Rainbow Cruise (レインボークルーズ, Rainbow Cruise), also known as Rainbow Ride, is a stage that appears in Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. Brawl. It is based on the "Rainbow Ride" stage from Super Mario 64. It is also one of Mario's home stages, and it is his stage in All-Star Mode, along with any of his teammates, as well as Bowser's stage in All-Star Match 1 of Melee's Event Match.
The battle starts off on a flying ship that is facing left. The ship has four propellers on the backside, three propellers on top, one on the front and two on the back, and six giant paddles; these make it fly. The anchor hangs off the front. The ship is flat in the center, but not on the sides. The bow of the ship is just a bit higher than the deck. The stern is clearly higher than the rest of the ship, including the bow. It is wide enough to fit two characters. The stern increases the height of the back of the boat, which is good for those who can wall-grapple. In the middle of the boat is the mast of the ship. It has two levels to fight on. The space between the middle platform and the deck is slightly larger in comparison to the space between the top platform and the middle. The top platform is also shorter than the middle one. It is just large enough to fit Bowser. After about thirty seconds, the ship will crash into the next segment of the stage and sink. When the ship sinks, the characters will have to battle on the strange floating platforms that follow. The platforms are different and feature a rotating axle platform, flying carpets, and falling blocks. The stage moves in a clockwise order and at the end, flashing red arrows will appear that point downwards. They indicate that all players should descend to the lower parts of the stage before the camera zooms down. Those who do not make it to the boat, which is waiting below, can be KO'd off the top off the screen. The cycle restarts from there. Because of its predictable pattern, Rainbow Cruise is allowed in some tournaments (the only Mario-related scrolling stage to be allowed in tournaments).
While the Western localization version of the SM64 stage's name (on which this stage is based on) is "Rainbow Ride", the original Japanese version's is "Rainbow Cruise". The appearance of the Japanese name in the initial North American release of Melee seemed to be an oversight by the localization team and appeared as "Rainbow Ride" in both the PAL release and later North American copies of the game. It also appeared listed as "Rainbow Ride" in North American demos of Brawl, seeming to establish it as the "correct" Western name. Oddly enough, the stage's name in the retail release of Brawl in North America appears as "Rainbow Cruise". In the retail release of the PAL version however, the name appears as Rainbow Ride. CrappyCaptureDevice has also revealed in one of his "History Behind Super Smash Bros." videos that, through a GameShark, if one chooses a stage that they wish to start on (the stages won't have their actual names; instead, they will have either Japanese or roughly translated names, if not names that simply refer to the type/theme of the stages), Rainbow Ride will be shown as Rainbow Cruise.
This stage is from Super Mario 64's 15th level Rainbow Ride. In Super Mario 64 there is a giant floating boat. The boat is made mostly out of wood and has wings for oars, but the boat only remains stationary. On the boat are strong gusts of wind, Bob-ombs, a Lakitu, and a cannon that Mario can shoot himself out of. The boat also has a tall mast with no sail. In this stage in Melee, the boat has been greatly changed and scaled down. The boat has also been designed differently. The mast of the boat has been shortened, and there is now an extra platform. The boat now has a door towards the back and propellers that are connected to these wires on the boat. The boat is also no longer stationary as it flies across the stage. Despite these changes the boat retains it's wings for oars and how the ship is made mostly out of wood.
In Super Mario 64, flying carpets are means of transportation. When Mario jumps on a carpet the carpet starts to move along a rainbow trail. If Mario were to jump off of the carpet, it would continue to fly until it disappears. When the carpet reaches the end of the trail it simply falls. In this stage, the carpets move when a player jumps on them. If a player jumps off of a carpet, it disappears as it did in Super Mario 64. The carpets do seem to follow some form of a pre-determined path, but when the carpets reach the end of the "path" they don't fall. The design of the carpets also are retained from Super Mario 64.
In Super Mario 64, there is a seesaw like platform that rises on one side and lowers on the other depending on where Mario stands. In this stage, a seesaw-like platform can be seen towards the upper left, but the platform is designed differently and has been scaled down. Also from Super Mario 64 is a giant pendulum-like swing that swings side to side. This pendulum-like platform appears in this stage, but it is designed differently. In Super Mario Bros. 3, there are these platforms called Donut Lifts. Donut Lifts are these platform that fall down when a player stands on it too long. These donut lifts also appear in Super Mario 64. The Donut Lifts in this stage work the same as they did Super Mario Bros. 3 and are designed to resemble the ones in Super Mario 64. Inside Princess Peach's castle in Super Mario 64 are black and white checkered floors. Some of the platforms in this stage have checkered platforms. In Super Mario 64's Rainbow Ride, the stage is high above the clouds and no land can be seen. In this stage, however, the land can be seen far off in the distance (including a mountainside village by the platforms just as the ship goes down). 
- This stage is also unique in which there are screen corner frames around the main battle area, following the camera (which, in any other stage, would possibly be the point where the characters get magnified - though they can still be magnified here). Fighters can stand out of these boundaries without any consequences, though.
- During the first little bit of the boat ride, it is possible to jump out of sight, onto a platform above the boat, avoiding the fights below. The only draw back is taking damage being outside the screen.
- It is impossible to fall through the magic carpets. The carpets also only rise diagonally upward to the right.
- In Melee, a character was able to jump through the bottom of the donut lifts, but not drop through. However in Brawl, characters can no longer pass through the donut lifts in any way.
- If the Pokémon Trainer is used on this stage in Brawl, he will stand on a special magic carpet in the background that is otherwise not present.
- If one stands at the edge of the teeter totter (near top of screen), they will not slide off when it tilts. Instead, the character will shake repeatedly until they jump off or when it disappears. This glitch coincidentally resembles a similar glitch in SM64, where if Mario stands on a ledge in the right place, he will shake repeatedly. Video can be seen here.
- In Melee, if Camera mode is being played, and the camera is being angled to where the ship sinks, it doesn't actually sink. Instead, it follows the characters under them.
- In Melee's Training Mode, 1 or 2 opponents will automatically self-destruct if the number of CPUs was set from 1 to 2 or 3 after reaching the platforms. This does not happen in the Brawl version of this stage. However, something similar happens in the Halberd stage.
- In the beginning part of the stage, you can hang on to the ledge the farthest to the right, and no computer will attack nor chase you.