"It's ya main man Knuckles
And we in Meteor Herd!
You ready to go into space?
Help me get the Emeralds!"
And we in Meteor Herd!
You ready to go into space?
Help me get the Emeralds!"
— Sonic Adventure 2, "Space Trip Steps"
Space, as presented in video games, comes in two varieties:
- The Shoot 'em Up version of space, in which you can only go in one direction, possibly thanks to 2-D Space — which by a crazy coincidence happens to be the direction swarming with enemies.
- The platformer version of space — which is basically like every other platformer stage, except that you might jump a little higher due to lessened gravity. It may take place in a space station, densely-packed asteroids or on an planet or moon surface where the atmosphere is missing.
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- Early in Double Dragon Neon, the Lee brothers find themselves on a space rocket owned by Skullmageddon. One stage on the rocket involves the brothers taking a big breath of air and holding it before jumping out of an airlock.
- Battletoads & Double Dragon has an Unexpected Shmup Level in space.
First Person Shooters
Role Playing Games
- Deep Space from Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, which is based on the prologue of Lilo & Stitch. Parts of the stage allow you to explore the areas outside of the spaceship and even allow you to turn off gravity to reach higher places in the spaceship.
- In Pokémon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire, the immediate postgame, where you fight Deoxys in space. While riding Rayquaza.
Shoot Em Ups
- The Lylat System of Star Fox is a relatively narrow corridor of space with Invisible Walls keeping the player from moving out-of-bounds. The player can generally only fly in one direction.
- Gradius, R-Type, and all their variants and spinoffs. Special mention to the Genesis title Whip Rush. Several levels feature segments where your titular starship flies up, down, and even backwards, all while obediently facing and shooting to the right. It requires getting either missile or flamethrower powerups to be able to shoot in the direction you're going.
- Super Mario Bros.
- The Space Zone in Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins is the Trope Namer, and also the first space-themed world in the series. In the levels, Mario wears a spacesuit, and the gravity is lessened. The boss is Tatanga, who was originally the Final Boss of the first Super Mario Land.
- A few of the secret levels in Super Mario Sunshine have a space background.
- The entire basis of Super Mario Galaxy, though only Space Junk Galaxy consciously displays the setting among the main fifteen levels (as the others mix it with a different setting, for the sake of variety). Super Mario Galaxy 2 has Battle Belt Galaxy.
- The respective maps of all four secret worlds in Super Mario 3D World are space-themed, though only World Star has actual space-themed levels (namely Rainbow Run, Super Galaxy, Honeycomb Starway, Cosmic Cannon Cluster and Captain Toad Takes A Spin), and it's also in that world where Rosalina can be unlocked to play as her. There's also the earlier Beep Block Skyway from World 4.
- The Moon Kingdom in Super Mario Odyssey is set on the Moon which also has a hot and molten interior. There are also the secret areas set on the Dark Side of the Moon and the Darker Side of the Moon.
- In Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door you go to the moon as well, without any oxygen gear. Goombella tells you not to think about it too hard.
- Also shows up in Super Paper Mario. You do need a space suit, but the space suit is merely a fishbowl on your head. One Boss Battle does an Unexpected Gameplay Change and turns it into Shoot 'em Up space. Hop on Carrie and it's already a Shmup in space.
- Mario Adventure has World 5, Starry Slopes.
- Something has A Day in Space. This level is unusual because it is also a Green Hill Zone. However, it is a Brutal Bonus Level because there are lots of Munchers and flying Koopas to dodge.
- Mega Man:
- The seventh chapter of Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice takes place on a path that goes through outer space, and connects the game's netherworld with the human world (Which exist as separate planets, contrary to what the names may imply).
- The Sonic the Hedgehog series includes both space station levels (usually with reversed gravity) and True Final Bosses in outer space that require Super Sonic.
- The Death Egg from Sonic & Knuckles. There's also a shoot-em-up space zone: the Doomsday Zone.
