Able Juice, this won't be hard. With my level 7
    Mario's stats and the degree of Jump powering up I did, I killed Punchinello in
    11 attacks if I got good timing on Jump but never perfect timing which isn't
    even optimal. Some of his those turns are used summoning minions, and the other
    turns are only a 1/8 of using Sand Storm. It doesn't take a whole lot of luck
    to kill him before he uses Sand Storm at all. Actually, 11 turns to kill a boss
    is just absurdly fast, especially when it could be even faster. Enjoy it.
    Mallow strategy - Ignore Punchinello's minions and go after him with physical
    attacks. Mallow's Cymbals will do 55-60 damage per hit, and Punchinello has
    1200 HP. Heal with HP Rain when you need it, and you might need to down some
    Maple Syrup during the fight. Be sure to be on your toes with the timed
    defense; his bombs hurt if you get hit too often with unguarded blows.
    Punchinello has a 1/8 chance of using Sand Storm on the turns he is not
    summoning minions. This should not be a problem since you were using the
    Fearless Pin anyway, right? As you can tell, it's just a battle of attrition.
    It's also not that hard even if it is a bit long.
    Geno strategy - Geno Beam is our weapon of choice yet again. Just Geno Beam
    away at Punchinello, and heal with Mushrooms when your health gets low. If your
    stats are like mine were, it should take 16 hits to do Punchinello in.
    That's really not that much when you think about it. The Fearless Pin is nice
    in this fight both for the defense buff and for the protection against the rare
    Sand Storm's fear effect. By the way, if you happen to be at level 8 for this
    fight, Geno Boost will make this battle into a total joke. Use it if you really
    don't want there to be even a slim chance of you losing.
    Okay, now we go through scenes, and it all ends with you riding a mine cart
    with Dyna and Mite. The minigame you do on said cart affects absolutely
    nothing. Seriously, don't worry about it at all. It's somewhat fun so I guess
    you can try to do well for that sake. If you really dislike the minigame for
    some reason, feel free to turn off the TV and do something else while the game
    runs through it. It seriously affects nothing; the only gain from doing it is
    that you can get a little extra cash along the way. By this point, money is
    already nearly useless to you. Do as you will.
    On a more interesting note, all this talking ends with you hearing about a
    princess from the sky at Booster Tower. Statistically, the odds of any random
    princess being the one you are looking for are pretty slim. In Mario's world,
    however, things work differently. This is for sure Princess Toadstool so you
    need to go and steal her back from Booster. Well, off to the next dungeon I
    guess. There's still not a whole lot to do in Moleville, unless you are really
    desperate for Fright, Fire, and Ice Bombs and think it's a good idea to "trade"
    a rather absurd number of consumable items for them.
    Dungeon 10 - Booster Pass
    Now we're heading into the very Booster heavy portion of the story. Joy. The
    good news is that this particular area is really short. It's only two screens
    long, and there's no boss.
    Spikester - Magic takes them out very easily. Mario needs his Jump Shoes.
    Carroboscis - Magic disposes of him quickly and easily. Mallow will need to use
    a few Thunderbolts. The status effects they use are very annoying.
    Artichoker - Mario and Geno do better with magic, but his thunder immunity
    forces Mallow to use the physicals.
    Lakitu - I would avoid these enemies. They are fairly powerful. If you do
    fight them, go with a typical strategy of Mario and Geno using magic whereas
    Mallow is stuck with physicals.
    This place is interesting for fighting. Spikester and Carroboscis are really
    weak, but Artichoker and Lakitu are quite strong. Lakitu can be avoided, but
    you just have to deal with Artichoker. This place is also a further
    demonstration of just how weak Mallow's Thunderbolt has become. It is now only
    useful in fighting enemies with much less magic defense than physical defense,
    and the game's mage has been reduced to relying on physicals for general
    combat. Thunder immune enemies are becoming more common too; it's a real
    problem. Things don't get better until you hit level 10. Speaking of levels, it
    would not be a bad idea to be at level 8 when you leave this place. It's not
    mandatory, but it will keep you on par with Bowser when he joins. Bowser does
    join a bit stronger than he had to be so if you're a little behind, don't worry
    about it. The next dungeon is amazing for doing lots of fighting.
    You also have to think about what accessories to equip here. Mallow and Geno
    are torn between the Trueform Pin and the Wake Up Pin as mute and
    mushroomization are both present here. Mario also really needs those Jump Shoes
    for the Spikesters. It's up to you what to equip, and in many ways you have to
    pick your poison. Do you want to risk being muted by the Carroboscis and forced
    to fight weakly, or do you want to risk getting decimated by Fungispike/Spore
    Chimes? An added benefit to the Trueform Pin is preventing S'Crow Chimes from
    working as well, but scarecrow isn't a very bad status effect anyway. If you
    want to make things even more complicated, you can consider that the
    Artichokers can inflict fear with Sand Storm... This place is too short to give
    yourself too much of a headache worrying about it; I'm just trying to make you
    aware of the choice.
    Anyway, there's not really much to do here other than fight. On the first
    screen, run all the way west and jump on top of the plant to find a hidden
    chest with a Flower. Then head to the northeast exit and jump in the corner
    directly west of it to find a hidden chest with a Rock Candy.
    On the second screen, run along the lower ground to a large Flower in plain
    sight. After getting the Flower, you could run into a gap in the cliff and hit
    a hidden button to kill all the Spikesters on this screen, but you'll only get
    coins and no experience. I personally would fight them as this is about as
    convenient as it gets for fighting in this area. Either way, exit to the north
    on the top of the cliffs to end this place.
    As we progress onward to Booster Tower, we get to see a nice scene that ends
    with Bowser walking away. Bowser doesn't stay gone for long; he quickly joins
    up with your party after you check out the door to Booster Tower. Bowser
    challenge players can rejoice as they finally have a chance to beat this game
    with nothing but your not so friendly giant idiot turtle monster. Everyone else
    can do as all your other party members do and mostly ignore Bowser.
    Before entering Booster Tower, you should do a quick FP check. I had 56 FP at
    this point. It might be possible to have a bit more FP, and it's reasonable to 
    have missed a few obscure Flowers. If you have a radically different number
    than this, you have a problem. As you have likely noticed, random encounter
    strategies for Mario, Mallow, and Geno are becoming extremely reliant on
    magic, and I am assuming that you have a lot of FP to spare in every area. 56
    FP is a lot to spare, and I will assume that you have this much now and even
    more later. Don't neglect to get those Flowers!
    Dungeon 11 - Booster Tower
    Booster Tower is not a very short dungeon, but it's a very friendly dungeon to
    the player. Status effects are not prominent here, and you get some really good
    items while progressing through the dungeon. In terms of equipment, you will be
    best off equipping everyone with the Fearless Pin except for Mario, but by this
    point that should be fairly obvious. Also, if you are doing Bowser's challenge,
    do not forget to equip the Work Pants!
    Snifit - They have a lot more defense than magic defense so use magic. Bowser
    should just use Terrorize once and then go with physicals. However, they are
    only worth 1 experience point so you should really avoid them.
    Spookum - They're just weaker Snifits. Magic decimates them. Bowser can save
    his FP if he wants to; you really don't need Terrorize. Don't worry; you get
    multiple experience points for defeating them.
    Jester - Mario and Geno should use magic while Mallow and Bowser should use
    physicals. He can do serious damage if you leave him alone.
    Rob-Omb - Magic is the best way to go unless you are using Bowser. Bowser
    is too cool to use magic. These are the easiest fight in the tower so I would
    advise picking on them more than the other enemies.
    Remo Con - He has really low magic defense, but he's immune to thunder. That
    means that Mario and Geno get quick, easy wins with magic while Mallow and
    Bowser stick with the physical plan.
    Orb User - They only have 8 HP, but their defenses are insane. Mario and Geno
    have easy wins with magic. Mallow can't make it past their thunder immunity and
    thus must use physicals. Bowser uses physicals because he is Bowser.
    Chomp - Magic is the best plan here. They are even weak to thunder so Mallow
    gets a break for once. They are strong compared to many other enemies here so
    Bowser might consider leading the fight with Terrorize before going into his
    usual physical attack rampage.
    Blaster - Magic is your best bet against them, but an even better bet is not
    fighting them. They are quite strong. Again, when I say to use magic, Bowser
    doesn't count unless you're just leading the fight with Terrorize.
    Fireball - Pretty much anything will kill them, but they will almost certainly
    get the first turn. Bowser and Mallow have easy group sweeps with Terrorize
    and Thunderbolt respectively; Mario and Geno go one at a time with physicals.
    On an interesting yet obscure note, many enemies in here are weak to ice. You
    probably do not have any means of using ice elemental attacks at this point,
    but if you happen to have Ice Bombs, they will do very well. In terms of level,
    you will probably want to be at level 9 when you leave this place. Being well
    on your way to level 10 does not hurt, but then again, falling short of level
    9 is not the greatest tragedy.
    In the first room, simply go up the stairs and exit via the top exit. Then, in
    the second room, stick to the outer wall as you ascend. Once you reach the peak
    of your ascent in this room, jump around a bit to find a hidden chest with a
    Flower in it. Progress onward for a little scene with Booster in which he
    pretty much confesses to kidnapping Toadstool.
    After Booster is done talking, you can explore the extreme ends of the track.
    If you wait until Booster runs away, you can fight Snifit 2 on the end near the
    entrance. There's not much point, but it's somewhat of an obscure opportunity
    so I figured that I would mention it. The end of the track near the exit of the
    room contains a much more valuable Flower Tab. The room afterward has two
    exits; take the nearer one if you are doing Mario's challenge.
    In the room Mario reaches via the nearer exit, you will see a chest that is
    quite out of your jumping reach. What you must do is jump down to the ground
    and land on the seesaw. Mario will be catapulted upward, and you will receive
    the Masher, a truly awesome weapon. Once you have done this, work your way back
    up through the tower and take the farther exit in the room in which your path
    diverged from the other characters.
    This next room contains one big button and an exit. Hit the button to trigger
    an event on Booster Pass. I'll cover what you can do there later, but you can
    go and take care of it now if you want. You really won't need the items to
    finish this dungeon so I suggest waiting until the game gives you a more
    convenient opportunity. Whatever you choose, the guide continues onward after
    you proceed to the next room, and you can run right through this room as well
    once you are finished messing around with the 2D Mario gimmick.
    As a matter of fact, your path is linear with no surprises up until you reach
    a room with a locked door and 6 pictures. Observe the pictures in the following
    order to get the key to the door:
    6, 5, 3, 1, 2, 4
    Inside, you will get the Chomp, a useful weapon for Bowser. This is so easy to
    do that you might as well get it to sell for coins even if you aren't doing
    Bowser's challenge. Anyway, once you're finished with that, continue on your
    progress along the obvious path. Grab the Mushroom in a chest in the next room
    and jump on the seesaw to catapult upward.
    The next room is fairly big. First of all, grab the hidden chest with a frog
    coin in the southwest corner of the room. Next, carefully jump across the
    platforms until you reach the staircase. Instead of going right up, hug the
    lower platform that runs alongside the staircase and jump around in the nook in
    which you cannot see Mario. You'll find a hidden frog coin. With that in your
    possession, exit the room from atop the stairs.
    The next room has a lot of coins and frog coins on the floor, and there's a key
    to the northern room. Grab all of the frog coins and the key, and then snag the
    Zoom Shoes from the northern room. Exit to the west once you are finished. This
    is the room in which Fireballs attack you when you step on the wrong floor
    tiles so you'll get some free experience points as you get all of this stuff.
    Note that Geno and only Geno can outspeed the Fireballs if he equips Zoom Shoes
    so if you are going to intentionally fight a lot of Fireballs on Geno's
    challenge, be sure to get and equip the Zoom Shoes first.
    The next few rooms are linear again, and you don't find anything of interest
    until you reach a room with a save point. This is the last standard room of the
    tower. First of all, you will want to save. Next, you should leap along the
    platforms until you are on top of the already visible chest. Jump on top of
    that chest to find the Goodie Bag. Yes, you finally have it. Now your other
    characters no longer get to select the defend command in battle. Of course, you
    should then get the contents of the visible chest; it's a frog coin. Finally,
    jump around in the southeast corner of the room for a restorative Mushroom. Be
    really sure that you've saved and then head into the next room.
    Okay, it's time for the curtain hiding minigame. If you succeed, you get the
    Amulet. If you fail, you get to face Booster. You get 22 experience points and
    145 coins for defeating Booster, but you get the one of a kind Amulet accessory
    for winning the minigame. You want the Amulet. If you want to fight Booster, I
    suggest you reload from your last save after winning. After all, he is a fairly
    fun fight, but be warned that he's also a good deal harder than anything else
    you've fought so far.
    Optional Boss 2 - Booster
    Mario strategy - Start the battle by using Jump to take out the three Snifits.
    If you get muted, you'll have to use physicals. Booster won't take action until
    his Snifits are dead so feel free to waste time until mute wears off. Anyway,
    Booster is weak to jump so either Jump or Super Jump will make very quick work
    of him. However, Booster is extraordinarily strong, and he can wipe you out
    as fast as you can wipe him out. Be sure to keep healed with Mid Mushrooms, or
    your game will be over very quickly. Ideally, you will end his Snifits while
    either Mallow or Geno are still alive, and they will divert Booster's attention
    while you kill him.
    Mallow strategy - I would really suggest opening the fight by using a Bracer.
    I hate to suggest using an item like that this early in the game, but Mallow
    just does not have the defense to go head to head with Booster. Booster is an
    all out physical attacker who has one of the most powerful physical specials in
    the game in Loco Express. Loco Express does 4X normal damage, and it's
    unblockable. Mallow can't take that without some defense buffing, and even
    then, it will not be a wonderful time. Be sure to equip the Wake Up Pin as
    well; being muted in the battle with the Snifits would be terrible. As per the
    actual strategy, after using the Bracer, use Thunderbolt to wear down the
    Snifits until one more would kill them all. Unless you manage to be at nearly
    full health at this point, transition into using your physical attack to kill
    two of them. Heal up with HP Rain and a Maple Syrup if you need it, and then
    use your physical attack to take out the last one. Physical attacks are what
    you will have to rely on to defeat Booster. Constantly be healing with HP Rain,
    and only attack with the Cymbals when your health is very high. Loco Express
    did 60 damage to my level 9 Mallow in my test run, and I only had 65 max HP.
    It is fortunate that his physical attack is fairly easily blockable so that it
    will only do zero damage. You will need some luck with what attacks Booster
    uses in order to get the chances you need to take him down. All the optional
    bosses are harder for Mallow, but then again, it's much more rewarding to win
    those very difficult fights.
    Geno strategy - You will want the Wake Up Pin equipped for this fight as being
    muted is quite bad. Lead off with Geno Boost, and then use Geno Beam to take
    out the three Snifits. Make sure you are near full health upon killing the last
    Snifit. Booster dies very quickly; he will probably only take 6 Geno Beams.
    However, he hits pretty hard. Loco Express did 48 damage to my level 9 Geno
    with the equipment that I suggested, and Loco Express is unblockable. Yes,
    that's 48 unblockable damage after Geno Boost. This guy is no joke. However,
    he's very beatable as his defense is as bad as his offense is good. Extreme
    enemies are always fun to fight.
    Bowser strategy - The Snifits at the start aren't any real threat to you so
    feel free to take your time taking them out. Terrorize can help speed up the
    process, but you really don't need it so don't feel bad if you get muted. When
    you will kill the final Snifit with an attack, make sure you are at full health
    and not muted. Booster can be feared so once he is targetable, nail him with
    Terrorize. After that, use physical attacks. Bowser's defense is incredible so
    you should be able to win this fight without too much trouble. Seriously,
    Booster's Loco Express, ordinarily one of the scariest attacks in the game, did
    four damage to Bowser in my test fight. You almost have to try to lose. If you
    feel the need to deviate from any strategy given here, it probably won't hurt
    Anyway, after you're done playing around with Booster, be sure to reset the
    game and actually win the curtain minigame. It's laughably easy so I'll leave
    the task of winning up to you. Once you have the Amulet, head back to the save
    point and save, and then go through the door that Booster did to meet your next
    Boss 9 - Knife Guy and Grate Guy
    Note: All characters should equip the Wake Up Pin for this fight.
    Mario strategy - Knife Guy is the one who has bad magic defense, and he has
    less HP. Jump or Super Jump will remove him from the fight very quickly. Grate
    Guy alone isn't a threat as long as you have the Wake Up Pin equipped, and he
    too will fall quickly to a barrage of Jumps or Super Jumps. This is not one of
    your harder battles.
    Mallow strategy - Ugh. Knife Guy has bad magic defense, but he's immune to
    thunder. Grate Guy has equal stats in both but is weak to thunder. What this
    really means is that you're going to be using your Cymbals a lot during this
    fight. Start with a focus on Knife Guy. He is more dangerous when they are not
    teamed up. Just keep smacking him, and use HP Rain when your health gets low.
    It will seem like the fight is going to be really hard after they team up, but
    they run out of FP fairly quickly so just use HP Rain extra often early on.
    Once Knife Guy falls, you have all but won. Grate Guy is no threat at all alone
    if you have the Wake Up Pin equipped. If you happened to over level to level
    10, Shocker devastates Grate Guy and makes this fight very simple. Either way,
    don't expect this fight to be too awful. It just takes a long time.
    Geno strategy - Open the fight with Geno Boost, and then unload on Knife Guy
    with Geno Beam. He should fall very quickly. After he goes down, begin firing
    the Geno Beams at Grate Guy. He lasts a bit longer than Knife Guy, but he still
    takes a lot of damage. This is not a hard fight for Geno at all; you probably
    won't have to use a single Mushroom.
    Bowser strategy - Open with Terrorize, and then launch an all out physical
    assault on Grate Guy. They can't do anything to you at all when they're not
    teamed up, and Grate Guy is the easier one to eliminate. Whenever the fear
    wears off, cast Terrorize again. You might have to use a Mid Mushroom during
    this fight, but it would be just one. Bowser's power is fantastic; put it to
    Either way, you get a handy Flower Jar for winning the fight, and then you rush
    off to Booster Hill in pursuit of Booster and Toadstool. Booster Hill is a
    pretty fun minigame, and the prize this time is great. Every time you catch up
    to Booster and Toadstool, you get a Flower. You could get a theoretically huge
    number of Flowers from this. I personally got 11 on my test run, and I could
    have done better yet. If you do really badly, you can redo Booster Hill and
    find some Flowers lying along the path. I suggest you do your best to do well
    at this minigame, and if you do horribly, redo the Knife Guy and Grate Guy
    fight so you can try again. As per the mechanics of the minigame, Toad explains
    it far better than I ever could. Listen to him if you don't get it. I will give
    you the one hint that Snifits give you a better boost than barrels, but barrels
    are still really important to hit.
    Anyway, regardless of how many Flowers you obtained, you will find yourself in
    Marrymore. The town has one combination inn/item shop and a giant chapel which
    seems to have the sole purpose of weddings. Hmm, what could Booster want to do
    here? Anyway, your first stop should be the item shop as there's some useful
    new stuff here. However, be you warned. Do not sell the Work Pants even if you
    get a new armor here. The Work Pants are too valuable to just ditch like that.
    Mario - Restock on Mid Mushrooms if you need them. Buy a Happy Shirt as well.
    Mallow - Buy the Whomp Glove and Happy Pants, and restock on Maple Syrups if
    you are running low.
    Geno - Buy the Hand Cannon and Mid Mushrooms if you need them.
    Bowser - Just buy some Mid Mushrooms if you need them.
    You notice that there's a lot of useless equipment here too. The Happy Cape and
    Happy Shell are inferior to the Work Pants, and the Super Hammer and Chomp
    Shell are similarly inferior to the weapons you found in Booster Tower.
    However, regardless of whose challenge you are playing, make sure that you have
    armor for a full party. The next boss is Bundt who forces you to violate the
    rules of the challenge. I personally think that Mario, Mallow, and Bowser is
    the ideal party for the next fight. Be sure to pick up the Happy armor for the
    first two and give the Work Pants to Bowser. If you are doing Geno's challenge,
    ditch Bowser for him and just pick up the armor for Mario and Mallow. Weapons
    do not help you in the way you have to cheat, and we're not going to bother
    giving the other characters accessories. Just get armor for them and nothing
    else. Also, you might consider picking up a few Able Juices. They aren't
    critical, but they could be handy. Some Pick Me Ups would also be a great
    investment just in case. Note that for the two previous items you will need to
    head back to Rose Town.
    I should note now that it's possible to get some interesting items if you stay
    in the suite. You could be given flower items and frog coins, and, once in your
    room, you can order Kerokerocola from room service. You might even be able to
    get some similar items by sleeping in your room over and over again, getting
    indebted to the suite, and forced to be a bellboy. However, the whole thing is
    very financially draining. Normal coins don't tend to matter much but,
    seriously, it costs 200 coins just to step foot in the suite. The Kerokerocola
    cost another 150 coins a piece. I am not going to do this, but if you don't
    care at all about coins and would like an opportunity at some decent items,
    feel free. If you go in with 950 coins, it's the cheapest way to buy
    Kerokerocola en masse so that's cool I guess.
    Also, head upstairs in the inn and jump in the western corner of the bedroom on
    the second floor. You'll find a hidden chest with a frog coin. Speaking of
    secrets, we have some unfinished business. So, instead of rushing to save
    Toadstool, we're going to return to Booster Pass
    Dungeon 10 - Booster Pass (again)
    I'm not going to rehash old ground here. Don't fight anything at all, and just
    rush to the first screen of this area. Once you arrive, head west, and you'll
    see that a new area has been added. Go through the door that has appeared, and
    you'll be on a long, tall pathway. The enemies in the gaps are Spikeys from
    Mushroom Way; ignore them. You will also find the Apprentice enemy wandering
    around up here. You should be able to easily flatten him; he fights very
    similarly to a Snifit from Booster Tower. There's a bit of a funny side quest
    you can do if you lose to the Apprentice; the dialogue changes each time as
    Booster makes the winning Apprentices new Snifits. I don't really suggest
    bothering, but if you are into quirky easter eggs, explore away.
    Either way, at the end of the cliff, there are three chests. You'll obtain a
    Kerokerocola, a Flower, and a frog coin. Hey, that's not bad. Now head back to
    Marrymore; it's time to take care of business.
    Head over to the chapel, and sneak in around back on the right side. Cooperate
    with the Snifit and Bowser to break a few doors down, but be sure to save when
    you can. Also, make sure your party is ready for the Bundt boss fight when you
    save. The character you are using should have the Fearless Pin equipped, and
    the other two characters should have the armors I suggested earlier equipped.
    Yes, I feel awful that we have to cheat like this. Also, if you're wondering
    why Geno is not in the suggested party except on his own challenge, it's
    because he is the least useful if you don't use Geno Boost, and Geno Boost
    would affect the third stage of the fight. We're going to try to keep the
    cheating to a minimum here.
    Anyway, once you're clear and set on your equipment and in the main hall of the
    chapel, you get to do a minigamish thing of recovering Toadstool's wedding
    gear. Do it fast to see Mario get kissed by Toadstool, and do it more slowly to
    see him get kissed by Bowser or Booster. The scene is really funny in all
    cases so do whatever. Yeah, there's a lot of talking and such, but eventually,
    you get to do what you came here for.
    Boss 10 - Bundt
    Mario strategy - Start off the fight by using Jump on Bundt several times to
    progress the fight to the second stage. You're allowed to take advantage of
    Mallow's HP Rain during the first two stages so I suggest that you do so. In
    the second stage, just have everyone hammer away with physical attacks. It is
    the only way to extinguish the candles; for once, Jump is not the winning plan.
    Once you progress to the Raspberry stage of the fight, abandon your allies and
    just smack it with Jump a few times. This shouldn't be too tough, but you do
    have to cheat. Note that Mallow will have the first move in the second stage
    of the fight. A candle will be re-ignited immediately if he attacks so don't
    bother having him attack at that point. Don't use Able Juices to cure fear on
    your allies; just use them to cure sleep if it comes up.
    Mallow strategy - Bundt is immune to your magic so the plan here is pretty
    simple. The only way you will ever attack Bundt is with the Cymbals, and your
    only use of FP is HP Rain which you will use whenever your health gets low.
    Note that during the second stage of the fight, you will have to use physicals
    with all three characters. Feel free to heal them in the first and second
    stages of the fight with HP Rain, but leave them to die in the third stage. The
    Fearless Pin will protect you from fear, but Lullaby could be a problem for you
    or your allies. It would be fine to just let it wear off, but you can also
    consider using an Able Juice if you have one.
    Geno strategy - As always, open the fight with Geno Boost. Then conduct the
    fight exactly like Mallow does except for the detail that you have to use Mid
    Mushrooms on yourself in the third stage of the fight instead of HP Rain. The
    boss has less defense than magic defense, and you just got a new weapon. I
    wouldn't use Geno Beam here, but you might do marginally better damage with it
    against Raspberry. Either way, it doesn't matter a whole lot.
    Bowser strategy - Bowser was never one for magic, and this cake happens to be
    immune to fear. Well, I guess you can only really do one thing with Bowser, and
    that's physically attack. Actually, this fight with Bowser is the exact same as
    it is with Mallow except you have better stats, and he's the one using HP Rain
    instead of you. Once the fight progresses to the Raspberry stage, you have to
    use Mid Mushrooms instead of relying on HP Rain.
    I probably could have said more about this fight, but considering that you have
    to cheat, I'm not too enthused about the whole affair. Once you're finished,
    you get to leave Marrymore. Try exiting via the west exit and refusing to
    return Toadstool for some humor. Otherwise, exit via the east exit to be
    automatically sent back to Mushroom Kingdom. Talk to the man whose Wallet you
    returned to receive a Flower Jar. Don't wait to do this either! Talk with the 
    Chancellor, and then leave the castle. Toadstool is so upset by the fact that
    you were going to leave without her that she throws herself from the upper
    story of the castle. Luckily for her, she also simultaneously violates all
    known laws of physics by floating slowly down with her parasol. She then joins
    your party. Rejoice players of the Toadstool challenge; at this, the halfway
    point of the game, your game has finally begun!
    Next, you have to stop by Tadpole Pond and speak with Frogfucius. If you did
    not obtain the Froggie Stick earlier in the game, you must do that event now.
    Of course, who would skip that, especially after being warned earlier in this
    guide? Anyway, it's not big deal to have to go through that now. Also, you can
    get the second card from Toadofsky now, and that will let you buy Megalixirs.
