Follow TV Tropes


Bonus Stage
aka: Bonus Level

Go To
Giant, flashing letters that spell out BONUS are optional.
"Here's a little bonus room
'Cuz I know you've had it tough,
And here's a little bonus tune
'Bout collecting real cool stuff..."
— "The Li'l Bonus Room," Skullmonkeys

The friendly Bonus Stage (not to be confused with the less friendly Bonus Dungeon and Brutal Bonus Level) is a level or area in a video game that has all or many of the following traits:

  • Does not need to be accessed/completed to complete the game (though it may be needed for 100% Completion).
  • Is entered after the end of a regular level, or at points within a regular level.
  • Usually hidden, or requires a certain level of performance or number of pickups, but in some games they always appear at set points.
  • Contains opportunities to get large amounts of points, One Ups, continues, Power Ups (often rare/powerful ones), and even Bonus Stage Collectables.
  • Typically, it is a Mini-Game, or differs significantly in some other way from normal gameplay.
  • If it's possible to die at all, it will usually only kick you out of the bonus stage without taking a life.

This is also not to be confused with the web animation of the same name, or Bonus Round, which is for game shows and tends to function similarly. See also Secret Level.


    open/close all folders 

     Action Game  
  • Battletoads
    • Battletoads in Battlemaniacs had continuous scrolling bonus stages following the second and fifth levels. The object was to collect the bowling pins or dominoes for points and avoid the black ones and enemies.
    • The Battletoads Arcade Game had a Street Fighter II-like timed stage after the third level to demolish a Rat Fighter like the one from Battletoads and Double Dragon.
  • Jitsu Squad have levels after most boss battles and before the following stage, set in a sushi restaurant. Where gigantic rolls of sushi will repeatedly drop from the ceiling, where you can slice up as many sushi rolls as you can before a given time limit and gain bonus points for the number of rolls you managed to cut up.
  • Jackie Chan's Action Kung Fu has hidden bells in many places. When Jackie picks up a bell, he is instantly transported to a "special stage," where he can win points, by punching/kicking things or jumping on clouds, that can be spent on health, continues, and Psycho Waves. There's a show of fireworks for a perfect score.
  • In between certain stages of Dynamite Dux, Bin must fight Pin in a boxing ring for points. If only one person is playing, Bin fights a computer-controlled Pin; if two are playing, they must duel.
  • Carrie's Order Up! sends you to a bonus stage every four rounds, where you have a limited time to collect coins to raise your score and earn extra lives without fear of bumping into customers.
  • Solar Jetman has two types:
    • Some planets have hidden warp zones where you float through space in your jet pod and try to collect as many crystals as possible while avoiding space mines.
    • The second type is accessible after collecting a Golden Warpship piece and also requires you to collect as many crystals as possible, but with no hazards and a shorter time limit (10 ticks, or about 24 real-time seconds).

     Action Adventure  
  • Jaws has a bonus stage involving bombing jellyfish from a plane.

     Fighting Game  
  • Street Fighter
    • In Street Fighter, winning every two fights gives you a bonus stage where you either press the attack buttons at the right time to break a stack of bricks and cinder blocks, or break all of the wooden boards in the room.
    • In Street Fighter II, after every two or three rounds, your character got to beat the crap out of a car or pile of oil drums for extra points.
    • And Street Fighter III 3rd Strike: Fight for the Future has two bonus stages in which you destroy a car or tech Sean's basketballs.
  • Super Smash Bros. has a few staple bonus rounds, the most enduring one being "Break the Targets". Others have included "Board the Platforms" and "Race to the Finish". In the 3DS game's Smash Run, these bonus rounds were repurposed into bonus challenges for power-ups (in the case of Break the Targets) and endgame rulesets (in the case of Race to the Finish).

     First Person Shooter  
  • Star Trek: Elite Force 2 has a Bonus Stage which is a direct pastiche of Super Mario Bros.; you even have go drop down a giant pipe to get to it.
  • Batman Doom has one of these. During your first boss fight with the Scarecrow, mayor Kroll sits nearby, tied to a ticking bomb. If the bomb explodes, the level ends and you go to the next one (map16) like normal. But if you manage to actually defeat Scarecrow before the explosion, you go to map31. It's a big, empty (and thus somewhat creepy) city map where you're trying to collect a bunch of random bonuses before you can access the exit and continue onto map16. This is also where you can access the Secret Level.

