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I know there's a breakdown of Sonic the Hedgehog physics found here, and I was wondering, does there exist a breakdown of any of the Mario games? Something similar to this but for Mario is what I'm interested in!

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closed as not constructive by bobobobo, bummzack, Anko, Josh Petrie, Byte56 May 9 '13 at 13:31

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Thanks for linking to the Sonic page. I've always wanted the details! –  Brian McKenna Dec 17 '10 at 21:51
Tangentially related - Tetris is pretty heavily documented at tetrisconcept.net/wiki/Main_Page and tetris.wikia.com/wiki/Tetris_Wiki –  T.R. Dec 19 '10 at 4:06

6 Answers 6

I don't know about a breakdown of the physics, but there are commented disassemblies floating around the internet. Romhacking.net, nesdev.parodius.com, Acmlm Board2, SMWCentral and their respective forums would probably be the best places to get that kind of information. The document sections of those sites have enough information to compile your own guide.

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That's rather interesting, I'll have to take a look at some of those comments to see if I can find anything useful. Thanks! –  Jeff Dec 18 '10 at 17:52
I'll warn you that it's not for the faint of heart - the comments will mostly just tell you what memory locations are used for - you'll probably need to dig through the assembly yourself. If there are specific pieces of information that you're interested in, the fastest way to find it would be to run the game in a debugging emulator (legal issues aside). Use breakpoints on writes to related memory locations in order to figure out what code is being executed, then look that up in the disassembly and read it. I'd imagine that's how Sonic Retro compiled its guide. –  T.R. Dec 19 '10 at 3:46
A similar question, with more useful resources: gamedev.stackexchange.com/questions/6145/… –  T.R. Dec 20 '10 at 2:56

Well, I know this question is kind of old but since I found this site was higher ranked in google than the actual answer I thought I'd post a link to this description of the basic falling physics of multiple Mario games

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This is nice for gravity, but I was hoping there would be a more complete breakdown of the game (jumping, running, etc) like that sonic breakdown has. –  Jeff Dec 13 '12 at 19:31

I was told by Claude Comair (Founder of Digipen sponsored by Nintendo ) that basically the senior programmer and senior game designer sat down and adjusted magic numbers until the game designer was happy.

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-1 - This doesn't break down what the magic numbers are (which is how I read the question), and doesn't accurately describe the division of labor that exists in the industry today. –  user744 Dec 19 '10 at 10:51
Why do we care about the current division of labor? We are talking about a classic game. –  EnabrenTane Dec 19 '10 at 16:37
Knowing what the numbers are is useful today, because they still produce good game physics. Knowing how the numbers are found today might help developers today derive useful ones for their particular situation. Knowing how they were found 30 years ago, is not a very useful answer. –  user744 Dec 21 '10 at 12:30
This is a good answer because yeah -- what are you going to do with that information. I personally find it extremely lazy of a developer to just plunk in "the formula Mario Bros used". C'mon, put some effort in, derive it yourself, then tweak it. You need to consider the levels are designed with Mario's jump capabilities in mind. What I dislike about this question is even if you had the exact formula, that blocks you in to gaps of a certain size, level design in a certain way. –  bobobobo May 5 '13 at 23:47

Gamasutra did a feature on the physics of Super Mario Galaxy some years back ... probably not what you're after if you're more interested in the 2d versions. Link here: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/3593/games_demystified_super_mario_.php

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That's pretty useful, thanks for the link. I was more interested in the 2D physics (something similar to that the sonic analysis), but this is rather interesting too –  Jeff Dec 21 '10 at 16:49

There is a Flash clone of Super Mario called "Super Mario crossover", whos developer put a lot of effort into cloning the actual physics. Flash code should be easily reverse engineerable, so you could get the actual physics code (or maybe just ask the developer).

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