Follow TV Tropes

Following

Bubbly Clouds

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/bubblyclouds.bmp

"Wow! We're in the clouds! We're floating! It feels comfy, but I just don't quite trust it. Mario, am I sinking? Am I?"
Goombario, Paper Mario 64
Advertisement:

A video game area that takes place on Solid Clouds in the sky. The characters may be seeking out a landmass or building in the sky, but they also might just be wandering through a huge field of solid clouds. Naturally, not falling to one's death is the biggest challenge of such an area, which can be made worse by the presence of annoying flying enemies and the boss often being a Cumulonemesis. Fluffy Cloud Heaven is often this in video games. It's interesting to mention that already the first sidescrolling platformer — Jump Bug, released in 1981 — contained solid clouds.

Typical enemies encountered in these levels include aggressive birds, animated clouds and airborne variants of previous enemies.

Compare Levels Take Flight. Solid Clouds is the supertrope. May overlap with Big Storm Episode if the level takes place in stormy clouds.

Advertisement:

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Action-Adventure 
  • Jables's Adventure: Many above-ground areas have a line of cloud platforms near the top, and even those that don't will lead to a cloudy sky area if you fly off the top of the screen.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap: Cloud Tops, one of the later dungeons, consist of solid clouds that you can walk on, and is inhabited only by airborne fish and cloud-riding lakitus. Also, there are such clouds you need to explore in order to get to the dungeon in the first place, and you obtain a special set of shovel-like claws to dig through some of them.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures: The Realm of the Heavens and the Dark Cloud are set high in Hyrule's skies, and their terrain consists of solid clods. The enemies, however, are the same kinds found elsewhere in the game.