     Maze Game  
  • Devil World has the "Bonus Box" at the end of every round, where Tamagon searches for a 1-Up hidden in one of six boxes. As the Devil has flown away, Tamagon can for once control the direction of scrolling by stepping on arrows.
  • Lady Bug for the ColecoVision had the Vegetable Harvest Screen as a reward for spelling S-P-E-C-I-A-L, while the arcade original simply gave the player a free game credit.
  • Saturn Bomberman had "Bomber Catcher," a Power-Up-grabbing crane game.
  • Monster Hunter (PC) have certain levels containing Treasure Room keys, which the hunter can collect. If they finish a level with a key in their possession, before moving to the next stage the hunter can enter a room filled with gems, rubies, extra lives… but also various monsters, and NO weapons to boot. They'll need to collect as much loot as they can in thirty seconds, and if they succeed, the "Level Complete" music plays as all monsters onscreen dies. If the hunter is unfortunate enough to be killed in a treasure room, they won't lose a life, but the game will mock them "Loser" before going to the next stage.
  • Wrecking Crew has a find-the-coin bonus minigame after every fourth stage.
  • In Super Pac-Man certain rounds are a bonus game where Pac-Man starts in his Super form and has to eat everything in the maze as quickly as possible with no ghosts to stop him. Bonus points act as a timer that gradually go down, so the faster the player clears the stage, the more bonus points they get.

  • Spiral Knights periodically and randomly inserts bonus stages into their dungeons. These levels are full of money, items, Heat and Minerals, with no enemies to attack.
  • World of Warcraft:
    • The Troves of the Treasure King, a single player instance focused on the player looting as many chests as possible before a timer ran out. While there were enemies to fight it was better to ignore all but the final mini-boss as they dropped little loot and tended to call others over, wasting even more time. It could only be accessed using a key which characters could only loot once per week.
    • The special Warlock instance in the Black Temple has a timed stage where the player temporarily ignores the fighting to steal as many trinkets as possible. Depending on what was swiped, the total haul could easily be several hundred gold.
      • Crosses over with Suspicious Videogame Generosity however, as the subsequent fight was quite difficult, and so the gold was needed to offset the incoming repair bill.
  • Phantasy Star Online 2 has the bonus stages "Tokyo Bonus (Silver)", "Tokyo Bonus (Gold)", "Magatsu Bonus (Silver)", "Magatsu Bonus (Gold)", "Rappy Fever" and "Kazuchi Assault" which can only be accessed by randomly obtaining keys (which expire after 168 hours) as a possible reward for beating a daily featured quest for the first time that day with an A or S rank result. These quests offer high exp gain and/or loot as well as set rare enemy spawns depending on which one you are doing.
  • In Final Fantasy XIV, uncovering hidden treasure using a treasure map has a possibility of creating a portal that leads to a bonus dungeon where a party of players can potentially earn rewards of massive money payouts and rare, valuable items. The interior of the dungeon can take one of two forms: a procession of battle rooms, after which players must chose a door to progress through, their choice either leading deeper into the dungeon or prematurely ejecting them back to the overworld; or a roulette-style arena where battles and their respective rewards are decided at random, as well as whether the player will be ejected from the dungeon.

     Party Game 
  • Mario Party 9: Instead of boss minigames, DK's Jungle Ruins features two bonus minigames called Diddy's Banana Blast and DK's Banana Bonus. Both minigames place players in a series of Barrel Cannons they launch themselves out of, with the goal of collecting as many Bananas as possible. All Bananas collected during these minigames will be carried over to the players' scores on the board.

