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Paper Mario: Color Splash (ペーパーマリオ カラースプラッシュ Pēpā Mario: Karā Supurasshu) is an action-adventure video game developed by Intelligent Systems and is published by Nintendo for the Wii U. It serves as the fifth installment of the Paper Mario series, following Paper Mario: Sticker Star. It is also the latest Mario game to be released on the Wii U.


At Port Prisma on Prism Island, the local Toads are enjoying playing with the paint in Prisma Fountain. Bowser is watching from the highest point in the port, and decides he wants to use the paint to gain a rainbow-colored shell. He jumps into the rainbow area in the middle of the fountain; however, his jumping around the paint causes him to inadvertently create Black Paint, which proceeds to transform him into a dark form, Black Bowser. He is brainwashed by the Black Paint into stealing the Big Paint Stars and ordering his minions to drain the island and its inhabitants of their color. Seemingly unaware of the black paint's possession of Bowser, the Koopa Troop willingly follows Black Bowser's orders.

Mario (who is in his house at the time) finds Princess Peach and Toad at his door one night during a storm. Surprised, he lets them in and receives a mysterious letter. The letter is actually a folded-up Toad drained of his colors, which horrifies him. The stamp on the letter is the emblem of Prism Island, so Mario and company travel through the storm on Peach's boat. Mario's hammer is lost during the trip, so he finds a replacement hammer and uses it to reach the town square, which is deserted and full of white spots where colors have been drained. Toad heads off to find help, while Mario and Peach, after activating an emergency mechanism, awaken Huey, a mysterious 3D talking paint bucket. A scream is heard and Mario, Huey, and Princess Peach quickly head over to the sound to find a red Shy Guy with a straw, called a Slurp Guy, draining the color from Toad. Toad gives some Battle cards to Mario and then the Slurp Guy fully drains his colors. Huey then asks Mario to squeeze him into paper form in order to obtain colors from his "blood, sweat, and tears". The colors and cards are used to battle the Slurp Guy and two Shy Guys that came to his assistance. After the battle the colors from Huey are used to return Toad to color using Mario's new Paint Hammer. Soon Huey discovers to his shock that the Big Paint Stars at Prisma Fountain are gone, and asks Mario to find them and return them to the fountain, starting from a Red Mini Paint Star at Port Prisma that he mistakes for a Red Big Paint Star. As soon as they reach the Mini Paint Star, they see an airship carrying a giant bucket of red paint that was stolen by the Slurp Guys. When they reach Cherry Lake they find a Toad, named Justice Toad, that was hanging on the giant bucket but in the end fell off.

At Bloo Bay Beach, Mario and Huey find themselves participating in the Ocean Fest in their research for the Paint Star.

Mario eventually finds himself at the Crimson Tower, where the airship carrying the red paint is found. Mario and Huey board the airship (by climbing the anchor) and they destroy it, causing the large paint bucket to fall onto the tower, repainting it and allowing them to enter it. Inside, they find Morton Koopa Jr., who is looking for the red Big Paint Star as well. Mario defeats Morton and recovers the red Big Paint Star, which helps repaint the large gate entrance in Sunglow Ridge before returning to Prisma Fountain.

After collecting the Big Red Paint Star, Mario and Huey return to Port Prisma, where the Red Paint Star reveals that Black Bowser has thrown all the Big Paint Stars away from Prisma Fountain. Soon after the reveal, Black Bowser shows up and reveals to Mario his plan to use the power from the black paint to take on the world and then flies off on an airship with a lot of Bowser tape on it, including a long tape holding Peach. Peach manages to leave a Holo-Peach to Mario, where she reveals that Bowser seems different besides the black paint that covers him, even though he doesn't intend to be harmful toward her.

Later on, the duo runs into the Golden Colosseum where a gladiator battle is held between Mario and Iggy Koopa, a Hammer Bro, and a Snifit, all three on chariots attached to Chain Chomps, while Iggy promises to give Mario the yellow Paint Star if he wins the challenge.

