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Top 10 Bowser Battles

VO: Dan Paradis
Script Written by Nick Spake No matter how many times you go up against him, fighting this definitive video game baddie never gets old. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Bowser Battles. For this list, we’re taking a look at the most epic boss battles against the Koopa King in the Super Mario games. We’ve excluded any battles from “Super Mario Maker” because, come on, there are too many Bowser varieties to choose from, none of which are official. Special thanks to our user BigBoss for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Script Written by Nick Spake

Top 10 Bowser Battles


No matter how many times you go up against him, fighting this definitive video game baddie never gets old. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Bowser Battles.

For this list, we’re taking a look at the most epic boss battles against the Koopa King in the Super Mario games. We’ve excluded any battles from “Super Mario Maker” because, come on, there are too many Bowser varieties to choose from, none of which are official.

#10: Tower Chase
“Super Mario 3D Land” (2011)

This is probably the closest a Mario level has ever come to feeling like a rollercoaster, which is only made more effective by the inspired utilization of 3D. There are many familiar trademarks you’d expect to find in Bowser’s lair: hot lava, cannons, and Bowser himself, who literally comes crashing in. Rather than attacking him head-on, Mario must navigate through the crumbling environment as Bowser takes shots from afar. Eventually you’ll send him tumbling down with the press of a button, which Bowser should really stop putting in his castles.

#9: Koopas in Space
“Super Mario Galaxy” (2007)

Where most Bowser battles have an ominous buildup that’s practically apocalyptic, this one is refreshingly whimsical with the sensation of an intergalactic obstacle course. At the same time, though, the player still gets the sense that a great challenge awaits ahead. Bowser delivers in a final fight that really makes you feel the gravitas of the situation. Leaping from planet to planet and knocking bowser around like a soccer ball, it’s a boss battle as grand and epic as the universe itself. That’s one small step for Italian plumbers.

#8: A Taste of his own Medicine
“New Super Mario Bros. U” (2012)

You know that one kid that always ran to get his dad whenever things got too rough? That’s totally what baby bowser does here. Thankfully, you can use the little brat’s clown car against his overside pop – in fact, it’s pretty much the only way to win. Stealing the clown copter and bringing it down on big daddy’s head key to victory here. After you do that for the obligatory 3 rounds, Bowser is down for the count and his tattle tale of a son is has nothing left to do but turn tail and run.

#7: Cat Fight
“Super Mario 3D World” (2013)

The cat suit was one of the best innovations in “Super Mario 3D World.” Mario and the gang aren’t the only ones that get to use this awesome power-up, though. Bowser takes full advantage of it in this towering battle as the player embarks up a skyrocketing skyscraper. You never know when Bowser will come up climbing up, scratching down, or bursting out of the walls. Hopefully you have more than nine lives to make it to the top where the ultimate POW box awaits for a booming finale.

#6: Block Buster
“Super Mario Bros. 3” (1988)

By the time you finally reach Bowser at the end of this timeless masterpiece, your thumbs will likely be completely drained of energy. Yet, this only motivates the player more to keep their head in the game. You’ll have to stay on your toes throughout this fight as Bowser attempts to ground pound you into oblivion. By breaking the blocks below, however, the king of the koopas will plunge his way to a shattering fate. Interestingly, you don’t even need to strike Bowser here. Just be careful wear you step.

#5: Bowser Strikes Back
“Super Mario Galaxy 2” (2010)

As perfect as “Super Mario Galaxy” was, it’s follow-up somehow managed to top it in every conceivable way. The final Bowser battle is no exception with even stronger buildup and stronger payoff. While the setup is somewhat similar to the first game, this fight truly ups the ante. For starters, Bowser’s first is the size of a small planet now and can flatten Mario with a single punch. As the battle goes on, the action just keeps building and things keep getting bigger until you deliver the final blow. The only thing that really holds this entry back is the second phase, which seemed a bit anti-climactic after the first.

#4: BIG BOWSER
“New Super Mario Bros. Wii” (2009)

This Wii title goes back to the tradition of Mario’s earliest platformers, but with a few twists. As you press the switch and send Bowser plummeting into a pit of lava, just like you did back in the 80s, you might think it’s time to rescue the princess and call it a day. Our princess is in another cage, though, and Bower’s nowhere near finished – hey, at least he killed that STUPID wizard, man I hate those guys. Anyway, Mario needs to run for his life as the fire-breathing beast destroys anything in his path. Once Mario finds the real switch and real princess, Bowser is history…at least until the next game.

#3: Big Baby Bowser
“Super Mario 2: Yoshi’s Island” (1995)

“Yoshi’s Island” is such a colorful game with the child friendly imagery of a storybook. The game’s lighthearted tone is overthrown, however, when Baby Bowser takes his last stand. All of a sudden, the lighting becomes shadowy, the music becomes menacing, and the seemingly harmless villain ascends like a demon from hell. It’s as if a pleasant dream became a nightmare and the only way to wake up is by taking Baby Bowser out with giant eggs. For somebody so young and small, Bowser has rarely been this daunting.

#2: 3D Bowser
“Super Mario 64” (1996)

“Super Mario 64” was a genuine game changer as it brought the Mushroom Kingdom into the third dimension. Our minds were blown when we saw a 3D Bowser for the first time. He only got more challenging and intimidating with every passing fight, the final battle appropriately being the ultimate showdown. The grim lighting and haunting pipe organ music creates an overwhelming atmosphere. Few things will make a gamer feel more triumphant than grabbing Bowser by his tail and swinging him into a bomb. The things Mario does for cake.

Before we challenge our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:

Chandelier Fight
“Super Mario RPG” (1996)
Hot Tub Bowser
“Super Mario Sunshine” (2002)
Giga Bowser
“Super Smash Bros. Melee” (2001)

#1: Clown Car
“Super Mario World” (1990)

Here we go. “Super Mario World” saw the debut of the iconic flying koopa clown and it acts as the centerpiece of the greatest Bowser boss fight ever. When you make it to the top of the fortress, things start to get all dark and stormy. Then when Bowser show’s his face, you know that it’s on. There are too many immortal images and moments throughout this enthralling battle, particularly the whimpering expression on Bowser’s face whenever stricken. Never before has defeating Bowser and rescuing Princess Peach been more satisfying.

Do you agree with our list? What’s your favorite Bowser battle? For more epic Top 10's published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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