Can you complete Super Mario 64 without ever jumping?

Yes, but it will take you at least 86 hours. This is the feat that an Internet user named Marbler achieved in 2024.

Released in 1996 on Nintendo 64, Super Mario 64 is the first three-dimensional adventure of the famous mustachioed plumber. An entry into 3D which nevertheless retained a fundamental gameplay: to advance, you must always jump, dodge traps and enemies in the different levels, to collect stars.

Imagine that a passionate person managed to achieve a challenge that seemed impossible on paper: finishing Super Mario 64 without ever pressing the A key, the one that allows you to make a jump.

It’s counterintuitive to miss out on the most important action in a platform game. But this insane challenge has been around for a long time. There is even a wiki page that provides information on the subject, called “A Button Challenge” or ABC. We have learned that, for years, enthusiasts of Super Mario 64 strive to complete the game by pressing the A button the minimum number of times. It was not until 2024 that the ultimate feat was achieved.

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More than 86 hours to complete Super Mario 64 without skipping: that’s a crazy challenge

A few hours ago, Super Mario 64 was completed by Marbler without the use of the A button, for the first time ever. It took 86 hours (…). This is an incredible performance », we can read in https://twitter.com/gtace99/status/1792977375375831311. What the man named Marbler achieved is truly incredible. His success rewards all these years spent finding the slightest trick or the slightest loophole to save a single jump, until reaching the number zero.

Marbler did not use any support software. Interviewed by Kotaku on May 23, he indicated: “ The significance of this attempt is truly immense, at least for the A Button Challenge. There have never been any support tools for a full run without jumping, because the Super Mario 64 community standards imply that this must be possible on console. » He couldn’t rely on a simulation done on a computer either — a practice employed by speedrunners, who then try to reproduce what the machine did.

type="image/avif"> type="image/webp">>>
The success obtained on Super Mario 64. // Source: https://twitter.com/gtace99/status/1792977375375831311?s=61&t=2KYyU3CcPlIkYZlrZ-7RTw

To achieve his goals, Marbler used the version available on the Wii Virtual Console, which adds a few exploitable glitches compared to the original Nintendo 64 game. The rest is a mix between patience (waiting for hours, time that an opportunity to pass an entire section presents itself), talent and precision. And a hint of luck too when, for example, he leans on an enemy to be thrown further, in a normally random direction (1 chance in 32 that it is the right one).

Marbler manipulates everything he can to his advantage, but it’s not always enough. “ This allows me to reach a probability of 16/32, to which I add the fact that Mario can land at two angles which leave him alive, which gives 18 chances out of 32 of success (56.25%). It’s not ideal to have RNG at the end of such a difficult trick, but it’s still better than 3%. “, he admits.

If the complete attempt has exceeded 86 hours, the effective playing time does not even reach ten. The training, on the other hand, was long. “ I would say that I trained for around 150-200 hours, not counting the part dedicated to research and strategy development, which weighs 50-100 hours “, explains Marbler, who can really be proud of himself. On Reddit, he is logically applauded.

For further
type="image/avif"> type="image/webp">Super Mario Bros. The Film // Source</a>: Universal Pictures>>Super Mario Bros. The Film // Source</a>: Universal Pictures

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