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Art Course

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Accustomed, abstract, or appliances, art levels can be all-inclusive.note 

Sialeeds: Lord Barows gathered a bunch of artists he thought had promise and had them create his village. For better or worse, this is how it turned out.
Zegai: It attack on my senses.
Haud Village, Suikoden V

Sometimes video game creators see themselves as artists, so they will try and make that clear by designing a level to look like a work of art. You know, so that you know that they know.

The level can look like it was hand-painted in various cheap oil paints, sculpted from stoneware clay, knitted from yarn or folded from origami paper. Its enemies will often fit the environment with attacks to match. If such a setting sounds too whimsical, then museums and art galleries can also work as more realistic alternatives.

To get the point across at what they were aiming for, much of the level's aesthetics will be borrowed from a specific work of art or even the collective portfolio of a particular artist. Vincent van Gogh is a favorite among artists borrowed for inspiration, making the games' levels look as though they were painted like The Starry Night.

Note that if the game's whole setting is already artsy, then it doesn't count. This trope is a Video Game Settings trope in the same sense as Band Land and Level Ate. Overlaps with, but not mutually inclusive with, Graffiti Town.


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    Anime & Manga 

  • The Future Forest: The installation is essentially a self-contained biosphere constructed from recycled plastics.

    Films — Animation 
  • While touched upon in the aesthetics of Trolls, the entire world present in Trolls: World Tour is made to look as though it was hand-crafted, with various geographical points made of different materials and styles, sand being made of glitter and water made to look like tinsel and silk georgette and lava made from satin that doesn't actually burn or melt anyone.
    • Pop Village and the forest it exists in is made entirely out of felt with an emphasis is basic pastel colors.
    • The coral present at the Techno Troll's party looks as though it was croquetted.
    • Symphonyville is made of varying shades of bright yellow and gold, the world made to look like embroidered pillows to match the Classical Troll's sophistication and gentle tones.
    • Lonesome Flats and the surrounding desert have a theme based around quilting and natural fibers, an art-form common to the Old West.
    • Vibe City is the most diverse in its color palette (reflecting the Funk Troll's acceptance in musical-diversity), which much of the outside and inside of the ship emphasizing sequins. The String's Chamber in particular is made of records repurposed as sequins.
    • The Rock Trolls have a heavier emphasis off of denim and black leather (the most common fashion in Hard Rock), their territory Volcano Rock City made of patches of black leather stitched together with reflective silk as the streaming volcano and spike-studs everywhere.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • GARO: Lament of the Dark Dragon: The design of the Promised Land is heavily inspired by found object art, especially of the trash art subgenre. This is because the place is inhabited by the spirits of lost and abandoned objects. Some of the creatures even resemble the characters from Kaoru's drawings in the first and second seasons.