     Platform Game 
  • Super Mario Bros.:
    • Mario Bros. had the enemy-free "Test Your Skill" stages, where the objective was to collect coins within the time limit.
    • Super Mario Bros.: Going down certain pipes or climbing up hidden vines will take you to hidden areas filled with coins and the occasional power-up. They often also let you skip a bit of the stage when you came out. Later games in the series keep these in-level bonus areas but also add entirely separate levels, sometimes hidden and sometimes not, in which you can get loads of points, lives, or items.
    • Super Mario Bros. 3 has an even larger number of different kinds of bonus area/level. Underground coin rooms, Hidden Note-block coin rooms, the slot-machine Mini-Game, the Memory Mini Game, the treasure ship, etc.
    • Super Mario World has, in addition to coin rooms, a Mini-Game where Mario must hit various cycling blocks and try to get 3 shapes in a row to win 1-Ups. It is accessed by accumulating 100 stars via breaking the tape at the end of the main levels (they're absent in Fortresses and Castles).
    • In Super Mario Land on the Game Boy, in addition to coin rooms, taking the harder-to-reach exit to a stage would lead to a bonus game where, depending on your timing, you could get lives or a power-up. One room, notably, exaggerates this trope by having all of the space in the room except for the floor and exit pipe filled completely with coins. It was impossible to collect all coins unless you used a thrown Super Ball (which, unlike other Mario games' fireballs, can collect coins, bounce at a 45-degree angle upon hitting a surface, and are unaffected by gravity). A few of the coin rooms have Spikes of Doom, allowing you to die in a coin room.
    • Super Mario Galaxy 2 has scattered Warp Pipes that lead to various rooms with free stuff available. Some contained dice which can give coins, Star Bits, or OneUps. Others contain many coins that, if collected soon enough, give a 1Up.
  • In Ristar, each level contains a secret entrance to a bonus stage where you must complete a task within a time limit to get a special item; collecting enough of these would unlock passwords that you could enter to modify various aspects of gameplay.
  • The Sonic the Hedgehog franchise has many of these, which are often required for obtaining Chaos Emeralds, and may also grant other rewards:
    • In the original Sonic the Hedgehog, the Special Stage consisted of a rotating maze with the objective being to reach the end and collect the Chaos Emerald. They were accessed by jumping into a giant ring that appeared at the end of the first two acts of each zone when you had at least fifty rings.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog 2 featured a race through a pseudo-3D halfpipe with the objective of collecting enough rings to pass through three checkpoints while dodging bombs. These were accessed via Star Posts: having fifty rings when touching one would create a halo of stars, jumping through which begins the stage. This style of Special Stage was brought back in Sonic 3D Blast and Sonic Pocket Adventure.
    • In the 8-bit (Sega Master System and Game Gear) game, the Chaos Emeralds were hidden in the levels but collecting enough rings gave you access to a Bonus Stage full of rings, extra lives and one continue per stage.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog Chaos featured Special Stages for Sonic only, that could be accessed by collecting 100 rings in a single act. The form of the Special Stages are platforming challenges that vary widely from one to the next.
    • In Sonic the Hedgehog: Triple Trouble, Special Stages were accessed by breaking open an item monitor displaying a Chaos Emerald while carrying at least 50 rings, and jumping through the halo of stars it created. There are two types of Stages: time-limited platforming challenges, and pseudo-3D flights on Sonic and Tails' Cool Plane where the objective is to collect a set amount of rings. Completing either challenge leads to a boss fight with Fang the Sniper, and defeating Fang rewards the player with an Emerald.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog CD featured Sonic running around in a 3D environment and trying to destroy 6 UFOs under a time limit, and being awarded a Time Stone if he's successful. Rings increase the player's score but do nothing else. Like in Sonic 1, these stages were accessed via reaching the end of a level with 50 rings or more and jumping through the giant ring that appears under those circumstances.
    • Sonic 3 & Knuckles was unique for having Special Stages dedicated to the Chaos Emeralds, as well as three less elaborate Bonus Stages for the express purpose of farming rings, lives, and shields — a gashapon, a hybrid of pachinko and pinball, and a slot machine located in a perpetually-rotating area based on the Sonic 1 special stages. The Special Stages, meanwhile, were 3D mazes where you must "Get Blue Spheres", which are replaced with either ringsnote  or red spheres after being obtained; red spheres eject the player from the stage if touched, whereas rings increase the player's score and can grant a continue if 50 rings are collected, and 50,000 points (a guaranteed extra life) if all collectable rings are grabbed.
    • The bonus stages were brought back for Sonic Heroes, where the characters run through a gigantic tube much like in Sonic 2 (though they collect colored orbs instead of rings), which is notable because the other 3D games both before and after Heroes normally just automatically gave you the Chaos Emeralds over the course of the main plot. Those Emeralds were still necessary to reach the final story...
