It's time for the second TV Tropes Halloween Avatar Contest, theme: cute monsters! Details and voting here.
Stand to attention, player! You're not in Green Hill Zone
any more! This videogame setting
suddenly has a lot of guns, bombs, tanks
, warships, soldiers, barbed wire, trenches, smoke, and mines, often in stark contrast to the rest of the game. Often seen in platformers to mix up the usual mix of generic level types.
The music will generally switch to a more sinister theme to warn you, if not a straight out military marching tune.
Don't be surprised to see Schizo Tech
, Super Soldier
enemies, a Military Mashup Machine
for a boss, and for the battlefield to resemble Mordor
. Compare Battleship Raid
- Super Mario Bros.:
- The tank parade and warships of the Dark World in Super Mario Bros. 3.
- A subversion is Bob-omb Battlefield in Super Mario 64, which contains references to a war between two groups of Bob-ombs, but the only actual fighting seen is when the Bob-ombs on the mountain shoot bubble cannons at Mario in the first episode. After that (and even before it), it's more of a pretty standard Green Hill Zone.
- Wario's Battle Canyon from Mario Party.
- Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario Galaxy 2 have both several examples of this, which become Difficult to tackle when it comes time to collect Purple Coins in them (except the Bowser and Bowser Jr. levels, which only have 1 star each in the first game and 2 in the second).
- Super Mario 3D World has Bowser's Bullet Bill Brigade and several other levels, which feature goosestepping Mooks and also see the return of the tanks from Super Mario Bros. 3.
- Super Mario 3D Land and Super Mario Bros. 3, among others, combine this with Levels Take Flight in the form of airship levels, which see Mario take on Bowser's air force.
- The final regular level of Gnasty's World in Spyro the Dragon, Twilight Harbor.
- The Peace Keepers Home has background music that sounds like a military march, the enemies are old-fashioned soldiers, and there are some cannons sitting around that can be fired. None of the actual Peace Keeper worlds continue this trope, though.
- The Zephyr stage from Ripto's Rage!/Gateway to Glimmer features the war betwen the Breeze Builders and Land Blubbers. The main goal of the level is to capture an enemy building.
- The Sonic the Hedgehog games use this every now and then.
- The Rikti War Zone in City of Heroes. Also the Shadow Shard, though not as well known for it...
- Warcadia in Folklore. Particularly noticeable since you head there directly from the Faery Realm, a fairyland filled with friendly little elves, breathtaking architecture, and lots of big, green trees. Whereas Warcadia is filled with monsters based on soldiers and WWII-era weapons, craters, burning buildings and at least one Military Mashup Machine.
- When the Army comes in Half-Life, and some places of Half-Life 2.
- The War levels of Mischief Makers had lots of tanks and bombs. You even rode a missile at one point!
- The very first level in Psychonauts, Basic Braining. You're in the mind of your coach, who is obsessed with the military, and thus everything in his mind that you can see so far is war, war, war. Explosions, war-themed figments, minefields, cannons, camouflage. Even the trees are made of bullets and the rabbits are wearing soldier's helmets.
- The Kingdom of Anger, Volk, from Klonoa 2: Lunatea's Veil, a kingdom consisting entirely of people who do nothing but fight all the time.
- The War chapter of Conkers Bad Fur Day
- Technoir in Jazz Jackrabbit.
- Napalm Man from Mega Man 5 has this for the second half of his stage.
- The aptly named Planet Batalia in Ratchet & Clank (the first one).
- All Metal Gear games feature these prominently, of course.
- Sometimes Inverted in Metal Slug: while the game is about (at times wacky) war, some areas have little to no killing machines trying to kill you. Of course, there are always something else trying to kill you...
- Military base in Painkiller.
- Moon Kronor in Serious Sam II.
- Planet Norion and Pirate Homeworld in Metroid Prime 3.
- Ichor in Jet Force Gemini.
- World 2 ("Combat Island") in Rainbow Islands. With cute, cartoony-looking bomber planes and tanks, no less.
- Pretty much ALL the levels in Heavy Weapon are like this.
- The Halberd in the Kirby series. Meta Knight's airship is probably the biggest example of Mood Whiplash in the series that doesn't involve a Cosmic Horror.
- Planet Helghan from Killzone looks like this beside all the other stages in Playstation All Stars Battle Royale (at least until it gets invaded by Ape Escape's Goliath and an army of Pipo Monkeys).
- Cratermaze has the Wartime levels, where the enemies become soldiers. In Booby Kids for the Famicom, the collectibles also become radios.
- Double Dragon Neon has the Assault Zone (Mission 6), whose boss is a Giant Tank.
- Non-Videogame example in the Pathfinder Adventure Path: "Reign of Winter Part 5: Rasputin Must Die!", in which your Medieval European Fantasy-ish party travels to Red October-era Russia to take on soldiers, vampires, tanks, and clouds of sentient mustard gas in a prison camp before trying to give Rasputin The Mad Monk himself another brutally overdone death.