What the world thought was known about video game star Mario turns out to be wrong.
Japanese console maker Nintendo has updated Mario’s online profile with some details that have shocked his fans.
First, Mario was never a plumber and started life as a carpenter working on a construction site when he first appeared in Donkey Kong in 1981.
Then he was dubbed a plumber because he moved underground in many of the follow-up games.
His Italian name, looks and family background reinforced the image because his creators based him on a typical American-Italian from New York.
Hence his partner and twin brother was named Luigi to keep up the back story.
Originally called Jumpman because of his trademark ability to leap over barrels and between platforms in games, his creators allowed the myth to live on.
How old is video hero Mario?
Although the hero of more than 200 games looks middle-aged on screen, his profile says he is only 24 years old.
Shigeru Miyamoto from Nintendo says Mario never worked as a plumber and was never intended to do the job.
“All around sporty, whether it’s tennis or baseball, soccer or car racing, Mario does everything cool,” says the Nintendo profile.
“If he did work as a plumber, it was a long time ago.”
Well, not that long according to his age. But that doesn’t compute either as he first appeared in 1981 – 36 years ago.
So how old is Mario? No one seems to know. He would certainly be more middle-aged now and coming up to retirement if he was 24 when he first took to gaming. The answer seems to be that Mario’s age and occupation is flexible and changes to suit the game environment he is in.
Is Princess Peach Mario’s girlfriend?
And what about Princess Peach whose role in the Mushroom Kingdom seems to be a kidnap victim for dastardly Koopa?
“I like cake making and cooking, I am good at sports unexpectedly!” says her profile.
“I am also careful about fashion, and besides my nice pink dress, I also have summer dresses and sportswear.”
Koopa, the great demon king has pledged to be Mario’s eternal enemy and give him no peace.
But the big mystery remains unanswered: Is the princess Mario’s girlfriend? Yes, according to Super Mario 64 when she kissed him on the nose and in Mario Tennis where she gave him a peck on the cheek.
So far, though, he has not popped the question.