I love all the partners and how unique they are in both their attacks and their personalities! They are easily one of the highlights of the game, and its a shame they went two Paper Mario games without any sort of partners in battle! Now it is time to join me today for... Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door: All Partners RANKED!
7. Admiral Bobbery
Okay, bear with me here—I think all the partners in this game are fantastic, and its a shame any of them have to go in last since they are all fantastic! Bobbery can dish out some of the best damage in the game with Bob-ombast, and his default Bomb attack is on par with the rest of the default attacks (at least in terms of damage... I'll explain more in a second). To add on to this, Bobbery has an enormous health pool that is near double Koops's and Ms. Mowz's! However, now on to some of the glaring flaws I find in Bobbery. First off, his Bomb attack doesn't bring any new perks to the table (whereas Shade Fist ignites enemies, Ms. Mowz ignores defense, Flurrie can hit high- flying enemies, et cetera). Second of all, Bob-ombast—although the most reliable multi-target attack in the game since it hits all enemies no matter what and does the most reliable damage—is the second most costly ability in the game and has no distinct reasons to distinguish it from the other AoE attacks (Stampede is the most powerful, Power Shell is cheap, Shell Slam breaks all defenses, and Fiery Jinx ignites enemies). And lastly, Bomb Squad and Hold Fast both place in my top 3 worst partner abilities, hindering Bobbery's potentional significantly. Since Bobbery's benefits fail to outweigh the flaws, I surprising put him in last, even below Ms. Mowz.
6. Ms. Mowz
I see it now—the utter rage of all the readers becoming red like a cherry as they see that I ranked Ms. Mowz above the fan-favorite Admiral Bobbery. Ms. Mowz is often considered the worst partner in the entire series, so it isn't all that surprising that people would be confused about me ranking her higher than Admiral Bobbery, but I'll explain. I find Ms. Mowz better than Bobbery because, although she is situational, she excels extremely well in these specific situations. First of all, without Ms. Mowz, it is rather hard to get repeat badges from enemies (popular examples being Power Rush or Mega Rush) since Ms. Mowz's Kiss Thief is the only reliable way to gain badges—unlike trying to get the enemies to drop the badges, which hardly ever works and is super unreliable. Second of all, without Ms. Mowz's sniffing ability, it is quite difficult to find Star Pieces without a guide or without paying the fortune teller to find them for you over and over again, and with Ms. Mowz, the star-piece-hunting process becomes a whole lot less tedious. I was even able to find a hidden badge block using Ms. Mowz that wasn't even mentioned at all in the official Nintendo Power guide, which was a perfect demonstration for me that her field ability is more useful than meets the eye. Third of all, her Smooch ability, although the most expensive ability in the entire game, can be a lifesaver in battles or bosses where Mario has no Star Power to heal with Sweet Treat or Sweet Feast or no restorative items to spare. Last of all, Love Slap breaks through enemy defense, allowing Ms. Mowz to beat up tons of enemies that other partners simply can't really deal damage to unless they throw away precious FP to do so (Buzzy Beetles and Clefts are both great examples of enemies best taken down by Love Slap). However, as I briefly mentioned before, not only are all of these abilities situational, but Tease isn't really a very notable ability & her damage and health are the worst in the game (like at least Koops has an extra defense point to make up for his low health... come on, Ms. Mowz!). But, since she truly does shine in what she was made to do and no other partner can quite do what she does, I had to rank her above the outclassed Admiral Bobbery.
Yay! Yet another controversial opinion, how fun! In my opinion, Vivian suffers from the same problems as Admiral Bobbery, but I just find her to be better than him. From a damage perspective, I think Vivian is the second or third strongest in the game, and this is due in part to her powerful, fiery moveset. Her Shade Fist is great because it can hit practically any enemy for huge damage as well as burning them (and it's helpful that if you fail the Action Command, it doesn't actually lower your damage output—it just gets rid of the fire effect). In addition, her fourth ability Fiery Jinx is pretty much the strongest multi-target attack against enemies with no defense, enemies vulnerable to fire, and enemies that simply can't be hit with other great abilities like Shell Slam. Vivian's Veil command, though situational, is a godsend in protecting from foes who buff their attack stat such as Hyper enemies, Macho Grubba, Gloomtail, Bonetail, and even the final boss. Infatuate is the weak link of her abilities, but it is still a decent ability, as it is able to confuse all of the enemies on the battlefield. However, Vivian, although very powerful, simply doesn't have some of the perks that other partners offer. Since (like Bobbery and Ms. Mowz) two of her abilities are rather situational, she still can't make it higher than this place on the list because that is half of her arsenal. Overall, an amazing partner, but a partner that doesn't have four fantastic moves like the rest of the partners on this list; seriously, that's pretty much my only critique for Vivian, which proves just how good she is even though she is low on this list!