    You really don't need them, but you might want to finish this side quest
    eventually so you can buy Kerokerocolas. If you're wondering, the melody is:
    Mi Do So Do Re La Ti Do
    Now, before we head to Star Hill, it would be a good time to assess where we
    stand. Consider this a halfway through the game check up.
    In terms of FP, I had 75, including the Flower Jar from Mushroom Kingdom.
    Depending on your performance on Booster Hill, you might have a bit more or a
    bit less. You might have missed some permanently missable Flowers, or you might
    have gotten some Flower that I haven't. The only two possible sources I can see
    are rare drops from Croco 2 or Booster, both Flower Boxes. You really do want
    to be sure that you have as much FP as possible; battles in the second half of
    the game are much harder than in the first half, and not having to spend as
    many turns restoring FP can be the difference between victory and defeat.
    I had 23 frog coins at this point in the game. Frog coins are not the most
    important things really, but they are helpful. You can use them in the Frog
    Coin Emporium to get the buffing items and Sleepy Bombs. We haven't needed
    those yet, but they will be important for several bosses in the second half of
    the game. Also, once you arrive in Seaside Town, you have the opportunity to
    buy the Scrooge Ring for 50 frog coins. That's an obscene amount, but the item
    is fairly handy since it cuts all FP costs in half. If you've been diligent in
    collecting the coins, it will be more easily obtainable.
    In terms of items, you should have a good supply of Mid Mushrooms or Maple
    Syrups, whichever your particular character prefers. Be sure to sell off any
    Mushrooms or Honey Syrups you still have lying around; by now, those are
    totally useless to you. If you have gotten them all so far, you should have 4
    Kerokerocola, 1 Red Essence, and 1 Rock Candy. Kerokerocola are very, very
    useful at endgame. Red Essence is a banned item; feel free to sell it. The Rock
    Candy is the best attacking item in the game; you will doubtlessly be able to
    find a use for it by the end of the game. You also should definitely have the
    Goodie Bag; go back and get it if you don't. You could also get the Mystery Egg
    now if you want to use that instead, but it costs 200 coins. Toadstool could
    invest even more coins and get the B'Tub Ring in Marrymore and use it to make
    the Lamb's Lure which in turn can become the Sheep Attack. In my opinion,
    that's a really big waste of time, but if you want to do it, feel free. I also
    had a Bracer which I bought during my first trip to Tadpole Pond. You still
    don't need one yet, but having one in the inventory is always nice.
    Now is also the time at which we get access to some better opportunities for
    item harvesting. For now, Mid Mushrooms and Maple Syrups are fine, but very
    soon, they will begin to fade in usefulness. You already have a max FP of
    nearly twice the restorative abilities of Maple Syrup, and your HP with the
    non-healers is pushing 80 which is the limit of Mid Mushrooms. You could use
    Megalixirs, but they are expensive and only legal when the rest of the party is
    dead. Luckily, your next destination is Star Hill. If you are doing Mario or
    Bowser's challenges, be absolutely sure to bring some Yoshi Cookies (you did
    win the Yoshi Race, correct?). This will let you pick up some Max Mushrooms
    from Sackits while you are there. Geno should head on over to the Pipe Vault.
    He can equip the Work Pants and Zoom Shoes to outspeed Shy Rangers, and he can
    Yoshi Cookie them to obtain Kerokerocola. Geno actually probably will want to
    keep a Max Mushroom or two in the inventory at late game, but he can get
    Kerokerocola so he might as well use it. I suppose Max Mushrooms should still
    be a big part of Geno's inventory too. There's a failure rate for using a Yoshi
    Cookie on Shy Rangers, and you can't use Kerokerocola until your allies have
    fallen. As per pure FP restoring items, they are sadly a long way away yet.
    Your first chance at getting those is in Nimbus Land.
    You also might have some Fright Bombs, Sleepy Bombs, or Fire Bombs. You can get
    plenty of those now if you want them. I don't use them in random encounter
    strategies, but they are quite handy if you choose to use them. Look back up to
    the Yoshi Cookie table if you need some help tracking down Fright Bombs and
    Fire Bombs. Ice Bombs are also a possibility, but for now, the only way you
    could have them is from Moleville which is a pain.
    Your equipment is also a big concern right now. First of all, be sure to remove
    everything from your other characters. You might have accidentally left
    something on after the Bundt fight, and Toadstool comes with a weapon and
    armor. Your main character will want to be equipped as such:
    Happy Shirt
    Zoom Shoes
    Whomp Glove
    Happy Pants
    Hand Cannon
    Work Pants
    Amulet (Zoom Shoes if your next stop is the Pipe Vault)
    Work Pants
    Zoom Shoes
    Slap Glove
    Polka Dress
    In terms of accessories, you should have all four status protection pins, the
    Amulet, and Zoom Shoes. You should also have a pair of Work Pants, equipped or
    otherwise. If you're missing the Antidote Pin, don't worry about it. You aren't
    missing anything important.
    Also, if you are absolutely swimming in coins, you could get the game right now
    in Mushroom Kingdom's inn. It does nothing for you, but Beetle Mania is mildly
    entertaining. I just thought I'd mention it. Do note that Toadstool will need
    a lot of coins in Seaside Town so don't bankrupt yourself if you're doing her
    If you haven't already, now is the best time to harvest massive amounts of
    Yoshi Cookies. You likely have a spacious or easily down sizable inventory.
    You will want to get nearly 100 of them; it's not that hard, and it will ensure
    that you never run out. Really, get as many as you can stand to get. Also, you
    will notice that a baby Yoshi has appeared on the island. Feed him 25 Yoshi
    Cookies to make him fat, and then you can feed him 10 cookies at a time to get
    a random item. You can get Bracers, Energizers, frog coins, or Yoshi-Ade. One
    of these items is much better than the others; I suggest getting a few
    Yoshi-Ade now. I will always try to use Bracers over Yoshi-Ade in my
    strategies, but sometimes you just need the best. It should be obvious, but
    Geno can ignore the fat Yoshi altogether. Geno Boost is a better plan.
    If you are doing Toadstool's challenge, you will likely want a few Energizers.
    Mallow should pick up just one. I would obviously suggest buying them in
    Tadpole Pond instead of paying 10 Yoshi Cookies a piece.
    Lastly, your level should probably be level 9 right now, and you shouldn't have
    much more than 100 experience points to the next level. Different characters
    are likely to be closer or farther to the next level, but no one should be much
    farther than 100 experience points away. If you're under leveled, it's not a big
    deal, but you'll have to do some extra fighting in the sea. Just keep that in
    Okay, the check up is finished. Did you pass, or is there more that you need to
    do before moving on? Regardless of what your status is, be sure to get yourself
    in as ready of a state as possible, and then proceed to the next dungeon.
    Dungeon 12 - Star Hill
    Okay, this place pretty much defines simple. There are no items to find here,
    and it's completely linear. That being said, I'm not going to actually walk you
    through this place. It would be a waste of time. Just keep going until you
    reach the Star Piece, get it, and leave. You can't miss it; Geno won't let you.
    If you want to see some interesting dialogue, check the stars on the ground.
    You can see the wishes of various characters, including Mallow and Luigi.
    There's no boss, but the enemies are well worth noting.
    Mukumuku - Magic usually does a bit better than physical, but he's immune to
    thunder so Mallow must melee him. He's not a threat so take him out however is
    most convenient for you.
    Gecko - He's very similar to the Mukumuku in terms of how he fights and what
    hurts him. He can put you to sleep so make him a higher priority.
    Pulsar - He counters physical attacks with Migraine, an instant death attack.
    Refrain from using physical attacks on him unless you have instant death
    protection equipped on a return trip here. He's immune to jump; watch out for
    that. In general, I suggest just fleeing from him.
    Mastadoom - Unless you have a Pure Water for a quick kill, I suggest just
    fleeing. He's very strong. If you must fight, try using non-thunder magic.
    Sackit - Use a Yoshi Cookie on him to get a Max Mushroom.
    I very strongly suggest that you not fight here at all. There are some
    abnormally strong enemies, and the next area is a very player friendly area.
    However, Mario, Geno, and Bowser will want to harvest Max Mushrooms here from
    the Sackits. When you engage in battle, only do so with the monsters that
    appear to be Sackits outside of battle. Use Yoshi Cookies on as many of them as
    you can, and then flee from any Mastadoom or Pulsar enemies. If there are just
    some Mukumukus or Geckos, you might as well kill them.
    Don't be too concerned about Max Mushroom harvesting right now. You will have
    plenty of time for it later, and you are fine with Mid Mushrooms for the time
    being at least. Just get a few and get out of here. Mallow and Toadstool should
    not bother getting anything and should just get out of here.
    ***Seaside Town***
    Well, once Star Piece later, you will arrive in Seaside Town. Hmm, the music
    sounds so nice, and the townspeople are definitely not suspicious. Things are
    definitely looking up here. The elder tells you to go to the Sea, but first we
    should check out the shopping around here. The frog on the second floor of the
    elder's house gives you some opportunities to spend your frog coins; that
    Scrooge Ring is nice. There's almost no chance that you can afford it now; just
    keep it in mind for later. The Exp Booster is doubtlessly tempting, but trust
    me when I tell you that it will make you grossly overpowered and ruin the game.
    The other items are useless; ignore them.
    There's also one item shop in town that feels like selling to you. The items
    sold here are unlike any you have seen in a shop before, and once you return
    from the Sea, you will never see any of them for sale like this again. Bad
    Mushrooms are a waste of coins for the most part (Toadstool should consider
    grabbing one and only one), but all those other items are quite good. If you
    are doing Toadstool's challenge, I'd really suggest picking up a few Fire Bombs
    for the next boss. Snagging a few Ice Bombs for Smilax (a much later in the
    game boss) would also be wise, but you're fine without them. Fright Bombs are
    generally useful for non-Bowser characters, but they're easy to harvest with
    Yoshi Cookies. Muku Cookies are just plain strange. They heal 69 HP to the
    whole party, cure status effects, and remove the effects of Red Essence.
    They're the best status healing item in the game, and it would not be an awful
    idea to carry one (certainly no more than one). If you don't get one now and
    want one later, you can always use a Yoshi Cookie on the Mukumukus on Star
    Hill. Be sure you don't bankrupt yourself here; there's a real item shop in the
    Sea. However, be absolutely, positively sure that if you are doing Toadstool's
    challenge that you have three Fire Bombs. King Calamari will be "fun" if you
    don't. If you can't afford them (don't forget you need coins left over), Yoshi
    Cookies can help you out.
    Well, that was an interesting experience. As much as I hate to take advice from
    obviously evil people, let's take the elder's advice and head on down to the
    Sea. Rumor is that's where our next dungeon is.
    Dungeon 13 - Sea
    The first thing you find here is a more normal shop. Buy Sailor armor if your
    character is not Bowser, and buy some Hurly Gloves if it is Bowser. Next exit
    via the eastern exit, and you'll be in a place with actual enemies to remind
    you that this is a dungeon. Also, if you're doing Mario's challenge, put on
    the Jump Shoes. If you're using Bowser, replace those Zoom Shoes with the
    Zeostar - Magic takes them out easily, especially thunder magic from Mallow.
    Bloober - They're just like the Zeostars. Magic, especially Mallow's thunder
    spells, will take them out fast.
    Leuko - Use physicals to take them out except with Mario. He uses Jump.
    Crusty - Magic is the way to go here again. Mario needs to watch out for their
    jump immunity if he's not wearing his Jump Shoes.
    Mr. Kipper - He's like most of the monsters here. Magic, especially Mallow's
    thunder spells, tears him apart.
    Wow, this place bucks some trends. Notably, Mallow dominates here with his
    thunder spells. You'll definitely want to be at level 10 before you leave, but
    you likely won't do much fighting due to this place being short and having a
    Speaking of the Star, you'll find one in the first chest you see. Use it to
    take out every enemy in that room and the next room; it's not only possible but
    fairly simple to do so. This will almost certainly let you hit level 10, and
    for Mallow that's a glorious day. He finally has Shocker!
    After using the Star to destroy everything, exit via the northwest to find
    three chests. The nearest one has a healing Mushroom, and the farther two have
    a Flower and a frog coin. You can jump back down to the save point and discover
    that this area is a loop if you want. Make your way back to the previous room
    and go out the other exit to progress.
    Jump into the water in this room, dive down with the whirlpool, and then use
    the cave to reach the top of the cliff to find a chest with a Max Mushroom.
    That's a very nice find for Mario, Geno, or Bowser. Once you have that, exit
    the room via the land based exit to find yourself outside with a bunch of
    whirlpools. Just jump into one, go to the bottom, and enter the Sunken Ship via
    the "pipe" on the mast. That's it; this dungeon is clear.
    Dungeon 14 - Sunken Ship
    This is the most serious dungeon so far. The enemies are getting stronger, and
    there's a nasty optional boss in here. However, your characters are starting to
    have some more diverse special options, and you get a few truly awesome
    accessories in here.
    Dry Bones - They instantly die to all forms of magic, and they are immune to
    physical attacks. Use whatever your cheapest option for destroying them is.
    Toadstool should flee before she has Sleepy Time which actually does kill.
    Greaper - These guys can dish out damage very quickly. Bowser and Toadstool
    should stick to their physicals, but the others should use a strong magical
    assault. Mallow will want to be using Shocker here to nail the thunder
    weakness, and Mario must be wary of the jump immunity if he forgot his Jump
    Reacher - Magic absolutely destroys them, especially Mallow's Shocker. Bowser
    might want to open fights that involve these guys with Terrorize.
    Alley Rat - They're yet another enemy that's very weak to magic. Their HP isn't
    high so Bowser and Toadstool shouldn't have too much trouble mauling through
    them with physicals. They are fairly likely to inflict poison so watch out for
    Gorgon - They can potentially hurt you very badly, and they don't die as
    quickly as you might hope. Magic does better if you're the sort of character
    who can do that, but Bowser and Toadstool have to stick to the old plan of
    Straw Head - Shockingly, they are enemies that die more quickly to magic than
    to physicals, and they are weak to the thunder element. I think there might be
    a pattern here. These guys aren't as strong as you might expect, but they can
    inflict some status ailments.
    Also, all the enemies from the Sea appear in the underwater sections of this
    dungeon. As you can tell, this is as good as it gets for Mallow. Everything has
    bad magic defense, and everything is weak to thunder. Liberally abuse Shocker
    and Thunderbolt, the latter only being applicable against large groups when
    Mallow has high health. Bowser should have enough FP so that you can somewhat
    exploit the low magic defense with Terrorize, though you will almost never kill
    anything with Terrorize. Inflicting fear is still useful, and Bowser will have
    a large interest in reducing the damage he takes here since a few things are
    very good at punishing his poor magic defense. Toadstool just has an awful
    time, and if you're doing Toadstool's challenge, you should just get used to
    that. Her physical attacking abilities are not very good, and she can't attack
    with magic as long as her level is below level 18. However, all the enemies
    here are able to be put to sleep. Since you only enter at level 10, I didn't
    mention it in the strategies, but if Toadstool has hit level 11 and encounters
    a large group, you would be very wise to open the fight with Sleepy Time.
    Level 12 is a good target level to leave this place. Don't push yourself to
    fight too much as you will want to be strong for the bosses here (mostly,
    don't consume too many items), but the random enemies don't get easier after
    this so you shouldn't plan on training more later to make up for a lack of
    training now. The final boss here is strong, but he has few tricks so he should
    not be too much of a problem.
    There's a save point in the room north of the entrance, and the other direction
    is linear for a short while. Progress as you see fit until you enter a room
    with many Greapers guarding various doors. You are supposed to defeat the
    Greapers to access the puzzle rooms behind them, and then you solve the puzzles
    to get items and hints as per the password to access the depths of the ship. We
    already know that the password is pearls so the rooms are optional technically,
    but the items are nice so we're going to solve the puzzles anyway.
    Room 1 - The Sky Troopa moves in the same direction as you do. Lead him to
    knock the cannonball onto the switch to get a healing Mushroom.
    Room 2 - You have to hit the switches to stop the moving trampolines. Then, a
    cannonball will bounce from one to another toward a switch. Try to place the
    trampolines near the right side of the circles of light. Your reward is a
    Room 3 - Ugh, this is the extremely difficult 3D maze. You can't see what you
    are doing at all so giving advice here is difficult. You have to "feel" your
    way through, and the correct path is very indirect and involves "looping"
    through the majority of the structure while constantly jumping. The first big
    area you want to aim for is the exposed platform. You will reach it via the
    western "door", and then you'll take the eastern "door". From there, you'll
    head to a place where you can see Mario by jumping, and then you need to move
    in a U shaped pattern to get to the other opening which is elevated enough to
    allow you to reach the button. I know this description is horrible; there's no
    good way to instruct someone on how to complete this maze. If you simply
    cannot finish, that's fine. The prize is a valuable Royal Syrup so you really
    should try, but it's hardly a critical item to lose.
    After the three rooms on the top, you will enter a side passage. The fellow
    walking around can sell you some items, and you can sell him any Pure Waters
    you may have found. They can be used to kill ghosts, but they sell for too much
    to make that really practical. The chest contains a lot of coins, but Toadstool
    can forget about plowing through the Dry Bones in order to reach it. Either
    way, you'll find yourself on the bottom row of the previous room with a few new
    puzzle rooms to do.
    Room 4 - Just follow the trail of coins, and don't catch the head that's making
    the trail. You end up 150 coins richer.
    Room 5 - This room is so pointless. You have to hit the cannonballs into the
    switch. You reward is a Mushroom. No, not the healing type. You get one that
    goes in your inventory. A 30 HP healing item is useless by now; only do this
    room if you want a sense of completion. Well, at least it's not hard at all.
    Room 6 - This also happens to be the room that leads onward so at least
    entering this room is mandatory. The puzzle is really easy, but before you
    solve it, progress to the next room and enter the password "pearls". Now go
    back and jump on the out of place looking barrel and roll it onto the switch.
    Hop onto the other switch to get a healing Mushroom. Save and then head onward
    for a boss fight. Be sure to equip the Fearless Pin before entering battle. I
    was already at level 11 for this fight, but I had a few unfortunate Game Overs
    on the way here. You should be fine at level 10.
    Boss 11 - King Calamari
    Note: The Tentacles will not grab you if one of your other party members is
    dead. If both of your other party members die while you are grabbed, it is
    Game Over. The odds of getting a Game Over like that are pretty slim, and since
    you can't see who they are targeting, your timed defense will probably keep
    your whole party alive. Of course, this is still good to know.
    Mario strategy - It's all about Jump. Jump the Tentacles left to right to
    easily dispose of the first two waves. If you get grabbed, just endure for a
    few turns, and Mario will return. He'll be inflicted with fear despite having
    the Fearless Pin equipped, but what can you do? Either way, you'll work your
    way up to King Calamari himself. There, use your same Jump strategy to remove
    his two Tentacles, and then focus on King Calamari himself with either Jump or
    Super Jump. If you feel like using it just for the fun of it, feel free to use
    Super Flame. It won't do as much as Jump, but this is the best that it will
    ever do anyway. If your health gets low, be sure to munch a Mid Mushroom. This
    fight is easy, but you can get worn down if you aren't careful.
    Mallow strategy - Shocker does very well here so we're going to abuse it. Start
    the fight with a barrage of Shockers aimed at the left Tentacle, and then take
    out the two right ones with physicals. Don't worry too much if you get grabbed;
    just wait it out and then resume your assault after you return. You have to
    take out two waves of Tentacles like this. If you happen to run low on FP, use
    a Maple Syrup. Be sure to keep healed with HP Rain as well. Eventually, you'll
    be face to face with King Calamari. Take out his two supporting Tentacles left
    to right just like the previous times, and then focus on the big guy with
    Shocker. He has some fairly strong physical attacks, but the Fearless Pin
    prevents you from having to deal with fear once the Tentacles are gone. He's
    not strong enough to be a big threat if you just keep healed either; this
    shouldn't be a hard fight. Shocker is quite powerful at this stage of the game
    even when the enemy isn't weak to it. Well, it's powerful compared to what
    Mallow is used to having at least...
    Geno strategy - Open the fight with Geno Boost, and then target the left
    Tentacle with Geno Beam. After that, go after the two right Tentacles with Geno
    Beam as well. Don't worry if you get grabbed; just wait it out and then resume
    the Geno Beam use. Yes, you will be inflicted with fear even if you have the
    Fearless Pin equipped. It's lame, but you just have to deal with it. After
    defeating two batches of Tentacles, you will be faced with King Calamari
    himself, accompanied by the final two Tentacles. Again focus on the Tentacles,
    and be sure to go after the left one before the right one. King Calamari can
    inflict poison and fear. The Fearless Pin protects you from fear, and
    poison isn't a big deal. Like his Tentacles, King Calamari takes more damage
    from Geno Beam so be sure to use it whenever possible. Be sure to keep well
    healed with Mid Mushrooms (save your Max Mushrooms), and this should not be a
    very hard boss.
    Bowser strategy - The Tentacles can be inflicted with fear, and they have no
    magic evasion. Terrorize is a very effective tool against both waves of
    Tentacles so be sure to use it. Otherwise, simple physicals are about your only
    option. You might get grabbed, but it shouldn't be too big of a deal. Just wait
    it out and then resume attacking. Even when inflicted with fear himself,
    Bowser's physical defense will make the first stages of this fight very easy.
    King Calamari himself is immune to fear, but Terrorize is still handy to help
    you take out his supporting Tentacles more quickly. Most of what King Calamari
    does is physical, and his method of inflicting fear upon Bowser is blocked by
    the Fearless Pin. This really should not be hard at all. Just don't get sloppy
    with your health. At the same time, stick to Mid Mushrooms. He's too easy to
    waste Max Mushrooms.
    Toadstool strategy - Like most fight with Toadstool, this is a long and tedious
    fight. Start with an Energizer if you have one to spare, but all you're doing
    is making it take longer if you do not. All parts of this boss are immune to
    sleep so all you can do is rely on your physical attacks. Unlike the other
    characters, Toadstool should go right to left; the right ones have lower
    physical defense, and Toadstool is weak enough that this will matter more than
    their higher HP. If you get grabbed, wait it out. The good news is that Therapy
    also cures status effects so, if you ever get inflicted with fear, you can just
    Therapy away the problems. Fire Bombs will help you save quite a bit of time,
    but save them for when King Calamari himself shows up. In terms of dealing with
    King Calamari himself, you should be fine. Even without an Energizer, one Fire
    Bomb will take out his left Tentacle and leave the right without enough health
    to survive even one physical attack. Either way, if you followed my advice,
    you'll have three Fire Bombs for this fight so he goes down nice and easily.
    You can expect your physical attack to do a whopping 1 damage to King Calamari
    so, if you don't have the Fire Bombs, have fun. I hope you ignored my other
    advice and equipped the Amulet. If this fight is too tedious for you, you might
    want to rethink doing Toadstool's challenge. It only gets worse after this.
    Okay, after that, run back and save, and stop by the merchant to buy some items
    if you are running low. You're only halfway through this dungeon! Proceed
    through the upper exit of the room after King Calamari, and you'll have to work 
    your way through a room without getting hit by the Bullet Bills. This isn't
    hard, and the worst case scenario is that you have to try again. The next two
    rooms let you do naught but run straight to the door so do that.
    The next room involves you and a doppelganger who do a fine job of cutting each 
    other off. Jump in the bottom center of the room to hit a switch, and then leap
    from the head of the doppelganger to reach a hidden chest with a Kerokerocola.
    Proceed onward. The two elevated chests you passed by contain 100 coins a
    piece. You likely have maxed out money or very nearly maxed out money by now so
    you don't have to bother with them, but jumping from any of the elevated points
    in that room will let you get up there. Anyway, proceed until you see a Dry
    Bones standing in a gap in some crates. Jump over him and loot the hidden room
    behind the crates to get a Frog Coin. Then retreat a room and go down the
    stairs to a room with two chests and a save point. Save first, and then get the
    near chest to find a healing Mushroom. The farther chest contains Hidon, a fake
    treasure chest enemy. Be sure you have the Amulet equipped.
    Optional Boss 3 - Hidon
    Mario strategy - Jump tears Hidon to shreds. Super Jump can work too if you are
    in that sort of a mood. Use Jump to take out all the Goombettes once Hidon is
    gone. This is the sort of easy fight that everybody loves.
    Mallow strategy - Okay, for this fight to be possible, you're going to need an
    Energizer and the Rock Candy from Booster Pass. It's a really good thing that
    the save point is so close too since this also will take a good amount of luck.
    Start the fight with the Energizer, and then use the Rock Candy twice. Yes, you
    absolutely have to get a freebie on the Rock Candy, or you can forget about
    winning this fight. Actually, a Rock Candy is worth more than the 17 EXP, 100
    coins, and Safety Badge that you get for winning this fight. Unless you are
    dedicated to trying over and over again until you get the freebie twice, you
    can forget this fight. Of course, if you do get the freebie twice, that's
    always cool. You are right next to the save point, and the battle is only three
    turns long. It's not too bad to just try over and over again until luck is on
    your side.
    Geno strategy - Start the battle with Geno Boost, and then lay into Hidon with
    Geno Beam. Ignore his minions and just hammer away at him. He only has 600 HP
    so it should not take too long. Geno Beam will also be the method of choice to
    wipe out the Goomettes once he is gone.
    Bowser strategy - You are going to think I'm joking, but I'm not. Hidon
    counters physicals with either his physical attack or the very dangerous Carni
    Kiss. Physical attacks are out of the question. However, you do have one way to
    cause magic damage to him. Yes, that's right. You are going to use Terrorize
    over and over again until Hidon falls. It seems fantastically stupid, but it
    works. If any Goombettes remain after Hidon falls, some good old fashioned
    Bowser physicals will make quick work of them. You'll likely use quite a few
    Mid Mushrooms during this fight, and you will probably need a Maple Syrup as
    Toadstool strategy - Follow Mallow's strategy to the letter, but I'm really
    going to stress this with Toadstool. The Rock Candy is worth more than winning
    this fight. Do not lose the Rock Candy; only accept a fight in which you get
    two freebies. Toadstool needs item attacks more than the other characters; you
    don't want to lose the best item attack that easily.
    If you have to restock on some items, now would be a good time to head back to
    the merchant and buy up. The chest which used to contain Hidon will have 100
    coins when you return so you can make back all your shopping money really
    easily. Once you're finished with this whole ordeal, proceed through the door
    past Hidon, and then immediately run through the next door. This dungeon's end
    is in sight!
