Video Game: Wario Land 4

Wario Land 4 (Wario Land Advance in Japan) is the fourth game in the Wario Land series (not counting Virtual Boy Wario Land), originally released in 2001 for the Game Boy Advance.

Much like the other games in the series, the plot is primarily driven by Wario's greed: he finds out that a golden pyramid has been unearthed, and with the sight of gold in his eyes he storms off to find it. When he does go into it, he jumps into a large hole and finds himself trapped in the pyramid. Now, the only way out is to conquer the paintings found in the four corridors of the area, with a boss lurking behind each one, before finally fighting the one behind all this. And there's a strange black cat that seems to come and go when you least expect it...

The gameplay is a bit different from its predecessors - while Wario still has his unique transformations, he now has a life meter, and thus can die much like he could in the first Wario Land and Wario Land 3's final boss. (There are no lives, though - you're simply kicked out of the level without any of the money or bonuses you found in it.)

Wario Land 4 was given a limited rerelease for Ambassadors on the Nintendo 3DS, and later released publicly on the Wii U.

This game is the Trope Namer for:

This game provides examples of

  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: Several of them - two in Crescent Moon Village, one in Arabian Nights, and one in the Golden Passage.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Princess Shokora at the end.
  • Always Night: Crescent Moon Village, Arabian Night, Hotel Horror...
  • The Amazon: Monsoon Jungle.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Because the levels tend to be rather long and have to be beaten in one sitting to get the treasures, the game comes with a save state option on the pause screen, which allows you to save your game at the exact last spot you were at, then return to the title screen and shut off the game safely, so you can pick up where you left off later in a case where you're tired or have to stop playing.
    • Because the boss fights have time limits and you can lose the best ending if you don't get all three treasures late in them, the game gives an item shop before each fight, which you can use to knock off as many as ten hit points before a fight, in exchange for some minigame medals. This is especially helpful in Hard Mode.
    • Also, beating the Golden Diva without all the treasures will respawn all the bosses (but keep all the levels beaten and the items you got in them) when you go back to your save file, giving a player a second shot at getting all the treasures again.
  • An Axe to Grind: The Axe Ghosts.
  • Art Initiates Life: Hoggus, found in Doodle Woods.
  • Baleful Polymorph: Princess Shokora was transformed into the Black Cat by the Golden Diva after she lost in a magic duel.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: Three of the four levels in the Sapphire Passage (except Fiery Cavern).
  • Boss-Only Level: Every boss.
  • The Cameo: Dr. Arewo Stein, from the Japan-only game For The Frog The Bell Tolls, shows up in almost all the bonus rooms.
    • Mr. Game and Watch appears as the shopkeeper for the item store except not, it's actually Princess Shokora in disguise.
  • Cap: The coin counter maxes out at 999990. Since all the coins and crystals in the game come multiples of ten, it's clear that the extra zero is only there to give Wario's adventure more worth.
  • Clipped Wing Angel: The Golden Diva, so freakin' much. Her FINAL form is a quivering pair of lips that does nothing but crawl back and forth. You kill it with one blow.
  • Cool Car: The first appearance of Wario's car. He also drives this during the end credits on Normal, or a pickup truck on Hard, and even a Hovercar on Super-Hard.
  • Credits Medley: Which varies depending on how much treasure you collected.
  • Credits Montage: The ending.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: The game has no extra lives, so if Wario loses a level, he's simply thrown out without getting anything from it, and has to play it again.
  • Dem Bones: The skeleton ghosts, which can turn Wario into a zombie.
  • Denser and Wackier: The Wario Land series was always on the weird side, but this game made the weirdness even more blatantly obvious.
  • Deranged Animation: All of the bosses have weird animations that get more deranged as they lose health, and the Sound Room records have weird pics to go along with them.
  • Easy Levels, Hard Bosses: Most of the levels are fairly straight forward, but the bosses are no pushovers.
  • Eternal Engine: The Curious Factory. 40 Below Fridge combines this with Slippy-Slidey Ice World.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin/Meaningful Name: Catbat. Guess what two animals he resembles.
  • Expy: Dr. Stein may be a Canon Immigrant from For the Frog the Bell Tolls, but he also heavily resembles Wario Land 3 and Dr. Mario 64 enemy Mad Scienstein; ignoring the different art styles, their faces are identical.
  • Flunky Boss: Some of them.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Might be a case of Mondegreen, but it sounds like there is an F-bomb dropped in the main theme of the game.
  • Green Hill Zone: Palm Tree Paradise.
  • Gross-Up Close-Up: When you fight and damage the bosses long enough, except Spoiled Rotten, who's gross for half of the battle.
  • Grossout Game: See above.
  • Ground Pound: If you jump from a high-enough place, Wario's Ground Pound turns into a Super Ground Pound, able to smash through even ultra-hard blue boulders.
  • Guide Dang It: The Golden Diva has a method of hurting her which involves throwing a hammer she tosses at you on yourself, which turns Wario into Spring Wario, allowing him to smash into the Diva's mask. The game gives little indication that you're supposed to do this - it assumes the player will remember that hammers are used by the enemies that can turn you into Spring Wario - and the player may even assume you're supposed to throw it at the Diva (which won't remotely harm her).
