Cave

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The typical cave environment.
Caves in Super Mario World are levels that takes place wholly or partially underground. These levels are the second-most common type of levels, tied with mushroom-themed levels.

Caves were originally marked on the overworld in SMW by a special level tile depicting boulders surrounding a regular level icon. However, worlds such as Vanilla Dome and Valley of Bowser are exceptions that use the standard level tiles because they are entirely underground.

Common Elements

In SMW, cave levels featured a rocky foreground (GFX1A) and a background featuring stalagmites and stalactites (GFX0C) or Layer 3 graphics.

Cave levels often feature low ceilings and narrow paths to represent being in underground tunnels, as well as adding a unique challenge compared to outdoor levels. Enemies such as the lava dwelling Blargg, the Spike Top, and the Buzzy Beetle, are commonly used. Lava hazards also represent a unique challenge to players, offering instant death for mis-timed jumps in more places than just the bottom of the screen.

In Hacking

In hacks, cave levels usually implement dark colors or shades of black, browns and grays to give the feeling of being underground. Cave levels are generally harder than grasslands. Restricted movement due to low ceilings give players less leeway for their jumps, and since a cave may have many tunnels or pipes, puzzle elements such as finding a P-Switch to advance are commonly used. In addition, vertical levels in hacks are often tunnels in caves, due to their ease in creating ceilings and walls. Indeed, most vertical sections in the original game were cave-themed.

Cave themed levels in SMW


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