    In this room, jump into the whirlpool to head underwater, and then go back to
    the previous room via the underwater door to get quite a few frog coins. Then
    proceed onward to a submerged staircase teeming with enemies. Fight your way
    through if you wish, and then you'll be in a very large, water filled room.
    Behind the barrels in the northwestern corner is a secret room containing the
    Safety Ring. The Safety Ring is the single most important accessory in this
    challenge. I can't stress it enough. GET THE SAFETY RING. You will probably not
    be finishing the game if you don't get it, and it's a long trip back here if
    you forget it. The Safety Ring gives the same stat bonuses as the Fearless Pin
    except it also gives +5 to speed. It nullifies all status ailments. Yes, it
    just rendered all other status protection items obsolete, including that Safety
    Badge that you just got. It also makes you immune to instant death, and it
    grants immunity to a wide variety of enemy specials as well. It certainly does
    not protect you from all enemy specials or even most of them, but it does
    protect you from quite a few of them. Really, this item is completely awesome.
    After you're finished getting the Safety Ring, proceed up the barrels to the
    surface of the water. Cross the water to the southwest corner of the room to
    find a frog coin, and then exit the room via the door near where you surfaced.
    You'll be confronted by a group of four Bandana Reds. These are not very strong
    enemies. Magic tears them apart, especially Mallow's Thunderbolt. All status
    effects work on them as well so Toadstool can use Sleepy Time to help herself
    out a bit, and Bowser gets to play with Terrorize. Once they are fallen, you
    will see a chest you could grab. Do not grab it. Make sure you are at full
    health and run up the stairs to see the single best line in the game:
    WHAT THE? How dare you dodge the barrel!
    Seriously, that's brilliant. I hope whoever wrote that line got a promotion for
    it. Anyway, continuing up the staircase will end with you engaged in fisticuffs
    with five Bandana Reds. Fighting five of them is not much different from
    fighting four of them so just flatten them. Afterward, they will open the door
    behind them to Johnny's room. Johnny is the boss; don't rush in.
    If you are going to run back to the save point near Hidon, do so before
    grabbing that chest. Either way, before you go into Johnny's room, open the
    chest to get a healing Mushroom. Full HP and FP is helpful in a boss fight. You
    will want to concern yourself with your level and equipment. I was at level 12
    for the Johnny fight, but level 11 works for the most part. If you are doing
    Toadstool's challenge, you will really want to be at level 12. The fight is a
    whole lot longer at level 11 since you have 7 less attack, and you are doing
    very little damage to Johnny anyway. As per equipment, everyone should equip
    the Amulet. In order to speed up the fight, Toadstool should also equip the
    Work Pants. If you were a FOOL and sold the Work Pants, the fight is just going
    to be that much longer.
    Boss 12- Jonathan "Johnny" Jones
    Note: Clever people will try to kill all of the Bandana Blues after Mario dies
    to prevent the 1v1 fight. They'll be punished by Johnny using more powerful
    attacks. It doesn't matter if Mario is alive or not; do not, under any
    circumstances, kill all four Bandana Blues.
    Mario strategy - Use Jump to take out three of the Bandana Blues and then focus
    on Johnny. You can use Super Jump over Jump against Johnny if you want; it
    really does not matter. Just be sure to leave the last Bandana Blue standing.
    This will prevent Johnny from using any attack other than his physical, and it
    will prevent the 1v1 fight. You might be wondering why the 1v1 fight is so bad,
    but I have to inform you that Johnny becomes an entirely different monster.
    Notably, he gains elemental immunities to jump and fire. Of course, he also
    uses many of the more powerful techniques that Johnny ordinarily uses if you
    kill all of his minions. Really, the whole ordeal is just that much easier if
    you leave a Bandana Blue alive. Actually, it's really easy. I doubt you'll need
    more than one Mid Mushroom.
    Mallow strategy - This fight is all about Shocker. Start by roasting three of
    the Bandana Blues with Shocker, and then set into Johnny with Shocker. You will
    definitely want to spare one of the Bandana Blues; this keeps Johnny stuck
    using just his physical attack, and it prevents the 1v1 fight with Mario. You
    will probably have to heal a few times with HP Rain and use a few Maple Syrups,
    but Johnny should go down pretty easily.
    Geno strategy - As always, open the fight with Geno Boost. The Bandana Blues
    are just stronger versions of the Bandana Reds; Geno Beam will easily take them
    out. Be absolutely sure to leave one of them alive; this prevents the 1v1 fight
    with Mario from triggering and also limits what moves Johnny will use. After
    he's down to one ally, just hammer Johnny with Geno Beam. Be sure to use Mid
    Mushrooms to heal if you need them, and use Max Mushrooms if you have to (try
    to avoid it). This should not be very hard.
    Bowser strategy - Open up with Terrorize to inflict fear upon the Bandana Blues
    and then take out three of them with your physical attacks. Don't kill the last
    one as this keeps Johnny just using his physical attack, and it absolutely
    prevents the 1v1 fight with Mario from triggering. Once three of the Bandana
    Blues are dead, just lay into Johnny with physicals. He has good physical
    defense, but you have Bowser level attacks. Since the only attacks you will see
    in this fight are physicals, Bowser should do quite well. Heal with a Mid
    Mushroom if you have a problem. Note that Johnny himself can be inflicted with
    fear so feel free to use Terrorize a second time to speed up the fight.
    However, do not use it a third time as this carries a high risk of killing the
    last Bandana Blue. This should not be very difficult at all; just follow this
    strategy, and it should be easy.
    Toadstool strategy - If you have a Bad Mushroom, start the fight by using it on 
    Johnny. Otherwise or afterward, open with an Energizer, and then take out three
    of the Bandana Blues with your physical attack. Then start on Johnny with the
    same plan. This will take a very long time, and you will have to heal with
    Therapy quite a few times. Still, Johnny has no real ability to threaten you,
    and if you equipped yourself exactly as I told you to and further are at level
    12 (or higher, of course), this should not take an unbearably long time. Also,
    the Bandana Blues can be put to sleep with Sleepy Time. You certainly don't
    have to do it, but you can open the fight with Sleepy Time if you want. It
    might make the start a bit easier. The Work Pants hurt your defense a lot, and
    the Bandana Blues ganging up on you can make life hard. Using a Bracer or a
    Yoshi-Ade can also help if the start of the fight is too rough.
    You get a boatload of experience points for defeating Johnny, and then you get
    the precious Star Piece. That was very much so hard earned, but you're not
    finished earning it yet. Use the trampoline in the next room and return to
    Seaside Town.
    Now here our good friend the elder reveals himself to be Yaridovich, a member
    of the Smithy gang. Gee, I never would have guessed. As strange as it is, you
    should agree to hand over the Star Piece the first time he asks. This gets you
    a Flower Box later. He'll take off, and you should make tracks for the inn and
    save. You'll want to equip the Safety Ring with most characters, but Toadstool
    really needs the +7 attack from the Amulet. Toadstool would really like the +10
    attack from the Work Pants as well, but you won't survive this fight unless you
    equip the Nautica Dress. Yeah, this is going to be long. Yes, this is the real
    boss you have to defeat to earn this Star Piece; he's easily the hardest boss
    you'll have fought so far. Be sure you are well stocked on items; you will have
    to use more Mushrooms with the non-healers than you have had to use in the
    past. Also, everyone except Geno will want either a Bracer or a Yoshi-Ade.
    Toadstool will need an Energizer as well if she does not have the Yoshi-Ade.
    Boss 13 - Yaridovich
    Mario strategy - Open up with a Bracer, and then get to giving Yaridovich a
    healthy beating via Jump or Super Jump. Yaridovich has the potential to do some
    serious damage to Mario, but Mario's offensive insanity should manage to beat
    Yaridovich down fairly effectively. Don't switch targets after the mirage; that
    ensures that you always target the real thing. Just be sure to not take any
    stupid chances when it comes to healing; this should end well.
    Mallow strategy - Start things off with a Bracer, and then start hammering
    Yaridovich with Shocker. Yaridovich is weak to thunder, and Mallow is the
    perfect character to exploit that. Yaridovich still has decent magic defense so
    it will take a while, but that thunder weakness really does help Mallow out a
    lot. You'll also need to heal a good amount with HP Rain, and you'll probably
    have to use some Maple Syrup to keep up your spell spamming during this fight.
    Just keep at it and keep healed, and Yaridovich should fall easily enough.
    Do remember to not switch targets after he summons the mirage; it would be a
    terrible waste to use Shocker on the false Yaridovich.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost, and then begin to lay into Yaridovich
    with physicals. Heal with Mid Mushrooms or Max Mushrooms when your health gets
    low; this will likely happen quite a few times. Yaridovich has 1500 HP, and he
    can summon a mirage. Your cursor automatically targets the real Yaridovich so
    you can just focus on him the whole time without confusion. The Safety Ring
    will protect you from Flame Stone and some of the spells the mirage uses, but
    it won't protect you from his signature move, Water Blast. The fight will be
    long and arduous (compared to everything else so far), but you should be able
    to win.
    Bowser strategy - Start the fight with a Bracer, and then simply use physical
    attacks. Yaridovich is immune to fear so Terrorize is not any help at all in
    this fight. You'll likely need to heal quite a bit with Mid and Max Mushrooms;
    Bowser's poor magic defense is really highlighted during this fight.
    Yaridovich's 85 defense and 1500 HP will make this quite long. You
    automatically target the real Yaridovich after he summons his mirage; don't
    foolishly switch targets. The good news is that Yaridovich does not have a
    whole lot of FP; your ability to repeatedly attack rises greatly once he runs
    out. Just keep at it, and this fight shouldn't be too bad. It's the hardest so
    far, but it's quite manageable.
    Toadstool strategy - Okay, everyone else has a very short fight in comparison
    with what Toadstool has to endure. Start the fight with either a Yoshi-Ade or
    a Bracer -> Energizer combo. Then use your physical until Yaridovich falls.
    That sounds nice and simple, but the damage you do will be very sad. Therapy
    again ensures that you are not likely to die; it's just a war of attrition.
    Luckily, Yaridovich's poor FP will kick in, and his ability to damage you will
    decline greatly one he runs out. You can use attacking items to speed this up
    if you have them to spare, but Yaridovich's 1500 HP means that it will largely
    come down to a very slow physical attack spam fest. Have fun, and remember not
    to switch targets when the mirage appears. You automatically target the real
    Now you have the fifth Star Piece for real. Yes, you certainly did earn it, and
    you also have earned the right to explore the real town. Take the key and
    unlock the previously guarded door to free the townspeople. The elder will be
    so kind as to give you a Flower Box since you didn't let him get tortured. Of
    course, if you refused to give up the Star Piece, you will have a lesser
    reward. Now let's explore the various shops.
    The first shop on the left is Beetles R Us. Here you can invest 150 coins for
    access to the beetle races. The beetle races are a great way to harvest
    ordinary coins; in my opinion, it's the best way. You likely have 999 coins
    right now so you should make the investment now. Later on, if you need some
    cash, this will pay off.
    The second and third doors lead to the weapon and armor shops. The armor shop
    just sells old stuff, but you can get some new weapons at the weapon shop. Buy
    the new weapons for everyone who has something except Mario. Mario's weapon
    here isn't any stronger than the Masher. However, it is less random. I prefer
    the Masher so I wouldn't waste the coins, but if you really dislike how random
    the Masher is, it's fine to get this otherwise forgettable shell.
    The fourth door is a "health food store" that just sells some basic healing
    items. It's a good place to restock if Yaridovich drained you, but otherwise
    it's nothing special.
    The fifth door leads you to Mushroom Boy. You can give him regular Mushrooms,
    and he'll randomly give you nothing, a Maple Syrup, a Rock Candy, or a Flower
    Tab. I tend to find him way too annoying and random to deal with, but you
    could, in theory, get 99 FP right now or stock up on Rock Candies. It's up to
    you whether to mess with him or not.
    The sixth door leads to an accessory shop. They sell the various status
    protection pins that are outdated by the Safety Ring as well as Zoom Shoes
    which you already have. You can forget this place for the most part.
    Once you're finished with your shopping, you need to talk to the elder. He'll
    direct you toward Land's End which is going to be your next dungeon.
    Also, if you are doing Mario, Geno, or Bowser's challenges, you very likely are
    going to be looking to replace some Mushrooms. Your HP is starting to get too
    high to really rely on Mid Mushrooms; go the extra mile and harvest Max
    Mushrooms from Star Hill. Mid Mushrooms are still useful, and you should still
    carry a few, but begin the transition toward using mostly Max Mushrooms. It
    will make things easier for you in the long run. Also, on that note, you would
    be well advised to make sure you have a few Bracers or Yoshi-Ades. They will
    be useful in the future, and there's no time to collect them like the present!
    Well, with all that business taken care of, let's head over to our next
    dungeon, Land's End.
    Dungeon 15 - Land's End
    Land's End is a very big area, but it's not particularly hard. A few things can
    inflict status effects so the Safety Ring wouldn't be a bad idea. The boss at
    the end of this place is a joke as well; the biggest problem here is simply
    getting to the end.
    Stinger - Even weak magic should very quickly destroy them. Their HP is quite
    bad as well so the stronger physical characters can OHKO with their physicals.
    Fink Flower - Physical attacks are the way to go here unless your name is
    Mario. He should stick to Jump.
    Octovader - He has the same defense and magic defense, and he's immune to
    thunder. In short, everyone uses physicals but Mario who uses Jump.
    Chow - Magic is a fast kill, but his poor HP makes physical attacking viable if
    you are not a very magical character or are short on FP.
    Shogun - Magic is the way to go with them. They are fairly strong so Bowser
    should lead off his fights with Terrorize.
    Geckit - Magic is a fast kill, but physicals aren't much slower.
    Spinthra - Mario/Mallow/Geno can use whatever magic they want, but Bowser and
    Toadstool are just going to have to maul through with physicals.
    Chewy - Mallow should go for the magic, but everyone else should physical him.
    His jump immunity forces Mario into this position. If you are having trouble
    with them, Mario can try Super Flame, Geno can Geno Whirl them, and Bowser can
    slow them down with Terrorize.
    Kriffid - Magic is the way to go here. Bowser should use Terrorize to soften
    him up as well.
    Shy Away - Physical attacks are your best bet unless you are Mario with that
    crazy Jump. Willy Wisp is strong so he should be a priority.
    As per levels, you want to be at level 14 for Smilax who is not the next boss
    but the boss after that. It's easiest to get most of that experience on this
    trip, especially since there are two very well placed Stars near the end. There
    is some fighting you will want to do in Bean Valley, but it's very reasonable
    to hit level 14 near the end of this area. If you are looking for specific
    enemies to fight, I'd suggest the Geckits.
    On the first screen, use the cannon to reach the upper area and then jump onto
    the moving yellow platform. Face due north (toward a corner) and do a running
    jump while the platform is at its highest point to find a hidden chest with a
    Red Essence. Of course, you should avoid using Red Essence, but it's still good
    to grab.
    The second screen has a similar secret. Start by running past the cannon and
    jumping around in line with the cannon to find a hidden yellow platform. Do a
    "weak" blast from the cannon by waiting longer to fire to land on this, jump to
    the elevated area, and then jump around in line with the previous platform and
    the cannon. This will reveal a second yellow platform. Go back to the cannon
    and use it to launch all the way to the second platform. This lets you reach
    the floating chest with a frog coin and the highest ledge. The western edge of
    this ledge contains a hidden chest with a Kerokerocola.
    After this, follow the linear path to a room with spinning flowers and
    ascending ledges. Run along the lower area and leap between the purple flowers
    to find a hidden chest with a frog coin. Continue along the lower path until
    you find an elevated cave which occasionally shoots out a wisp of smoke. Leap
    into it to enter a side area.
    This place is quite linear so just run along and grab any chests along the way.
    There is a hidden chest in the northeast corner of the starting room so be sure
    to grab that for a frog coin. At the end, you'll knock a barrel down and find
    yourself way back in the Kero Sewers. Grab the chest up here to get some
    Cricket Jam and then work your way back to the last save point in Land's End.
    From here, work your way up the cliffs to reach a minigame called the Sky
    Bridge. This is a surprisingly useful minigame; it's one of the two best ways
    to harvest massive amounts of frog coins. If you want the Scrooge Ring, you
    might want to stick around and play until you have around 40 frog coins. You
    will get many more soon so don't worry about it too much, and the other, and in
    my opinion better, way to harvest frog coins is coming up very soon as well.
    Regardless of what you choose to do, proceed past this point until you reach a
    screen with a Shogun in a sand whirlpool.
    You just have to fight the Shogun and then go into his whirlpool. Just repeat
    this until you end up underground. Shoguns are fairly strong so I would suggest
    going all out. Don't be timid about using the higher FP costing Shocker and
    Geno Whirl or using Terrorize every fight; it won't hurt you in the long run.
    Save once you get down into the cave and then open the chest to find the first
    Star. You should be able to take out all the enemies on your way into another
    pit. Once down here, avoid all the Geckits and speak to the NPC on the west
    edge of the room. He'll offer to sell you a Star for 400 coins. It's a good buy
    so do it and then use it to take out all the Geckits in here. Proceed onward to
    find yourself in a temple. You may see a floating gas cloud in here. Engage it
    if you want to fight an optional boss. Be sure you have the Safety Ring
    Optional Boss 4 - Mokura
    Everyone strategy - With the Safety Ring equipped, you are invincible. Hit him
    with your cheapest spell (Jump, Thunderbolt, Geno Beam, Terrorize, Sleepy Time)
    to reveal Mokura, and then use physical attacks until you win.
    There's also an NPC in here standing on a trampoline. He offers to open a
    shortcut to the surface for 100 coins. I would consider it a good purchase, but
    you don't need it now either way. Proceed onward, get the 50 coins from the
    chest, and then pay them right back to get your fortune told. Depending on
    luck, you might or might not have to fight in the room beyond the pipe.
    Whatever happens, you will end up in a room with two chests. One contains 150
    coins, and the other yields a frog coin. There are also two hidden chests in
    here. The first is on top of the visible chest closer to the entrance, and the
    second is in a northern corner at the bottom of the stairs. Both contain frog
    coins. Proceed onward and get another fortune told. If you get the reading
    about hunger, proceed onward. If not, keep trying until you do. It's time for
    your next boss fight. Don't forget the Safety Ring! Also, if you're doing
    Toadstool's challenge, run back to the last save point and save. Luck abuse is
    going to save some time against this boss.
    Boss 14 - Belome 2
    Mario strategy - Ignore any clones and just focus on Belome. The Safety Ring
    protects you from the Mallow clone as well as almost everything Belome can do.
    Enjoy having a fast and easy victory.
    Mallow strategy - The Safety Ring makes you very invincible during this fight.
    Shocker Belome until he falls. Ignore the clones; they are not a threat. This
    is laughably easy.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost and then just hit Belome with Geno Beam
    until he falls. The Safety Ring protects you from the Mallow and Geno clones
    for the most part, and Belome is pretty harmless as long as you have the ring
    equipped as well. You can flatten him quickly and easily.
    Bowser strategy - Belome (but not the clones) can be inflicted with fear. In
    combination with the Safety Ring, this grants you a perfect defense. Likewise,
    Belome will not stand up long to Bowser's rampage of physical attacks. Just
    ignore the clones and flatten Belome quickly and easily.
    Toadstool strategy - Unlike you have come to expect with Toadstool, this fight
    is just as easy for her as it is for everyone else. You just need some luck. If
    Belome ever makes a Toadstool clone, reset. You can win eventually, but it will
    take a very, very long time as you'd have to stall out Toadstool 2's insanely
    deep FP pool. What you want to see are Mallow clones. Mallow clones can't do a
    thing to you and waste space nicely. Mario clones aren't a big deal either, but
    they will force you to heal more often. You could use the Work Pants to speed
    up this fight, but Mario clones are very, very dangerous with that low defense.
    Once you get an acceptable clone arrangement, just smack Belome with the
    Parasol until he falls. Don't waste an Energizer; it doesn't take that long.
    After you finish off that arduous boss, proceed to Monstro Town.
    ***Monstro Town***
    Monstro Town is pretty much just a bunch of doors in a row, but each of these
    doors has something interesting behind it. The first door is the door with the
    story events. Enter it and do the storyline required talking thing to send
    Sergeant Flutter and his company of Sky Troopas to a cliff in Land's End so you
    can access Bean Valley. You can also speak with the treasure chest enemy
    upstairs to discover how many hidden chests you are missing. If you've been
    following this guide, you should have 10 remaining which is perfect completion
    so far. Actually, if you've been following this guide, you're well on your way
    to having a perfect file in addition to completing this challenge; I can be
    quite the perfectionist.
    The second house contains two important monsters. One is a Chow who will give
    you incredibly broken equipment if you have done 30 or 100 consecutive Super
    Jumps. The Attack Scarf and Super Suit that he could give you would make this
    challenge very easy, and thus they are banned. If you want to have them in your
    inventory as trophies, feel free to collect them, but under no circumstance
    should you ever equip them. The Thwomp here is more useful. Just speak to him
    seven consecutive times, and the Temple Key outside will fall to the ground
    where you can collect it. This will let us get a few handy items shortly so you
    might as well get it.
    The third door leads to Culex's room. Culex is this game's optional super boss.
    You can totally forget about fighting Culex right now, and you can pretty much
    forget about fighting him until after you've finished everything else in the
    game. With the restrictions of this challenge, Culex is undoubtedly the hardest
    boss in the game. He's so special that he has his own section in this FAQ.
    I wouldn't advise looking into actually doing it until you've defeated Smithy,
    but take a look if you are curious.
    The fourth door leads to the item shop. You can restock on Maple Syrup if you
    need them, and there is also some Bowser unique equipment here. You can just
    forget about the Courage Shell as, like most Bowser unique armor, it is
    useless. However, be sure to pick up the Spiked Link. Actually, pick up the
    Spiked Link even if you are not doing Bowser's challenge. It will be useful to
    you in the Valentina fight in Nimbus Land as that is the other exception to the
    challenge rules.
    The fifth door leads to a bed in which you can sleep for a free heal. While
    sleeping, you will be approached by the Three Musty Fears. Be sure to rest here
    once now; this will begin a side quest which will allow you to obtain the Ghost
    Medal, a mildly useful accessory.
    The hole in the ground is the save point. Be sure to jump in before dealing
    with the final door that is at the top of the staircase.
    The last door leads to Jinx's dojo. Here, you can fight a series of four
    progressively difficult optional bosses, and if you beat them all, you win the
    Jinx Belt, a very good accessory. This will be very useful for some characters,
    but other characters have a very hard time with this series of bosses. Jinx has
    his own section in the FAQ. I would advise that everyone defeat Jagger and the
    first Jinx fight now. Mario should fight the second Jinx fight as well. If you
    are determined about it, Mario can win the final Jinx fight, and Geno and
    Bowser can win the second Jinx fight. Those will all be fairly resource
    draining if you do them now, but they'll be really simple if you wait until
    after Nimbus Land. If you're really up for a challenge, do them now, but I
    would wait. Well, to be fair, "very lucky" could win you the Mario fight fairly
    easily, and Bowser's fight isn't too bad. I'd really recommend against messing
    with Geno's fight at all, but it is indeed winnable. Don't even begin to think
    about pressing onward at all with Mallow or Toadstool right now; they don't
    stand a chance.
    Either way, before we head to Bean Valley, we have some side questing to do.
    Go through the only remaining door in Monstro Town to approach the exit. Before
    you leave, jump around in the western corner of the exit area to find a hidden
    chest with a frog coin. Now make your way to Yo'ster Isle.
    First of all, press "A" while standing between the letters O and A in the word
    GOAL to find The Big Boo Flag. Wow, that has to be the most awkward sentence in
    the FAQ grammatically, and there's no way around it. Anyway, while you're here,
    you might want to do some item restocking. Get some Yoshi-Ade if you don't have
    any, and if you need more Max Mushrooms, get the Yoshi Cookies you'll need to
    do the harvesting. Of course, Geno can ignore the Yoshi-Ade, and Mallow/
    Toadstool can ignore the Max Mushrooms.
    Next head on over to Rose Town. Business here is short and sweet. Check behind
    the large wooden flower that is the entrance sign to find the Greaper Flag.
    Exit Rose Town and head on over to Tadpole Pond.
    First of all, speak with Frogfucius to trade in your Cricket Jam for 10 frog
    coins. Hey, that's a great trade! Also, you can now play the final song for
    Toadofsky. If you are interested in finishing this side quest, the melody is:
    La Ti Do Re So Do Re Mi
    This will let you buy Kerokerocola for the low price of 200 coins a piece.
    Ouch! Well, strictly speaking, they do render all standard HP and FP healing
    items obsolete so it only makes sense that they would cost this much. If you
    want to buy them, feel free, but note that this will quickly force you to
    harvest coins at Booster Hill. Also, as you move later in the game, the use
    of a Bracer becomes vital in nearly every boss fight. Yoshi-Ade work as a
    superior alternative to Bracers, but you really don't need Yoshi-Ade very often
    at all. Bracers are easier to get since 2 frog coins is a cheaper price than
    10 Yoshi Cookies, and you have to reset the game several times to get Yoshi-Ade
    most of the time anyway. For my strategies, I will use Bracer over Yoshi-Ade
    whenever possible. If you use Yoshi-Ade, you'll just win faster. Obviously,
    Geno does not need to worry about any of this, and Toadstool should make sure
    that she has her typical bounty of Energizers. On that note, Mallow and Bowser 
    will need an Energizer if they don't have any Yoshi-Ade as well. I know that
    they are not used to carrying them, but there's a boss fight in Nimbus Land
    which is much less difficult for them if they have an Energizer.
    The next stop is Mario's Pad. Examine your bed to find the Dry Bones Flag. Hey,
    that's all of them! Now would be the time to head on your way back to Monstro
    Town to collect your reward. If you have 50 frog coins, now would be a good
    time to stop by Seaside Town to buy a Scrooge Ring. Of course, that does
    depend on your character. Obviously it's a fairly useless item for Bowser.
    Mallow and Geno will really want to get it fairly soon. Mario doesn't have much
    need of it unless you are a massive fan of doing insane numbers of Ultra Jumps
    to quickly finish generic encounters. Toadstool doesn't need it for quite a
    while, but she'll find it handy to have at the end of the game. If you don't
    quite have 50 frog coins because you decided to wait on frog coin harvesting,
    don't worry about it at all. Before you have to do even a small amount of extra
    fighting, you'll have another good shot at getting this.
