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Palmtree Panic

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Sun, sand, and a whole lot of coconuts.note 
The video game level version of Beach Episode—a level on the beach.

These levels are not entirely Under the Sea, but feature the edge of land and water. This can be an easy, fun and relaxing level in the style of a Beach Episode, but not always, since the beach can be dramatic. Expect palm trees, sand, fun Caribbean-style music and jetskis. Be wary of Stalactite Spite from falling coconuts, and possibly the occasional Threatening Shark and Giant Enemy Crab. May overlap with Gangplank Galleon and/or Under the Sea, or located near a Port Town.

Musically, the beach area almost always has background music with steel pans, pedal steel guitars, or ukuleles. Instrumentation stereotypical to tropical islands. Occasionally, it may invoke sailing with accordions.

Compare the just-as-tranquil Green Hill Zone, which is more grassland or inland than Palmtree Panic and will usually be one of the starting levels. There is considerable overlap between the two.



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     Action Adventure 
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening- at the start of the game you must return to the beach you washed up on and search for your lost sword. This can actually be a remarkably difficult area for first-time players, as, well, you have no sword, and the use of the shield to push enemies is neither obvious nor explained.
    • Great Bay from The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, and some of its associated locations (Pinnacle Rock, Zora Cape and Zora Hall). Due to the curse placed on the Great Bay Temple by the Skull Kid, only the closest portion of the ocean's water is safe to swim, as going any further will cause the murky water to take the swimmer back to the beach.
    • A good deal of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker has this, since the Great Sea originated from the Great Flood that sank Hyrule to prevent Ganondorf from taking over it by force.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes has the second world, the Riverside.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has the south, southwest and east coasts. Enemies have camps in these areas, including a large wooden construction in the beach of the Faron region. The largest destinations in them are Lurelin Village and Eventide Island (the latter doubles as a No-Gear Level, as it features a Shrine Quest where Link has to complete a task without any of his weapons or equipment save the Sheikah Slate).
  • Shantae and its sequel start on the outskirts of the seaside village of Scuttle Town.
  • Star Fox Adventures has Cape Claw, located past the LightFoot Village. It is home of a friendly HighTop dinosaur who asks you to retrieve his missing gold bars, and various unfriendly SharpClaws who hold a CloudRunner captive. This place is also home to the Ocean Force Point Temple, where the two Ocean Spellstones (located elsewhere) have to to brought back.


     Driving Game 
  • There are a few of these (such as Baroo Coast) in Star Wars Episode I: Racer. They're a real pain, because sand noticeably slows you down and water just stops you outright.
  • The Big Blue stages in F-Zero GX.
  • ModNation Racers' track editor can let you make tracks in a beach area if you chose to go with a Seaside Setting.

     Fighting Game 
  • Rival Schools: United By Fate has the Gorin High Training Camp stage, which takes place on a sunny beach (complete with an ice-selling shack on the background).
  • Street Fighter V has the Kanzuki Beach stage, a private beach owned by the character Karin and her family
  • The Tekken series has a few. There's a secret beach stage in 2 when you meet the criteria in Arcade mode to fight Alex, 3 has the beach in the Tekken Ball minigame, 4 has the very big beach stage, and Tag 2 has two: the "Eternal Paradise" stage, which is a beach resort, and "Coastline Sunset" located in the Philippines where the combatants fight on a road next to a bay/beach-y area.

     First Person Shooter 
  • The Beach in Water Warfare, where the copious damaging water and obstructions make the map difficult to navigate.
  • The second level of Command & Conquer: Renegade takes place in a beach assault that GDI is staging on Nod.
  • The penultimate mission of Ghost Recon: Island Thunder, letting you enjoy both a long walk on the beach and the wrath of an automatic grenade launcher.

     Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games 
  • Reynard Beach and Zaylope Beach are two such examples in Ace Online, although the palm trees have probably been long vaporised by the ongoing war between Arlington and Bygeniou.
  • Wonderland Online makes use of this trope in the starting areas.
  • MapleStory has the Florina Beach area, filled with monkeys, crabs, and turtles.
  • In Dungeons & Dragons Online, newly created (or reincarnated) level 1 (non-Iconic, which start in different areas and advance to level 15 when first created) characters start washed up on the beach of Korthos Island, the sole survivor of a dragon attack.
  • Ragnarok Online has Kokomo Beach, a beach area on the lower left of Midgard continent map, that's so secluded, most players (and NPCs!) don't go there. Another beach is in Comodo, a small piece of land that appears to be perpetually stuck in night time. Some oceanside maps also have small sections that counts as beach, although they went unnamed because they are attached to the mostly grassy/rocky land which takes up a huge portion of the map, and thus have the map named after the land instead.

     Party Game 
  • Mario Party:
    • Yoshi's Tropical Island from the original game.
    • Pirate Land from Mario Party 2, with a few Gangplank Galleon elements.
    • Waluigi's Island from Mario Party 3, which also has a few Down in the Dumps elements.
    • Koopa's Seaside Soiree from Mario Party 4.
    • Castaway Bay from Mario Party 6.
    • Goomba's Booty Boardwalk from Mario Party 8.
    • Blooper Beach from Mario Party 9.
    • Megafruit Paradise in Super Mario Party, with a few Level Ate elements.
  • Emerald Coast, the first board in Sonic Shuffle combines this with Slippy-Slidey Ice World, due to Void's magic freezing half the board.

