I got my hands on the instruction manual for Doki Doki Panic, the Japanese game that Nintendo eventually transformed into Super Mario Bros. 2. Flipping through it is kind of trippy, because you’re seeing a world that should have Mario in it but instead stars the jolly Arabian family you see here.
Had we only lived in the greater L.A. area as kids, we could have witnessed this King Koopa-starring spin-off to the Super Mario Super Show. Good news? We were probably better off not watching it.
VHS cover for the anime Super Mario Bros.: The Great Mission to Save Princess Peach!
Every world in Super Mario Bros. 2 has three levels, save for the last, which only has two. I’d always wondered why this is and kind of suspected that the developers simply decided “Eh, that’s enough.” But there may be an actual, storyline-based reason for the “missing” level, and the interstitial graphic you see here is actually a hint.