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Koopa Shells, also named Shells, are what Koopa Troopa wear as protection, just as real-world turtles wear their own shells. Koopa Shells first appear in Super Mario Bros.. The standard type of Koopa Shells are Green Shells, with Red Shells being the second most common type.


In 2D Super Mario games, jumping on a Koopa Shell generally causes a Koopa to withdraw inside, allowing Mario or another character to pick up the shell and throw it. A Koopa Shell defeats most regular enemies as it slides along the ground, and it bounce off walls and other objects. In the 3D Super Mario series games platformers, their use varies, such as enabling Mario to travel underwater quicker.

In the Super Mario series[]

Super Mario Bros.[]

Koopa shells appear in this game, red and green. The player can stomp on a Koopa Troopa once to make them go into their shells and twice to make the Koopa shells move left and right.

Super Mario Bros. 2[]

They are named Turtle Shells, all of which are red and appear in certain levels. Just as before, a Turtle Shell can be picked up and thrown to slide along the ground and defeat most enemies along the path it is on. This is the first time Turtle Shells appear without Koopa Troopas, so Turtle Shells are instead found from being plucked from certain patches of grass.

Super Mario Bros. 3[]

Koopa shells don't act any different from Super Mario Bros., and retain the same red and green colors as before.

Super Mario World[]

Yoshi gains a special ability depending on what type of shell he puts in his mouth: Green Shells grant no effect; Red Shells allow Yoshi to breathe out three fireballs; Blue Shells give Yoshi wings and the ability to fly; and Yellow Shells allow Yoshi to create a stomp that can defeat all enemies on the ground. A Flashing Shell grants all three abilities at once. Yoshi can use these abilities up until swallowing the Koopa Shell or by spitting it out.

The Yoshi's color also has an effect on what ability it obtains when eating a shell. For example, if a Yellow Yoshi has a red shell in its mouth, it would be able to spit fireballs and make sand clouds when stomping on the ground.

Super Mario 64/Super Mario 64 DS[]

Only Green Shells exist in this game, and to get them, Mario must jump on a Koopa Troopa or from certain ! Blocks. Mario can then ride on the Koopa Shell for an unlimited time until he hits a wall or another object. While riding on a shell, Mario can also travel up certain steep slopes that he could not traverse otherwise.

New Super Mario Bros.[]

In this game, there are Green Shells, Red Shells, and Blue Shells. Green and Red Shells are worn by Koopas and can be carried and thrown as projectiles. Blue Shells are power-ups that transform Mario or Luigi into their Shell form.

Super Mario Galaxy[]

Only green and red shells exist, and they are common items that can be thrown to defeat enemies and smash open chests. They disappear upon coming into contact with any object. While underwater, Mario can use a Koopa Shell to propel himself through water at high speeds. Sometimes though, (exclusively in the Beach Bowl Galaxy) there is a gold shell.

Red Shells travel faster than Green Shells and home in on enemies while Green Shells go in a straight trajectory.

In Yoshi's Cookie[]

In all versions, a Koopa Shell replaces one of the cookies upon reaching round 10.

In the Mario Kart series[]

In this series, there are Red, Green and Spiny Shells, none worn by Koopas; all of them usable items within races. The Green Shell shoots straight forward and bounces off walls until it hits a player, or if it hits the walls too much. The Red Shell always home in on its targets, but will disappear upon hitting the wall. Also, if it is thrown backwards, it will just travel in a straight line and won't home in on anybody. The Spiny Shell flies around the track and disappear upon hitting whoever is in first place. In some games, it has wings and flies, and targets only the leading racer and anyone else nearby when they strike. In others, it makes its way along the center of the track on the ground, and harms any karts it touches along the way.