Mario Paint Instruments

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Mario Paint has 15 different stamps representing sounds to choose from. They can be grouped in several ways, such as pitched/unpitched and melodic/sound effect. Each sound has a visual characteristic resembling the kind of sound it makes while others are less obvious, yet quite creative.

While music composition on Mario Paint limits you to the Treble Clef, the recorded samples for each instrument occupies a specific region of a piano keyboard. The range can differ from as low as B1 to as high as G6, giving you a range of over three octaves.

//picture of full range piano keyboard with Mario Paint sounds in their tuned region//

HIGH RANGE (B4-G6) The Star (B4-G6) "makes a metallic sound like a bell. The light, tinkling sound adds accent to a song." This instrument is useful for extending the Mario Symbol beyond its limited range, giving you an extra octave of notes to work with. This is the only instrument in the editor that allows you to place notes above G5.

MID RANGE (B3-G5) The Mario Symbol (B3-G5) "represents a piano-like sound. It’s good for making melody lines and chords." This sound best represents a toy piano, much like what you would hear in the opening theme song from Rugrats. It also has similar qualities to a xylophone. This sound is quite useful as both melodic and harmonic.

The Plant (B3-G5) "sounds like a trumpet. Normally, it’s heard in the melody but not in chords." The fireflower has a very abrasive presence and really stands out when it is used. It tends to get buried if placed too low on the staff, otherwise, it works quite well in the upper portion of the staff. Despite what the Mario Paint Player's Guide states, it functions quite well in chords and harmony, especially when you stack several fireflowers together.

The Game Boy (B3-G5) "makes a flat tone similar to a synthesizer. This tone is also a sound effect." The Game Boy sound has the natural ability to cut through all other sounds and be heard quite well regardless on its position on the staff. It's super useful to help melody lines feel more pointed, or to drive harmony and chords if used in combinations.

LOW RANGE The Goose (B1-G3) "is like an entire horn section of an orchestra. Use them together in chords for depth." This sound is useful to provide accents. It's a very short note which decreases in length the higher it moves on the staff. Its practical range is the lower portion of the staff and is rarely heard in the melody line.

The Jet (B1-G3) "makes a guitar sound. The note lasts longer than other notes and may be the most musical." The jet is one of my favorite instruments in the collection of sounds. The length of the sound is not compromised as it moves up the staff like other instruments, making it very useful in all ranges and tempos. It provides excellent harmony and works well with most other instruments.

The Car (B1-G3) "reproduces the tone from an organ for a rich, sustained sound." Its sound length is identical to the Jet, and retains the same duration regardless of its placement on the staff.

The Heart sounds (B1-G3) like a string bass being plucked. Use it to create a driving bass line.

UNPITCHED The Mushroom "sounds like a bass drum. Use it with the Ship and Heart for rhythm." The Ship "sounds like a wooden block being struck."