Regular readers will no doubt already know that I consider myself kind of a big gamer. Since a very young age, I wasted spent countless hours with my various computers and consoles finding pretty much every secret in every game I owned, and to this day my favourite topic of conversation remains video games.

I’d be the first to admit that amount of random game-related trivia in my head borders on the obsessive, but even I blanked when one Japanese netizen casually asked what the object pictured above, from 16-bit classic Super Mario World, was officially called.

Sure, we all had our own words for these little things back in the day – wall block; corner block; pink triangle; whatever – but was there ever an official name bestowed upon them? Most English-speaking gamers know them simply as “triangle blocks”, but it would seem our friends in Japan have no idea what these things are actually called, even some 24 years after encountering them for the first time.

Appearing in flagship Super Famicom/Nintendo title Super Mario World and even cropping up in the Super Mario animated series, these little objects allowed Mario to sprint up walls and pipes. If he was riding dinosaur pal Yoshi, however, the pair of them would be bounced back as if hopping on a mini spring block.

180px-TriBlSMWSuper Mario Wiki

They didn’t play an especially big role in the game, but they added an interesting new gameplay mechanic to some levels. Even so, they were something of an anomaly and were rarely seen again after their first use.

Then suddenly this week, an online bulletin board user in Japan commented:

“Of all the Mario characters, to this day this is the only one whose name I still don’t know.”

Naturally, fellow nerdy netizens took to their keyboards to offer up suggestions. But they, too, were surprisingly vague:

“The things-that-let-you-run-up-walls…”

“I called them Yoshi repellers.”


“Those are the grudge-bearing reincarnations of all the Marios that have died until now.”

Then someone said something that blew our minds:

“Was this a face or a foot icon?”


The instruction manual image above would lead us to believe that this is indeed a smiley face drawn on the side of the block, but now we look at it, it does kind of look like a foot, which would make so much sense since it needs to be run at and allows Mario to traverse things, but only on foot…

Honestly, I’m even more unsure of what to call this thing now, and short of digging out a copy of Super Mario World to find the part where the game introduces (and hopefully names) them, I’m just going to carry on calling them what I always used to: “Wall-runny-uppy-things” or “those #*@&ing triangles that always get me killed.”

Source: Golden Times
Feature image: Livedoor