Random: What do you mean by Super Mario donut blocks that aren’t based on donuts?

Image: Nintendo Life

Donut blocks. We all know them and we all love or hate them as they crumble under the weight of our plumber Mario. These platforms have been around since Super Mario Bros. 3, still waiting to lure us in with the safety of a flat surface, before falling and taking us Mario to his death. Presumably, because they are donuts, right? Bad.

Let Supper Mario Broth uncover the truth behind these devious dough-like platformers. Turns out, while they look like donuts in 2D Mario games, that’s not really what they’re based on. We’ve all seen these rigs used in New Super Mario Bros., Super Mario 3D World, and a few other 3D games, and they’re not just little floating donuts, but more of a tube.

That’s because in Japanese they’re not called donut blocks – they’re called “Chikuwa Lifts”. A chikuwa is a type of Japanese fish cake rolled around a bamboo stick and boiled, hence its tubular shape.

Foresight is a wonderful thing, but Nintendo couldn’t have predicted the move to 3D gaming as far back as the late 80s, so even though the outlook has changed and the flat tops of those platforms could be seen in 3D games, he decided not to rename them to confuse people.

We didn’t exactly question Brock’s jelly-filled donuts back then, did we? But it’s a really interesting example of how things have been localized. Does this affect the validity of Donut Plains in Super Mario World, we hear you ask? Fortunately not, because this place has the same name in Japanese. Phew! Not everything is a pasty lie, then.

Did you know the truth about donut blocks? Try not to fall by letting us know your shock in the comments!

About Jason Zeitler

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