    • Sonic Rush did the same thing, but only for Sonic's story - Blaze got a Sol Emerald automatically after every boss fight. The Chaos Emeralds AND the Sol Emeralds were both necessary to access the final stage in this case. Its sequel has Sonic racing against Johnny for the Chaos Emeralds, while Blaze gets Sol Emeralds on certain missions.
    • Sonic Mania has a new Special Stage inspired by CD and Chaotix, in the form of a fully-3D chase after a UFO holding a Chaos Emerald, with players tasked with collecting blue spheres to increase their speed and Rings to increase their time limit. The "Blue Spheres" Special Stages from Sonic 3 & Knuckles also return as Bonus Stages for collecting Medals to unlock new content; getting all the spheres but not all the rings gives the player a silver medal, and getting all the spheres and rings grants a gold medal. Sonic Mania Encore adds a fully-3D pinball bonus round in Encore Mode (and Mania Mode, after collecting all gold medals) where players can collect rings and powerups.
    • Sonic Superstars has three different types of these stages:
      • The Special Stages are accessed from Giant Rings, where the player must grapple to blue spheres and swing around to chase after the Chaos Emeralds. Blue Giant Rings also warp into this bonus, but the reward is changed to medals.
      • The Bonus Stages are the Cameltry-esque rotating mazes from Sonic 1 and they're accessed from checkpoints. There are 12 rounds in total, each with multiple layers, and they're only worth medals. With that said, collecting all the rings in one of the stages unlocks NiGHTS costume parts to buy.
      • Warps found around levels will send the player into a brief skydiving pocket dimension to collect rings before spawning the player somewhere else in the level.
  • Earthworm Jim:
    • As sort of a weird example, in Earthworm Jim, each regular level would be followed by "Andy Asteroids?", a race with Psy-Crow. Beating him would allow you to go on to the next stage without incident and possibly rack up an extra continue, while losing to him forced you to fight him before going on to the next stage.
    • In Earthworm Jim 2, the same was done with a minigame where you had to use a giant marshmallow to bounce Peter Puppy's puppies to safety after Psy-Crow throws them out of a window. If you drop too many, Peter transforms into his Superpowered Evil Side and attacks you.
  • In Skullmonkeys, the bonus rooms are accessed by collecting the "Swirly Q"s and entering a special exit at the end of the level. It's most remembered for the song that plays there, which must be heard to be believed.
  • Donkey Kong Country:
    • Donkey Kong Country and its sequels have loads of secret areas filled with goodies, some of which behave more like part of a normal level and some of which behave more like levels in their own right. But unlike in the sequels, where you'd usually get a special coin as reward, here you're simply gathering traditional collectibles like bananas, lives, KONG letters and Animal Buddy icons.
    • Donkey Kong 64 calls the Bonus Barrel minigames "bonus stages", though functionally they are just minigames. Completing one yields a Golden Banana as reward.
    • Donkey Kong Country Returns has hidden rooms that contain many bananas, banana coins, and balloons. Collecting everything reveals a Puzzle Piece necessary for 100% Completion. Falling off or running out of time does not result in death, but will prevent the player from a retry unless they lose a life elsewhere or replay the level to begin with. These bonus areas return in Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.
  • In Cool Spot, collecting 75 Cool Points in a level unlocked a bonus stage after the level was finished in which you could get 1-ups and continues.
  • In Dynamite Headdy, putting on the Liberty Head transports you to a bonus game where you try to shoot a certain number of basketballs through moving hoops within a time limit. Each time you successfully complete it, you get one of the characters in the four-character password needed to unlock the Bonus Boss after the end credits. You are transported back to the same point in the main level when the bonus game ends.
  • Crash Bandicoot has features several types over the years, but the one common rule is that, as Bonus Rounds, the player doesn't lose any lives when they die in them.
    • Crash Bandicoot (1996): Bonus Stages are reached by collecting three tokens of a certain character: Tawna, Brio and Cortex. Tawna's Bonus Stages are mildly challenging but certainly do-able, while the Brio and Cortex Bonus Rounds are very tough, but always reward you with extra lives (Brio) or a Key to unlock a new level (Cortex). Belying the name a bit is that they are all challenging to a certain degree (and there are no invisible walls to prevent you from pushing Crash into/out of the screen and falling to your death), which is frustrating because Bonus Rounds are one of the only methods of getting to a Save Screen (getting a Gem is the other, which is even more difficult). And if you die, you have to restart the level and get the tokens again. In the N-Sane Trilogy, you can try the Bonus Rounds as many times as you like, but to keep the original difficulty you now have to also break all the boxes in Tawna's Bonus Rounds to get the Box Gem similar to Crash 2 and '3''. Several Bonus Rounds were never designed for the player to get them all, particularly The Lost City's.
    • Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back: Starting with this game, Bonus Stages were changed to platforms that whisk Crash away to breather sections, with no challenging obstacles and plenty of Wumpa Fruit and extra lives to help the player after they've been dying so much in the regular level. Joining them are the Skull Routes, which are incredibly difficult but reward the player with either a Gem or the last boxes they need to get the Box Gem (and dying here will make you lose a life!).
    • Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time takes a different approach by making the Bonus Rounds play like Skull Routes: rather than being a breather from the action, the puzzles are intentionally much more difficult than the regular levels. This would be fine if the regular levels weren't already much harder than before.
  • Jazz Jackrabbit had a variation where, after each world, you would get a bonus round, where Jazz would run around (in Third-Person Shooter mode, minus the shooter part, rather than Side View mode) in a semi-3D maze collecting gems. If you met the target within the time limit, you got a 1-up.
  • Every world in Purple has one bonus stage which can be unlocked by finding a hidden switch. These stages contain lots of 1-ups.
  • Bug has two kinds. The first plays like the regular game itself (except you had to collect gold objects for extra lives). You could die in those, if that happened you'd exit the bonus level without losing any lives. The other is a Pass Through the Rings bonus, with an extra continue should you make it to the end.
  • Aladdin games
    • Aladdin (Virgin Games) has special tokens you can collect to earn a chance to play as Abu in Agrabah or the Cave of Wonders.
    • In Aladdin (Capcom), the "A Whole New World" stage is a bonus level with no enemies.
  • The Lion King has bugs that can be collected to play bonus games as Timon or Pumbaa.
  • In Nuts & Milk, the third of every set of five levels was a timed bonus round. Yogurt would be waiting on a box in the middle of the screen instead of in a house at the top left, Nuts was replaced by fireballs that moved slowly around the screen, and collecting fruits were optional, but they otherwise played like ordinary levels. However, dying in a bonus round wouldn't affect the number of lives.
  • Bubble Bobble
  • Mighty Bomb Jack has the unusual inversion of this trope, a Penalty Stage. Players who get too greedy collecting Mighty Coins or Mighty Drinks will be sent to a torture room, which has enemies but no prizes or exits. Escape is obtained by jumping fifty times.
  • Disney Princess: Enchanted Journey has Belle's world, unlocked after beating the game.
  • In The Adventures of Lomax, when you defeat 50 enemies, the exit at the end of the current level will bring you to a bonus stage, where you have a limited time to collect loads of money. The stage itself is entirely made out of money, too. No enemies to be found, and dying only brings you to the next level.
  • The Smurfs (1994): Collecting enough stars in all but the Game Boy Advance version will take you into a bonus level.
  • Gon for the Super Famicom has three timed bonus minigames: "Gon Eats Apples," "Gon Makes a Sculpture," and "Gon Steps on a Crocodile."
  • In Freedom Planet, collecting a yin-yang token would take you to a bonus room where spheres you collected up to that point could be redeemed to roll a die to win more spheres, shields, or extra lives.
  • In The Cat in the Hat, collecting four keys and taking them to a Bonus Door would take you to a room where you'd have to outrun some Advancing Wall of Doom (either horizontal or vertical) to collect a gem. These gems could be used to unlock the super secret bonus level.
  • Kao the Kangaroo:
    • The first game has a lot of those in the form of warp zones. They are often hidden in various places and allow you to collect a lot of coins.
    • The second game has unlockable minigames, which can be accessed when you collect enough purple crystals.
  • Endless Running Game Cookie Run has Bonus time, accessed by collecting letters spelling out BONUS TIME. Bonus Time is full of coins and jellies, the cookie flies while in it, and their energy does not decrease.
  • The Turing Test: Each of the seven chapters contains a side level after the fifth or sixth regular room, in a room just before the main puzzle. Solving these "Restricted Areas" isn't necessary to proceed, but their puzzles are often a lot different than the normal ones, requiring much more lateral out-of-the-box thinking that makes for a refreshing change of pace. Others are not so much puzzles but more an exercise in connecting a largely meaningless clue you find late in the game with a locked door you encountered near the beginning. Solving these optional puzzles also unlocks a separate achievement for each, one of which is outright named "Thinking outside of the Box".
  • Giana Sisters DS: Find all red diamonds in one world, and you'll unlock its respective bonus stage.
  • Shovel Knight has probably the saddest example of a bonus level in video game history, as it serves to highlight just how troubled Shovel Knight is by the loss of his beloved Shield Knight. Every three levels, you enter a Dream Sequence where Shield Knight is falling from the sky and Shovel Knight fights through a horde of monsters while trying to catch her, and the dream always ends just before he does. While killing the monsters allows you to earn a lot of treasure, the game convinces you that catching Shield Knight is your biggest priority, even though there's no actual reward for it.
  • If you're lucky enough to find a secret level in Battleblock Theater, you will be rewarded with some easy gems, no hazards, and silly background music.
  • In Armillo, each main level is a planet, and after completing it, Armillo is taken to a moon that serves as its Bonus Stage. Moons have many orbs for the player to collect within a time limit, which is determined by how many critters Armillo rescued in the stage.
  • Garfield's Nightmare: Each level has a bonus door which, if entered, leads to a bonus area where Garfield can get extra lives. There's also a standard secret area in each level that has a life at the end.