    Video Games 
  • In Bloons Tower Defense 6, the map Cubism is based on the cubism art movement. The path forms zigzagging straight lines, separating the map into several areas, each with different colors.
  • Bugs Bunny: Rabbit Rampage: In Final Showdown, the final battle against Daffy Duck takes place on an animator's table, where Bugs has to destroy various paint cans and tubes while battling Daffy's various incarnations.
  • The Painted World of Ariamis in Dark Souls is one of the optional areas of the game. It is an entire world hidden inside a painting in the Royal Palace of Anor Londo. It manifests in the form of the dilapidated ruins of a castle covered in snow, made to be a cold, dark but comforting place where things that don't belong anywhere else can find respite. Due to having been painted in blood to accomplish this, the Painted World will begin to develop a rot that slowly corrupts it and its inhabitants and must be burned away so that it can be painted anew, something found in Ariamis's replacement Ariandel in Dark Souls III.
  • The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion has a quest requiring the player to enter a painting of a renowned artist and rescue him. There you learn he possesses a magic paint brush, which he uses to enter the canvas and paint the work from inside, thus explaining the remarkable detail for which he is famed. Unfortunately, a thief stole the brush from him while he was inside, and it's up to you to track him down and get it back. The entire world is designed to emulate the look of a painting...right down to the trolls the thief painted up to protect him from the angry artist.
  • In James Pond II: Codename RoboCod, which is about the titular character trying to Save Christmas, has a door which houses art-themed levels, both visual art levels with paint, pencils, and paper, and musical-themed levels with instruments.
  • Kirby's Dream Land 3: The final portion of the last level of Cloudy Park features a corridor with many wall drawings that gain life and become enemies. This serves as a prelude to the world's boss, Ado.
  • Klonoa 2: Lunatea's Veil has the Maze of Memories, a museum-like level where people's memories are depicted as moving, abstract pictures and sculptures.
  • The Painted Swampland in New Super Mario Bros. U is located in the haunted sub-area of Soda Jungle. While the level counts as Big Boo's Haunt due to the vigorous amount of Boo enemies, the entire level was designed with Van Gogh's The Starry Night in mind.
  • One world in No Time to Explain takes place in a white void, where the player has to shoot ink everywhere in order to find their platforms. Each level in this world also contains a small snippet explaining why video games are art, parodying the sentiment with increasingly strict, random, or outright pretentious arguments.
  • Persona 5 has Madarame's Palace, which is the Mental World of a famous artist. It takes the form of an art museum filled with numerous paintings, each one representing a student or work of art that Madarame has plagiarized in order to achieve his fame. There's even a few sections where you have to traverse inside some paintings in order to advance.
  • Pokémon Black and White: The Gym Leader of Castelia City is Burgh, an artist and Bug-type Pokemon expert. His Gym is designed after those two traits: a hive-styled building with honeycomb-shaped rooms that doubles as an art gallery for Burgh's paintings. This is downplayed in Pokémon Black and White 2, where the whole building is just filled with silk, although Burgh's room is all painted over and occupied by his tools and work.
  • In Poptropica's Super Villain Island, you can enter the Black Widow's dream, an art gallery with art she has vandalized because she thinks that her portrait is the only art is worth seeing. You have to enter the paintings, which include Picasso's Three Musicians and Vincent van Gogh's "The Starry Night", cleaning up the graffiti she left.
  • Black Velvetopia from Psychonauts is a level set in the mind of One-Track-Minded Artist Edgar Teglee. The entire level is designed like a bright-neon black velvet painting parody of a Mexican Town, with Raz's design refitted to accompany this.
  • Rayman has Picture City, which is basically made of pencils, with erasers as bouncy floors, and sharpeners as moving platforms. And spikes, ooooh so many spikes...
  • Rocket: Robot on Wheels has its second level, "Paint Misbehavin'", an Ancient Grome level where painting objects, as well as yourself, is a central mechanic to solve most puzzles.
  • Rock of Ages 2, being heavily-based off of historical art, is packed to the gills with them. To name a couple, one level has you face off with Baba Yaga, which takes cues from The Starry Night, and one has you face off with The Scream, where the level resembles the latter painting.
  • Haud Village in Suikoden V is a town founded by the Barows family with the purpose of attracting artists to put their creative minds to the test. The town is very vibrant in color, has unusual architecture, and has some of the more "unique" artworks. It was this town that made your flag for the war.
  • Super Mario Galaxy 2 has Rolling Masterpiece Galaxy, an art-themed course that quite fits the name. It features many art supplies including paintbrushes, a paint palette, rulers, rolls of tape, and colored pencils.
  • A few of the latter levels in Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island have the night sky take an appearance similar to The Starry Night.
  • The Pictochat 1 and 2 stages from Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U respectively take place inside the titular DS application, where doodles are constantly being drawn around the fighters, like tornadoes, a giant clock and even multiple Pac-Mans.
  • Wario Land 4 has Doodle Woods, a level within the Topaz Passage. A Mook Maker constantly pesters Wario through the level drawing enemies to attack you. Pencils are cleverly used as Spikes of Doom, and some of the drawings on the wall come to life as enemies.
  • Yoshi's Crafted World, already a game based on arts and crafts, has one in the form of "Stitched Together", which actually reuses assets and aesthetics of the previous game, making it unique in a game that utilizes a different style of art. This also technically counts as a Nostalgia Level, in a way.

    Western Animation 
  • Legend of the Three Caballeros: Nazca Realm from the episode "Nazca Racing" is similar to ChalkZone's titular dimension but restricts the objects to line art with no filling colors. The place is described thusly:
    José: The sparseness of line and attention to negative space is primitive, yet evocative.
    Panchito: And also cool.


Video Example(s):


Black Velvetopia

Black Velvetopia is a level set in the mind of One-Track-Minded Artist Edgar Teglee. The entire level is designed like a bright-neon black velvet painting parody of a Mexican Town, with Raz's design refitted to accompany this.

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