- Mario can perform a rolling somersault attack or run fast with a dash move. Or, as Tanooki Mario, he can use his tail to hover, perform floating jumps or attacks.
- New enemies include Goombas with tails, tall stacks of Goombas and a Piranha Plant that spits ink to obscure a players view.
- New and familiar abilities add unique game-play strategies to the adventure
- 3D visuals make it easier for players to judge the depths and distances in their environments. Players can more accurately judge the jump to the next platform or how far Mario is from a question block.
- The Circle Pad gives players complete control to confidently move Mario through fun and challenging environments.