     Platform Game 
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • The Trope Namer comes from Sonic the Hedgehog CD, where it served as Green Hill Zone. Sea Gate in Sonic Heroes and the tutorial of Sonic Rush Adventure count as well.
    • The titular level from Sonic CD features beautiful scenery full of palm trees, flowing water, and tropical vibes throughout it's time zones (Except for one).
      • The Present is the resident Green Hill Zone for Little Planet, featuring a similar art style to Green Hill Zone with Palmtrees, a lake/sea in the background with some hills, and the familiar tunnels and loops, but a few differences to distinguish itself from Green Hill Zone.
      • The Past puts somewhat of a Prehistoric twist on the present. The colors of the sky, water, and grass look faded as if you were looking at an old color photograph, and the music is a more laid back version of the present's music. There is also a noticeable lack of some of the machinery from the other time periods (save for Robotnik's machine and the Metal Sonic projector), an abundance of wild foliage, and the presence of some plant life that does not exist in the Present or the Futures.
      • The Bad Future is a darker, and more industrialized version of this tropical paradise, if you can call it such. Thanks to all the pollution, the lush green foliage is now rotten brown, the once lush palm trees are now either rotting and decrepit, or transformed into metallic versions of their former selves, the water is much murkier, the skies are now dark and smoggy, and Robotnik's pollution plants and pipelines scatter across the landscape carrying a never ending stream of pollution.
      • The Good Future may be a palette swapped version of the Bad Future, but the stage uses almost the same colors of the Present on the future landscape (Even the theme uses the same melody from the Present, with a few notes from the Past and Bad Future tracks). The pipelines now carry water for the plants and palm trees instead of harmful pollution from the Bad Future, and the Bad Future's pollution plants are now water treatment plants for the flourishing plant life.
    • Even the original Green Hill Zone and its successors (Emerald Hill Zone and Sunset Hill Zone) have a coastline and palm trees in the background.
    • Emerald Coast Zone from Sonic Adventure.
    • Super Sonic in the picture above is flying into Sonic 3's Angel Island Zone.
    • Wave Ocean from Sonic the Hedgehog (2006).
    • Adabat from Sonic Unleashed is a cross between this trope, Jungle Japes and Temple of Doom.
    • There is also Neo Green Hill Zone in Sonic Advance, and Resort Island in Sonic R. The list just never stops growing.
    • Tropical Resort Zone from Sonic Colors. The dirt even has the same texture as the ground in Palmtree Panic.
    • Seaside Hill and Ocean Palace from Sonic Heroes, which also appear in the PS3/Xbox 360/PC version of Sonic Generations.
    • Tropical Coast from Sonic Lost World. 2 of the Zone's levels involve fruit.
    • Seaside Island from Sonic Boom: Fire and Ice.
  • The Super Mario Bros. series has plenty of these levels.
    • The non-Under the Sea levels of World 3 in Super Mario Bros. 3 hint at this, featuring shallow water where Cheep Cheeps and the man-eating Boss Bass swim, and the world map gives off the theme with relaxing beach music, palmtrees and a canoe.
    • Muda Kingdom, the second world of Super Mario Land. The first two levels take place in the coast, while the third goes Under the Sea (Mario uses the Marine Pop there).
    • The DS remake of Super Mario 64 introduces the bonus level Sunshine Isles, in which Mario and his friends look for Silver Stars that make up for a Power Star; the music is a remix of Delfino Plaza from Super Mario Sunshine.
    • Gelato and Sirena Beaches and the beach outside of Pinna Park from Super Mario Sunshine, albeit the latter two to a much lesser extent than the former. Gelato Beach includes small plants that, when fed with water, suddenly pop up large sandy dunes of varying shapes; the flagship mooks are the Cataquacks, but only the red ones are harmful. The beach outside Pinna Park is overrun by Snooza Koopas (which prevent the growth of sunflowers) and a Monty Mole operating a cannon. The outdoor area of Sirena Beach is invaded by Phantamanta, a large Mini-Boss with the form of a ghostly electric manta ray that leaves an electrified painting (colored yellow and blue) along its way.