    Once back in Monstro Town, sleep in the bed to get the Ghost Medal. Watch out
    as it's automatically equipped on Mario. Save and then head back into Belome
    Temple, and then work backward toward the surface. Once you reach the elevator
    that led you down to Belome, stop and try doing the fortune thing until you are
    told that Belome is not accepting visitors past his bedtime. Take the elevator
    back down and speak with Belome. He'll eat the Temple Key, and you'll get the
    items behind him. You will acquire 8 frog coins, 4 Flowers, a Fire Bomb, a
    Max Mushroom, and a Royal Syrup. That's not bad at all. By the way, at this
    point I had 86 FP. Your FP count should be pretty similar to that if you want
    to hit 99 FP by the end of the game without abusing Mushroom Boy. Regardless
    of how you stand, continue your trip back toward the surface.
    The 100 coin shortcut really pays off as an investment right now, but if you
    are cheap, there's nothing really wrong with going the long way. Once you're
    back under the sun, look for a path north. This will lead you to a cliff with a
    bit of a minigame. You just have to climb shell to shell. Success at all will
    open the road to Bean Valley. If you get under twelve seconds, you can win the
    Troopa Pin which is a great accessory. Note that if you are doing Mallow or
    Toadstool's challenge that you must win the Troopa Pin or else the Axem Rangers
    will become quite complicated. You can scale the cliff as often as you like,
    and a good time after winning the Troopa Pin will result in you winning five
    frog coins. In my opinion, this is the best way to harvest frog coins in the
    game; if you want the Scrooge Ring and don't have it, make sure you have 50
    frog coins before leaving. Once you are finished here, exit via the obvious
    path on the top of the cliff.
    This puts you back on the overworld. Go buy the Scrooge Ring now if that's your
    plan. If that Kerokerocola harvesting by using Yoshi Cookies on Shy Ranger that
    only Geno sounded cool and if you're doing Mario, Mallow, or Toadstool's
    challenge, you could go and join in now. The Troopa Pin's 20 speed in
    combination with the 5 speed you get from the Work Pants is enough to let all
    of them outspeed Shy Ranger. Sadly, Bowser is still just a bit too slow. Poor
    Bowser will never be fast enough. Once you're finished with all that, enter the
    new area to begin the next dungeon.
    Dungeon 16- Bean Valley
    The enemies in the first part of this area are just the same old enemies that
    you fought in Land's End. The same strategies work for the most part, and the
    Safety Ring is still a good idea. However, if you are feeling like getting
    through here more quickly, Mallow or Geno could equip the Scrooge Ring and go
    nuts with Snowy and Geno Blast. The second area has new enemies, and there's a
    new flavor of Chomp underground. Note that the enemies in the air don't use
    status effects; demonstrate your understanding of this by equipping the Troopa
    Pin on anyone who was formerly using the Safety Ring.
    Chomp Chomp - Magic is the fast and easy path to victory. Jump, Shocker, and
    Geno Beam will quickly eliminate them. Bowser should open his fights with them
    with Terrorize. Poor Toadstool is stuck with her physical as always.
    Birdy - They're very weak to magic and have a special weakness to ice. Mario
    should stick to his Jumping, but Mallow and Geno should use their Snowy and
    Geno Blast attacks to wipe out parties of them at once. Bowser and Toadstool
    are stuck with the physicals, but those won't take too long to get through.
    Heavy Troopa - Magic wins here yet again. Mario should make them his first
    priority in Jumping, but Mallow and Geno should just let them be caught up in
    the target all spells. Bowser should use Terrorize when these are involved.
    Toadstool just has to make them a priority and continue on her unfortunately
    slow plan.
    I wouldn't fight here much. You have to fight five parties of Chewys to fully
    explore the underground area, and then you get experience from the boss fight.
    That should be enough to get you up to level 15 for Nimbus Land. If you're
    lagging a bit, do your extra fighting in the latter half of the area up in the
    clouds. The Birdy/Heavy Troopa groups are very easy in comparison to the stuff
    on the ground.
    Anyway, start your exploration of this area by taking the right pipe. Jump in
    the western corner of this area to find a hidden chest with a frog coin, and
    then continue via the other pipe. On the new screen, take the other pipe to get
    to a treasure chest containing a Flower. Backtrack through the pipe and then
    take the standard walking exit to the next area.
    Here, there are five pipes and a save point. Save first and then explore the
    five pipes. To get in, you have to fight the monsters that come after the Shy
    Away waters the plants, but those shouldn't be too bad.
    The far western pipe will introduce you to chests with slots in them. You play
    a slot machine type game, and depending on how you match up the symbols, you
    get an item. Two of the same symbol gets you an item, three of the same give
    you a frog coin (or so I've heard; I have never gotten three of the same
    symbol), and all three different nets you a fight with Box Boy, an optional
    boss. Mushrooms yield healing Mushrooms, Flowers yield Flowers, and Stars give
    you Rock Candy. You should definitely not get Mushrooms as that's just a short
    term gain. I usually prefer to go for Flowers on these, but getting some Rock
    Candy might not be a bad idea. Note that if you don't have at least one Rock
    Candy in your inventory and are doing Mallow and Toadstool's challenge that you
    will have to get one at some point, though that doesn't have to be here. You
    should really, really avoid Box Boy. Not only is he very hard if your character
    is not Mario, but there isn't much of a reward for beating him (just experience
    and coins). However, if you must...
    Optional Boss 5 - Box Boy
    Mario strategy - Just like with Pandorite and Hidon, Box Boy's weakness to Jump
    is his undoing. Jump, Super Jump, and Ultra Jump should all take him out very
    Mallow strategy - Ugh. Well, if you enjoy living, you'll want to have a Bracer
    active in this fight, and if you want it to end remotely quickly, you'll want
    to have the effects of an Energizer. You really might as well just use a
    Yoshi-Ade. All you can really do is go all out with physical attacks on Box
    Boy, and it will take a while. He can hurt you pretty badly, and Fautso does
    not help. Fautso can also put you to sleep so you might want to consider the
    Safety Ring, but it doesn't protect against much in this fight. If you want to
    save an item, the Troopa Pin or Ghost Medal work too. If you have trouble,
    remember that there's absolutely no reason to fight him.
    Geno strategy - Start with good old Geno Boost and then transition into
    physicals. Geno Beam will do more, but that will incite Box Boy to counter with
    Water Blast or Blast, neither of which are very good for you. This will likely
    force you to use some Max Mushrooms, and you get nothing for winning. Why
    bother? As with Mallow, the Safety Ring is mildly helpful here.
    Bowser strategy - Box Boy can be inflicted with fear, and Crusher will actually
    do some good damage here. The bad news is that he counters all specials with
    his own powerful specials, Water Blast and Blast. Well, shucks. All you can
    really do is use your physical to slowly take him out. If he's doing too much
    damage to you, Bracers can help. If you want to kill him faster to conserve
    Max Mushrooms, an Energizer can help (or just use a Yoshi-Ade for both!). The
    Safety Ring blocks sleep, but sleep isn't very prominent in this fight so you
    really don't have to use it. You can save an item with the Troopa Pin or Ghost
    Medal if you feel as if though you can live without it.
    Toadstool strategy - Hmm, Box Boy makes fighting him with other characters seem
    like the average boss fight for Toadstool. How will it be for Toadstool? The
    obvious answer is "unbearably tedious", of course. I really hope that you have
    hit level 15 as that will speed up this fight quite a bit, and you'll very much
    need either a Yoshi-Ade or the equivalent Bracer + Energizer combo. The advice
    about the Safety Ring applies just as much to Toadstool as it does to everyone
    else, but given that you stand to lose a longer fight with her, perhaps you
    should be even more inclined to use it on her.
    Well, after you don't fight Box Boy and instead get a helpful Flower or Rock
    Candy from the chest, head into the next pipe counterclockwise. This contains
    another slots chest and nothing else of note. Continue your rotation
    counterclockwise to find yet another slots chest. Hey, you know, this could
    really let you speed up Toadstool's trip through the game a lot if you took
    Rock Candies every time. If you're wondering, I took one Rock Candy and two
    Flowers. However, before leaving this room, head southwest in line with the
    chest and jump around to find a hidden chest with a handy Kerokerocola. After
    obtaining that, continue counterclockwise through the pipes.
    The chest in here contains Box Boy no matter what so if you were disappointed
    at skipping him, now would be the time to fight him. You could also follow my
    advice and skip him altogether; he's really not worth fighting. Anyway, down
    here, jump around in the northeast corner under the platform to find a frog
    coin, and jump around in the southeast corner that doesn't contain the platform
    to find a hidden chest with a Red Essence. By our rules, we can't use the Red
    Essence, but this does count toward 100% hidden chest completion at least.
    Also, exiting via the trampoline atop the platform leads you to a secluded area
    with a chest containing a frog coin.
    The last area in our counterclockwise trip has the Chomp Chomp enemy. Jumping
    around near his base will reveal a hidden platform and open the way out of Bean
    Valley to the secret area, Grate Guy's Casino. There is no need to visit Grate
    Guy's Casino as the only good thing there is the Star Egg which is a banned
    item. However, if you want full map completion, it's a worthwhile trip. There's
    no healing before the next boss so this is also the fastest way back to the
    overworld to go heal yourself. You could use Grate Guy's Casino for frog coin
    harvesting at least. If you want to actually enter the place and not just be
    turned away by the door wardens, you'll need to win a very frustrating juggling
    minigame with Knife Guy in Booster Tower to get a Bright Card. I'll leave that
    choice up to you, but whatever you do, get yourself in good health and FP and
    save at the save point. After that, exit to the northeast to see a bit of a
    scene and begin the fight. Be absolutely sure that you have your Safety Ring
    equipped for this one.
    Boss 15 - Smilax
    Mario strategy - The way Smilax is divided does him no favors; a fully powered
    Jump will OHKO the smaller Smilax monsters. That being said, start the fight
    with a barrage of Jumps until Megasmilax and Megasmilax alone is left. After
    that, you can focus on him with your choice of Jump, Super Jump, or Ultra Jump.
    Since you're only using specials, (Mega)Smilax never counterattacks and only
    has a chance to hit you once between your turns which gives you more than
    enough healing opportunities. The fact that so many of this boss's attacks, as
    well as his impressive array of status effects, are blocked by the Safety Ring
    just makes it easier. Don't expect a great deal of resistance as you flatten
    this boss.
    Mallow strategy - It's Snowy's time to shine! Both Smilax and Megasmilax are
    weak to ice, and the smaller Smilax monsters only have 200 HP. Start the fight
    with Snowy, and then use a physical to finish off the first Smilax bulb. Six
    Snowies later, you'll be in a one on one with Megasmilax. Snowy will do more
    than your physical, but it costs a lot of FP, and it's not a whole lot more.
    It's up to you how you will attack; do keep in mind that Megasmilax has a 1/3
    chance of countering your physical attack with a physical attack of his own.
    You will likely need to use some Maple Syrup, but the fight should be neither
    long nor difficult. It's just too bad that more bosses aren't multipart and
    weak to ice like this.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost, and then use two physical attacks to take
    out the small Smilax monster. When Shy Away creates two more, eliminate them
    with a pair of Geno Blasts. Another pair of Geno Blasts will eliminate the trio
    of Smilax, and then the real boss will appear. Again, two Geno Blasts will work
    to kill the smaller Smilax monsters, and then you'll be free to focus on
    Megasmilax with a barrage of physical attacks. The Safety Ring does indeed keep
    you very safe during this fight; you will probably only need to heal once
    during this fight. The only real threat is that all parts of this boss have a
    1/3 chance of countering physical attacks with their own physical attack. Don't
    be surprised when it happens.
    Bowser strategy - Everything here is immune to fear, and you otherwise have no
    shortcuts to help you out. Just go all out with the physical attacks; it's all
    you can do. Once Megasmilax appears, take out his minions first. Be wary that
    any physical attack you use has a 1/3 chance of being countered by a physical
    attack. Bowser's physical defense serves you well in such a situation, but
    just be aware of it so you don't wait too long to heal. The Safety Ring does
    a fantastic job of negating most of the bad stuff that can happen to you in
    this fight; it's ultimately just a simple slugfest in which you have a massive
    Toadstool strategy - The use of an Energizer in this fight is optional; this
    fight isn't too tedious without it, but it's long enough so that you might want
    to use it. The Bracer is also optional, and that comes down to how confident
    you are with timed defense. Megasmilax can kill you in two hits with his
    physical, and he has a 1/3 chance of countering your physicals with his
    physical. That means that he could, hypothetically, kill you from full health
    before you get a turn unless you have a Bracer up. Of course, if you just use
    timed defense, you can endure. You have plenty of opportunities to attack from
    full health as Smilax likes to use spells that are totally blocked by the
    Safety Ring. You'll also note that everything here is weak to ice, but
    save any Ice Bombs for the last stage of the fight. Shortening the portion of
    the fight that involves Megasmilax is nice after all. Really, this fight isn't
    very hard. Both buffing items shorten the fight and make it easier, but you can
    fairly easily win without either of them. As is usual with Toadstool, it's a
    matter of spamming Therapy and slowly whittling down the enemy's HP with your
    weak physical for a long and boring fight that you are pretty much guaranteed
    to win eventually.
    Now that Shy Away has told us that someone does not want us to go to Nimbus
    Land, the course of action is clear. We really have to go to Nimbus Land. After
    all, it's a rule in video games that you always must do something if you are
    told not to do it or otherwise informed that someone does not want you to do
    You'll see a note drift down from the sky as well. Examining it reveals a
    "Seed". This is one of the two items needed to get the Lazy Shell weapon and
    armor. The Lazy Shell armor is easily the most broken item in the game and is
    banned with very good reason. The Lazy Shell weapon is Mario's ultimate weapon
    and is fair game in his challenge. If you're doing Mario's challenge, be sure
    to pick up the Seed. Otherwise, you really don't need it, though it sells for a
    lot, and the Lazy Shell items themselves could be sold for a lot. You might
    also just want completion. Whatever you do, head through the pipe, hit the
    block a few times, and climb into the clouds.
    On the first screen, just climb up. Grab the 30 coins and frog coin if you want
    them. The second screen is more interesting. The easily accessible chest
    contains a very valuable Flower; be sure to snag it. Since we want to obtain
    the Rare Scarf, we're going to have to jump to the left vine that has the frog
    coin hovering near it. This is somewhat difficult. You will need to hold down
    and left and do a running jump off the middle plant. The timing is somewhat
    precise, but you can try until you succeed. After that, climb to the middle
    vine, jump to reveal a hidden yellow platform, and leap from that to reach the
    left vine so you can ascend another screen. Up here, you'll discover two
    chests. One has a frog coin, and the other has the precious Rare Scarf
    accessory. This useful thing boosts defense and magic defense by 15 each; it's
    a great accessory for Mallow and Toadstool when you don't need the Safety Ring.
    Jumping down through the hole between the chests will land you on a small
    platform with two chests, each containing Flowers. Aren't you glad that we're
    taking this route instead of the normal, easy one? Jumping down again will send
    you on a more continuous falling path until you're in a small room with two
    marshmallow men and a trampoline. Take the trampoline and then the normal
    trampoline (not the warp one) in the next room to arrive in Nimbus Land, the
    final town in the game. After a brief scene in which you discover the shocking
    coincidence that there's a lost prince of the cloud people named Mallow, you
    can explore the town. Hmm, yes, a lost prince of the cloud people named Mallow
    is definitely a coincidence. All those bird enemies don't mean anything, and
    this bird woman named Valentina who wanted to keep you out of Nimbus Land seems
    trustworthy when she says that the fat bird is Mallow. There's definitely not
    any rule of video games in which no shared names are coincidence.
    ***Nimbus Land***
    Well, the nearest door to your left contains a shop. Be sure to buy Fuzzy armor
    for everyone other than Bowser (they don't even sell a Fuzzy Shell), and buy
    new weapons for everyone but Bowser since this game seems to really hate Bowser
    and doesn't want to give him as many toys as everyone else. Mario players can
    be especially shocked; you finally have a weapon that's clearly better than the
    Masher from way back in Booster Tower. Yes, Jump is still your main mode of
    attack. We also have to remember that the boss fight at the end of Nimbus Land
    is the other exception to the rules of this challenge, and you'll need gear for
    a second character. Bowser should have a full outfit of equipment if you've
    been following my advice. If you're doing Bowser's challenge, be sure to pick
    up the Hand Cannon and Fuzzy Cape for Geno. Also, while you're in here, jump 
    from the high boxes toward the door to discover a hidden chest with a frog
    coin. The inn here costs coins, and you can warp out of Nimbus Land freely via 
    the warp trampoline a screen down. Get healed somewhere free if you're cheap,
    and if you're doing Mallow or Bowser's challenge, make sure you have an
    Energizer. The boss inside Nimbus Castle is very arduous for them if they do
    not have one, and with those characters, you are likely not used to carrying
    Once you're ready to enter, enter the town in the northwest corner, have
    shocking revelations about Mallow's past, and tell Garro that you're ready. You
    don a brilliant disguise, and then you go into the next dungeon.
    Dungeon 17 - Nimbus Castle
    Your first choice in here is whether to fight Dodo or not. You can win the very
    easy minigame and avoid the fight or just get hit and fight. The reward for
    winning the minigame is the useless Feather accessory. The fight itself is very
    easy with minimal rewards. Really, it doesn't matter a whole lot either way. I
    personally like to win the minigame since the Feather, while useless, is one of
    a kind. Again, it's all up to you. If you want to do the fight, having the
    Safety Ring equipped would be helpful but isn't really mandatory for non-
    Toadstool characters. If being muted ruins your strategy, just smashing Dodo
    with physical attacks will tend to produce positive results.
    Optional Boss 6 - Dodo
    Mario strategy - Jump wins before Dodo can really do anything. He only has 800
    HP and has limited damage output potential.
    Mallow strategy - Shocker fries Dodo quickly and easily. He might do somewhat
    decent damage with Multistrike, but you have HP Rain for that.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost and then move in on Dodo with Geno Beam.
    He can counter your physicals with his own physicals, and why not keep it as
    simple as possible?
    Bowser strategy - Dodo can be inflicted with fear so open the fight with
    Terrorize. Dodo's 100 defense isn't bad, but his 800 HP is very poor for this
    stage of the game. Bowser's defenses render Dodo's attacking options inferior.
    Your Spiked Link should smash him nicely.
    Toadstool strategy - Unsurprisingly, she's again the only character who might
    have trouble with a fight. You really do need to have the Safety Ring equipped
    for this fight as getting muted is devastating. Dodo's 100 defense stat is a
    bit high for comfort, but at least you just got a new weapon. You'll probably
    want to use an Energizer to speed this up. Of course, Therapy is amazing
    protection; you will only die if you get careless. Also, I really wouldn't
    recommend wasting good attacking items on this fight, but Dodo is weak to fire.
    If you have a massive stock of Fire Bombs (they really aren't hard to harvest),
    they'll produce quite positive results.
    You can run to the next room, get the Feather if you decided to win the
    minigame, and then save. The room afterward removes your statue disguise if you
    still have it, and you have to deal with generic enemies from here on.
    Birdy - He's no different than he was in Bean Valley. Treat him the same way.
    Heavy Troopa - He's also unchanged from Bean Valley. Magic is still the best
    option if your character has it.
    Bluebird - They're the opposite of the Birdy enemies. Ice does nothing to them,
    and they have much better magic defense than physical defense. Everyone should
    simply smash them with physical attacks.
    Pinwheel - Magic tends to work well, but watch out for their thunder immunity.
    Their HP is very poor, and they are not strong. Make them a low priority.
    Muckle - Everyone except Mario should focus on them with physical attacks.
    Mario should continue to use his superb Jump. The Safety Ring totally nullifies
    Jawful - Magic is a good idea here as it does much more damage. They won't
    attack until you wake them up, and even then, they can be put back to sleep by
    Toadstool. Alas, Bowser cannot inflict them with fear.
    Shaman - Watch out! These are the powerhouses of Nimbus Land. Be really sure
    that you have the Safety Ring equipped before engaging them so only Diamond Saw
    can hurt you. Physical attacks are definitely the way to go against them, but
    Toadstool can think about opening her fights with Mute.
    Orbison - These guys are just plain tedious to fight. Mario gets a quick win
    with Jump, and Geno can put up a decent showing with Geno Beam. Bowser can use
    Terrorize to increase his damage output, but these guys are really resistant to
    physicals. Unless you are in the mood for a long and boring fight, Mallow and
    Toadstool should just run.
    Sling Shy - It's all about magic here, and that can include Bowser somewhat as
    inflicting fear on them makes them beyond useless. They do have a few status
    effects, but you protected yourself, right?
    If you didn't pick up on it, the Safety Ring is a great investment here. There
    are some ice immunities running around, and that really limits Mallow's ability
    to use the Scrooge Ring + Snowy combination. Geno still does very well with the
    Scrooge Ring + Geno Blast combination. Also, even more than in most areas, you
    can really influence what you fight by what types of enemies you encounter. You
    will only fight Shaman if you attack a Shaman group. Birdy and Bluebird groups
    only contain that specific type of bird with a chance of a Heavy Troopa or two.
    The Pinwheel groups are by far the best to harvest experience as they only
    contain Pinwheel, Muckle, and Sling Shy. The Safety Ring reduces the threat of
    all three to nearly zero. Don't attack Sling Shy groups at all unless you are
    doing Mario's challenge; these are very likely to contain the frustrating
    Also, look out for Yoshi Cookie opportunities here. This is probably the single
    best place in the game to harvest items with Yoshi Cookies. The enemies here
    disappear permanently after you finish the dungeon; do not miss this
    opportunity! Muckles yield Ice Bombs, and they are the only enemy which gives
    them up via a Yoshi Cookie. These will be very handy against the Czar Dragon so
    be sure to pick up a few if you are doing Toadstool's challenge. Jawful gives
    the extremely, extremely valuable Rock Candy item. This is your last chance to
    make sure that you have two Rock Candies for the Axem Rangers. Mallow and
    Toadstool are not getting past the Axem Rangers boss fight without these items;
    be absolutely sure you have two Rock Candies before leaving Nimbus Land. Even
    if you're doing someone else's challenge, you would be wise to take this chance
    to get some Rock Candies. Geno and Bowser will be finding them awesome against
    Jinx, among other uses. They're just an amazing item, and there's no reason not
    to take advantage of this. Anyone who uses FP can rejoice at the opportunity to
    harvest Royal Syrup from Shaman and Orbison. You've been able to get them from
    Shoguns in Land's End for a while, but these are much easier enemies to find in
    large groups.
    Birdy and Heavy Troopa will always be available to fight in Bean Valley. All
    other enemies here disappear permanently, excluding some cameos in the 6 Door
    Section of Bowser's Keep. In the excitement of all this, don't forget your
    level. Level 17 is our target for the Czar Dragon boss fight which is still
    decently far away. Hitting level 16 here would be a good idea, but it's not
    really mandatory.
    To start, you might want to find the exit. Heading southwest one screen leads
    to the entrance hall. Southwest again leads out, but the western door in the
    middle of the room leads down a hall toward a chest with a Flower. If, instead
    of heading southwest from the room in which you are "destatued", you head
    northwest, you'll end up in the upper part of the same room. The correct way
    to go is northeast; you'll go through some halls and end in a room with a
    convenient healing Mushroom. The room after that is the main hallway. The chest
    in the northwest corner contains another Flower, and the eastern door leads to
    a chest with another Flower. The western door leads to a narrow hall room that
    actually has two hidden chests in it. One of them is in the void, and you must
    run into the wall in front of where the Jawful is stabbing at it. The other is
    just right next to the Jawful on more solid ground. These chests contain frog
    coins which are always nice to have.
    The room beyond this has some NPCs with which you can speak. Doing so and
    generally giving positive responses nets you a Castle Key and a Flower Jar.
    Head back to the main hall and unlock the door behind the Heavy Troopa to enter
    a room with a giant egg. Predictably, this leads to a boss fight. If you have
    the Jinx Belt, be sure to equip it. Otherwise, go with the Rare Scarf. If you
    are willing to take a statistical hit in the interest of cheapness, the Ghost
    Medal could be used.
    Boss 16 - Birdo
    Mario strategy - Open the fight with a barrage of physicals to defeat Shelley,
    and then set in with your choice of Jump, Super Jump, or Ultra Jump on Birdo.
    Birdo does not have much HP so this should go fairly quickly and easily. Birdo
    could hurt you very, very badly, but he likely won't live long enough to do it.
    If you are having trouble, using a Bracer before you defeat Shelley fully
    trivializes this fight.
    Mallow strategy - Start the fight with a Bracer for sure, and using an
    Energizer on top of that (or just using a Yoshi-Ade in the first place) would
    be wise. Birdo is surprisingly strong. Afterward, conserve your FP by taking
    out Shelley with physicals. When Birdo arrives, blast it with Shocker over and
    over again. You will likely need to heal with HP Rain quite a bit, and you'll
    quite possibly run out of FP before it ends and have to use a Syrup. However,
    if you just keep at it, you should prevail.
    Geno strategy - As always, open the fight with Geno Boost. Next you have to
    destroy Shelley. Since it doesn't fight back at all, just use your basic
    physical attacks until it falls. Once Birdo reveals itself, you should continue
    with the same plan. Basic physical attacks do more damage and will take it down
    eventually. Birdo is pretty powerful so you'll likely need to do some healing
    before this is over. However, Birdo's very low 777 HP makes this easier than it
    might be otherwise.
    Bowser strategy - Like so many other bosses, Birdo is immune to fear. Open the
    fight with a Bracer as you can't afford to take totally undefended hits from
    Birdo at any point. However, after you've hit Birdo three times, he'll start
    using his "strong" egg attack. If you are under the effects of the "Defend"
    command, these will bounce off you and become Eggberts. Attack the Eggberts to
    do 80 damage to Birdo. Yes, this is a rather slow fight, and Birdo can hurt you 
    very badly. If you managed to get the Jinx Belt earlier, though I doubt you
    did, this will be much easier. You also could use an Energizer to allow your
    physical attacks to become more efficient than the Eggberts which really lets
    you beat Birdo a lot faster and consume fewer Max Mushrooms. You certainly
    don't have to, but it would be a really good idea. You do have that time with
    Shelley in which you can do anything with no penalty after all.
