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This page explains in detail the interactions between the Final Fantasy series and the Mario series.

Super Mario RPG

MarioRPGCulexSprite

Mario returns to Culex.

MarioRPGCulexBattle

Mario, Peach and Geno fight Culex.

MarioRPG Bahamutt

The Bahamutt

19960309 March 09, 1996

Final Fantasy5Arrow R Mario

The secret boss Culex in Super Mario RPG is a reference to the Final Fantasy series:

  • Instead of being in rendered 3D graphics he's 2D and has two different sprites, just like bosses from the Final Fantasy games (up to 1996).
  • He looks somewhat similar to the final form of Kefka, the final boss of Final Fantasy VI.
  • He has four elemental crystals, recurring objects in the Final Fantasy series.
  • He's said to be a "Dark Knight", a common class of character in the Final Fantasy series.
  • The music tracks that play fighting with him, defeating him and after his defeat are remixes of three musics from the final Fantasy series, and precisely are respectively: "Battle 2" from Final Fantasy IV, the traditional "Victory Fanfare", and "Prelude".
  • Lastly, his dialogue refers to him coming from a different dimension, and even breaks the Fourth Wall when telling Mario: "Perhaps in another time, another game, we may have been mortal enemies...".

For these reasons he could be considered a character from the (or "a") Final Fantasy universe, considering this an type 1 link, but he never actually appeared in any Final Fantasy game, making him an original Mario character, only looking like a Final Fantasy character, making this a type 3 link.

Additionally, in Super Mario RPG there's a dragon enemy named Bahamutt, a reference to Final Fantasy's Bahamut. However, in the original japanese version of the game it was called "Doshi", so the reference to Bahamut (Bahamuto in japanese) wasn't intended.

Mario Basketball 3on3

20030727 July 27, 2003

Final Fantasy5Arrow R Mario

Five of the eleven unlockable characters are from the Final Fantasy series. These are:

MarioBasket FinalFantasy

Mario, Luigi and Yoshi versus Ninja, Black Mage and White Mage.

  • Moogle: a recurring character in the Final Fantasy series that first appeared in Final Fantasy III and considered the mascot of the series, it mostly resembles Moogles from the Nintendo-exclusive Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles series. It's classified in the Tricky category and it's unlocked by earning a Silver trophy in the Star Cup. Its Special Shot is the Moogle Dance.
  • Ninja: a recurring character class in the Final Fantasy series, he mostly resemble ninjas from the first Final Fantasy and from Final Fantasy III. He's classified in the All-Around category and he's unlocked by earning a Bronze trophy in the Rainbow Cup. His alternative costume is unlocked by earning a Silver trophy in the Rainbow Cup in Hard Mode, and it replaces red parts with a purple-ish shade of blue, and adds a metallic ninja band on his helmet. The alternative color scheme resembles Barts from Final Fantasy V in his ninja from. His Special Shot is the Leaf Veil.
  • White Mage: a recurring character class in the Final Fantasy series, wears a shorter version of the dress worn by most white mages in the series (probably a sport version), but having pink/red hair she mostly resemble white mages from the first Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy III, and Lenna from Final Fantasy V in her White Mage form. She's classified in the Technical category and she's unlocked by earning a Silver trophy in the Rainbow Cup. Her alternative costume is unlocked by earning a Gold trophy in the Rainbow Cup in Hard Mode, and changes the red parts of her robe, and her hair color to a shade of purple. Her Super Shot is the Holy Shot, based on "Holy", the ultimate White Magic spell from the Final Fantasy series.
  • Black Mage: a recurring character class or race in the Final Fantasy series. Its appearance looks like Black Mages from the most recent games, as their graphics are more accurate. He's classified in the Tricky category and he's unlocked by earning a Gold trophy in the Rainbow Cup. His alternative costume is unlocked by earning a Bronze trophy in the Rainbow Cup in Hard Mode, and changes his dress color to brown and his hat color to green. His Super Shot is the Meteor Shot, based on "Meteor", the ultimate Black Magic spell from the Final Fantasy series.
  • Cactuar: a recurring enemy in the Final Fantasy series that first appeared in Final Fantasy VI. It's classified in the Speedy category and it's unlocked by winning the exibition match in Glare Desert, where it's found during a cutscene before the match. Its Super Shot is 1000 Needles, based on its same-named attack from the Final Fantasy series.