- 4th Dimension Space from Sonic Shuffle is one of the few in the series without a space station.
- Sonic Adventure 2 has a bunch of levels and several boss fights set in and around the Space Colony ARK. The ones inside the ARK also count as Eternal Engine levels (one of them is even the Trope Namer). There are even different Gravity Screw mechanics in different levels. Meteor Herd and Cosmic Wall have low gravity, Crazy Gadget has switches which change the direction of gravity, and Mad Space consists of multiple tiny planets which each have their own gravitational pull. The rest just have normal gravity. And, as always air is never an issue. Interestingly, everyone in the game with the exception of Knuckles has Super Drowning Skills, so they can't breathe in water, but they can breathe in space. note
- X-Zone, the Moon Zone, Egg Utopia, True Area 53, and Nonaggression from Sonic Advance.
- E.G.G. Station and Death Egg mk.II in Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I and Episode II, respectively.
- Starlight Carnival and Asteroid Coaster in Sonic Colors are mostly set in outer space, unlike the other zones which take place in multiple planets.
- Many Kirby levels, often featuring the especially delicious UFO enemies.
- "Project F" from Superfrog is a shoot-em-up space level, but World 6 after that is set on a space station in platformer space.
- Rocket Knight Adventures, a platformer for Sega Genesis, had a shoot-em-up level in orbit towards the end of the game.
- The Moon in DuckTales. "Hey Uncle Scrooge, you need a suit up there! How are you alive? You need heat! Also air!"
- The space levels in Ratchet & Clank (at least in the first game) seem to avert this trope. Ratchet can't go out there himself, but has to send his Robot Buddy Clank to explore. Then it turns out that the only thing Ratchet needed was an oxygen mask, and suddenly the space levels function exactly as the planet levels. Gravity works the same, there's no need for a pressurized suit, and even propellers work just as normal! Later games gave Ratchet some sort of commando suit, which kind of made more sense.
- Math Rescue has some of these in the second episode.
- "Space A Go-Go" from DK: Jungle Climber.
- An amusement park actually called the Space Zone in Theme Park World.
- Mass Effect 2, when navigating in star system or cluster. All star systems and planets, plus ships and stations are in same plane.
- Although the game is careful to point out that this is a feature of the Galaxy Map and not an actual reflection of what the galaxy looks like - its the same reason that the Normandy is shown bigger than whole planets and how you can fly it through suns.
- Mothership Zeta from the Fallout 3 DLC of the same name. One part has you take a spacewalk on the outside of the ship.
- World 6 (Outer Nebula) of Super Mario Fusion Revival is Science Fiction themed, taking place in outer space, on alien planets, space stations, and spaceships.
- In The Adventures of Lomax, the last world is this. It kind of looks like pieces of moon's surface suspended in space. Despite its looks, the world functions just like the previous worlds and there's no difference in gravity and such.
- Gruntz has this as the last world as well.
- The Asteroid Belt in The Adventures Of Rad Gravity, where Rad must propel himself with his gun in zero gravity.
- The first half of the fourth and final world of McDonald's Treasure Land Adventure takes place on the moon. Ronald and his friends crash their rocket looking for the treasure when it is revealed to be in space, and thus give up the hunt for a way back home. With the lack of gravity, Ronald is able to jump twice as high as before. The second half of the stage takes place inside the spaceship of the Alien King, who has captured Ronald's friends and is guarding the treasure.
- The last stage of Tiny Toon Adventures Buster Busts Loose takes place in space. It is based on the episode, "A Quack in the Quarks" from the cartoon series, and most of the enemies are characters that appeared in that episode, such as the Stormtwoopers. The final boss is Duck Vader, who attempts to zap Buster with a giant laser, which Buster must snatch from him and zap him with. At the end of the game, the stage is revealed to have been filmed in a studio, and Duck Vader is really a costumed Plucky.