    Toadstool strategy - Start things off with a Bracer, and then hack away at
    Shelly with physicals. You have no hope of defeating Birdo with your basic
    physical attacks even when under the effects of an Energizer. You can either
    use Ice Bombs and Rock Candies to take him down or use the special gimmick in
    this fight. If you have attacked Birdo three times, he'll start to use his
    one egg shot. If you used the defend command on the turn before, being hit by
    this will generate an Eggbert. Attacking the Eggbert will cause it to detonate
    on Birdo for 80 damage. Birdo has 777 HP so you'll have to detonate 10 Eggbert
    on it. Therapy will be pivotal in surviving long enough to do this.
    Okay, unless you were using Mario, that was a good deal harder than you likely
    expected. However, we still have a good deal of dungeon left. Snag the Castle
    Key 2 and unlock the next door. Hop onto the hopefully already opened chest in
    this room and jump to find a hidden chest containing a frog coin. Rush ahead
    past the door with the Heavy Troopa to see a lovely scene with Valentina. Hmm,
    yes, after all she's done, she has good reason to call someone else rude. Once
    she flees, proceed through the door in the back.
    Save in here and then go to the next room. In here, avoid the enemies and jump
    under the chest that seems out of reach. A platform will appear, and you can
    loot the chest for a valuable Star. Use it to defeat all the enemies in this
    room and the next room, including Dodo. Continuing past that room leads to the
    end of the dungeon.
    You'll end up back at the area you fell to after getting the Rare Scarf. Now,
    do not return to Nimbus Land. That will trigger the next boss fight. Instead,
    go, save, and heal. The next boss fight is the Valentina fight which is the
    second exception to the rules. Equip your main character with the Safety Ring
    and place him in the third slot in your party (Mario obviously doesn't move).
    Place Bowser in the second slot and equip him with the Spiked Link, Work Pants,
    and Safety Badge. If you don't have the Safety Badge, use the Wake Up Pin
    instead. If you are doing Bowser's challenge, use Geno instead. If you forgot
    to buy equipment for Geno in Nimbus Land, you can pick some up in Seaside Town,
    but it won't be as good. If you need to restock on Max Mushrooms after the
    Birdo fight, be sure to do so. Valentina's defense stats are poor, but she has
    2000 HP so she can take quite the beating. Once you are totally ready, head
    back to Nimbus Land.
    Boss 17 - Valentina
    Pre-battle - It's a 1v1, Dodo versus Bowser (maybe Geno). Dodo can be inflicted
    with fear so keeping him in that status would be a good idea and would also
    make this even easier. Geno obviously can't do that. Also, don't use Geno
    Boost with Geno. That would affect the later stages of the fight, and since
    it's not Geno's challenge, that's cheating. Either way, simple physicals wear
    away Dodo's health quickly, and you will likely not need to heal at all.
    Mario strategy - Open the fight with a Bracer and then begin your typical
    Jump attack plan against Valentina. A level 16 Mario who has followed the
    rotation and fully maxed Jump will only take 10 hits to bring her down. On that
    note, just ignore Dodo and Bowser when they come back; they aren't really worth
    worrying about. Valentina can inflict decent damage on you, but like most other
    bosses, she doesn't survive long enough to be a really big threat.
    Mallow strategy - Open the fight with a Bracer and then move in on Valentina
    with physical attacks. Mallow's high magic defense really shines through in
    this fight as not even Valentina's most powerful spells are very dangerous as
    long as you have that Bracer up. Once you've knocked off 800 of Valentina's HP,
    Dodo and Bowser will return. Neither has much impact on the fight so just
    continue assaulting Valentina with your physical. This is an astoundingly easy
    boss fight as long as you show even minor amounts of caution when it comes to
    healing. HP Rain is nearly infinite here since you aren't using other spells;
    if in doubt, heal!
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost and then focus on Valentina with
    physicals. Valentina has some quite potent magic, and the Safety Ring blocks
    only some of it. You'll likely need to do a fair amount of healing in this
    fight. Once you've done over 800 damage to Valentina, Dodo and Bowser will
    return. Leave Bowser to die and ignore Dodo; you can take out Valentina much
    more quickly than Dodo. This fight is more dangerous with Dodo around since a
    Valentina spell + Dodo Multistrike combo is very painful. However, Valentina is
    a foe of limited durability; you should be alright.
    Bowser strategy - Open the fight with a Yoshi-Ade. You really don't need the
    Energizer half of it and could get away with just the Bracer, but this way
    helps you conserve Max Mushrooms. After that, go all out with physicals on
    Valentina. Even when Dodo and Geno return, just continue attacking Valentina.
    She doesn't last all that long since her high HP is more than negated by her
    poor defense. With the Bracer effect, Bowser takes her magical assault
    surprisingly well.
    Toadstool strategy - Open the fight with a Bracer. You don't need an Energizer
    here, but it does speed it up substantially. I'll leave the issue to your
    discretion. Valentina's defense is quite poor, but her HP is high. She is quite
    random with her damage output. She has a few spells that are negated by your
    Safety Ring, but her others are very powerful, especially Diamond Saw. Once
    you've knocked off 800 HP, Dodo and Bowser return. Bowser must be left to die
    and isn't much help, but Dodo is quite the pain. Multistrike can really hurt
    after all. Luckily, you have nearly limitless healing thanks to Therapy, and
    you can afford to wait to attack until you've had a good round in which little
    bad has happened to you. Valentina's FP isn't infinite either. If you're having
    trouble with this fight, just constantly heal until she's out of FP. Overall,
    it's not really a hard fight, but it is somewhat long and has the easy
    potential for careless mistakes.
    Okay, after some touching scenes, you find yourself in the throne room of
    Nimbus Castle. Personally, I would have asked for Geno's autograph, but what do
    I know? Anyway, exit the throne room via the back door and return to the chest
    that used to contain a Star. Now it contains a Flower which will doubtlessly be
    handy for you. This also will be our last FP check as this Flower was the one
    that gave me 99 FP on my test run. Having maxed out FP is a great asset so if
    you aren't there, I hope you're close! I'll continue to point out Flower
    locations to help out those who are lagging.
    Return to the throne room and exit it via the normal door. Make your way to the
    room in which Mallow's parents were trapped while Valentina was in charge (also
    known as the only room you didn't enter during your first trip here) and speak
    with the NPCs in here to get a Flower Jar. Return to the main hall and go to
    the spot where there used to be a chest with a Flower in it. The chest is gone,
    but if you jump on that spot, you'll uncover a hidden chest with a frog coin.
    There's only one more hidden chest left if you've been following this guide,
    and it's in the final dungeon. That concludes business in the castle so head
    back to the main body of Nimbus Land.
    You can meet up with Croco in the northeastern house here. After discussing the
    finer points of philosophy, he takes off, but he leaves his Signal Ring behind.
    This is a pretty pointless accessory if you've been following this guide
    perfectly, but if you're missing some hidden chests, it will help you find
    them. Also, while outside in Nimbus Land, run along the eastern boundary of the
    city and push against the invisible wall. You should find a place which allows
    you to run out onto thin air, and you can speak with Shy Away here. He is
    quite intimidated by your impressive battle prowess and gives you the
    Fertilizer in exchange for his safety. This is the other item Mario needs to
    get his ultimate weapon. There's nothing stopping you from getting it right now
    actually so let's hop to it!
    Return to Rose Town and head to the northeastern boundary of the city. You
    should discover that there's a new exit here which leads to a lone house. Hmm,
    it's funny how this wasn't here before. Anyway, inside, speak with the
    gardener and agree to give up the Seed and Fertilizer. A vine will grow, and
    you can climb it up into the clouds to get the Lazy Shell weapon and armor. The
    weapon is a great treasure for Mario players; it's his ultimate weapon! The
    armor is a banned item; don't even think about using it.
    Now would be a good time to return to Jinx. Level 16 has an easier time with
    him than level 14, and everyone except Bowser got an equipment upgrade since
    then. Everyone should be able to beat Jinx 2 now, and Mario will have a fairly
    easy time with Final Jinx. Geno and Bowser can both beat Final Jinx now as
    well, and I'd heavily suggest that you obtain the Jinx Belt now if you're using
    those two characters. It will be helpful in the next dungeon. Let me repeat
    that. Get the Jinx Belt if you are doing Geno or Bowser's challenge. It will be
    helpful in the next dungeon. I'm not sure that I want to go as far as to say
    that it's mandatory, but you are on your own if you are thinking of taking on
    the Axem Rangers without it. As per Mallow and Toadstool, they will need to
    wait to challenge Jinx.
    Once you are fully prepared and well stocked on all the items you might need,
    head back to Nimbus Land to the area you fell to out of Nimbus Castle. Speak
    to the guards to access the hot springs. Walk through the exit to fall into the
    next dungeon.
    Dungeon 18 - Barrel Volcano
    Okay, this place is intense. The enemies are strong, and it ends with two very
    strong bosses. The good news is that near the end there's a shop that sells the
    excellent fire armor as well as an inn. You don't have to worry about keeping
    in good health for the bosses.
    Magmus - Magic is the best way to deal with him. Do watch out as he's immune to
    jump and all status effects so Mario, Bowser, and Toadstool do have to stick to
    boring physical plans.
    Armored Ant - Don't leave him for last or else he'll use Vigor Up!. Magic is
    the way to go with him, and that includes a nice Terrorize from Bowser. Fear
    not only weakens him and hits his low magic defense, but it can negate Vigor
    Oerlikon - He's very similar to Magmus. He's immune to jump and status, but
    he has poor magic defense.
    Chained Kong - Mario can use his magic, but everyone else should stick to the
    physicals here. His magic defense is worse and he is status weak so including
    him in a group Snowy, Geno Blast, or Terrorize isn't a bad idea.
    Vomer - It's just Dry Bones version two. Use any magic to quickly and easily
    destroy him.
    Pyrosphere - Mario and Mallow should definitely use magic to take him down.
    Geno, Bowser, and Toadstool should stick to physicals, but he is weak so
    catching him as a part of a group with Geno Blast isn't a bad idea.
    Stumpet - Hit him hard and fast with magic. Sadly, he is immune to fear and
    sleep so Bowser and Toadstool are very likely to see his powerful attacks that
    he uses every other turn.
    Corkpedite - Kill the Body and ignore it. Sand Storm is quite nasty as always.
    Body - It has a magic defense stat of one. Even Bowser should join in the magic
    assault with Crusher. However, if you have instant death protection equipped,
    it can't hurt you so you don't have to worry about ignoring it. Toadstool
    should flee from these battles if she doesn't have instant death protection.
    You will want to reach level 17 by the end of this dungeon. In terms of
    accessories, there are a lot of choices. Almost everything here is weak to ice
    and magic in general so Mallow should definitely go with the Scrooge Ring so he
    can abuse Snowy to its fullest extent. Bowser has the easy choice of the Jinx
    Belt. It protects him from instant death and massively boosts the stats that
    are important to him. If you don't have the Jinx Belt, you're in somewhat of a
    bind and will be stuck between the Troopa Pin and Safety Ring, neither of which
    are nearly as useful here. Mario has two real options. He can use the Jinx Belt
    for the big defense buff and instant death protection and rely on having over
    200 attack to be his big thing in here. He could also equip the Jump Shoes to
    try to exploit Jump, but the Jump Shoes leave him defensively vulnerable. Geno
    has a similar double choice. He can use the Jinx Belt and use his physical
    nearly exclusively here, or he can use the Scrooge Ring and rely mostly on Geno
    Blast. The former option is safer, but the latter is faster. Toadstool doesn't
    have options that are nearly as lucrative as everyone else's choices. She can
    use the Safety Ring to really help her against Pyrosphere and Corkpedite/Body,
    or she can use the Troopa Pin for speedier kills. The Troopa Pin will help her
    a lot, but her fight with Corkpedite/Body is awful without the Safety Ring.
    It's really up to you what you prefer or whether you're willing to juggle
    accessories based on what enemies you expect to be fighting.
    Regardless of how you choose to fight your battles, this place is extremely
    linear. Unless you jump down from an elevated place, you never have multiple
    choices about which way to go. I'll point out a few rooms of interest, but for
    the most part, I'll leave navigating this place up to you. You do get a lot of
    Flowers here; I will assume that you will hit 99 FP here if you didn't already.
    The first room of mild interest is a room with a frog coin over the lava. The
    frog coin is well obtainable; you just have to leap out to get it. No, there
    are no negative consequences for doing this regardless of how foolish it seems.
    The next interesting room is the room with a seemingly unreachable frog coin
    above a doorway. The trick is to run through the room, exit through that
    doorway, return, and then leap into the lava. Mario's third degree burns are a
    minor concern; you just got a frog coin!
    The next screen of interest is a place with a chest and a man standing in a
    doorway. Ignore the chest for now as it just contains coins, and you likely
    have maxed out money. The man is Hinopio, and he'll lead you into his store. Be
    sure to buy some fire armor unless you are doing Bowser's challenge, and also
    be sure to heal up at the inn. Head back and get the chest after you do your
    shopping, and then progress onward out of Hinopio Mart and save. You are very
    close to the Czar Dragon, the first of the two nasty bosses here in the Barrel
    You'll want to equip yourself for this boss fight. The boss is able to inflict
    fear, but he doesn't do it very often. You also have the double problem of
    having to deal with the Helios he summons. Basically, it works like this. The
    Czar Dragon sometimes randomly summons four Helio monsters. As soon as these
    get a turn, they will immediately suicide on you with a decently strong
    unblockable physical. Therefore, it is greatly to your advantage to go between
    the Czar Dragon and the Helios. The Czar Dragon has 20 speed, and the Helios
    have 0 speed. Every character has to look at this problem differently.
    Mario is in a tough spot. In the case of a tie in speed, he is guaranteed to
    go before the Czar Dragon since Toadstool's 24 speed is the fastest in the
    battle and thereby gives your party the win in all tiebreak situations. Yeah, I
    don't like it either. He can use the Amulet to reduce his speed to 15, but then
    he's open to being inflicted with fear. He could equip the Safety Ring to block
    the fear, as well as Flame Wall, but then he's guaranteed to have to take the
    4 hits from the Helios. The choice is really yours here; both paths have their
    advantages and disadvantages. Mario is so powerful that the battle will not
    last very long, especially if he opens it with a Yoshi-Ade instead of a Bracer.
    Do note that two bits of luck are needed with the Amulet path. First of all,
    you need the good luck of not being inflicted with fear immediately before the
    Czar Dragon summons Helios. Secondly, you need to get lucky with Ultra Jump and
    hit all four Helios with it. I will be using the Safety Ring for my strategies
    since it also helps slightly in the Zombone section of the fight. However, if
    you are willing to reset for some good luck, you could save some very precious
    Max Mushrooms by using the Amulet instead.
    Mallow has a bit of an easier choice. His base 18 speed is slow enough that he
    doesn't have to worry about outspeeding the Czar Dragon unless he equips the
    Safety Ring or another speed boosting item. He can easily wipe out all of the
    Helios and punish the Czar Dragon's ice weakness with Snowy. Of course, if the
    Safety Ring doesn't work, just use the Safety Badge! You lose the protection
    from Flame Wall, but you keep the more important fear protection and retain
    your slower speed. Of course, if you've been following this guide, you very
    likely do not have the Safety Badge. In that case, the Fearless Pin works as a
    fine substitute.
    Geno has an easy choice, but it's not the sort of choice that you want to be
    that simple. Geno's base 30 speed will outspeed the Czar Dragon no matter what
    you equip (remembering that the Lazy Shell armor is banned). Therefore, you
    should just equip the Safety Ring and hope for the best. You do have the option
    of using the Jinx Belt and using the nice stat gains from it to try to win in
    fewer turns while using luck and Able Juice to get around fear. I'll be using
    the Safety Ring for my strategies, but do be aware of the other choice.
    Bowser is, for once, quite happy that he's the slowest character in the game.
    Additionally, his standard two allies, Mario and Mallow, are slow enough so
    that if Bowser were to have 20 speed that he would still go after the Czar
    Dragon. This means that you're allowed to equip an item which boosts your speed
    by 5. You have two choices. You could stick with your Work Pants as your armor
    and use the Safety Badge. The other choice is to buy a Flame Shell form Hinopio
    and then equip the Safety Ring. The former option gives you more attack, and
    the latter option is somewhat better defensively. I'll be using the first
    option for my strategies, but the second one is really just about as valid.
    Toadstool is slightly faster than the Czar Dragon to start. She can equip the
    Amulet to go second, but any form of fear protection makes her go first. She
    also has another serious problem. If you've been following this guide, you
    will only be at level 17. Toadstool doesn't learn Psych Bomb, her only
    offensive special to strike all enemies, until level 18. Unless you level up to
    level 18, you will have to rely on item attacks. Here things get even worse.
    The Helios are immune to fire so Fire Bombs will do nothing. Rock Candies are
    also mostly out of the question. Remember that you absolutely need to have two
    Rock Candies for the next boss, the Axem Rangers. Even if you have more, they
    are so useful that it would be somewhat wasteful to use them here. That really
    just leaves Ice Bombs. If you have quite a few spare Ice Bombs, feel free to
    rely on them and use the Amulet. If not, just use the Safety Ring. You can
    stall nearly infinitely with Therapy, and with the Yoshi-Ade effects, you
    aren't going to be wiped out in one turn. The Safety Ring is indeed the safe
    option here; the fight is actually pretty easy with the Safety Ring. Just be
    aware that you have other options.
    If you are not using fear protection in this fight, be sure to go and buy some
    Able Juice from Hinopio. They cost nearly nothing at this point in the game,
    but you might not have much room in your inventory for them. Still, having a
    few will likely help you out. Muku Cookies obviously work as substitutes if you
    want to do that. Regardless of what you have done, press boldly ahead and
    prepare to meet this game's token dragon.
    Boss 18 - Czar Dragon
    Note: The Czar Dragon summons Helios after using his physical attack (using it
    as a counter, which he does 1/3 of the time, does not count) or after using
    Iron Maiden. He won't summon them after using a spell.
    Mario strategy - Opening this fight with a Yoshi-Ade saves precious turns, but
    it's winnable with just a Bracer if you really don't want to use a Yoshi-Ade
    for some reason. The plan is to just go all out with Jump (or Super Jump/Ultra
    Jump). You do some pretty massive damage to both the Czar Dragon and Zombone
    with this sort of attack; they won't last too long. You just need to hope for
    luck. You need to hope that the Czar Dragon does not summon Helios very often,
    and you need to hope that Zombone doesn't use Blast and Storm as often as his
    weak, easily blockable physical. The whole point is to use as few Max Mushrooms
    as possible since there's another boss fight right after this. If you are using
    the Amulet instead of the Safety Ring, be sure to use Ultra Jump against the
    summoned Helios, and be sure to cure fear whenever you get a chance. Good luck
    as you will need some luck here!
    Mallow strategy - On my test file, I beat this fight using a Kerokerocola and
    no other items. At the start of the fight, it would be very helpful to use a
    Bracer, Energizer, or Yoshi-Ade, but you really don't need it. The Czar Dragon
    is weak to ice, and Snowy will also wipe out all of the Helios. Use Snowy
    whenever he summons Helios, and if you manage to get a totally free turn, use
    your physical (that's not very likely). Once Zombone comes out, go all out on
    healing with some physicals mixed in. Zombone is pretty powerful, but he isn't
    capable of wiping you out in one turn, and he has very limited FP. Once he runs
    out of FP, you can get more aggressive with your physical. He has pretty
    horrible defense so he should go down fairly easily.
    Geno strategy - Open the fight with Geno Boost and then go all out with
    physical attacks. Unfortunately, you can't really do anything at all about the
    Helios so just take the hits and heal more often because of the threat. The
    Czar Dragon won't last too long, but when he falls you get the treat of the
    second stage of your first true multi-form boss. Zombone is much more powerful
    than the Czar Dragon, but you have some advantages. Zombone never summons
    Helios, and his physical defense is actually a good deal worse. Also, if you
    have any Pure Water, it would be a decent idea to use them on Zombone. He won't
    instantly die, but he will attack himself for decent damage. Pure Water are
    ordinarily totally useless so this is quite an improvement. Really, if you can
    make it to the Zombone section of the fight, you have pretty much won. This
    isn't even a hard boss at all really, but you need to worry about how many Max
    Mushrooms you use, unless you feel like going all the way back to Star Hill and
    then returning here before the next boss.
    Bowser strategy - This is a pretty cool fight for Bowser no matter how you look
    at it. Open things up with a Bracer or Yoshi-Ade (the latter is preferred in
    order to save Max Mushroooms), use Terrorize to inflict fear on the Czar
    Dragon if you only boosted one stat, and then move in with physical attacks. If
    the Czar Dragon summons his Helios, use Terrorize to eliminate them and to
    renew the fear on the Czar Dragon. Eventually, the Czar Dragon will fall, and
    Zombone will take his place. Zombone is immune to fear, but he doesn't summon
    Helios either. Zombone also has much worse physical defense than the Czar
    Dragon. A continued barrage of physical attacks should bring him down fairly
    easily, though you can feel free to use any spare Pure Water you have to do a
    good amount of damage on the side. All around, this is a mostly easy but not
    totally easy fight so it's just entertaining.
    Toadstool strategy - This fight is all about Mute. No, I'm not kidding, and I
    will never say this about any other fight for the rest of the game. The Czar
    Dragon and Zombone both are able to be inflicted with Mute, and it really
    messes both of them up. In the Czar Dragon's case, it blocks Flame Wall and
    Water Blast. The latter was actually fairly dangerous. Against Zombone, it just
    destroys him. Mute blocks Boulder, Blast, and Storm which is also the full list
    of all of Zombone's dangerous attacks. With all that being said, the strategy
    is simple. Open with a Yoshi-Ade or a Bracer -> Energizer combo and then use
    your physical to take the boss down. Be sure to keep the mute status inflicted
    the whole match, and be sure to keep healed with Therapy. Once the fight
    progresses to the Zombone stage, you have practically won. His only real way of
    hurting you is gone, and Zombone has considerably less defense than the Czar
    Dragon. It's amazing, but for once, Toadstool has perhaps the easiest time of
    all the characters.
    After you have slain the dragon, run ahead to get the sixth Star Piece. You
    have it for all of a millisecond until it is stolen by the Axem Rangers. Oh no!
    They take off, and you can pursue them. Now, you very likely (and very
    intelligently) are worrying about saving. You don't get stuck pursuing the Axem
    Rangers so feel free to chase them a little further. That way, if you lose the
    fight a few times, you will have to watch fewer scenes. I personally suggest
    turning back after Yellow catches the Star Piece and informs Red that he
    dropped it. Do be sure to save before taking the trampoline; you don't want to
    redo the Czar Dragon. Also, check your items and equipment. There are two ways
    to win this fight. You can win by "fighting hard", or you can win by using two
    Rock Candies. Mallow and Toadstool cannot win no matter how hard they fight;
    they will need the two Rock Candies. If you do not have them, you have
    obviously not been taking my advice very seriously up to this point. You must
    go back to Seaside Town and abuse Mushroom Boy until he gives you two Rock
    Candies. You should just be thankful that you didn't totally prevent yourself
    from completing the challenge. If you want to fight hard with Mario, Geno, or
    Bowser, you'll need quite a few Max Mushrooms. Mario and Bowser will also want
    a Yoshi-Ade. Do not use Bracers and Energizers as substitutes. Hopefully, you
    will have everything you need without needing to leave the Barrel Volcano. It's
    possible that you either didn't prepare well or had to use too many resources
    against the Czar Dragon. If that's the case, you'll just have to leave and
    return. In terms of equipment, you'll want to give Mario, Geno, and Bowser the
    Jinx Belt. Mallow and Toadstool should equip the Troopa Pin. Anyone can use
    Mallow and Toadstool's strategy so if you find this fight too hard with the
    other characters, feel free to adapt. Eventually, you'll take the trampoline to
    the top of the Barrel Volcano and be greeted with the most dangerous boss fight
    this side of Culex.
    Boss 19 - Axem Rangers
    Mario strategy - Open with a Yoshi-Ade, and then take out Pink with physicals.
    Green is your next target with the awesome power of the Lazy Shell and Jinx
    Belt combination. This will prompt Red to use Vigor Up!, but the offensive
    abilities of the Axem Rangers are quickly crumbling regardless. A single Jump
    will be enough to take out Yellow; he is weak to jump. The next target is that
    super powered Red. Physicals will dispatch him fairly quickly, and yes I know
    how awkward it is not relying on Jump for once. This leaves you in a very
    simple 1v1 with Black. Be sure to be in good health before defeating Black as
    the Breaker Beam is able to kill you if your health is bad going into that
    section of the fight. As per actually defeating Black, a physical attack
    followed up by Jump should do it. If you're scared that the Jump won't kill and
    absolutely do not want to see Spritz Bomb as a counter, just use physicals to
    take out Black. The Breaker Beam section of the fight is really easy. You only
    get attacked every other turn after all. It should only take 3-4 physical
    attacks to seize victory at this point. You will need to use a few Max
    Mushrooms in this fight, probably more than you have had to in any other fight.
    Still, this is Mario's challenge. You are offensively insanely overpowered.
    This fight should be winnable without too much trouble, though if you are bad
    at timed defense and get bad luck in which spells Green uses early on, this
    could get a bit more complicated.
    Mallow strategy - The Troopa Pin ensures that you go first, and it gives you
    the effect of an Energizer immediately. This is a battle against time more than
    anything so you really need that boost. Open the fight with a Rock Candy, and
    then the Axem Rangers will begin their assault. It is very possible that you
    will die before your next turn, and if you do, I hope you saved. There's
    another factor to consider here as well. Pink might heal someone. If she heals
    Red, it's no big deal. However, if she heals anyone else, they are going to be
    a part of this fight for even longer. Well, regardless of what happens and
    totally regardless of your health, use another Rock Candy next turn. If Pink
    either healed no one or healed Red, this will kill every ranger except Red. If
    she healed someone, that person as well as Red will live while the other three
    will die. Red will always use this turn to use Vigor Up! so you don't have to
    worry about being attacked by him. If Pink survived, she'll use Petal Blast
    which you can only pray misses. If it hits, it will probably kill you. If you
    survive it, you'll be turned into a mushroom and will probably die before you
    get another turn. If Black survived, he'll probably kill you, but you might get
    lucky and/or manage to do some timed defense. Yellow and Green aren't as big of
    threats if they survived, but both could hurt you really badly if things go
    badly. Green could also mute you which could be really devastating. He's not
    very likely to mute you at all, but it's possible. Anyway, after you heal as
    needed, use a Bracer and then focus on any surviving Axem Rangers that are not
    Red. Black will die from a single blast of Shocker. Pink and Green go down to
    physicals. If Yellow is the ranger left, just start blasting with Snowy. It
    will nail Red's ice weakness while simultaneously preventing Yellow's dangerous
    Body Slam counter. If you have the good fortune of being locked in a 1v1 with
    Red from the start (or after you've killed the other rangers), just take him
    out with a few physicals. Be sure you are in good health before finishing Red.