  • Hailfire Peaks: A three-fold example: Firey Cavern starts out as a Lethal Lava Land/Underground Level, but turns into a Slippy-Slidey Ice World when you hit the Frog Switch.
  • Harder Than Hard: Super Hard mode, which starts off Wario with one hit point, adds large amounts of enemies, hides most of the needed treasures, and gives a lot less time for the level escapes and bosses.
    • To let you know how hard it is, you are given fifteen seconds to beat the first boss. Said boss is the easiest boss in the game, yes, but you can NOT screw around; as soon as you are able, you Attack! Attack! Attack! and don't let up for any reason.
  • Hearts Are Health: There's no lives, so if you die you're kicked out and have to start over.
  • Hell Hotel: Hotel Horror, unsurprisingly.
  • Hook Hand: Captain Coin.
  • Hub Level: The Golden Pyramid.
  • Idle Animation: When left standing around in a level, Wario pulls out a pair of dumbbells from somewhere and does bicep curls. He sometimes also jumps rope (very quickly, like a boxer during his training regimen). If he's idle while the clock is ticking down after pressing the level switch, he starts panicking by flailing his arms and nervously running in place.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Wario, suprisingly. In the ending, while Wario was as rough as usual, he helped Dr. Arweo Stein and Princess Shokora out when the pyramid was collapsing, the latter of which he didn't know the identity of at the time. This goes against everything gamers have seen from Wario as a character so far, but that doesn't seem to be a problem here.
  • Jungle Japes: Monsoon Jungle and Mystic Lake.
  • Last Lousy Point: The hardest level to get a gold crown on is the tutorial level, as there are only just enough points to earn it.
    • You can give yourself a tiny bit of breathing room when getting it by using one level trick: Ground Pound next to the harmless purple Goomba-like enemies to pop them into the air and "upgrade" them to red. They're still harmless, but now they drop bronze coins that are worth 50 points, instead of a couple tiny coins that are only worth 10 points each.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Firey Cavern.
  • Load-Bearing Boss: When the Golden Diva perishes, the pyramid collapses.
  • Long Song, Short Scene: The Golden Passage theme can be heard for a couple of milliseconds before pressing the time bomb right below the beginning and starting the Hurry Up theme. It's a shame because the song is quite creepy, mood-inducing and short, so it would have been perfect for a small corridor between the entrance and the time bomb.
  • Losing Your Head: One enemy is a robot that throws its head on the floor.
  • Magic Carpet: Found in Arabian Night.
  • Man-Eating Plant: Cractus, except it dosen't eat Wario and zombifies him instead.
  • Malevolent Architecture: Made rather obvious in Hotel Horror and Crescent Moon Village.
  • Market-Based Title: The game is called Wario Land Advance in Japan.
  • Mook Maker: Hoggus in Doodle Woods, by way of drawing.
  • Multiple Endings: How many of the treasures you earned for quickly beating the bosses at the end determines what form Princess Shokora takes, and what bonus images are received at the end of the credits. Finally, what vehicle Wario is driving during the credits is determined by the difficulty level of the file.
  • Numbered Sequels: Except in Japan.
  • Pinball Zone: The Trope Namer.
  • Redundant Researcher: Dr. Arewo Stein plays this role.
  • Save the Princess: Unintentionally.
  • Shifting Sand Land: Arabian Night.
  • Slasher Smile: Cractus and Spoiled Rotten (once she Turns Red).
  • Smooch of Victory: Wario gets one from Princess Shokora at the end of the game.
  • The Song Remains the Same: Oddly, the title screen stays in English in both versions and the Palm Tree Paradise one stays in Japanese in both versions. And the odd aversion is the ending song, which is an American style song with English lyrics in Western regions and an anime type song with Japanese lyrics in Japan.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Is it Princess Shokora or Chocolat?
  • The Spiny: One enemy looks almost exactly like the Mario Spiny - though on closer examination, it looks more like a yellow Kirby with a spiked helmet.
  • Stalked by the Bell: Hitting the Frog Switch prompts a time limit - if it runs out, your accumulated money is quickly drained. If that runs out, you're booted out of the level.
  • Super Title 64 Advance: The Japanese title, Wario Land Advance.
  • Temple of Doom: The Golden Pyramid, although only the Entry and Golden Passages are actual levels set there.
  • Timed Mission:
    • Every level turns into this when you hit the Frog Switch. Entire Golden Passage is this, considering it's placed under the starting vortex, and if you're playing on S-Hard, entire Palm Tree Paradise, as well as most of the Hall of Hieroglyphs, as you're forced to hit Frog Switch early in the level.
    • Every boss is fought on a time limit, with treasures starting to disappear if you take too long.
  • Toy Time: The Topaz Passage and the levels within.
  • Turns Red: Spoiled Rotten illustrates the trope. Rather graphically, at that.
  • Underground Level: Fiery Cavern.
  • Under the Sea: Mystic Lake.
  • Violation of Common Sense: Especially blatant in the final boss fight. When the Diva's face is crying and throws spiked hammers, you must wait for the hammer to retract its spikes, pick it up, throw it in the air and hit yourself in the head with it. Only then is Wario in a state where he can damage her. If you figured out on the first try that this is what you had to do, without doing it by accident, you're lying.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: The normally easy Spoiled Rotten becomes this in Super Hard mode - you have a scant 15 seconds to defeat it.
  • Warm-Up Boss: Spoiled Rotten, except on Super Hard.
  • Weird Moon: Crescent Moon Village, anyone? Stuck in a state of perpetual crescent phase, and way larger than it should be in the sky.

Alternative Title(s):

Wario Land Advance