- Cleemalt Soa (Saturn in other variants) in the arcade game Xaind Sleena . This stage is a moon that features floating, non-moving asteroids, bottomless pits that kill you instantly, and a cool background with Saturn and its rings floating in the black, star-studded sky.
- The Fairly OddParents: Shadow Showdown has the level "Vicky Strikes Back", a parody of old sci-fi space shows.
- In Snoopy's Grand Adventure, the third world, "Lunar Surface", takes place on the moon, where the goal is to rescue Lucy. Enemies in this world consist of robots. The boss of the world is a giant robot that resembles Lucy, who chases Snoopy throughout its level.
- The world "Spaced Out" in Monkey Shines, which is loaded with flying saucers, aliens and robots. Gravity Screw is averted.
- Yoshi's Island:
- Looney Tunes games:
- Throughout Taz in Escape from Mars, Taz travels to different planets, but the world that suits this trope the most is Mars, the first world in the game, as it takes place in Marvin the Martian's zoo. A very unusual choice for a first level and one that sets some pretty strange standards about what's to follow.
- In Desert Demolition Starring Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote, the end of Wile E. Coyote's bonus round at the end of "Red Rock Rondevous" has him riding rockets through space, and when he reaches the very end, Marvin the Martian can be seen shooting at Bugs Bunny.
- Speedy Gonzales Los Gatos Bandidos has Galactical Galaxies, which serves as the sixth world of the game.
- Bugs Bunny in Double Trouble has the final three levels taking place in outer space. Marvin the Martian maybe be unrelated to Dr. Sam's hunt for a brain but manages to easily escalate things quickly. You first race against Marvin on a space scooter, then you traverse through Mars on a UFO, and finally, you need to "rescue" the dynamite plunger and switch Marvin's lasers into reverse so that it blows up Mars instead of Earth.
- Galleon Galaxy in Yooka-Laylee which also has a pirate motif.
- In Sesame Street Countdown, the fifth level takes place on the moon. With the lack of gravity, The Count is able to jump twice as high.
- Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back has the levels Rock It and Pack Attack. In them, Crash is exploring a space vessel with zero gravity, so he has to use a space suit to move forward. He also chases Cortex in outer space in the Final Boss battle.
- Most of the Rainbow Road courses in the Mario Kart series. Taken Up to Eleven come Mario Kart 8, where THAT Rainbow Road takes place in a space station.
- Need for Speed III has a hidden course set on a space station.
- The Oovo IV courses in Star Wars Episode I: Racer run through an asteroid penal colony, and include zero gravity tube sections.
- There are three space levels in Cel Damage, including one set on a space station, and one where you drive directly on the rings of Saturn.
- Sonic Drift 2 has Milky Way, which serves as the fifth track in the Blue GP. The track is a linear one that leads to the Death Egg, which serves as the sixth and final track.
- In MechWarrior Living Legends, the map 'Extremity' takes place on a rapidly spinning asteroid near a bright star. Gravity is significantly reduced to the point where Power Armor players can stay permanently aloft with their regenerating Jump Jet Pack, and due to the rotation the level's ambient conditions change over the course of the match; at night, the temperature drops and the atmosphere freezes into lakes, while at daytime the temperature rises to dangerous levels, the lakes boil off and a steady stream of gas vents from the surface. The community map 'Deepspace' is a more straight example, set in a zero-gravity asteroid field where vehicles are limited to the Space Plane fighters and powered armor.
- Once you get your archwings in Warframe, you get access to several missions where you use them to fly in freefall through asteroid thickets and over the hulls of spaceships. These missions feel very much like a different game, what with your equipment being replaced with archwing-exclusive weapons (Even your warframes' abilities are replaced with archwing-specific abilities!) and any mods found there also being specifically for archwing equipment.
Wide Open Sandbox
- In Terraria if you go high enough up in the sky you will eventually reach space where gravity is a much weaker.