    Once all five rangers are dead, you have pretty much won. The second stage of
    the fight is childishly easy. The Breaker Beam will fire every other turn for
    high but not unbearable damage (if you are not under the effects of a Bracer,
    it will probably kill you immediately). After 6 shots, it will be out of FP and
    will do nothing until you destroy it. Shocker kills it faster, but it doesn't
    matter much. If you are having trouble surviving, just alternate between
    physical attacking and healing until it is out of FP. If you didn't notice,
    this is a very random fight, and the damage output in the first stage of the
    fight is far above what Mallow can ordinarily take even with a Bracer. However,
    it might be possible to win with less cheesy tactics. I have tried quite hard
    to win this fight in a Mallow solo on other files using different strategies,
    and the only thing I was able to do to win other than this was abuse Red
    Essence which is a banned item for a very good reason. If you want to try to
    win this fight by fighting normally, I suggest equipping the Rare Scarf and
    hoping for quite a bit of early luck. You'll need to use a Yoshi-Ade first
    turn, you'll need to kill Pink first so you never see Petal Blast, you'll need
    Black to play nice in general, and you'll need Green to never use Elegy. Note
    that you can do massive damage to Black with Shocker (kills in two hits), but
    he counters specials with Spritz Bomb which is almost certainly your ticket to
    a Game Over so only hit him with Shocker if you are sure it will kill. Also,
    Yellow counters physicals with Body Slam. Never, ever attack Yellow with a
    physical attack. I think you also might have a shot if you used the Safety Ring
    to block mushroomification and to negate most of what Green can do (pray you
    don't see much of Meteor Blast) and then tried to take out Black fast. Ugh, I'm
    actually fairly sure that it's possible to win this fight without the Rock
    Candies as Mallow, but you'll need to get really lucky and have some really
    good timing with the timed defense. Only try it if you're feeling quite
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost, and then set into Pink with physicals.
    Pink must go first as Petal Blast, which she uses if one of her allies dies,
    would lead you to the Game Over screen very quickly. After that, take out
    Green with physicals as well. The Jinx Belt will do a really fantastic job of
    reducing the damage that Black, Red, and Yellow do to a manageable level so
    taking out the two casters is a big deal. Unfortunately, the death of two of
    his allies triggers Red to use Vigor Up!. You can handle this fairly well.
    Go after Black with physicals here; he won't last too long. With Black gone,
    your group specials won't be countered by Spritz Bomb so you can use Geno Blast
    or Geno Flash. At level 17 with rotation level up bonuses, Geno Flash is the
    better choice here. Yellow has 600 HP, and Geno Flash does over 150 damage
    which Geno Blast does not. This is the only stage of this fight in which you
    need FP so don't be stingy. Use Geno Flash to take out Yellow and do some
    decent damage to Red. Once Yellow is gone, finish off Red with physicals. Make
    sure that you have decent health when Red dies as it will trigger the Breaker
    Beam portion of the fight. This isn't a very hard section of the fight at all,
    but it's possible to lose if you get careless. The Breaker Beam can only fire 6
    times before running out of FP, but it won't last that long. This fight as a
    whole is very likely to drain a rather unfortunate number of Max Mushrooms.
    Don't worry about it; you have them to use them. There is not a time in the
    future for which they would be better saved. Fight your best, and you should be
    able to win this.
    Bowser strategy - His fight with the Axem Rangers is fairly similar to Geno's
    version. It will probably be slightly easier. You have to open the fight with
    a Yoshi-Ade instead of Geno Boost, but then the fight progresses the same way
    until it's just Red and Yellow left. Now, Yellow can be inflicted with fear,
    but Red cannot, and Red is the far bigger threat here. Inflicting fear is also
    very pointless if you are under Yoshi-Ade effects so just go for Red with
    physicals. A barrage of physicals will quickly overwhelm him and leave Yellow
    alone. Now, Yellow counters physical attacks with Body Slam which is more
    powerful than we want to deal with. The solution to this conundrum is Crusher.
    It should kill Yellow in five hits. Gogo casting Bowser! Either way, the
    Breaker Beam section of the fight is exactly the same for Bowser as it is for
    Geno. You, like Geno, are likely to use quite a few Max Mushrooms here, but the
    Jinx Belt really proves to be quite the lifesaver. If you are lacking it for
    whatever reason, this will be much harder indeed.
    Toadstool strategy - Her fight is a slightly harder version of Mallow's fight.
    She will be slightly more likely to die early in the fight, and she will have
    more trouble when Black or Yellow survive the two Rock Candies since she lacks
    Mallow's specials. If you have three Rock Candies, you can feel free to use the
    third one in such a case to immediately send the fight to the third stage. Be
    sure to only do this if you can survive Breaker Beam; that would be a lame way
    to die. If Black is the one alive, you can probably take him down relatively
    easily with your physicals. He's very powerful, but durability isn't Black's
    specialty. Yellow is a bigger problem. Attacking Yellow results in the very
    nasty Body Slam counter. If you have any attacking items at all, use them
    against Yellow. Fire Bombs won't hurt Red, but they'll help wear down Yellow.
    Ice Bombs are the far better choice as they'll very quickly finish Red while
    damaging Yellow a bit more severely than Fire Bombs. When you get to the point
    at which you are out of all attacking items and Yellow is still alive, you
    should look at what enemies are left. If Red is also alive, kill him first
    with physicals. Then heal to full health before touching Yellow, be sure you're
    under the effects of a Bracer, and then physically attack. It will be slow and
    painful, but you should be able to win. If you have it, Psych Bomb would make
    this much less painful. Of course, if you get Red alone from the start, just
    smack him around with physicals (after using a Bracer, of course). Once you get
    to the Breaker Beam stage, it's as easy as it is for Mallow. Do note that while
    I think it's probably possible for a very lucky Mallow to win without the Rock
    Candies, I am not so sure for Toadstool. She's just as fragile as Mallow, but
    she lacks his superior magical attacking abilities. If you want to try it, be
    sure to be at level 18 so you have Psych Bomb. Use Mallow's first option of
    going after the casters (Pink and Green) first, and only use Psych Bomb to
    attack Yellow after you've killed Black since Spritz Bomb is death for you too.
    Good luck; this fight is terrifying!
    There you go; the Axem Rangers are fallen! You have just completed one of the
    game's most serious boss fights, and you have finished this whole segment of
    the game. Take it for you have earned it; the sixth Star Piece is yours!
    If you were wondering, yes, it's a glitch that you only get 17 experience
    points. You are supposed to get 63 experience points, but the special death
    sequences of the Axem Rangers prevents you from getting most of it. Meh, I
    guess you're just going to have to fight a bit more in the next dungeon to make
    up for it!
    Okay, you will find yourself on the world map. Head out and restock on items as
    you need them. I would be sure to have 3 Yoshi-Ade before progressing any
    farther in the game. You get stuck in Bowser's Keep, and you can't leave until
    you finish a series of three boss fights. None of them are particularly nasty,
    but if you are woefully under stocked on items, you could force yourself into a
    pretty horrible position. Obviously, Geno has absolutely no need of Yoshi-Ade.
    Mario, Geno, and Bowser likely need some more Max Mushrooms as well so be sure
    to make a stop by Star Hill to pick up some of those.
    Also, Toadstool now has access to her ultimate weapon, the Frying Pan. Head on
    over the Moleville and talk to the mushroom man in the store. His special shop
    has three items you could buy; you want the third one (the other two are not
    very useful). This is the Frying Pan, and it's Toadstool's ultimate weapon. It
    is a very good weapon, far better than Mallow, Geno, or Bowser's ultimate
    weapons. In short, Toadstool can finally do strong damage with her physical
    attack. You've only waited the whole game for it.
    Toadstool should be able to use this new weapon to beat Jinx now for the Jinx
    Belt, but you might want to wait until you are at level 18, a level which gives
    a big attack boost, and have her ultimate armor. It's up to you if you want to
    try. Mallow shouldn't even think about trying now, and the other three should
    be sure to go and stomp Jinx if they haven't already.
    Once you are set on items, head over to Nimbus Land and speak with Mallow's
    parents. Their infinite wisdom helps you to see that the Star Piece must be the
    only place that you haven't been yet which means that it's in Bowser's Keep.
    Of course, if you were paying attention during the opening scene of this game,
    you would have noticed one of the Star Pieces very clearly fell into Bowser's
    Keep. General video game logic indicates that the last thing you need will be
    in the place best guarded by the bad guy. You could use the world map to
    conclude that it was the next destination. In short, you need to go to Bowser's
    Keep. Mallow's parents suggest that he has grown old and mature enough to go
    through the true rite of manhood and take the bus there. Seriously, if you
    listen to the way they talk about it, that's about how it sounds. Either way,
    hop on the bus and be on your way.
    Dungeon 19 - Bowser's Keep
    Bowser is so satisfied right now. He joined your party on the vague notion that
    he would eventually get his keep back if he worked with you, and it seems like
    it's paying off. Of course, if you're doing his challenge, you should note that
    the only thing you gained from being a member of this party is the ability to
    take the bus home. Anyway, there are enemies here, and they understandably all
    fear Bowser.
    Gu Goomba - A nice, quick physical attack will destroy him. They flee from
    Bowser so watch out for that.
    Terra Cotta - Magic destroys them quickly and easily, but they won't last long
    to physical attacks either. These guys also flee from Bowser.
    Malakoopa - Physicals or magic are both fairly viable in quickly destroying
    this. Do note that it's weak to thunder, and it also flees from Bowser.
    Tub-O-Troopa - Remember the Heavy Troopa from Nimbus Land? This is basically
    the same thing. Do note that it's weak to thunder. Use magic if your character
    is that sort of character; use physicals otherwise.
    Forkies - Since they won't move until they're attacked, deal with them last.
    Physicals are the way to go when fighting them.
    Star Cruster - Magic is the way to go here, but watch out for his unusual
    elemental properties. He's immune to jump and weak to ice. He also counters
    physical attacks with Light Ball which will put you to sleep so watch out for
    that. Mario can use Super Flame to help bypass this. Bowser's bypass is
    Mallow and Geno can clean up here with the Scrooge Ring. The first three
    enemies on that list are very weak, and none of the latter enemies are very
    threatening themselves. Bowser has a somewhat awkward time leveling up here
    since all the weak enemies run away from him. You should level up to level 18
    in the first section of Bowser's Keep. If you fight more, Toadstool can join in
    the Scrooge Ring fun with Psych Bomb. Mario and Bowser should use the Jinx Belt
    here to make slaying the enemies as easy as possible, but Jump Shoes for Mario
    or the Safety Ring for Bowser would simplify dealing with that annoying Star
    Cruster. Toadstool should use the Jinx Belt if she has it, but if she does not,
    she can go with the Rare Scarf or Safety Ring.
    This place is pretty linear for a while. Just progress forward. There's a chest
    near the end of this linear area with a Mushroom so don't feel bad about eating
    through your FP here. You'll eventually come to a room with a save point and
    Croco. Croco has some stuff to sell you that you almost certainly don't need,
    but the save point is handy. Once you're ready, press onward to the dreaded 6
    door section of Bowser's Keep.
    Okay, there are two of each type of course - puzzle, action, and battle. Battle
    is easily the hardest set of rooms in this challenge so, if you can, you
    probably want to avoid the battle rooms. However, Geno and Bowser have the
    misfortune of having their ultimate weapons at the end of battle rooms.
    Therefore, I'd suggest that Mario, Mallow, and Toadstool do the two action and
    two puzzle rooms while Geno and Bowser do both the actions, one of the puzzles,
    and the battle room needed for their item. If you want to do a battle room with
    the others for experience, drop a puzzle room for it.
    You can easily scout the rooms by running in and seeing how the room starts.
    The order of the rooms is random, but it was decided when you created your
    file. You can abuse the save point to quickly scout the rooms and decide which
    rooms to do.
    Action Rooms:
    Everybody should do both of these. You get Mallow's ultimate weapon at the end
    of one of them, and you get Toadstool's second best weapon at the end of the
    other. The big factor is that these have random other items in them as well
    which are very good themselves, and these are the easiest rooms to complete.
    Action 1 - invisible floor (Super Slap)
    You're able to fail 9 times, and there's no real penalty for having to try
    again if you fail totally. You should get every chest in this course. You'll
    get a few coins (fairly useless), a Fright Bomb, a Royal Syrup, an Ice Bomb,
    and a Rock Candy. Yeah, that's a better prize alone than either of the puzzle
    rooms. As per a hint about completing this, um, don't fall into the lava. If
    you take too long, the Terrapins will disappear, but it doesn't really matter
    since you can try as much as you want. You can also show the floor again by
    simply jumping, though I find it easier to just expend a try by jumping into
    the lava.
    The second room here could be passed very easily if you just follow the
    platforms easily to the exit. However, this would neglect the great items here!
    You can ignore the lower left chest as it contains an illegal Red Essence. The
    upper left one grants you a Flower, and the upper right one has a Fire Bomb.
    The lower right one has a Max Mushroom which could be very handy if you overly
    drained yourself on one of the battle courses. If you need some help actually
    clearing the room, um, stay out of the lava. I should also note a general rule
    of all moving platform areas. They stop moving when Mario is jumping. This
    helps on many challenge areas, but I won't mention it again.
    The last room here is somewhat of a remake of the original Donkey Kong. You
    have to run up the ledges while avoiding the barrels. If you stand right next
    to the slightly raised platforms, the barrels can never hit you. This is very
    easy, and it ends when you make contact with DK, er, the Chained Kong. Hey, I
    seem to remember that causing you to die in the original Donkey Kong. A
    faithful remake this is not!
    Unfortunately, the final prize here is about as useful as what you have earned.
    You get the Super Slap, Toadstool's second best weapon. You already have the
    Frying Pan so this is a pretty pointless piece of equipment. The damage is less
    random than it is with the Frying Pan, but that's not enough to justify the
    lower power.
    Action 2 - moving platforms (Sonic Cymbals)
    You just jump from platform to platform. This is so mind numbingly easy; my
    only hint to help you complete it is to not jump into the lava. You can ride
    the final platform up really high to a chest with a Kerokerocola. Be sure to do
    that as it's a really quality item.
    The second room here is just insultingly easy. Don't hit the Bob-Ombs. Ride the
    cannonballs with reversed controls. Get the chests for a Pick Me Up, two
    Flowers, a Max Mushroom, and a Rock Candy. Go into the door.
    The last section here is also simple, but the jumping and maneuvering can be
    somewhat tricky. I suggest you avoid falling into the lava. Also, loot the
    chests to get two Flowers, a Royal Syrup, a Pick Me Up, a Fire Bomb, and a
    Kerokerocola. Yeah, for being so easy, these action rooms sure have nice loot.
    Once you've completed this series of rooms, you get Mallow's best weapon, the
    Sonic Cymbals. It's really nice that Mallow gets a break like this. You go to a
    room with such good items dispersed throughout it that you would want to do it
    even if there was no prize at the end. At the end, you get the one item that
    Mallow wants most.
    Puzzle Rooms:
    Everyone should do one of these at least. You have to solve some surprisingly
    difficult puzzles to get a Rock Candy at the end. It's a good item that every
    character can use, and while these rooms require some thought, they aren't any
    harder in this challenge than on a regular play through.
    Puzzle 1 - quiz
    This starts with a quiz about various aspects of the game. No, I don't have a
    list of every possible question or even a list of any of the questions. This
    quiz isn't very hard, and if you've been paying attention during the game, you
    should be fine. I do have one hint here. Don't take your time. If you don't
    know the answer, quickly guess. This is a timed event, and if you know the
    answers to most of the questions, this will minimize the impact of those things
    you do not know. It will also cycle through questions quickly so you can see
    many different questions which will doubtlessly help you if you have to try
    again. If you only want to do one puzzle room, I'd really suggest the other
    one so don't keep trying if you are finding this hard and that is your
    Next you have to do a barrel counting event. Ugh, this is easily the hardest
    thing in any of the puzzle rooms. You'll never win by mere counting; you have
    to count rows and use multiplication. Even then, you have to think pretty fast
    and have a fairly sharp memory. Well, there are only two times you have to do
    the counting, and the first one isn't that hard. Just do your best.
    The third is a fairly interesting triathlon puzzle. You have to decipher the
    hints they give you. Unless you know something about triathlons, this will
    likely be nearly impossible for you to do. The little detail that you aren't
    told is that once any competitor finishes one event that he or she (or it in
    this case) immediately starts on the next event while anyone remaining finishes
    the previous events. The winner is simply whoever wins the last event. The
    order of the events is swimming, biking, and then the marathon. This is enough
    to logically conclude the order. The actual order is random, but the same hints
    always correspond to the same ranking. The one who out rode the other on his
    bike is first place, the one who was in 4th during the bike race got second,
    the one who flat out tells you he got third in the marathon got third, and the
    one who got third in swimming ended dead last. On that note, it's really funny
    when Mr. Kipper is the one who got third in swimming.
    Okay, that room is clear, and you're one Rock Candy richer. Don't you feel good
    about yourself?
    Puzzle 2 - coin game
    This starts with a basic coin grabbing game. You can take up to four coins from
    the box. Dr. Topper has the same ability in this regard. You take turns until
    one of you takes the last of the 21 coins. That person loses. The strategy is
    that you always want to take such a number of coins so that there is one more
    coin than is divisible by five on your opponent's turn. The logic is that six
    is the ideal number of coins for it to be on Dr. Topper's second to last turn.
    He can take any number of coins, and then you can reduce the number of coins
    remaining to one which forces you to win. In order to force him to have the
    turn with just 6 coins left, you want him to be the one who has the turn with
    11 coins and then 16 coins and then 21 coins. If you notice, you go first when
    there are 21 coins left. Yes, that's right. You have a forced loss, but Dr.
    Topper isn't smart enough. Take one coin at a time until he makes a mistake,
    and then force him into a losing position.
    The next room is one of those puzzles in which you have to hit a series of
    switches which alter the state of all the switches around them. That is, if you
    hit a switch that is up, it will make any other switches around it that are up
    go down. Any switches around it that are down will go up. It's a 4X4 grid, and
    if you just jump around randomly, you should win it without too much
    difficulty. That's how I've always won it, but a logical analysis of the
    situation could probably let you win faster.
    The last part of this is ball solitaire. If I did a bad job explaining the
    last puzzle, I'll do an even worse job with this. Dr. Topper explains the
    rules fairly well, though he neglects to mention that you use "A" to kick the
    balls. I'll give you the general tip that you should, after kicking a ball, be
    sure that you will be able to get another ball next to it in a future move.
    This puzzle has many possible solutions, and I can't really explain it much
    better than I have. If you just try a few times, you'll probably stumble into
    a winning solution. I wish I could do better, but I can't.
    That's the end of the second puzzle room. You get a Rock Candy for your
    Battle Rooms:
    These are fairly draining rooms. You have to fight twelve battles in a row, and
    then you get either Geno or Bowser's best weapon as your prize. The experience
    you get from one of these rooms is really valuable, but you don't get a chance
    to heal before the next boss. If you let yourself get too worn down here, it
    will make things harder. Of course, there is a save point before the next boss.
    If your pride can take it, you could just die to the boss and abuse the instant
    full heal. Also, you can see a few enemies here that had otherwise disappeared
    from the world which can be handy for Yoshi Cookie purposes.
    Battle 1 - Terra Cotta battle (Drill Claw)
    I'm going to write this primarily assuming that you are doing Bowser's SCC
    since he's the only one I really recommend it for. If you want to do just one
    battle room with Mario, this is the one to do. Do not do this room with Mallow
    or Toadstool under any circumstance.
    First battle: 4 Terra Cotta
    Equip your Jinx Belt and just use physical attacks. They flee from Bowser.
    Second battle: 2 Oerlikon, 1 Star Cruster
    Equip the Jinx Belt and open with a barrage of physicals to take out the two
    Oerlikons. You will probably kill the Star Cruster with another physical, but
    save him for last because he'll put you to sleep if he survives.
    Third battle: 1 Sackit, 2 Big Bertha
    The Big Bertha are the big threat here. Keep your Jinx Belt on for this one.
    Bowser should open with Terrorize for sure and then use Bowser Crush to end the
    battle. Mario, if he's doing this, should use Jump on the Big Berthas. You can
    Yoshi Cookie the Sackit for a Max Mushroom if you want; he is the same enemy
    from Star Hill.
    Fourth battle: 2 Chow, 1 Forkies
    Stick with your Jinx Belt for some more fun. The Chow easily go down to
    physicals, but the Forkies will take a few hits. Mario can use Jump on the
    Forkies to speed it up a bit.
    Fifth battle: 1 Alley Rat, 2 Armored Ant
    The Jinx Belt comes to the rescue here. The Alley Rat is very weak, and the two
    Armored Ants can be inflicted with fear. Terrorize works well here as it kills
    the Alley Rat outright and inflicts fear on both Armored Ants which makes them
    easy targets for your physicals. Mario can do it even easier with Jump.
    Sixth battle: 3 Bloober, 1 Star Cruster
    Bloobers are very weak by this point in the game. A blast of Poison Gas should
    be enough to finish off all three Bloobers and prepare the Star Cruster to die
    to a single Jinx Belt boosted physical.
    Seventh battle: 4 Stinger
    Equip the Troopa Pin before the battle and open with Terrorize. You'll kill
    them all without taking a hit. If you're worried about missing with Terrorize
    and then getting nailed with Fungispike, use Bowser Crush.
    Eighth battle: 2 Geckit, 1 Chained Kong
    Keep your Troopa Pin equipped so you can open this up with a stronger
    Terrorize. It will kill the two Geckits and leave the Chained Kong ready to be
    beaten easily with some physicals.
    Ninth battle: 1 Rob-Omb, 2 Big Bertha
    This is pretty much the exact same as the third battle. The Terrorize to Bowser
    Crush combo is the safe way to deal with this. I'd equip the Jinx Belt just in
    case Blazer comes into play. Being nailed with instant death is always bad.
    Tenth battle: 4 Vomer
    Use Terrorize once.
    Eleventh battle: 2 Magmus, 2 Pulsar
    Equip the Safety Ring so the Pulsar can do absolutely nothing to you. Some
    basic physicals will be enough to take out the Magmus, and then a physical a
    piece will take out the Pulsar.
    Twelfth battle: 1 Chester
    Okay, I suppose I had better treat him like all other false treasure chest
    enemies. Don't forget to equip your Safety Ring!
    Optional Boss 7 - Chester
    Mario strategy - Jump will take out Chester very quickly, but it's not an
    instant win like it was all the previous times. Still, it could be worse.
    Mallow strategy - Ugh, this is why I told you to not do this room with Mallow.
    Well, you are somewhat better prepared than usual since Star Rain can actually
    hurt him. Star Rain spamming is more or less all you can do here. Physicals are
    not the best plan since Chester can heal himself. Star Rain also takes out
    Bahamutt without too much trouble which is always valuable. A Bracer or Yoshi-
    Ade is probably going to prove nearly mandatory.
    Geno strategy - Geno Boost is a nice opener, and then you can set into Chester
    with your physical. It's really nice that he doesn't counter physicals like
    some of the other false treasure chest monsters. His HP is fairly high, and
    he's fairly strong. Just keep at it, and he'll fall. Do note that Bahamutt can
    be killed with Geno Whirl which will help you at the end of the fight.
    Bowser strategy - Both Chester and Bahamutt are immune to all status effects so
    all you can really do is go with physicals until they fall. Chester is annoying
    since he can heal himself, and he's very strong. You will probably need a
    Yoshi-Ade at the start of battle to minimize the Max Mushroom waste; you have
    a series of three bosses after this guy to deal with. You should definitely go
    for Chester first as well.
    Toadstool strategy - This is pretty much the exact same thing as with Mallow
    except replace Star Rain with Psych Bomb.
    Hmm, that last fight was quite a bit harder than the others, wasn't it? Well,
    now you've won, and you have the Drill Claw as your valuable prize!
    Battle 2 - Gu Goomba battle (Star Gun)
    Whereas the last one assumed you were using Bowser, this one assumes you are
    using Geno. After all, this is where his Star Gun is! If you want to do just
    one battle room with either Mallow or Toadstool, this is the one to do. Mario
    should stick to the first one.
    First battle: 5 Gu Goomba
    Equip the Troopa Pin and then use Geno Blast. If you want to conserve FP, just
    use a physical on each one of them down the line or use a Scrooge Ring combo of
    Geno Boost to Geno Blast.
    Second battle: 2 Malakoopa, 1 Tub-O-Troopa
    Equip the Troopa Pin and go all out with physicals. The two Malakoopas should
    die in single hits, but the Tub-O-Troopa will take a bit more of a beating.
    Third battle: 2 The Big Boo, 2 Orbison
    The Scrooge Ring is your friend here. One touch of Geno Blast will wipe out the
    entire group.
    Fourth battle: 5 Sling Shy
    One touch of a Scrooge Ring cheapened Geno Blast is all you need here.
    Fifth battle: 2 Chewy, 2 Shy Away
    Open with a Scrooge Ring'd Geno Blast to take out the two Chewy enemies. Next,
    use a physical a piece to finish off the Shy Away.
    Sixth battle: 1 Mr. Kipper, 2 Muckle
    Hey, it's another chance at some Ice Bombs! If you have some Yoshi Cookies, it
    would be a fine idea to use them on the Muckle. Otherwise, just equip your
    Safety Ring and use physicals. Mr. Kipper is no threat, but he should go first.
    The Muckle can do absolutely nothing to someone with the Safety Ring equipped.
    Seventh battle: 2 Amanita, 1 Orbison
    Haha, in case you forgot, Amanita is the mushroom enemy from the Forest Maze.
    Yeah, this fight is nearly unloseable. A Scrooge Ring'd blast from Geno Blast
    is enough to end it instantly, but if you want to be conservative, physicals
    will work just as well. I'd go with the former option just because Orbison is
    annoying with the healing.
    Eighth battle: 2 Greaper, 1 Glum Reaper
    Glum Reaper is a scary enemy that you ordinarily would only see in the final
    dungeon. Well, the most important thing here is preventing him from ever
    getting a turn so equip your Troopa Pin and open with a physical aimed right at
    the Glum Reaper. This should kill, and then you can use physicals to take out
    the Greapers who seem to do a lot less damage than they were doing back on the
    Sunken Ship.
