Hmph. They couldn't beat us... so they decided to BE us. How odd.
— Ludwig, Bowser Jr.'s Journey
Ludwig von Koopa, or simply Ludwig, is the confirmed eldest and leader of the Koopalings. Being the eldest, he displays great skill and is third in line for control of the Koopa Troop, after Bowser Jr. and Bowser.
Ludwig appears as the last Koopaling battle before Bowser, in Pipe Land. His jumps will cause an earthquake that paralyze Mario if he is on the ground. The player jumps on his head three times to defeat him.
The game’s official player’s guide claims that he is Bowser’s “second-in-command,” and has all the powers of his siblings.
Ludwig von Koopa is the fourth boss of this game, appearing in Twin Bridges. The player must stomp his head three times to defeat him. Ludwig's battle is unique compared to the others. First, Ludwig spits fire until Mario stomps his head. Ludwig then retreats in his shell and spins across the ground. When he comes out, he will jump high and flip over Mario.
(According to the in-game text of Super Mario World, Ludwig composes “Koopa symphonies”, a play on the famous composer he is based on.)
In Yoshi's Safari, Ludwig is the second boss to fight. He rides in a mechanical brontosaurus. The red spot on its back is its weakspot. After that the arms of the mech will become legs and arms and the head will be the new body. When the body is destroyed, Ludwig will surrender the Amethyst Gem.
Ludwig appears as a boss and is the fourth Koopaling to be fought in this game, just like the order the Koopalings are fought in Super Mario World. Like the other Koopalings, he is found in Bowser's Castle.
Before his battle, he will go into his shell and spin around on the ground. Mario and Luigi must jump to avoid being hit. After a while he will come out of his shell, roar, and jump off-screen. When the Bros attempt to leave, Ludwig will reappear and go into battle.
In battle, Ludwig has 550 HP, 130 DEF, 93 SPEED, and drops 800 exp. points, 99 coins, and a 1-Up Super. The amount of exp. points and coins may be changed with E. Gadd's gadgets. In battle, he attacks by breathing fire, spinning rapidly around the Bros, and spinning in his shell.
In the remake, his "battle" consists of one attack. First, he will summon a massive orb of magic which is sent into the air. He will then use his wand to shoot blue magic flames at the Bros, who must use their hammers to destroy them. When the large magical ball comes down on one of the Bros, he must hammer it back. If he does, Ludwig will instantly be defeated. If he doesn't, it's an instant Game Over.
Fact: Ludwig has exactly 999 HP, matching the 999 damage that his ultimate attack deals. If the Great Force is equipped, his ultimate attack will do double the damage, dealing 1998 damage.
Ludwig von Koopa appears in New Super Mario Bros. Wii, and is the seventh boss in World 7. When Mario faces him in his fortress, he will turn away and snicker, then summon a deep blue magic flame from his wand that homes in on the plumber. He also is able to flutter-jump. After being jumped on three times, he retreats to his castle.
At his castle, Kamek will use a magic spell to assist Ludwig. The battlefield is three quickly rising platforms. Ludwig will shoot four deep blue flames from his wand (which move slower and in a fan pattern), then leap into the air to choose another platform to stand on, usually the one Mario is currently on. After being stomped on the head three times, Ludwig is defeated, falling offscreen and yelling.
In this game, his hair and shell have become deep blue, and orange rings are around his shell's spikes.
Ludwig reappears in the direct sequel of New Super Mario Bros. as a main antagonist alongside the other Koopalings and Bowser. He is the final Koopaling that needs to be fought to advance to the next world, but not the true final Koopaling as the player can beat Larry and Lemmy anytime. He drives the Clown Car that the Koopalings use to kidnap Princess Peach in the intro. In his boss fight, he will snicker again, then flutter jump to grab one of the five chains hanging from the ceiling. From there he will shoot deep blue fire from his wand. Mario must knock him off of the chain by going into a cannon and shooting at him. When he is stomped on the head three times, Ludwig is defeated.
Ludwig appears as the final boss of the Koopalings at Ludwig's Clockwork Castle. In battle, Ludwig flies up to the top of the screen and creates three clones of himself. The clones will then fire their magic spells at Mario, prompting him to dodge. As the battle progresses, Ludwig will shuffle himself and the clones around, making trying to find the real one a little more difficult. Once Ludwig is defeated, Mario can access the final world, Peach's Castle.
Ludwig returns in Mario Kart 8, and it's Nintendo Switch port as a playable character along with the rest of his siblings. This marks the first time Ludwig is playable in a Mario game.
Ludwig von Koopa is an obtainable trooper in Minion Quest. He is Ranged-type, and his Special Skill is Chain Shot. He is fought in the levels "Double Koopaling Caper" in Bowser's Castle with Lemmy, and "Goomba's Worth" in the same area, with the other six Koopalings.
Bowser Jr.'s Journey
Ludwig von Koopa is also an obtainable character in Bowser Jr.'s Journey. His type and Special Skill are the same; his new First Officer skills are Negotiation and Stop And Drop. Ludwig is never fought, but a dark version of him appears as an enemy in the final battle of the game.
In the Nintendo Adventure Book “Pipe Down!”, Ludwig kidnapped Princess Toadstool to be in his dance recital, but she was saved by the Mario Bros. Until Mario and Luigi caused an explosion that "shook something loose in his brain", he was deaf and couldn’t hear his own music.
This may be a reference to his namesake, Ludwig von Beethoven, who was deaf.
In the cartoon series, he was named Kooky von Koopa and was the typical mad scientist character, inventing wicked devices for his father, Bowser, to use. The only major physical differences between Ludwig and Kooky is that Kooky has untamed hair, bigger eyes, a signature laugh, and is significantly smaller, girth-wise.
Magic Wand: Ludwig can shoot magic flames from his Wand like his siblings (except Wendy and Lemmy). His are colored deep blue.
Flutter Jump: Ludwig is able to flutter jump, similarly to a Yoshi. However, in New Super Mario Bros U, he can simply levitate instead.