At Dark Bloo Inn, Mario and Huey attempt to solve the mystery of paranormal incidents happening in the building, which ends up being related to a tea party that ghostly Toads are throwing. They must head to Plum Park to retrieve a teapot for the Toads after obtaining the Paint Star in the inn. Upon reaching Plum Park, they find it in a poisoned state. They eventually find Petey Piranha, under the alias of "Petea Piranha", who is responsible for this. They defeat him and return the teapot to Dark Bloo Inn.

Mario and Huey then head to Cobalt Base, where they must play the Snifit or Whiffit game show. If Mario answers four or more questions correctly, he is rewarded with a blue Mini Paint Star, which unlocks Fort Cobalt, where the blue Big Paint Star is located. After traversing through the fort, Mario and Huey find Ludwig von Koopa, whom they defeat atop his Super Ludship in order to recover the blue Big Paint Star, which helps repaint the ocean in Violet Passage, allowing Mario and Huey to set sail through the sea to find the purple Big Paint Star.

After traversing the violet islands, Mario and Huey arrive at Fortune Island, where the purple Big Paint Star can be found. To recover it, however, they must defeat Wendy O. Koopa. Upon defeating her, Mario and Huey obtain the purple Big Paint Star, which helps repaint the entire ocean of Prism Island, as well as a large sinkhole found at Mustard Café. Entering the sinkhole allows Mario to find the owner of the café, whom they help return to his café and retrieve an orange Mini Paint Star. The player then enters a train repair depot, where the train, named the Sunset Express, must be repaired. After repairing it, Mario and Huey use it to travel to Starlight Cape, and, after defeating Larry Koopa on the way, recover the orange Big Paint Star, which helps repaint a large Draggadon fossil in Marmalade Valley. The fossil transforms into a real Draggadon and flies off to Redpepper Volcano.

Upon taming the Draggadon in Redpepper Volcano, Mario and Huey ride him through the volcano to find a red Mini Paint Star, unlocking Redpepper Crater. After traversing the crater and solving some Thing puzzles, Mario and Huey arrive at The Emerald Circus, where the green Big Paint Star is held. They defeat Lemmy Koopa and recover the green Big Paint Star.

Upon rescuing all six Big Paint Stars, they create a rainbow-shaped path to Black Bowser's Castle, where Mario and Huey head off to (via a kart ride from Luigi) in order to find and rescue Princess Peach. They have to battle Roy Koopa before stopping Black Bowser.

After Black Bowser is defeated, he is rid of the black paint and returned to his usual self. Mario then uses his Paint Hammer to restore Peach's color. Black Bowser's Castle proceeds to collapse as a result of the immense amount of black paint, but Mario, Peach, and Huey manage to escape. After this escape, Mario, Peach, and Luigi return to Port Prisma while Huey stays behind to contain the black paint and release it where it will not do any more harm, turning the castle into a card in the process.

Later, while a celebration is occurring at Port Prisma, Mario and Peach notice Bowser and the Koopalings fly away on an airship. Peach then states that she hopes that they learned their lesson this time, and comforts Mario when he laments Huey's disappearance.

When all Banners are achieved, Huey can be seen falling back into the Prisma Fountain in the end screen.


Paper Mario: Color Splash is an action-adventure RPG game that elaborates on the mechanics of Paper Mario: Sticker Star. It is based on Mario using the Paint Hammer to paint colorless elements, characters and parts of the environment in order to progress in the game and collect Mini Paint Stars and Big Paint Stars. When a course is completed, several new courses may become available at once, and the number-based course naming that was seen in Super Paper Mario and Paper Mario: Sticker Star is gone (the game features a sort of 'world map' like the latter though).

Super Flags return as well, this time found in the main square of Port Prisma. The battles are based on Battle Cards that can be painted to increase their effectiveness. Painted cards can be bought at the Prisma Cardware. Once used, cards are discarded, it is, however, possible to buy them directly in battle using the Battle Spin and choosing one of the flipped cards. There are three types of cards. Basic Cards are used for various purposes, including attacking, healing and replenishing paint. Many attacks are similar to those featured in Paper Mario: Sticker Star, with the hammer, attacks now having a charging sign indicating at which point an "Excellent" attack can be obtained. Thing Cards, which do not deplete Mario's paint, are used to summon Things, both in battle and in the course to solve puzzles. Such cards can be obtained by directly squeezing Things into Thing cards. There is a shop in Port Prisma allowing the player to directly buy Things to squeeze them into Thing Cards, and there are Replica versions of them as well, which are less powerful than original ones. Finally, Enemy Cards, dropped by defeated enemies, are used to summon an enemy into the battle as an ally. Only one ally can be present at a time. Using another one will make the previous ally flee. Such an ally will attack other enemies and, when the enemies attack, position itself in front of Mario to protect him, and will stay in battle until defeated or if the battle is won. However, it will run away in front of the bosses.

