Super Mario Brothers Mushroom World
Written By: Chuck Cochems
Date: 23 Jan 1994
Playfield: very weird... NO outlanes or inlanes to speak of. Gottlieb-style sinkholes that return the ball BELOW slingshots, one left ramp, jet bumpers at the upper right (3), will feed to a sinkhole leading to right slingshot kickout. Upper center is whistle target (standup). To right is a sinkhole leading to left slingshot kickout. To left is VUK to bumpers. The ramp feeds to trough leading to left flipper, where it is held for video modes. Also, there are two banks of drop targets fit within the remaining space.
Rules: Well, there are two different rule sets: easy and hard. Also, it can give out tickets instead of points in some modes, if a dispenser is installed.
Only ONE free game earnable per paid credit. Period. No matter what.
When plunging the ball, it gets sent into the jets every time. This starts line up game. Each jet bumper hit brings the pictures closer to lining up after initial scrambling. Each picture is worth something...
Anchor,Music Box=token bonus points.
and the other important one:
Starman, which you should be very happy to get... The object of game is to complete the drop target banks. Each completion is called a world. These world names are Super Mario Brothers 3 references.. Starman instantly completes a world by dropping the actual drop targets (yes, they fall by themselves!!). If you get starman, shoot for what you want. But if not, you enter the current world.
The game will drop a certain number of drop targets inversely proportional to the world number (always the same ones!), then kick out the ball. You have 30 seconds to hit the remaining drop targets to complete a world. If you fail this task, the flippers die on you! If you succeed, the timer goes away, and you can play the field at your leisure, until you hit the VUK. When not playing a world, this starts a new line up game, and repeats the process just described. When you ARE playing a world, it does either a "Tail Attack" or "Block buster" round, which lasts as long as the ball is up there. This also SHOULD stop the timer. If a jet bumper is hit in synch with certain display actions, you et bonus points progressing up to 10M. WARNING! The Timer will NOT always truly stop! You may find that the timer is counting down at warp speed when the ball kicks out!!! This will usually happen only if you flail about on the flippers for no reason.
Clearing the targets has NO effect when NOT playing a world.
Boom Boom: this is the upper right sinkhole. Hit three times to start two ball multiball. This exists purely for it's own sake! Should you do it? NO!!! If you do start it, then the timer will NOT stop when playing a world, even if they BOTH are in the jets. Also, timer tends to screw up then.
Whistle: The non-drop target. It lights ramp for secret, which can be many things.
The first time, and on alternating shots after that, it is a video mode. One is the one from SMB. you make Mario jump over holes and ghosts (instead of bullets!). The other is a Frog Mario one where you swim up and down to dodge crabs and other stuff. Each is worth 30M upon completion, less if you die.
Even shots to a lit ramp score another secret. This can be Luigi's Surprise (complete the world), Mario's Countdown (hurry-up collected on ramp), or a point bonus. Maybe an extra ball can also be awarded, but it usually won't happen. Consider this stuff as stuff between video modes, where the real points are.
But wait, I said the object was to clear the banks.. Clearing the first seven worlds and starting the eighth one awards you a special! It also starts the eighth world , Dark Land. Here is where you can also nab points by the millions, OR tickets if it is set up to dispense them. If it dispenses tickets, I don't think you can get ANY free games, but I haven't seen one that gave tickets. The drop targets will be lit, but will drop two by two of their own accord, with the 25M ones dropping first. You must hit one BEFORE it drops to get the points. However, you do keep the special no matter what if you reach that far.
Replays CAN be earned on points, but keep in mind that the replay score is usually higher than the top scores, due to the number of specials that get awarded.
With this in mind, basic strategy follows...
Go for that special FIRST. This is your insurance policy, should you not get that top score. As long as you do this, you can play again.
After you do that, lock on to the video modes. Become an expert at grazing the RIGHT side of the whistle. This puts it in the boom boom sinkhole, and returns it to a flipper. After you get your one special, START NO MORE WORLDS! Avoid the VUK like the plague! If you DO hit it, clear the targets. On a properly aligned game, the ball should, when coming out of a kickout, bounce off the opposite flipper and land neatly on the other flipper to trap if you raise it up after if bounces. If your game does this, you are set. Here is the routine: master it:
This takes patience, but it keeps control of the ball. After all is said and done, you have top score, and one credit on the game.
There is one playfield modification. A thick post is removed from the jet bumper area, enabling a ball to sneak in and out of the jets around the boom-boom hole. The Line Up game is only awarded on plunge. Worlds start by themselves each time you clear one. AND..... the timer is DISABLED! Also, you can now gain as many free games as you want! You can earn four specials in one game, now. This allows a few changes to the game plan.
Change #1: Multiball is now a viable option, as there is no timer to screw you over, and it helps you clear the drop targets faster. Enter it as much as possible until you get your special.
Change #2: You can now graze the LEFT side of the whistle as well, and if the ball doesn't drift out through the new bumper hole, you don't have to pass it to the right flipper. Again, the lack of a timer allows this plan. However, the old game plan still keeps more ball control, and still works..
Now if the game is set up as a redemption machine, then the only strategy is go for the eighth world, and get your tickets. Hit the ramp when it is lit, but otherwise go for the targets.
Unlike most pinball games, SMW is totally masterable. That is, you can essentially keep the ball under your control at ALL times. There is no randomness that isn't either in the video modes, or totally AVOIDABLE under hard, or wizard, rules, as I call them! But what about the drop targets, you ask? Well, there is no randomness there!!! The ball will rebound off the drop targets in a predictable fashion! You must learn how the ball bounces off the drop targets. Learn the bank shots, which hit targets from BOTH banks. Learn what the few drain shots are, then avoid them. Although it would seem this isn't so, you can keep the ball under your control 100% of the time on hard rules. The extra bumper entrance/exit adds a more random element into the easy or casual players rules. The ball, if just flailed around at, will not tend to drain very much.
I have doubtlessly missed stuff, and feel free to edit and proofread before archiving this rule sheet. But with this knowledge, you too can be number one on your local SMBMW.
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