    • World 3 in New Super Mario Bros., New Super Mario Bros. 2 (a combination of this and Jungle Japes) and New Super Mario Bros. U (and by extension New Super Luigi U). New Super Mario Bros. Wii has it a bit later by using the setting in World 4 instead. Features include Huckits (red crabs which throw rocks at Mario and his friends), large-sized Urchins, and thick water geysers. The fan-made Newer Super Mario Bros. Wii has Yoshi's Island, the first world.
    • Super Mario Galaxy combines several of its water levels with a beach filled with a recurring cast of penguins in a swimming class (Beach Bowl Galaxy, Sea Slide Galaxy, Drip Drop Galaxy, and to a lesser extent Deep Dark Galaxy). The sequel Super Mario Galaxy 2 has the Starshine Beach Galaxy, which is instead inhabited by Piantas.
    • 6-1, S1-4, and S4-3 in Super Mario 3D Land, as well as 5-1 and Flower-9 (and to a lesser extent 3-5 and Flower-7, leaning more towards Under the Sea) in Super Mario 3D World.
    • The Seaside Kingdom in Super Mario Odyssey is a French Mediterranean-style beach with carbonated water. It is home to the snail-like Bubblainians, but also overrun by the squid-like Gushens and their King Mook Mollusque-Lanceur.
    • Crescent Coast in Yoshi's Safari is one-third this and two-thirds Under the Sea.
    • Wavy Beach in Super Princess Peach.
  • Half the levels of Plok consist of these.
  • The Kirby series has plenty:
  • Banjo-Kazooie:
    • Treasure Trove Cove in the first game, though it also has a large Death Mountain section in the topmost area and Gangplank Galleon at the center. Features include beach-dwelling enemies, a shark that aims to repeatedly chew Banjo and Kazooie while they're swimming, a Giant Enemy Crab boss, and a seach for a treasure chest whose underground location changes constantly.
    • Jolly Roger's Lagoon and Nutty Acres in the sequels are both subversions; the former turns out to be just a small portion of a hidden Under the Sea level and the latter is a combination of Palmtree Panic with other level types. Breegull Beach from the interquel Grunty's Revenge plays it straight, though.
  • The Starting Beach in Tomba! 2 (or Tombi 2, depending on a region).
  • The Sanctuary of Water and Ice and Whale Bay from Rayman 2: The Great Escape.
  • Rice Beach in Wario Land is this, albeit with less water than most examples (until the tide comes in after beating the world boss) up to around level 4.
  • Cool Spot begins with a beach level and ends with one.
  • Jett Rocket begins in one of these, called the Atoll. Strangely, the second level of the Atoll is a Death Mountain instead.
  • Donkey Kong Country:
    • Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble! has a few "lakeside" levels, which are more or less this with wooden piers instead of sand.
    • The Hub Level DK Isles in Donkey Kong 64 is this type of setting as a backseat in all islands except K Rool's (as it's purely mechanical, thus being Eternal Engine instead).
    • The second world of Donkey Kong Country Returns, simply named "Beach", is set on DK Isle's tropical beach amid the wrecks of numerous ships (overlapping with Gangplank Galleon). Crabs and squid abound.
    • Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze features this for its first world, though in a unique twist the predominant plants are not palm trees, but giant mangroves. Most of the (few) non-underwater parts of the fourth world, Sea Breeze Cove play it straight by having actual palmtress. Finally, the revisited Beach area in DK Island in World 6 is a frozen variant, where the water is so cold it's harmful for the Kongs.
  • Ape Escape gives us the whole Oceana level set, with Crabby Beach, Coral Cave, and Dexter's Island (where the level takes place primarily inside a dinosaur).
  • Bummin' It Beach is the beach level in The Fancy Pants Adventure: World 3.
  • Rockman 2 Deus Ex Machina has Bubble Man's stage, which combines this with Underground Level.
  • World 5 in Something Else. Luigi can retrieve kitties for a giant cat, interact with mermaids, swim in floating globs of water, storm Dedede's castle, smell the flowers, climb a flower-themed tower, and fight a giant Yoshi koopa cosplayer.
  • In Castle Cat 2 the entire game takes place in one.
  • The first planet of Blender Bros is Oasis, a seaside planet. However, it's slightly different in that it's a heavily populated futuristic planet, so it's an urban port city.
  • In the The Flintstones Licensed Game for the Sega Genesis, the first level, Leaf Rock, takes place on a beach. At one point, Fred runs off a cliff and is about to fall in the water, but lands on a shark, who takes him to dry land, which the shark immediately starts ripping apart. The boss of the stage is a dinosaur riding a giant eggbeater, who has stolen Wilma's necklace.
  • In McDonald's Treasure Land Adventure, the first half of the third world, Magical Sea, takes place on a beach.

     Puzzle Game 

     Racing Game 
  • Pokémon Dash is set within a series of islands, so of course there is plenty of coastline.
  • Every Mario Kart game has had at least one original beach course. Most of them are placed near the beginning as far as difficulty goes, but there are a few outliers. This is the list of beach-themed courses over the Mario Kart series, with some of them reappearing as retro tracks:
  • Iggy's Reckin' Balls has Soft Sun Bay, set on a sunny beach with a lot of beach-goers. Unlike most examples of this trope, however, it's in the mid-game, not the early game. Courses set in Soft Sun Bay do show up right from near the start, but the game does not actually feature it until World 4.
  • Hydro Thunder has the Lost Island, which is a racecourse through the rivers of an island in the Pacific with stock tropical setpieces along the sides of the track.

     Real-Time Strategy 
  • Pikmin has the Distant Spring in the first game, Perplexing Pool (which is a revisited form of Distant Spring) in the second, and Tropical Wilds in the third, all areas themed around sandy beaches with multiple pools and other areas of shallow water. Due to the abundance of water, the areas are explored more easily with the Blue Pikmin.

     Role Playing Game 
  • Kingdom Hearts has one of these both at the beginning and the end of the game in the form of Destiny Islands and a destroyed version of the islands' main area respectively. The latter returns in Kingdom Hearts 0.2: Birth by Sleep - A Fragmentary Passage as the site of the final boss battle against a massive swarm of Heartless.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy VII has Costa Del Sol.
    • Final Fantasy XI has Bibiki Bay, Valkurm Dunes, and Buburimu Peninsula.
    • The first third or so of Final Fantasy X once you get out of Zanarkand is Palmtree Panic, comprising Besaid and Kilika Islands.
    • Final Fantasy XII has Phon Coast near Arcadia. One of the few instances of the characters relaxing and acting juvenile.
    • There's also Sunset Beach in Bodhum from Final Fantasy XIII, which subverts it by only being part of an interactive flashback sequence. It was originally planned to have been a proper level, but it never made it into the final game.
  • EarthBound has Summers, a beach resort town about midway through the game. It's quite a bit more relaxed in pace than the previous areas, though not safe - overzealous cops, muscled beach jocks, taxis and street signs are still out to get you, albeit at a low encounter rate. Also references overinflated prices at tourist resorts by jacking up the price on everything at shops.
  • Wizardry 8 has Bayjin, a tropical-themed area inhabited by Rynjin.
  • Mass Effect: Virmire. A beautiful beach area, completely unlike the desolate or otherwise depressing locations in the other main-quest missions up to that point, yet it's also one of the most dramatic locations in the game.
  • Xenosaga gives us Pedea Island in the beginning of the third game, which really contrasts with the whole futuristic outerspace setting of the series.
  • The Beach Stretch of Gal Da Val in Phantasy Star Online Episode II.
  • Mario & Luigi:
  • Isle Galados, one of worlds in Miitopia.
  • Most Pokémon games have at least one beach area. There aren't any wild Pokemon on the beaches themselves, but go surfing and you'll run into plenty of Tentacool/Tentacruel and Wingull/Pelipper, plus things like Goldeen/Seaking and Mantyke from time to time. (Frillish/Jellicent in Gen V). The Swimmer, Tuber and Sailor trainer classes are often found here. Plenty of other water Pokémon are found by fishing with various rods. Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire and Emerald seem to have the most individual beach areas, due to Hoenn being a warm, tropical region with lots of coastline, but there's plenty of coast in the first five gens. Pokémon Sun and Moon also has plenty of beach areas due to being based on Hawai'i.
  • Dark Chronicle: "Goodbye, Shingala", Chapter 4, is set at the beachside village of Veniccio. The action segments take place in the Ocean's Roar Cave dug into the nearby cliff.
  • Endless Ocean and its sequel are made of this,since your base is a tropical island.
  • Napple Tale contains an oceanfront-themed level called Once Summer. The later half of it follows the seabed, but the ocean magically parts to form a passage, allowing the heroine to proceed on dry land. It's for the best, since she has Super Drowning Skills.
  • Tortuga archipelgo in Fantasy Life, complete with actual palmtree-based enemies.
  • Romancing Saga 3: Great Arch. The main point of interest on this beach resort town are the treasure maps sold by the locals. Herman is found and can be recruited here as well and he plays a pivotal role in the sidequest involving the dolphin statue from Vanguard.

     Shoot Em Up 
  • Blastnya in Heavy Weapon combines this with Remilitarized Zone. Amusingly, you can see sunbathers relaxing on the beach even when it's raining bombs.
  • The entirety of Island Wars takes place on small islands in the sea, and the Palm Trees on the island serve as a player's Video-Game Lives. Depending on the mode, you're either trying to bomb the heck out of another player's trees while defending your own, or both players are desperately trying to protect their trees from an invading enemy force.
  • Summer Star in Space Invaders '95: Attack of the Lunar Loonies! has its first three stages set on a beach, with enemies taking cover behind sand dunes and palm trees.

     Simulation Game 

     Sports Game 

     Wide Open Sandbox 



Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Beach Level


Bloo Bay Beach

A beach level with palmtrees and sand.

How well does it match the trope?

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Example of:

Main / PalmtreePanic

Media sources:

Main / PalmtreePanic