    Fighting Games 

    Platformers 
  • Aladdin (Capcom): The Genie stages have some areas with cloud platforms, including one where the Genie determines which platforms you get based on how well you did on the stage so far (with the clouds being the easiest platforms to use)
  • The California Raisins: The Grape Escape: The final level is Sky High Records which features solid clouds the Raisin walks on.
  • Mega Man:
    • Mega Man 2: Air Man hides in a sea of clouds and odd blocks with evil faces on them.
    • Mega Man 3: Snake Man resides in a cloudy tower, full of giant snakes and missiles hidden in clouds.
    • Mega Man 4: Ring Man waits in a cloudy tower, although it reaches to space and is filled with hippos and spinning Saturns, instead of snakes and missiles. Also, the third section of Dr. Cossack's Siberian Citadel takes place in the sky above the citadel, full of clouds that often obscure the platforms.
    • Mega Man 5: Gyro Man has a base full of cloudy areas.
    • Mega Man 6: Wind Man's base has a variation; his level is semi-cloudy, but has more of a Chinese motif.
    • Mega Man 7: Cloud Man's level is at a research institute, but clouds are major platforms.
    • Mega Man 8: Tengu Man's level eventually gets to the point where there are no more cloud platforms. To continue, Mega Man has to undergo an Unexpected Gameplay Change and fight through a SHMUP section. There are still clouds, but no platforms. His level in Mega Man & Bass is just a regular example of the trope.
    • Mega Man 9: Tornado Man has the clouds in the level change from normal, to snow, to rain.
    • Rockman 7 EP: Freeze Man's stage uses Cloud Man's old tileset, so it takes place in the skies.
  • Sesame Street: Countdown: The bonus stages take place in the clouds, accessible by riding balloons. There, The Count must solve a math problem to get the number he chose, which can involve simply finding the number hidden in a box, adding or subtracting the numbers to get the right one, or adding or subtracting the number of items in a jar.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
  • Super Mario Bros.: Mario seems to end up in the clouds quite often. In the standard Mario world layout, this is the penultimate setting before Bowser's Castle. Such worlds and levels include:
    • Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels: The end of World 8-2 and entirety of 8-3 and A-3. The former one can only be found by climbing a secret beanstalk (as the rest of the level eventually loops). The latter two are more traditional sky levels, and the placement of the cloud platforms as well as that of most enemies make the levels among the most challenging (especially if played with Mario, who doesn't jump as highly as Luigi).
    • Super Mario Bros. 2 has World 7, mostly the first level (as the second is the last one in the game, and takes place predominantly inside Wart's castle). It focuses on featuring a heavy concentration of enemies (including Albatosses that drop Bob-Ombs which break the floor upon exploding), and at one point Mushroom Blocks have to be used to reach the next point (while having to deal with Sparks).
    • Super Mario Bros. 3 has the second half of Sky Land (the first is Green Hill Zone). In addition to large chasms and cloud platforms, these levels see the debut of Fire Chomps (flying Chain Chomps that spit fire and, once they run out of it, approach Mario or Luigi to explode near him) and flying Parabeetles.
    • Super Mario 64 has Rainbow Ride and a couple of bonus levels. Much of Rainbow Ride can be accessed while boarding a flying carpet railroaded by a rainbow, though Mario still has to keep an eye on any obstacles the carpet is approaching. The first sky bonus level is notable for enabling the use of the Wing Cap in the other levels in the game, while the second is infamous for forcing Mario to trek all the way back up through the castle if he falls down (instead of simply making him lose a life, putting him right outside the course).
    • Super Mario Sunshine has the daytime obstacle courses, as well as the highest area of Pianta Village. The obstacle courses consist of wooden contraptions floating in the sky, and in each case Mario has to deal with their gimmicks in order to clear them (for example, the Pachinko stage has a collection of red coins necessary to claim the Shine Sprite, but the surrounding physics of the contraption makes their collection difficult). The high area of Pianta Village can be accessed with the fluffs that appear in Episode 8, and one of the necessary red coins in that episode lies in the floating clouds. The oddity is that the cloud platforms can be enlarged with FLUDD's water.
    • New Super Mario Bros.: The sub-series has World 7 in all games except New Super Mario Bros. 2 (where it's the fifth world, and comes along with a smidgen of Death Mountain). The sub-series introduces a type of white fog that hides items (they can be dispelled with an aerial spin, however).
    • Super Mario Galaxy: Gusty Garden Galaxy has all the various platforms being suspended in the sky. The third Star mission in particular evokes this. Other levels have clouds, but they are only solid when Mario has the Bee powerup.
    • Super Mario Galaxy 2 has Fluffy Bluff Galaxy and Cloudy Court Galaxy. In this game, not only the Bee powerup allows Mario to walk over the clouds; so can the Cloud powerup, which in addition allows Mario to create his own clouds!
    • Super Mario 3D Land: World 5-5 is a downplayed example. It mostly consists of raised grassy platforms, but several stretches require jumping on clouds.
    • Super Mario 3D World: The map of World 6 and the levels Clear Pipe Cruise, Pretty Plaza Panic, and The Great Goal Pole are all sky-themed. The latter two levels also have strict time limits, so Mario and his friends have to move quickly through the clouds and floating platforms.
    • Super Mario Odyssey: The Cloud Kingdom is located in the cloudy skies above another kingdom.
    • Super Mario Maker 2: This is one of the added settings (it was theoretically possible to invoke this trope with the Airship theme in the first Super Mario Maker, but it required some difficult workarounds), and is present in four of the game styles; in the 3D World one, the designated "sky" themed is based specifically on the Toy Time level present in the original game's World Star). In night mode, gravity is reduced.
    • Super Princess Peach: Giddy Sky consists chiefly of solid, smiling clouds interspersed with some balloon platforms, and is mostly inhabited by flying versions of common enemies, cloud-riding Lakitus, and parachuting Bob-ombs.
    • Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island: The second half of world 5 takes place in clouds solid enough to have Piranha Plants rooted into them. Enemies found here include Lakitus, missile-like flying ghosts and seagulls.
    • Yoshi's Island DS: "In the Clouds" has Yoshi navigate a series of small cloud platforms, while being menaced by an assortment of Lakitus, Shy Guys flying with propellers, and land-bound Mooks standing on the platforms.
    • Yoshi's Story: "Cloud Cruisin'" on page three takes place along the usual series of cloud platforms, although some sections are crossed on the back of a large flying dragon. Enemies include seagulls, Lakitus, flying Shy Guys and large fat butterflies, and the boss is a walking cloud made out of cotton candy.
    • Yoshi's Woolly World: "Fanciful Fluff and Feathers" consists of a series of fluffy white clouds inhabited by a considerable amount of seagull enemies.
    • Hotel Mario: Lemmy's High-ate Regency Hotel takes place several miles up, and has clouds blocking the screen to interfere with the player's vision.
      Mario: It's hard to see through those clouds, I hope we can get rid of them! Get the hint?
  • Something: World 2 in in Something else takes place in the clouds,, with solid cloud platforms and heavy focus on athletic platforming. Three of the levels take place in the tall trees.
Advertisement:

    Racing Game 
  • Mario Kart: Sky/cloud-themed courses are rare, but they exist: Sky Garden in Mario Kart: Super Circuit and Mario Kart DS, Cloudtop Cruise in Mario Kart 8, and the Arcade-exclusive Aerial Road and Sky Arena. The cloud platforms in these tracks are usually safe to drive on, but a part of the Cloudtop Cruise has the racers enter a large cumulus where the clouds are electrified, and occasionally a thunderbolt zaps the tracks' dash panels; getting struck by one shrinks you, as they have the same effect as the Lightning item.
  • Stunt Race FX: Sky Ramp is set on a track in the clouds.

    Role-Playing Games 
  • Baten Kaitos features Diadem. Heck, there's even a castle entirely made out of clouds. Even more relevant in the appropriately named "Cloud Passage" level.
  • Faria: Once you get the Sky Shoes, you can go up to the Sky World, which consists almost entirely of walkable clouds and Random Encounters. There is no Edge Gravity when walking around up there.
  • Might and Magic : The fourth and fifth games, Clouds of Xeen and Darkside of Xeen, have these at the top of every tower. If your Levitate spell wears off while you're up there, you fall straight through the clouds and take a lot of damage.
  • Miitopia has Nimbus, a land made of walkable clouds with futuristic towers in the background. Some of its areas have an Eternal Engine flavour.

    Shoot 'em Up 
  • TaleSpin (Capcom) has two examples. The third level, The Storm Clouds, combines this with Big Storm Episode. The prologue to the stage reveals that Don Karnage and his Air Pirates have planted mines in the clouds, so Baloo must dodge the lightning as it strikes. The Bonus Stages in the same game take place in the clouds during clear weather. In these stages, you play as Kit Cloudkicker, who rides his air foil as he collects bonuses.

    Strategy 
  • Civilization II: Test of Time has a fantasy world set in the sky inhabited by the bird-like Buteo people complete with Solid Clouds.

    Other/Undetermined 
  • Sky is set in the ruins of a fallen kingdom built upon the surprisingly solid cloudtops.

    Non-Video Game Examples 
  • Brawl in the Family: Strip 237 plays with this, showing Mario reaching a cloud level on a vine to different results, such as him falling through the clouds or getting hit by a plane. Strip 238 does it again by having Lakitu deliberately making Mario believe he's in Heaven and step on non-solid clouds.
  • Dungeons & Dragons, Lair Assault module Temple of the Sky God. The clouds are solid ground. When characters reach the half-way point of the mission, the clouds mostly dissipate, and the ones remaining become electrified (harming those who stand on them).
  • The Magic Goes Away: Wizards can cast a spell allowing them to walk on clouds. Any wizard who makes a habit of this had better have a firm grasp of meteorology, though, because it's not a good thing to be far above solid ground when the weather starts to clear up.
  • Rubbadubbers: In "Amelia the Babysitter", a land of clouds that represent diapers is the setting for the "if only".

Top

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

/

Media sources:

/

Report