     Puzzle Game  
  • Milon's Secret Castle has hidden music boxes that transport Milon to an area in which he collects musical notes to earn money.
  • The credit rolls of the Tetris: The Grand Master series have you continue playing. Some modes have you simply continue playing as the credits roll, with no effect on your score or grade. Some others, like TGM2's and TGM3's Master mode, have the "disappearing roll," in which pieces vanish 5 seconds after locking down; in TGM3 clearing lines during this part will add a small fraction of a whole grade. Then there's the infamous "invisible roll" in which pieces vanish upon locking; in TGM2, this is required to earn the Grand Master rank (failing will net you an M grade instead), and in TGM3, this nets even more grades per line clear, and clearing enough lines and surviving are just part of the requirements for TGM3's Grand Master rank.note  Finally, TGM3's Shirase credit roll has you playing with fully-visible double-sized pieces, but has no effect on your grade.
  • You access these in Angry Birds by hitting the golden eggs in some levels.
  • In Binary Land, the third stage out of every five was a bonus level where the goal was to collect hearts.

    Racing Game 
  • In Stunt Race FX, halfway through each of the three difficulty classes there is a bonus level where the player takes control of the large Trailer and drives through an obstacle course to gain additional time that can be used in the remaining two courses.

  • Destroy the Godmodder has had a few. Team Fortress 2 mode in the second game, as well as the first intermission.

    Roleplaying Games 
  • Diablo III:
    • Greed's Domain, reached either via Kanai's Cube or rarely when killing a Treasure Goblin. The zone not only contains two additional Treasure Goblins and the boss Greed but also breakable items which spawn massive amounts of gold. A good run can easily net millions of gold.
    • Not the Cow Level is not nearly as lucrative but the bodies found throughout the area spawn a surprisingly large amount of gold.