    Ninth battle: 3 Pyrosphere
    Mallow loves this fight because of Snowy. You should be able to kill them in
    one round with Geno if you equip the Work Pants and Troopa Pin before the fight
    and then use Geno Blast.
    Tenth battle: 3 Lakitu
    Equip the Safety Ring and get ready for a really easy fight. These are enemies
    from back on Booster Pass. They were really strong at the time, but now they
    are just sad. A physical attack per each Lakitu is all you need.
    Eleventh battle: 2 Zeostar, 2 Shaman
    Equip the Safety Ring for this one, and then rely on your physicals. Target
    the Shaman enemies first as their Diamond Saw still really hurts. The Zeostar
    are not a serious threat and can be dealt with once the Shaman threat is
    Twelfth battle: 6 Shaman
    This is a scary fight. Open with Geno Boost and then go down the line with
    physicals. Hope your Safety Ring protects you well; 6 Diamond Saw attacks in a
    row are more than you can likely handle. Don't use up a valuable Yoshi-Ade with
    Mallow or Toadstool (you can heal more easily), and if you are using Toadstool,
    be absolutely sure to avoid using a group attack Mute. Despite the fact that,
    of all battles, this seems to be the best one for Mute, it will turn on you
    here since using Mute as a group attack against six enemies locks the game.
    Sleepy Time will work fine, of course.
    For a victory here, you claim the Star Gun. This is the best weapon Geno gets
    to equip, and it's quite potent. It will come in great handy for the remainder
    of his challenge.
    Once you are finished with four of the rooms, you'll fall into a room with a
    save point. Be sure to save and make any necessary preparations for the next
    boss. That would include equipping the Safety Ring.
    Boss 20 - Magikoopa
    Everybody strategy - Okay, I'm going to approach the strategy here a little
    differently than usual because this fight comes down to abusing a very serious
    bug in Magikoopa's AI. Notably, when his summoned Mezzo Bomb uses Big Bang and
    removes itself from the battle, Magikoopa returns as a valid target but does
    not start taking turns again. That's right, he'll just sit there until you slay
    him. There is no reason to use a single item in this fight. The save point is
    in the room right before this one, and you can AI abuse him until he summons
    Mezzo Bomb as his first summon. However, you might as well try fighting his
    other two summons if he calls them.
    Jinx Clone - Jump, Shocker, and Geno Beam are easy wins here. Toadstool should
    use Psych Bomb if she has the FP. Bowser will get some results with Crusher,
    but he's probably best off just sharpening his new Drill Claw on this guy.
    Bahamutt - The Safety Ring is bad news for this guy. Jump, Shocker, and Psych
    Bomb are again the answers. Bowser again gets to have fun with the Drill Claw.
    Geno gets to have more fun with Geno Whirl.
    Of course, once Mezzo Bomb is summoned, just defend until it detonates. Use
    physicals to take out Magikoopa once he's lost his ability to defend himself;
    his physical defense is quite low after all.
    After you stomp him, Magikoopa regains his senses and remembers that he's one
    of Bowser's loyal minions. To make up for his foolish (though quite non-
    threatening) attempt on your lives, he'll heal you fully whenever you speak to
    him, and he summons a chest with an infinite number of coins in it. The chest,
    sadly, only gives on coin at a time so it's a very tedious way to max out your
    money. Still, it's somewhat neat.
    Enter the left room after Magikoopa to meet up with Croco again. He's updated
    his wares, and now he's selling the legendary armor! Be sure to buy whatever
    your character specific armor is; even Bowser has some use for this. You can
    also buy some random common items that you probably don't need, and you can max
    out your money once you're finished. Head back and save, and then progress via
    the right door to approach the end of this dungeon.
    Just avoid all enemies here unless fighting several Big Berthas sounds like fun
    to you. The next room after this has the next boss. Be sure to keep that Safety
    Ring equipped. I prefer the Heal Shell over the Work Pants for Bowser here.
    Boss 21 - Boomer
    Mario strategy - Open with a Bracer and then set into Boomer with Jump as long
    as he remains red. He'll take massive damage for a few rounds, and then he'll
    turn blue. That signals the time to start hammering on him with your physical.
    This too will do massive damage. Boomer is an easy boss with anyone; the effect
    just multiplies when you're using a powerhouse like Mario. He won't last long
    at all.
    Mallow strategy - Open with a Bracer and then set into Boomer with Shocker as
    long as he is red. Once he turns blue, start using the Sonic Cymbals to strike
    him. It's a very simple to abuse gimmick, and the instant death attack he uses
    to "punish" you for abusing it is blocked by the Safety Ring. You even get
    fully healed after this fight so you don't have to worry about conserving your
    FP. Consider this a bit of a freebie before the next boss.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost and then set into Boomer with Geno Beam.
    As long as Boomer is red, Geno Beam will do massive damage while the Star Gun
    will do lackluster damage. Once he turns blue, switch to using the Star Gun
    since that flips his defense stats. Really, he's a very easy boss. His gimmick
    is not a very hard one to abuse, and his only protection from you exploiting
    his weaker stat is a 1/3 Shaker counter. Shaker is an instant death technique.
    The Safety Ring makes you immune to instant death. You do the math.
    Bowser strategy - I suggest opening this fight with a Bracer. You can get away
    without it, but you will conserve Max Mushrooms this way. Use Crusher when
    Boomer is red, and use the Drill Claw when he is blue. He's really not very
    strong, and his Shaker counters can be laughed off with the Safety Ring. I'm
    not sure why they put someone with such a weak gimmick so late in the game; he
    would have been a great boss if only you fought him earlier. It's very possible
    to run out of FP here, but don't worry about it. You get a full heal after the
    fight, and you can just use your physical instead of Crusher at that point.
    Boomer is probably nearly dead by the time you run out of FP.
    Toadstool strategy - Open the fight with a Bracer (optional) and then set into
    Boomer with the Frying Pan. You're supposed to use specials against him when
    he's red, but Psych Bomb really won't do much more than your physical. Also, it
    costs 16 FP which isn't very sustainable. Boomer really isn't very strong, and
    you should be able to take him out without serious difficulty. You even get
    fully healed after this fight so don't worry that you're overdoing it with
    After defeating Boomer, you get to ride the chandelier to the top of the keep.
    Time for another boss!
    Boss 22 - Exor
    Note for the dumb: Read the names of the eyes. "Right Eye" refers to Exor's
    right, not yours.
    Mario strategy - Open the fight with a Yoshi-Ade and then take out the Right
    Eye in a single Jump. Yep, he's weak to jump. Keeping him dead for the whole
    fight prevents Dark Star from ever happening. That's pretty cool. Once he's
    gone, attack Exor with Jump, Super Jump, or your physical. Super Jump is
    obviously best if you have insane timing skills, but it's fairly hard so for
    general purposes, you should probably stick to Jump. Your physical will
    actually do a bit better on average, but it's unreliable. Whenever Right Eye
    comes back, kill it in one Jump again. This should be quite simple.
    Mallow strategy - Open the fight with a Yoshi-Ade, and then set into the Left
    Eye with physical attacks. Sadly, it is immune to Shocker. Be sure to keep
    well healed early in the fight as Right Eye's Dark Star hurts you very badly.
    He'll run out of FP eventually, but be sure never to destroy the Right Eye.
    That would give him a full FP restoration. This is why Star Rain is a really
    bad idea in this fight. Once Exor is exposed, use physicals to slowly take him
    out. He's immune to Shocker so don't even think about it. This will be a really
    long battle, but it's a foregone conclusion. Their FP to attack is way more
    limited than your FP to heal, and the Safety Ring blocks everything dangerous
    the Left Eye can do along with the majority of the strong spells from Right Eye
    and Neosquid.
    Geno strategy - Geno Beam the Right Eye a few times to remove Exor's
    protection. Unfortunately for Exor, this includes his instant death protection.
    Use Geno Whirl on Exor for a quick win. If you think this is "cheap", I think
    you're being absurd and overly difficult. Either way, if you want to win
    another way, just open with Geno Boost and repeatedly kill the Left Eye with
    physicals so you can attack Exor with physicals. Leaving the Right Eye and
    Neosquid alive lets them run out of FP which is very good for you. You don't
    want to see Dark Star very often for sure.
    Bowser strategy - Open with a Yoshi-Ade, and then focus on the Left Eye with
    your physicals. Be warned that you absolutely should not go after the Right
    Eye. This fight has a way of dragging on, and parts that you leave alive are
    fairly likely to run out of FP. You definitely want to run the Right Eye out of
    FP as that blocks Dark Star for the rest of the fight. Be sure to keep healed,
    and give Exor a hearty serving of the Drill Claw whenever you get the chance.
    The fight will probably be long, but it really isn't very hard.
    Toadstool strategy - Toadstool's fight here is just an easier version of
    Mallow's. Mallow never used his offensive magic so Toadstool doesn't need to
    worry about that. By this point, Toadstool's stats are all around higher than
    his, and she has the excellent Frying Pan. In short, open with a Yoshi-Ade,
    target the Left Eye with physicals, attack Exor when he's exposed with
    physicals, and leave the Right Eye and Neosquid alone so they can run
    themselves out of FP.
    With Exor defeated, the path is open to Smithy himself. After Bowser shows you
    how sly he is (hint: not very), you get the chance to enter the final dungeon.
    I personally suggest that you not do that right now. There are seven bosses in
    there. Yes, you heard me right. There are seven. You will want to be fully
    stocked. Take the warp trampoline behind you to return to the overworld map.
    You can come back here whenever you want.
    Obviously, physical characters will want lots of Max Mushrooms, but the big
    thing to note is Yoshi-Ade. You will want a very healthy supply of the stuff
    unless you're doing Geno's challenge. Smithy himself is able to use Shredder
    which dispels your stat buffs so you really can't have too many. You'll also
    want to think about mixing in some Kerokerocola. Really, make your inventory
    the "perfect" inventory as the final dungeon is not a friendly place. Also, if
    you are doing Bowser or Geno's challenge, you will want some Sleepy Bombs. The
    Director is a fairly rigorous boss fight for them, and they will help
    immensely. You will probably have to back out of the final dungeon to restock
    again before Smithy so you might as well stock 4-5 of them. You can buy them
    at Tadpole Pond for one frog coin which is quite the bargain. If you're feeling
    really cramped on your inventory, you could get away with fewer. They're really
    just needed for one boss so don't worry about them too much, but your life will
    be easier if you have them.
    If you haven't beaten Jinx yet, do it. Everyone should be able to beat final
    Jinx now. Well, Mallow will still have a very hard time with him, but he should
    be beatable with the super equipment you got in Bowser's Keep. If you want to
    delay fighting Jinx until postgame, I won't blame you. However, there's no
    reason to avoid him with Mario, Geno, Bowser, or Toadstool, and the Jinx Belt
    will still be of some use to you. Take him down!
    Once you are really sure you are ready, proceed onward.
    Final Dungeon - Factory
    Okay, this is it. It's time to finish this game. This place isn't very
    friendly, but what did you expect? Of course, before you start, you should
    know your enemy.
    Ameboid - They have horrible physical defense, but hitting them with physical
    attacks causes them to split. Use magic to wear them down so that one more
    physical hit can finish them. If that's not possible, just split them and keep
    in mind that they have no status protection. Do note that they are immune to
    Glum Reaper - These are very dangerous so make them a priority. Luckily, they
    stand up very poorly to basic physical attacks.
    Li~L Boo - They're very weak enemies. A single physical from anyone is an easy
    Hippopo - They have high HP and physical defense, but they have poor magical
    defense. Their thunder weakness makes them easy targets for Mallow especially.
    Doppel - He has good HP, but his defenses are low on both sides. He also has a
    jump immunity. What that really means is that you should smash him with
    Puppox - Use a Yoshi Cookie to get a Rock Candy! Otherwise, non-thunder magic
    is the best way to go here. He's not all that dangerous so physicals can work
    if the FP is a problem.
    Jabit - Magic, especially thunder magic, is the easiest way to win here. They
    aren't very dangerous unless they use Last Shot!, and that is a suicide attack.
    You can safely make them a low priority.
    Mad Mallet - Use physicals to kill them. They are an extremely low level
    Pounder - Use physicals to kill them, but nailing them in group magic isn't an
    awful idea. They are not very dangerous.
    Poundette - It dies easily, but it stands out over the other weak hammer
    enemies due to its ability to inflict fear. Still, if you have fear protection,
    it's a joke.
    Springer - Group magic is the easiest solution, but physicals will take him
    out pretty easily as well.
    Ninja - He's immune to ice, fire, and thunder, his defenses are similar to each
    other, and he uses an attack right before he dies. There's not much else to say
    about this enemy; just smash him with whatever does more than zero damage.
    Machine Made (Axem Black) - He's very similar to the real Axem Black. Magic,
    especially thunder magic, kills him easily, but if he survives, you'll eat a
    powerful Spritz Bomb counter.
    Machine Made (Axem Green) - With a mere 80 HP, he should die easily to a
    physical attack. His magic can be potent if you leave him alone.
    Machine Made (Axem Pink) - She can heal her allies, and she uses Petal Blast if
    one of them dies. Take her out first with a physical hit or two.
    Machine Made (Axem Red) - Take him out fast to prevent him from abusing his
    stat buffing abilities. He's more durable than the other mechanical rangers so
    it will likely take a few physical hits.
    Machine Made (Axem Yellow) - He's just like the original Axem Yellow. Magic is
    the way to go against him no matter what character you are using.
    Machine Made (Mack) - Again, he's pretty much the same thing as the original
    Mack. If you have the Safety Ring equipped, he really can't do anything but sit
    there and take a beating. Magic is especially effective against him and against
    the minions he summons.
    Machine Made (Bowyer) - Hey, he's just like Bowyer. I smell a pattern here.
    Actually, he randomly locks buttons so you have to work around that. He doesn't
    have any elemental protection (though he is immune to all status), and he takes
    similar damage from physicals and magic. Just smash through him.
    Machine Made (Yaridovich) - Use magic to take him out, and use group targeting
    magic to destroy the "Drill Bits" he splits into.
    Wow, there are a whole lot of enemies here! Despite how long it took me to
    write about that mess, I suggest that you not fight here. You should be at
    level 19 or very close to it when you enter here. Just from fighting the
    mandatory fights, you should be able to reach level 20 for Smithy. If you're
    concerned that you will miss the mark, pick on the Ameboid as they are the weak
    enemies here. If you are looking to level up to level 30 through fighting here,
    the last three enemies are the ones to pick on. Mack is the easiest one to
    defeat, but he's only worth 40 experience. I personally like to fight against
    Bowyer for his fairly easy 50 experience. Yaridovich gives 60 experience and
    has a rare Rock Candy drop so he's potentially the best, but he's also the most
    dangerous. It's really up to you. I heavily suggest that you avoid the Axem
    Rangers here; they just aren't worth the hassle.
    Okay, the area is pretty linear for a while, and there are no enemies. Just
    enjoy the music and push ahead. Your first dangerous area will be a large
    network of platforms connected by nuts that is patrolled by Glum Reapers and
    Ameboids. There are no treasures here so just push onward toward the northeast
    corner. The screen after that is just a hit the obvious switch and push onward
    screen so do that. You'll come to a save point in a small room next. Jumping
    around here reveals a hidden chest with a healing Mushroom. This is the game's
    last hidden chest so get it if you need it, and be sure to save. The next
    screen has an obvious chest with the Ultra Hammer, a weapon you will likely
    never use. Moving on, you'll reach the first boss here. Be sure you have your
    Safety Ring equipped!
    Boss 23 - Count Down
    Note: Count Down cycles through his techniques in the following order:
    Crystal(2/3) or Ice Rock(1/3), Recover, Aurora Flash, Mega Recover, Water
    Blast, (restore FP), Petal Blast, Corona
    The Ding-A-Lings cause him to skip a move in his cycle when they use "Time is
    marching on!". Note that the Safety Ring protects against much of what Count
    Down can do.
    Mario strategy - Open up with a Yoshi-Ade, and then set into one of the
    Ding-A-Ling with Jump. It should fall quickly, and then you can take out the
    other one the same way. With the threat of Dark Star totally gone, Count Down
    is wide open. A barrage of Jump will dispatch him quickly and easily, and
    you'll probably end up needing just one Max Mushroom.
    Mallow strategy - Everything in this fight is weak to thunder so Mallow has
    some reason to feel confident. Open the fight with a Bracer and then start
    using Thunderbolt. Yes, you read that correctly; I did not mean Shocker. This
    is the best tactic since it's very FP conservative and damages both Ding-A-Ling
    at once. Once the two of them are gone, just beat on Count Down with your
    physical. Despite his weakness to thunder, physicals are best since his two
    defensive stats are equal, and the way magic works makes that very bad for
    magic at endgame.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost and then start in with Geno Blast. Geno
    Flash works too, but Geno Blast should kill the Ding-A-Lings in the same number
    of turns. If you are doing less than 172 damage per turn with Geno Blast, use
    one Geno Flash to make up for the lesser damage. Once both Ding-A-Lings are
    down, focus on Count Down with physicals. This shouldn't be too hard.
    Bowser strategy - Okay, this guy is well capable of laying down a beating. Open
    the fight with a Yoshi-Ade, and then focus on one of the Ding-A-Lings with your
    physical attack. Dark Star is easily the most dangerous thing in this fight,
    and they both can do it. Odds are that once you finish one of them, the other
    will be low on FP. That means that you should focus on Count Down at that
    point. Once he falls, the other Ding-A-Ling will be in a very weak position.
    Just smash it to end the fight. It might sound simple, but it will likely use
    up quite a few Max Mushrooms. You'll need luck insofar as you don't get hit by
    too many Dark Stars if you want to make it to the end of the Factory without
    having to make a return trip.
    Toadstool strategy - Okay, you have two basic strategies here. You can use the
    Frying Pan strategy or the Psych Bomb strategy. I suggest using the Frying Pan,
    but the other plan is faster if FP consuming. Start the battle with a Bracer
    either way, and then begin on your attack. If you're using Psych Bomb, hammer
    away until both Ding-A-Ling are dead. It will likely require you to use a Royal
    Syrup or two, but it will damage the enemy pretty quickly. The more
    conservative Frying Pan strategy is basically the same thing as fighting with
    Bowser. First take out one of the Ding-A-Lings with the Frying Pan. I do
    suggest deviating and taking out both Ding-A-Lings before going after Count
    Down with Toadstool since they can randomly give you "Attack Up!" flowers which
    will let you beat Count Down faster. Therapy ensures you'll never die so don't
    worry about that. Really, this isn't a hard fight. Just keep attacking and
    healing, and you'll win in short order.
    Okay, one down and six to go! Save if you want (you can never return to this
    screen) and then push onward. In the next area, you'll find an elevated chest
    containing a healing Mushroom and then a pit that you can cross on some white
    platforms. If you fall into the pit, you can find a few chests. The near one
    contains a Flower, and the far one contains another healing Mushroom. I doubt
    that you need healing since Count Down fully restored you, and I really hope
    that you already have 99 FP. Still, those things are there if you need them,
    and they might be useful if you decide to come back here to level grind for
    Culex or something.
    The next screen contains some enemies coming endlessly off conveyor belts while
    arrows rain down. If you get hit, you spin for a while. They almost always hit
    you in the places where the enemies are so it's pretty annoying. Just do your
    best to get through with minimal fighting. Afterward, the path becomes linear
    for a while, though you can pick up a Royal Syrup and Max Mushroom from chests
    along the way. You will eventually reach a save point, and then the next room
    contains an infinite number of Machine Made (Yaridovich). You have to defeat
    one of them to get rid of the block. There's also a healing Mushroom and a
    Flower in chests in the room you can reach by exiting northwest. I would get
    them after beating that false Yaridovich in order to be at full health for the
    next boss. Speaking of the next boss, save up and jump into the hole in the
    floor after defeating the would be Yaridovich to fight the next boss. Keep that
    Safety Ring on still.
    Boss 24 - Cloaker and Domino
    Mario strategy - Open with a Bracer or a Yoshi-Ade and then go all out on
    Cloaker with Jump. He won't last long at all. Once Domino teams up with Mad
    Adder, you get to switch tactics to pounding Mad Adder with the Lazy Shell.
    This should be a quick and easy boss fight as are so many others with Mario;
    enjoy it.
    Mallow strategy - Open the fight with a Bracer and then set into Cloaker with
    Shocker. You are very safe during the first stage of the fight and will likely
    not have to heal at all. Once Cloaker falls, you get to fight Mad Adder. Focus
    your physical attacks on Mad Adder and heal as needed. This is really quite the
    easy fight; Mallow's high magic defense and the Safety Ring make you quite
    safe at all times.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost as always and then start hammering away
    with Geno Flash. If you do under 240 damage to Cloaker with Geno Flash, use
    Geno Blast instead to save FP as in that case both will kill in the same
    number of turns. Once Cloaker is gone, you'll get to duel with the Domino/Mad
    Adder combo. Focus on Mad Adder with physicals, and he'll fall quickly and
    Bowser strategy - Open with a Yoshi-Ade, and then focus on Cloaker with
    Crusher. Earth Link is overall more dangerous than Mad Adder even with Bowser's
    low magic defense so you should defeat Cloaker first.  Once Cloaker is gone,
    you get to fight the Domino/Mad Adder combo. Just focus on Mad Adder with
    physicals as it's the one you must destroy to end the fight. Don't worry too
    much about Max Mushrooms as you only have one very easy boss in the way of a
    great source of them.
    Toadstool strategy - Open with a Bracer and then just smack around Cloaker with
    the Frying Pan. It will take a while, but you are pretty much totally safe from
    the duo with your Bracer + Safety Ring + Therapy combination. Once Cloaker
    falls, you'll get to fight Domino/Mad Adder. Just focus on Mad Adder with some
    more physicals, and this should end quickly and easily. You really don't even
    have to have the Bracer, but this fight does get legitimately hard if you skip
    it. By legitimately hard, I mean it forces you to FP stall in the second stage
    of the fight.
    By the way, did you notice how buggy that fight was? If you were too fast
    which, if you were doing Geno or Toadstool's challenge you were, you didn't get
    your first turn. There were a lot of minor graphical glitches in the first
    section of the fight with shadows appearing on top of characters and such.
    Really, I think this must have been some fight they tacked on at the last
    minute. The whole concept of the fight is pretty much a copy and paste from
    Knife Guy and Grate Guy too; I often wonder why that last boss really had to be
    in the game at all. Anyway, once you've won, head back and save. A small amount
    of progress forward reveals the next boss. Be sure to have the Ghost Medal
    equipped as it's not worth using a Bracer against this guy. If you are doing
    Geno's challenge, equip the Jinx Belt instead.
    Boss 25 - Clerk
    Mario strategy - Use Jump to very quickly destroy the Clerk. A few Lazy Shell
    physicals will quickly remove any Mad Mallet problems after that.
    Mallow strategy - Use Shocker to take out the Clerk quickly and then dispose of
    the Mad Mallets however you see fit.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost and then use your physical attack to very
    quickly end this fight. Take out the Clerk first as he uses Vigor Up! and Valor
    Up if he's the last one left.
    Bowser strategy - Smack the Clerk with a few physicals to quickly take out his
    measly 500 HP, and then kill one of the Mad Mallets the same way. The other
    flees. If you want to increase your damage output, use Terrorize. It's not
    really needed, but it's an option.
    Toadstool strategy - Basic physicals against the Clerk first and the Mad
    Mallets second works well here. Sleepy Time is also effective if you use the
    all targeting attack.
    I was tempted to not even count that as a boss fight, but you do get fully
    healed after fighting a unique enemy so I guess it's a boss. Run forward a bit
    to see the last scene centered around Mallow in the game, and then try to leave
    the room. Toad will rush in and open up shop in this prime location. I question
    his business sense, but I can hardly complain about the results. He sells Max
    Mushrooms! You'll never need to farm them on Star Hill again. Hmm, if he had
    Max Mushrooms the whole time, why couldn't he sell them at some earlier point
    in the story? Gee Toad, whose side are you on? He'll also give you a valuable
    Rock Candy after you finish shopping so leave a slot open. You might want to
    head back and save before the next boss. Then again, you might not. The next
    boss is only somewhat harder than the Clerk. Keep your Ghost Medal equipped
    unless you are Geno who gets to play with the Jinx Belt.
    Boss 26 - Manager
    Everybody strategy - Do the exact same thing you did to take out the Clerk.
    This is nearly the same boss. It's just more powerful with one more minion. If
    you destroy all of its minions, it summons some more instead of powering up
    like the Clerk did. Of course, since Manager only has 800 HP, you can easily
    avoid this by just killing the Manager first. This is somewhat more satisfying
    if you are playing as Bowser.
    Head back and save for sure now. The boss in the next room is the actually hard
    variety of this sequence. This is the battle that Bowser and Geno players got
    Sleepy Bombs for. Equip the Safety Ring if you don't have any Sleepy Bombs, but
    use the Troopa Pin if you do have them (Jinx Belt for Geno). Do note that
    Toadstool can use a group Sleepy Time to replace Sleepy Bombs.
    Boss 27 - Director
    Mario strategy - If you don't have any Sleepy Bombs, open with a Bracer and
    then focus on the Director with Lazy Shell physicals. Once he has fallen, take
    out the three Poundettes. Your offense should overwhelm them fairly quickly.
    If you have the Sleepy Bombs, use them and then proceed as per normal. Keeping
    the Poundettes asleep prevents them from inflicting fear on you which would
    mean almost certain death.
    Mallow strategy - Well, if you have Sleepy Bombs, take advantage of them, but
    if you do not, it's not a big deal. Use Shocker to take out the Director and
    then rain down on the Poundettes with Thunderbolt. HP Rain is more than enough
    to keep you alive. Use a Bracer if you're really having trouble.
    Geno strategy - Open with a Sleepy Bomb and then follow up with Geno Boost.
    Use your physical attack to overwhelm the Director's 1000 HP, and then use
    your choice of Geno Blast or Geno Flash to take out the Poundettes. Sleep only
    lasts three turns so you may need a second Sleepy Bomb; it will be what keeps
    you safe from fear. If you are having a lot of trouble with the Poundettes
    waking up and inflicting fear, just use the Safety Ring for this fight.
    Bowser strategy - Bowser is too slow to go first without the Troopa Pin, and
    fear is death. Unless you want to keep restarting until you get lucky, open the
    fight with a Sleepy Bomb and then use physicals to take out first the Director
    and then the Poundettes. Everything here can be inflicted with fear, but fear
    will overwrite sleep so don't be stupid about it. Don't be shy at all about
    using all of your Sleepy Bombs here; they aren't really useful anywhere else.
