The game starts out at Mario's House, where Mario and Luigi get a letter from Princess Peach, inviting them to a party at the castle. They head there only to be caught in a trap caused by Bowser, who uproots Peach's Castle and sending it into the sky. Mario defends Princess Peach the best he can, but Bowser defeats him by using the Star Rod, a magical item that he stole from Star Haven. He sends Mario back down to the Mushroom Kingdom and takes Princess Peach as his prisoner.
Mario lands in a forest where the Star Spirits find him and try to revive him. While its unsuccessful, they leave and he found by a goomba child, Goombaria, and taken to Goomba Village for care until he revives. While Mario is still unconcious, Eldstar, one of the honorable Star Spirits tells him to go to Shooting Star Summit when he awakens. After being out for days, according to the Toad who runs the Toad House where Mario was taken to, he finally awakens and attempts to head for Shooting Star Summit. Apparently,he is unable to leave cause Goompapa, Goombaria's dad, is busy fixing the town gate, which is blocking the road that leads to Toad Town. Later on, the gate is fixed, but Kammy Koopa shows up and blocks the path again with a yellow block. Goompapa tells Mario that Goompa has a hammer that they can use to break the block.