It was a hard choice putting Koops in fourth since he is an amazing partner! Koops is a very good character because he can dish out huge damage for extremely low FP costs, and for a large portion of the game, he is the only partner who can damaged spiked enemies! This easily makes him the most useful partner for the first couple of chapters. His Shell Shot ability, although not the strongest basic attack in the game, is one of the most useful (if not the most useful) because, like I just said, it is one of the only ways to hit spiked enemies early on. Secondly, Power Shell is one of the better multi-target attacks in the game, and even though it does much less damage than moves like Stampede and Bob-obmast, it is insanely cheap to use and it is the only multi-target partner attack for a decent portion of the game. Shell Shield is also great, basically buffing Mario's health by ten, virtually making it the best defensive ability in the game. And fourth is my personal favorite multi-target move, Shell Slam. This move is great because it ignores defense and does a ton of damage for a FP cost that is quite a bit lower than some other moves. Now for some of the negatives. Koops has very low health compared to other partners like Flurrie, but luckily, he makes up for it by having a defense point. However, that doesn't compare to his biggest flaw: Koops is a Koopa. This means that if he takes too much damage, he will be flipped onto his back, which renders him literally useless for THREE TURNS! This means that Mario will have to waste a turn swapping Koops out for another partner or wait until Koops fully recovers. Overall, Koops has cheap and powerful attacks that outclass tons of other abilities in the game, but due to him having a small amount of health, having the burden of being a Koopa, and having attacks that can only damage ground-based enemies, I simply could not justify putting him in the top three partners.
3. Madame Flurrie
Just gotta say, even though she is fricking weird and a pretty boring character story-wise, Madame Flurrie is a very underrated partner in battle! Madame Flurrie functions as both a tank and a beefy fighter, with the second highest health in the game and the single most effective healing ability in the game. First of all, Body Slam, although one of the worst basic attacks in the game, has a few necessary uses when it comes to attacking enemies like Rawk Hawk and Swoop-type enemies who simply can't be targeted by Jump attacks. But luckily her mediocre abilities end there, since the rest of her abilities are as stellar as heavenly heck. Her second ability, Gale Force, is easily one of the best abilities in the game and my personal favorite instant-death attack in the entirety of gaming. Lip Lock, her third ability, ignores defense, deals huge damage, and heals Flurrie all at the same time! Dodgy Fog, although not as overpowered as Gale Force or Lip Lock, is still a great ability that is able to make Mario nigh on invincible if utilized in tandem with a Pretty Lucky badge or two! Now on to a few of Flurrie's negatives. First off, Flurrie, although amazing, doesn't have the unique fighting style that makes her particularly strong against any enemy types except for just a few enemies that could only be targeted by Body Slam. Second of all... umm... she just isn't as good as the other two partners on this list? Honestly, I don't even have any other major critiques for Madame Flurrie—she simply is just a really solid partner to have in battle!
Yoshi is widely regarded as the best partner in the game, and it is easy to see why people believe this is the case. He has a wide array of abilities that make him excel in so many areas! His Ground Pound ability is easily the strongest basic attack in the game once upgraded since it hits with a barrage of attacks that really start adding up (unless fighting an enemy that has a lot of defense—Goombella is definitely the better option in that case). Another great ability is Gulp, a defense-ignoring, cheap, and powerful two-target attack. Mini-Egg is also amazing too, as it hits most enemies on-screen for damage and reduces their attack by 2 points—all just for a miniscule 3 FP! Seriously, what an amazing move Mini-Egg is. Finishing it off is Stampede, the most powerful multi-target attack in the game in terms of damage as long as the enemy doesn't have any defense. However, even though he may have the best or second best set of abilities in the game, he has a pretty big flaw: he simply is trash against enemies that have defense when it comes to his very powerful Ground Pound and Stampede attacks, which is an area all of the other partners don't suffer from. Honestly, this flaw isn't that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things, as he is simply so good that he still deserves second place on this list.
This was a tough choice, but I felt Goombella just slightly edges over Yoshi in the race for first. Goombella is really great for tons of reasons. Her Headbonk attack, although slightly weaker than Ground Pound, is very potent and reliable in doing damage. Tattle is one of the most useful and fun abilities in the game because it reveals enemy HP and weaknesses, allowing Mario and his friends to have an easier time slaying the opposition. Multibonk is pretty much Mario's Power Bounce, and since that is in the top three best badges in my opinion, I'd be lying if I said that Multibonk wasn't one of the best abilities in the game! But it doesn't end there—Multibonk isn't even her best ability! That title goes to Rally Wink, which (for a rather low FP cost) allows you to grant Mario an extra turn! This opens up so many oppurtunities for overpowered combos like two Power Bounces in a row, a Power Lift and a Power Bounce, a Supernova and a Earth Tremor or simply whatever you want to do! Overall, with a plethora of amazing skills, Goombella just edges out over the runner-up and takes her place as the best partner in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door.
Leave any feedback and suggestions for future articles below in the comments section!