    Toadstool strategy - Her fight is pretty much just like Geno's except she
    replaces Sleepy Bombs with her Sleepy Time special, Geno Blast/Flash with Psych
    Bomb, and Max Mushrooms with Therapy which also cures any fear she might get
    inflicted with. Yeah, don't expect much resistance.
    Defeating the Director will reveal the final save. There are only two bosses
    left! Equip the Safety Ring and press onward.
    Boss 28 - Factory Chief and Gunyolk
    Mario strategy - Open with a Bracer or Yoshi-Ade and then focus on the Factory
    Chief with Lazy Shell physicals. He only has 1000 HP so he won't last long.
    Gunyolk can only hurt you with Breaker Beam which he uses at fairly lengthy
    intervals. Jump will dispatch Gunyolk easily once he's alone.
    Mallow strategy - This is pretty simple really. Open with a Bracer and then
    focus on Gunyolk with Shocker. He's weak to it so he won't hold up for long.
    After he falls, take out the Factory Chief with physicals, though Shocker also
    works. The Safety Ring protects you from the sleep that the Factory Chief can
    inflict and every move Gunyolk has except Breaker Beam. Alternatively, use
    Snowy over Shocker at the start. Gunyolk is also weak to that, and you'll be
    wearing down the Factory Chief while you do it.
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost and let the Factory Chief have it with
    repeated Star Gun blasts. Once he's down, Gunyolk will go down easily to pretty
    much anything.
    Bowser strategy - Terrorize is effective here so you could use that, though you
    might prefer the security of a Bracer or Yoshi-Ade. Either way, use the Drill
    Claw to take out first the Factory Chief and then Gunyolk. Be sure to be ready
    to take the big hits from Breaker Beam; it hurts really badly.
    Toadstool strategy - Open with a Bracer and then use Sleepy Time to put them to
    sleep. Use your physicals to take out the Factory Chief first, and then focus
    on Gunyolk. You could use physicals, but if you want him to never have a turn,
    use Psych Bomb while you keep him asleep with Sleepy Time.
    Okay, head back and save, and then be sure you have a nice, full inventory.
    Head back for more Yoshi-Ade if you need it; Smithy's Shredder makes having
    multiple very mandatory (unless you are Geno of course). You should be at level
    20 by now, though a higher level will just make it easier. Be sure to save at
    the final save point before heading in; Smithy is not friendly.
    As per equipment, it's between the Safety Ring and the Jinx Belt. Mallow and
    Toadstool should definitely use the Safety Ring. The problem is that only one
    of Smithy's four heads in his second form uses status ailments; nothing else
    is blocked by the Safety Ring. That being said, those status ailment can and
    will ruin you. The three heavy physical characters can try their luck and
    overwhelm Smithy before he can inflict them with a fatal ailment, and the Jinx
    Belt will really help them do that. With natural healing, the mages shouldn't
    risk it.
    I was really wanting to accept Smithy's reasonable proposal, but for some
    reason, the game automatically forces you to reject. Shucks, I guess this game
    is going to end with violence.
    Final Boss - Smithy
    Mario strategy - 2000 HP is nothing; you are Mario! Just open with a Yoshi-Ade
    and smash though Smithy with Lazy Shell physicals. You can only heal so many
    times; a fast kill is the most important thing here.
    His second form has 8000 HP; that's going to take a while to kill. Your basic
    goal is to keep using Lazy Shell physicals except against his Tank head which
    you will attack with Jump. If his Invincible head uses Shredder, re-apply a
    Yoshi-Ade. If his Treasure Chest head inflicts status, you will probably be
    fine. You can safely ignore poison and mute. Fear can be cured with an Able
    Juice, Muku Cookie, or time. Scarecrow is really bad. Use Jump while inflicted,
    and pray you survive until it wears off. You very well may not, and there's
    simply nothing you can do about it except try again and hope it doesn't happen
    next time.
    Mallow strategy - Okay, the first form is actually pretty easy. Open the fight
    with a Yoshi-Ade and then focus on Smithy with physicals. Heal with HP Rain
    when your health gets low. That's really it. If you leave the Shypers alone,
    they will exhaust their FP quickly and cease to be a threat. Smelter is simply
    not worth the effort to kill. Smithy has 2000 HP so this will take a while.
    Unfortunately, then comes the second form. This form is decidedly less
    friendly. Don't worry; your Yoshi-Ade from the first form carries over.
    Basically, what you do depends on his head:
    Tank head: Blast him with Shocker! This is your chance to really hurt him.
    Wizard head: Tremble in fear. Once you are sufficiently terrified, consider
    nailing him with highly damaging physical attacks. Early in the fight, this is
    a good plan, but later in the fight, the risk might not be worth it. If you get
    hit with two strong spells in a row and are not at absolutely perfect health,
    you're in for a quick trip to the Game Over screen. Yeah, have fun with that.
    Treasure Chest head: This head can't do anything to you. Have at it with your
    physical for minor but useful damage.
    Invincible head: Use a Yoshi-Ade after Shredder. You can really do nothing to
    this head so either use completely ineffective physicals, use Snowy to do a bit
    more damage but eat through FP, or use item attacks. The last is the best
    option, but you probably only have a few attacking items.
    Don't go after the body; it just keeps coming back. Smithy has infinite FP and
    8000 HP; this will take forever with defeat always being one bad turn away. You
    have come this far; you can do it!
    Geno strategy - He fights the first form just like everyone else. Open with
    Geno Boost and then hammer away on Smithy with physicals. Keep healed as you
    need and try to defeat this form quickly. Your resources are too limited to
    play conservatively, and you are very close to a save point if things go awry.
    Against his second form, use physicals against the Wizard head and Treasure
    Chest head for sure, and use Geno Blast or Geno Flash against his Tank head.
    Against his Invincible head, you will do more with magic, but it is likely not
    worth the FP to use it. Physicals are a better bet; you don't have to worry
    about running out of stat boosting items thanks to Geno Boost. Just be sure to
    keep your stats boosted at all times, and heal as you need. If you get turned
    into a Scarecrow, well, sorry. Try again unless you manage to survive the
    ailment. In that case, be thankful and carry on.
    Bowser strategy - His fight is really similar to Mario's except he's a lot less
    strong. Crusher is really overall sucky, but the Tank head's stats are so
    extreme that it will still probably be worth it. Really, just use Mario's
    strategy here except know that you'll have a lower chance of victory, though it
    should still be well within your grasp.
    Toadstool strategy - Are you ready for a long fight? I hope so because that's
    what you are going to get. Open with a Yoshi-Ade and use your physical to maul
    your way through Smithy's first form. Therapy will keep you alive, and the
    Shypers will quickly exhaust their own FP. Just keep at it, and he'll go down.
    Against his second form, you mostly fight the same way, constantly focusing on
    his head, except you are in a bit of a difficult situation. Your only option
    to seriously damage his Tank head is Psych Bomb, but that's not exactly FP
    conservative. His Invincible head will work its way through all of your
    Yoshi-Ade. Item attacks against his Invincible head (especially Ice Bombs) will
    be very effective at clinching you the win. You could consider trying with the
    Jinx Belt if the Safety Ring isn't working out, but you should be able to take
    him out if you just keep at it. Therapy is great after all.
    Enjoy the ending; you earned it!
    VI. Jinx
    Jinx is the easier of the two optional bosses in Monstro Town, but that's a
    somewhat misleading statement. The Jinx side quest is actually a series of four
    progressively difficult optional bosses. Unlike with Culex, I suggest that you
    fight the various fights in the Jinx side quest as soon as your character is
    strong enough to win. This will maximize the fun of each fight, and it will
    allow you to get the Jinx Belt as early as possible. Everyone can do the first
    two fights as soon as they reach Monstro Town, but the others require different
    degrees of delay depending on character.
    As per equipment, you will want to equip yourself with the best weapons and
    armor available at the time. I cover every good opportunity to upgrade
    equipment in the main walkthrough so I will assume that you have it. In terms
    of accessories, I suggest the Amulet  for the Jagger and first Jinx fight and
    then the Safety Ring for the second two Jinx fights. The Amulet and Safety Ring
    should both be in your inventory when you first arrive in Monstro Town. If you,
    for whatever reason, delay doing the Jagger and first Jinx fight until later in
    the game, the Rare Scarf you find at Bean Valley is a good replacement for the
    Jinx is very powerful, and he's all about physical attacking. You will need to
    have some skill at timed defense if you hope to do well against him. You will
    need to have a healthy supply of Max Mushrooms for the later fights if you are
    not using a character with a natural healing spell, and non-Geno characters
    will want to have a Yoshi-Ade for the later fights as well.
    Well, without further ado, let's get to the strategies.
    Optional Boss 8 - Jagger
    Mario strategy - For this fight, you will actually want to have the Jump Shoes
    equipped to overcome Jagger's normal immunity to Jump. This is very easily
    winnable when you first arrive in Monstro Town at level 14. If you have fully
    maxed out Jump, it will only take three Jumps to take Jagger out. This is
    really more of a warm up than anything; the later fights will be much harder!
    Mallow strategy - It will take 6 Shockers to bring Jagger down, but Jagger has
    the potential to do some serious damage to you. He ordinarily has a 1/3 chance
    of using Terrapunch which is twice as strong as his physical, and he has a 1/3
    chance of countering any attack with Terrapunch. To be safe, you should heal
    with HP Rain until you have a turn after you have normally blocked his regular
    physical or have gotten a perfect guard against either of his attacks. Then
    attack with Shocker. You may need to down a Maple Syrup, but this fight is not
    too hard. Unfortunately for poor Mallow, this is only the beginning, and this
    is the only fight in which Shocker does more than zero damage.
    Geno strategy - Jagger won't give you too much trouble. Open with Geno Boost
    and then hit Jagger with Geno Beam until he falls. It should only take four
    hits so you will likely only have to heal once if at all. Don't worry; the
    other fights are much harder!
    Bowser strategy - Fortunately, Jagger is susceptible to Terrorize so be sure to
    keep Jagger inflicted with fear for the whole battle. After that it taken care
    of, just hammer away with physicals from your new Spiked Link. He should go
    down fairly easily, and odds are you will not consume many (or any) of your Max
    Toadstool strategy - There are two ways to go about this fight. The simple plan
    is to try to chip your way through Jagger's defenses with physicals. This takes
    surprisingly few hits, but it takes long enough so that the odds of him doing a
    Terrapunch counter followed up by another Terrapunch are pretty high. In the
    condition you should be entering this fight, level 14 as soon as you enter
    Monstro Town with the Amulet equipped, this is fatal if you have taken any
    damage at all beforehand. You can easily make this a winning strategy by using
    a Bracer or a Yoshi-Ade, and that's the least resource consuming method to win
    the fight. Therapy will be more than enough to cover you as long as you are
    under the "Defense Up" status. Alternatively, you could abuse the fact that
    Jagger is one of those rare bosses who can be put to sleep. Hit him with Sleepy
    Time and then barrage him with item attacks. You can take him out that way
    without him having a chance to retaliate. Do note that he's immune to fire so
    you must use either Ice Bombs or Rock Candy. I'd really suggest that you use
    the first strategy in general, but if you are willing to go through the effort
    to harvest those item (or to get freebies), the second method is quite viable.
    Optional Boss 9 - Jinx 1
    Mario strategy - Be sure you have the Amulet equipped, and then just hammer
    away with Jump. Jinx in this fight is basically just Jagger except superior in
    every way. He uses Jinxed 2/3 of the time ordinarily and 1/3 of the time as a
    counter, and that's pretty much the same thing as Terrapunch except running off
    a higher stat. He also uses Triple Kick 1/3 of the time as an ordinary attack,
    and that's twice as powerful as Jinxed. It's possible to win with just Jump and
    some Max Mushroom use, but using a Bracer or a Yoshi-Ade before you begin
    attacking really simplifies the fight.
    Mallow strategy - Open the fight with either a Yoshi-Ade or a Bracer ->
    Energizer combo. Afterwards, just go all out with that Ribbit Stick (or better
    weapon if you fight him later). Heal with HP Rain if your health ever gets even
    remotely low, and focus on getting those crucial timed defense commands. You
    should be able to take him down if you just continue with this plan; just don't
    take any chances when it comes to using HP Rain.
    Geno strategy - Open the fight with Geno Boost and then go all out on Jinx with
    physical attacks. You will probably have to heal once or twice depending on how
    well you time your defense and how often Jinx counters your attack. If you are
    having problems with your physical attack missing, feel free to use Geno Beam
    instead. The damage output is slightly lower, but it never misses. Either way,
    keep at it, and Jinx will go down quickly and easily!
    Bowser strategy - Alas, Jinx is immune to fear. Well, the bright side is that
    the plan becomes really simple. The use of Energizers, Bracers, and Yoshi-Ade
    is really up to you, but the more of those you conserve, the more Max Mushrooms
    you will consume. If you open the fight with a Yoshi-Ade, it's very simple to
    take down Jinx before needing to heal even once so if you wanted to get through
    this fight without using anything, you'd just need that one freebie. The Bracer
    and Energizer are lesser forms of that with both serving the purpose of
    improving the ratio of your damage to Jinx's damage. If you're only going to
    use one of them, stick with the Bracer. Well, regardless of what you choose to
    do with items, Jinx falls to a good beating with that trusty Spiked Link.
    Toadstool strategy - Her fight goes exactly like Mallow's does. You have to use
    the Yoshi-Ade (or Bracer and Energizer), and then you just go nuts with her
    physical. It takes a pretty long time, but you are very safe if you play
    conservatively via liberal use of Therapy.
    Optional Boss 10 - Jinx 2
    Mario Strategy - Open with a Yoshi-Ade and nothing else; you can't afford to be
    wasting turns. Jump is your path to victory; you just have to hope that Jinx is
    cooperative. If Jinx uses his Triple Kick counter a lot and uses Quicksilver a
    lot in general, you're in trouble. Luckily, the Safety Ring protects you from
    Silver Bullet so every time Jinx uses that, you get a free turn. You will
    probably need to use a Max Mushroom somewhere during the fight, and you may
    need a few if you are bad with timing commands.
    Mallow strategy - Open with a Yoshi-Ade to make this a surprisingly simple
    fight. As long as you have the boosted defense, Jinx will not do an unbearable
    amount of damage to you. As long as you have the boosted attack, you can beat
    Jinx in a reasonable amount of time with your physical attack. Be sure to use
    HP Rain whenever you dip below half health, and Jinx should be defeated quite
    Geno strategy - Open with Geno Boost, and then ask yourself at what point in
    the game you are fighting him. If you are fighting him on your first trip to
    Monstro Town, use Geno Beam every turn after that. He won't go down very fast
    at all, and you will have to be quite good with the timing commands. Also
    expect to use quite a few Max Mushrooms; it's not a nice fight at all. If you
    are fighting him on a later trip, your physical attacks are going to do
    substantially more to the point that you should use them regardless of accuracy 
    Bowser strategy - You'll need to open up with a Yoshi-Ade and then lay in with 
    physicals. You'll need to use quite a few Max Mushrooms to keep your health up
    as you smash him with the Spiked Link. It will take a good beating to defeat
    Jinx, but he's well beatable. Watch out for the Triple Kick counter attack, and
    if he opens the fight by using Quicksilver on Bowser, you should consider
    resetting. Timed defense is key; don't mess it up!
    Toadstool strategy - Her fight with Jinx is nearly identical to Mallow's fight.
    Open with the Yoshi-Ade, and things become fairly simple. You just go nuts on
    Jinx with your physical attacks, and you heal with Therapy when your health
    gets low. Your stats are all around worse than Mallow's stats, but by this
    point in the game, the difference is pretty minor. Don't expect this to be too
    Optional Boss 11 - Final Jinx
    Mario strategy - His first move is always Bombs Away. If he aims at Mario, you
    had better perfect guard or pray that it misses. If you get hit, reset. On your
    first turn, use a Yoshi-Ade, and then go nuts on Jinx with the Jumps. Jinx only
    has 1000 HP, but he can hurt you really badly. He uses Valor Up when his health
    dips below 600 HP and Vigor Up! when his health dips below 300 HP. Valor Up
    just slows you down a lot, but Jump will still do massive damage. Vigor Up! is
    the big problem. At 1.5X attack, his Quicksilver counter will do massive damage
    if you don't time it correctly. After he's used Vigor Up!, you also just have
    to hope that you never see Bombs Away again as, unless you perfect guard or it
    misses, you can probably say goodbye to Mario. However, Mario is strong. Jinx
    is just one of the few enemies who can match your damage output. Just keep at
    it and you should be wearing your Jinx Belt in no time!
    Mallow strategy - Even at level 20 with your ultimate equipment, this will not
    be friendly. Having a few Rock Candies will help a ton. Your magic is useless
    for attacking here so the plan is pretty simple. Just attack with the Sonic
    Cymbals while healing as needed, and do not forget to use that Yoshi-Ade at
    the start of the battle. Once he dips below 600 HP, he'll use Valor Up which
    slows your damage output to a crawl. Once he dips below 300 HP, he'll use Vigor
    Up! which is likely your death. Two Rock Candies at that point will finish him,
    but if you don't have them, I hope you are good at perfect guarding! The whole
    fight, his Quicksilver counter will be causing you massive trouble, and Bombs
    Away is incredibly unfriendly itself. You really never need to win this fight;
    it's mostly just pride on the line here.
    Geno strategy - If you are trying this right after Nimbus Land, I hope for your
    sake that you have two Rock Candies to spare. This will be much harder if you
    do not. Open with Geno Boost as always and then set in with physical attacks.
    This takes a while to wear Jinx down, and Jinx is very strong. Notably, Bombs
    Away is a very bad attack for you to see. If you don't have the skill to
    perfect guard it, you just have to hope that he doesn't use it. You especially
    have to hope that he doesn't use it immediately after a Quicksilver counter.
    That would be just awful and has a very high potential of leading you to a Game
    Over. Once he dips below 600 HP, he uses Valor Up which really slows your
    damage output, and once he dips below 300 HP, he uses Vigor Up! which elevates
    his power to an obscene level. Bombs Away under Vigor Up! is death unless you
    take no damage from either a perfect guard or a miss or if you are at
    absolutely full health. Considering that it's very possible for Jinx to use
    this immediately after a Quicksilver counter, that's a problem. If you have two
    Rock Candies, you can help yourself out by using them right after Jinx uses
    Vigor Up!. They will do 150 damage each so two of them will kill Jinx for sure
    at that point. You can still win if you don't have them, but it's just going to
    be a lot harder. You'll need a lot of skill to do it. All of Jinx's attacks can
    be blocked so you really can beat him at any level. At level 16 with Nimbus
    Land equipment, you need a fairly high level of skill to beat him without Rock
    Candies, but it's certainly a level of skill that a person could reasonably be
    expected to have. I would definitely recommend that you try to win without them
    if you don't have them, and you might even consider farming Mushroom Boy if you
    are in a tight spot. The Jinx Belt is very valuable after all. If you
    persevere, it is all yours.
    Bowser strategy - If you have two Rock Candies to spare, this fight will be a
    lot easier. Otherwise, you're going to need either great luck, amazing timing,
    or a higher level than level 16 which means waiting to have the extremely
    useful Jinx Belt. I'm not saying that you shouldn't try Jinx if you don't have
    those items, but the fight is just much easier if you have them. Open the fight 
    with a Yoshi-Ade and then start up the physical attacks. Bowser's stats mean
    that Jinxed and Triple Kick aren't that dangerous, and you can deal with
    Quicksilver, even when he annoyingly uses it as a counter. Silver Bullet is an 
    absolute blessing as Jinx likes to use it a lot, and the Safety Ring means that
    it does absolutely nothing. However, Bombs Away is a very serious problem. If
    you chose the same level up bonuses as I did, it does 80 damage when you block
    it. That's forces you to keep your health quite high. That wouldn't even be too
    awful of a problem except for the fact that once Jinx goes under 300 HP he uses
    Vigor Up!. Valor Up was annoying, but Vigor Up! is devastating. Now Bombs Away
    does 120 blocked, and Quicksilver does 60 blocked. Therefore, if he uses
    a Quicksilver counter followed by Bombs Away, you are dead unless one of them
    misses (extremely unlikely) or you perfect guard (both attacks are very hard to
    perfect guard). It's also reasonable that you would have been injured in the
    first place. At the recommended stats to fight him, it takes 15 physical
    attacks to kill Jinx after Vigor Up!. The odds of this combination happening
    over that time is fairly high, especially when you factor in all the turns
    you'll inevitably have to spend using Max Mushrooms and the fact that you'll
    probably miss with your physical at some point. This is where the Rock Candies
    come in. If you have them, use them after Jinx uses Vigor Up!. They will do
    150 damage, and Jinx is guaranteed to have under 300 HP at that point. Two of
    them will finish him off, and you'll only have to take one powered up attack.
    If you don't have them, don't fret. With a combination of luck, good timing,
    and a nearly full inventory of Max Mushrooms, the battle is very winnable with
    one or zero Rock Candies. Do remember that every single one of Jinx's attacks
    is blockable so you can win this fight with pure skill. Do your best, and you
    will be wearing your new Jinx Belt before you know it!
    Toadstool strategy - Her fight is like Mallow's except the Frying Pan lets her
    do real damage so she can win before she gets her ultimate equipment. Therapy
    is also a better heal which is always nice. Just hammer away at him, and use a
    few Rock Candies after Vigor Up! if you have them to spare. The Jinx Belt will
    be of some use to you; do get it if you can manage it.
    VII. Culex
    Okay, it's Culex time. Culex is this game's optional super boss, and he is
    tough. Should you wish to challenge him, you'll need to take a Shiny Stone from
    Moleville (trade the Fireworks for the Carbo Cookie and that for a Shiny
    Stone) to the sealed door in Monstro Town. Of course, just rushing out and
    doing that is a fine way to lose to Culex.
    I am unable to write a comprehensive section on Culex now. I am several months
    away from having physical access to the game, and I am not confident enough to
    write much about Culex without a play test. Consider this a "to be continued"
    with a few pointers:
    1. Equip the Safety Ring. It protects you from everything the Fire Crystal can
    do as well as many of the attacks used by the Water Crystal and the Wind
    2. Endgame characters are the only ones who should try. Even level 20 may not
    be enough. If you need to grind experience, abusing the 800 coin Star in Land's
    End is a good idea. Just use it, go to the Factory, get killed, and repeat.
    You'll retain your experience but nothing else. Grinding against the "Machine
    Made" bosses in the Factory is another approach. This is so tedious; you will
    probably want to mix the plans.
    3. Culex uses Shredder a whole lot. Unless you can win fairly quickly or are
    using Geno, keeping your stats boosted for the whole fight is quite likely
    4. Unless you can kill another crystal very quickly, the Earth Crystal should
    be your first target. It has the most health but is overall more threatening
    than the other three put together.
    5. All five enemies in this fight have finite FP. Good luck stalling it out.
    VIII. Other Challenges
    So, you've finished a Single Character Challenge and want more? You want to be
    as hardcore as possible? Okay, first of all, I will caution you that combining
    many extra restrictions into a Single Character Challenge will either make it
    impossible or force you to power level a whole lot. SCC No Items is probably
    impossible with every character, for instance. Mario has a shot at pulling it
    off, but I can't see anyone else making it through without a ton of leveling.
    What you can do is restrict yourself of other commands, physical attack or
    magic (or even ban specific spells). Mario should be able to finish the
    challenge either way. I don't think Mallow can finish without magic because of
    Croco 1 at least, and without physical would make Bowyer an instant Game Over.
    Geno might be able to pull off either end. Bowser could do without magic. If
    you want to make this game as unpleasant as possible, I see no reason why
    Toadstool only no magic should be impossible. You can try to be creative in
    other ways with challenges; do whatever your imagination can find!
    Moving away from SCC, other popular challenges are the level 3 game and the no
    equipment no items challenges. The former has a fine FAQ on Gamefaqs, and the
    latter has been proven possible before. I would suggest against a level 3 game
    solely on the basis that having a 1/3 chance of winning the "Lucky" game after
    every forced battle and having to redo if you lose sucks. I haven't even
    considered the possibility that you get the coin doubling game in that either.
    Level 3 is mostly just an exhibition about broken items anyway so I suppose I'm
    biased against it, but it would be criminal to not mention it here.
    The last category of challenges would be the "button ban" challenges. Try
    banning A, X, or Y for yourself in battle. I have done "A" before, and I know
    for a fact that the other two are possible. These aren't hard challenges, but
    they are interesting and fun to play.
    IX. Contact and Credits
    If you need to contact me for whatever reason, your best bet is to try to get
    a hold of me via the Gamefaqs general board for Super Mario RPG. It's very
    likely that I won't see it, but it's very likely that I will as well, assuming
    it stays on the first page for a while. I really can't anticipate much need to
    contact me; I have no intention of helping people who are stuck on bosses and
    such. The only kind of feedback I'd really want would be feedback about the
    actual FAQ, and the board is the best place for that. I never check e-mail so
    giving an address out would just be a waste of time.
    More importantly, I have to credit those who helped in the making of this FAQ.
    Floogal was the biggest help. He helped out with all sorts of strategies from
    Croco 1 through the Director. His experience with a Bowser challenge was a nice
    compliment to mine with Mallow, and it helped me think about how to go about
    the game with characters who cannot heal. He did a lot of proofreading as well.
    Seriously, thanks a lot man.
    Secondly, I have to thank whoever made the "super site". This site was a
    phenomenal reference; it has technical information that nowhere else seems to
    have. It's ROM extracted info which means that it is in an unfriendly format
    to read, but it's incredibly useful. I was worried about putting a link in the
    final file since I was scared that it might contain a link to a ROM somewhere,
    but I searched it over and can't seem to find anything actually illegal. I'm
    sure CJayC (or is SBAllen doing this now?) will reject this and make me remove
    the link if he finds something bad, but until that happens, I'm putting the
    link here.
    Thank you user shadowpimpstyle for the info about the minimum number of Flowers
    from Booster Hill.
    Thank you Javeman for confirming that it's actually possible to get a Flower
    Box from Croco 2.
    Thanks in advance to anyone who reads this and uses it while doing a challenge.
    This took quite a bit of work to make; I'd be delighted if it were used to
    great benefit.
    Anyway, thanks for reading my FAQ, and have fun playing some Super Mario RPG!

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