     Shoot Em Up  
  • A classic example is the Challenge Stages of Galaga.
  • The US manual for Deathsmiles advertises the Ice Palace in MBL as this. Under normal conditions, it is exceptionally easy to rack up points and max out your lifebar (scores of over 11 billion from the stage by itself are not unheard of, making it the single high-scoring stage). Unfortunately, if you happen to be doing too good, the background will be red instead of blue, and you'll have to contend with it at Rank 999, where accumulating points is much more difficult.
  • Space Invaders
    • Space Invaders Extreme has bonus rounds that are activated by shooting red or flashing UFOs. Inside, you have to shoot a certain number of armoured or evasive invaders within a time limit. Your reward? When you exit, your cannon becomes a Wave-Motion Gun for at least 15 seconds.
    • Space Invaders Extreme 2 streamlines this feature by having the main stage keep going while the bonus stage takes place on the top of the screen, which you have to shoot upwards to.
  • In Space Harrier, stages 5 and 12 have you leap onto a friendly dragon and score points by flying into everything in sight.
  • In Carnival, when you complete a screen, you get a bonus stage where you must shoot a bear with a bullseye target as many times as you can before it runs offscreen.
  • The Challenge Racks in Solar Fox, where you must collect all the solar cells on the screen in a limited time to receive bonus points.
  • Aleste:
    • GG Aleste has bonus stages where your subweapon is disabled and you destroy waves of enemies. The enemies don't fire, won't kill you if you run into them, and each full wave defeated awards a cache of powerup chips or a subweapon powerup item. You get a bonus at the end depending on how many enemies you defeated, with additional points awarded on top of that if you destroy all of them.
    • GG Aleste 2's bonus stages spring an Unexpected Gameplay Change on you by putting you in behind-the-ship view. You have to move a cursor to lock onto enemies and fire missiles at them. However, if you fire a missile without locking on first or if the enemy escapes your missile, it counts as a miss, which will reduce your bonus at the end.

    Sports Game 
  • Tropical Angel: There are bonus stages where you have to either jump off ramps or slalom between flags.

     Turn Based Strategy  
  • In Oasis (2005), bonus stage where most of the map consists of large oasis. There is also a single town. Once the glyph and the city is discovered, victory is guaranteed.

  • Crüe Ball has a hidden game where you play Breakout against exploding skeletons.
  • Between nights in Five Nights at Freddy's 4, the "Fun with Plushtrap" minigame occurs. You use a flashlight to try and make Plushtrap stop moving on a large white "X" when a timer has expired. Succeed, and you skip two hours on the next night. Fail, and you either get a screen stating "Too bad" or Plushtrap jumpscares you, but the next night's gameplay is otherwise unaffected.
  • Star Wars Starfighter has everything from a canyon race, to a multiplayer duel, to an escort mission involving the protagonist's father.
  • Zapper's bonus stages are unlocked by collecting all 100 orbs in each level. Completing each level's bonus stage while collecting all 100 coins unlocks a different type of headgear for your shield to appear as. The bonus stages consist entirely of Temporary Platforms to make collecting the coins more difficult and while there are no enemies, falling once means you need to collect all the orbs in the level a second time to try again.

     Non-Video Game 
  • In American Football, the "extra point" and "two-point conversion" come after a major score, and failure usually has no consequence other than not getting the extra points. However, in extreme cases, it's possible for the other team to score. Much the same applies to a conversion in Rugby Union.
  • Most modern Pinball games have a Video Mode, which temporarily suspends the playfield action for a short video game.
  • In Wreck-It Ralph, two bonus stages in their respective games are plot points.
    • An unfinished bonus track in Sugar Rush, known as Diet Cola Mountain, is Vanellope's home. It gets destroyed during the climax , but Vanellope gets a castle immediately after anyway.
    • At the end, after being accepted by the Nicelanders, Ralph starts lamenting for the Qbert gang, whose game was unplugged. His solution? Integrate them into the Fix-It Felix Jr. Bonus Level, giving them a new home as well a giving the game a popularity boost.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Bonus Level


Harry Potter: Bonus Bean Room

In the PC version of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets video game, if Gryffindor got first place in the weekly House Point Ceremony, Harry would get to visit the Bean Bonus Room and collect Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans.

How well does it match the trope?

4.5 (8 votes)

Example of:

Main / BonusStage

Media sources: