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“Move faster, Pokey!!! Faster!!! FASTER!!! OH, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, FASTER!!!
Pokey from Super Mario World.

A Pokey is a cactus that first appeared in Super Mario Bros. 2. In that game, they were green and could be killed by picking up one segment at a time and throwing it.

In Super Mario World 1, however, Pokeys are yellow and can't be defeated in the same way. Throwing a Shell or Block at them will only kill one segment. Mario and Luigi could also defeat a Pokey by sliding up or down a hill at the cactus, but few people know about this. Another option is to defeat them with Yoshi, who can eat their body segments one at a time. If you get up close with Yoshi, he can eat multiple segments in one go.

The number of body segments present depends on if Mario has Yoshi or not. If he does, Pokeys have five body segments. Without Yoshi, Pokeys only have three segments so that Mario can Jump over them. They only appear in a special world level and Yoshi's Island 4 in a bonus room.

SMW1 isn't the only game without a desert to feature Pokeys. They also appeared in Super Mario Sunshine, the Paper Mario series, and the Mario Kart series.

Hacking Information

  • They are sprite 70.
  • They use palette A and expect SP4 to call GFX09. Ironically enough, that graphics set features some other enemies that should be used in desert or rocky levels (like Monty Moles), but aren't, due to there being no deserts and due to the Underground 3 tileset going unused. The head uses tiles A, B, 1A, and 1B, while the body segments use 68, 69, 78, and 79.
  • As the quote at the top implies, Pokeys are common in Kaizo hacks and hard levels. They're used to cross pits of Munchers or other undesirable things. Mario has to spin jump on them for the duration of the pit. But because they move so slow, their usage in this exact manner isn't recommended.
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