At the beginning of a battle, Kamek can sometimes appear and either flip all the cards or steal many cards, once the battle is won, all the stolen cards are regained and additional coins are obtained as well. The number showing the HP of the enemies as well as the number showing the amount of damage dealt in HP are both missing, while the health of each enemy is shown in the form of color that is gradually drained starting from the bottom. When an enemy turns white, it is defeated.

Both the use of the Paint Hammer and the painting of most cards require colors, whose levels are indicated by bars. Coins are obtained when winning a battle. They exist in at least three different varieties with varying amounts of glittery parts, and the scraps with more glittery parts fill the bar more than the scraps with less glittery parts. Once the bar is fully filled, the maximum amount of colors that can be carried is permanently increased and the power of the First Strike is increased as well, up to the point that enemies on the course can be directly defeated without starting the battle. The defeated enemies also drop various items, including colors, cards, and coins.

It is also possible to permanently increase the number of cards playable in a turn during a battle by collecting special power-ups. Similarly, the maximum amount of Mario's HP can be increased by collecting HP-Up Hearts that are obtained when saving a Big Paint Star. Each HP-Up Heart increases the maximum amount of HP by 25 and increases the power of the First Strike as well.

In order to gain additional coins, there are side quests and mini-games that can be played. One of them is finding Luigi who is hiding in some places, another is playing Super Roshambo against several opponents at the Roshambo Temples, a further one is fighting and defeating The Shy Bandit on the world map.

Furthermore, it is possible to use a move similar to paperization called "Cutout" in order to cut parts of the courses. Likewise, the Flip technique from Super Paper Mario returns as well, in a course dedicated to Super Mario Bros. 3 found at the Green Energy Plant. Key items also return.







  • Draggadon



Battle Cards

  • Worn-Out Jump
  • Worn-Out Jump ×3
  • Jump
  • Jump ×2
  • Big Jump
  • Hopslipper
  • Hopslipper x2
  • Line Jump
  • Iron Jump
  • Spin Jump
  • Worn-Out Hammer
  • Worn-Out Hammer ×3
  • Hammer
  • Hammer ×2
  • Eekhammer
  • Big Eekhammer
  • KO Hammer
  • Hurlhammer
  • Blazehammer
  • Fire Flower
  • Ice Flower
  • Mushroom
  • 1-Up Mushroom
  • Spike Helmet
  • POW Block
  • Frog Suit

Thing Cards

  • Fan
  • Compass
  • Washing Machine
  • Instant Camera
  • Basin
  • Bone
  • Balloons
  • Disco Ball
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Lemon
  • Charcoal Grill
  • Piggy Bank
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Cat-o-luck
  • Teapot
  • Battery
  • Recorder
  • Claw Hammer
  • Plunger
  • Lightbulb
  • Cork
  • Ice Pick
  • Hair Dryer
  • Magnifying Glass
  • Bottle Opener
  • Megaphone
  • Turnip
  • Huey
  • Bowser's Castle


Paper Mario: Color Splash received generally positive reviews (76% in Metacritic) but it did not sell very well (750,000 copies as of 6 Aug 2021, with 63,000 in Japan alone), most likely contributing to the fact that it was only out for a year before the Wii U was discontinued. It was praised for its unique painting technique but criticized for the same reason Sticker Star was: for its difficult cut-out/paperize puzzles, however, Color Splash slightly made up for it with easier-to-spot puzzles.


  • Some of the enemies in this game correspond to differently colored regions of Prism Island, but interestingly, there are no orange or purple variants of these enemies.
  • The Koopaling's wand color is the same as the color of the Big Paint Star that they guard. For example, Morton holds a red wand, and he is shown guarding the Red Big Paint Star
  • This is the last Mario game released for Wii U.


External links