Also Final Fantasy themed courts are unlockable:

  • Malboro Garden: a garden featuring Malboros, recurring enemies from the Final Fantasy series. These are redesigned though, and don't resemble any previous incarnation. It's unlocked by making a Dunk 3 times in Daisy Garden, and collecting a seed from a "?" panel.
  • Glare Desert: the court where Cactuar is met for the first time, it's supposed to be its desert, even if it never appeared in any Final Fantasy game and may simply be a desert from the Mario universe. It's unlocked by winning by 800 or more points in a single match in the Star Tournament.
  • Rainbow Ship: an airship, a recurring mean of transportation in the Final Fantasy series, even if no airships with this name were ever featured in a Final Fantasy game. Basket boards are shaped after chocobos, recurring birds in the Final Fantasy series. It's unlocked by beating the extra challenge of Rainbow Cup.

Finally, in Bowser's Castle court, Bombs from the Final Fantasy series occasionally jump out of the lava.

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga

M&LSS PsychoKamek

20031117 November 17, 2003

Final Fantasy5Arrow R Mario

The character Pshyco Kamek, who's an hypnotist Magikoopa, wears a white and red robe, based on the White Mage's robe from the Final Fantasy series.

Mario Sports Mix

20101125 November 25, 2010

Final Fantasy5Arrow R Mario

The five Final Fantasy characters from Mario Basketball return in Mario Sports Mix (along with Slime from Dragon Quest):

Mariosports Ninja,White Mage & Black Mage

White Mage, Ninja and Black Mage.

  • Moogle: still classified in the Tricky category, it's unlocked by clearing the Mushroom Cup.
  • Ninja: still classified in the All-Around category, he's unlocked by clearing the Star Road once. His alternate costume, called "Shadow White", is unlocked by clearing the Star Road four times, or by using him in 20 matches, and changes its red parts with white, also adding the metallic band on his helmet, already featured in the alternative costume in the previous game.
  • White Mage: still classified in the Technical category, she's unlocked by clearing Star Road twice, clearing certain Mushroom Cup missions, or winning the Flower Cup four times. Her alternate costume, called "Pure White" is unlocked by clearing the Star Road five times, or by using her in 20 matches, and it chananges all red parts to white, including her hair, adds white stockings and changes her eye color to red.
  • Black Mage: still classified in the Tricky category, he's unlocked by clearing Star Road three times, clearing a certain Mushroom Cup mission, or winning the Star Cup four times. His alternate costume, called "Magic Red" is unlocked by clearing the Star Road six times, or by using him in 20 matches, and is supposedly based on the Red Mage class from the Final Fantasy series, sporting mainly red parts with a yellow cape, and other different details.
  • Cactuar: now classified in the Tricky category, instead of the Speedy category, it's unlocked by playing 60 matches in one sport or clearing a certain Star Cup mission.

Note that when the names for Ninja, White Mage and Back Mage are shown, there also is a sprite of the respective character from Final Fantasy III, possibly confirming these as their incarnation from that game.

This time no Final Fantasy themed court is featured, but the Star Ship could be a new version of the Rainbow Ship.

The storyline however references the Final Fantasy series, revolving around four Sports Crystals, looking like the Elemental Crystals from the Final Fantasy series, even being of the same colors, but with each one being associated to a sport, rather than an element, and are:

  • Red (Fire) — Basketball;
  • Green (Wind/Thunder) — Volleyball;
  • Yellow (Earth) — Dodgeball;
  • Blue (Water/Ice) — Hockey;

In the end of Story Mode, they fuse into the Rainbow Crystal, unlocking the Sports Mix tournament mode.

Also, a special boss fight is included against Behemoth, a recurring boss in the Final Fantasy series. There even is a King Behemoth variant, still taken from the Final Fantasy series.

Finally an unused model in the game data is a version of Bahamut, a recurring dragon in the Final Fantasy series, meaning that it was originally planned to be in the game, likely as a boss, but was later scrapped.

License

Super Mario RPG, Mario Basketball 3on3 and Mario Sports Mix were developed by Final Fantasy company's Square Enix (Squaresoft at the time of Super Mario RPG), and published by Mario's company Nintendo.

Square Enix was not involved in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, but the creators only included a minor reference.

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