Favorite 3D Platforming Levels/Design?

Currently working on my project Chublands right now, so I’m curious; what are your favorite 3D platforming levels and why are they so memorable to you?

They can be from any 3D platformer (Banjo Kazooie, Mario Sunshine, Spyro, etc)


Every suggestion I would’ve said was already covered on the Discord server by someone else, ha.

I’d have to say Toy Time Galaxy from Super Mario Galaxy, just for how memorable it was for me. Something about the music, bright colors, combination toy and sweets aesthetic and the fact that the skybox is a giant child’s bedroom earned that level a spot in my memory above all the others.


The games with the smoothest platforming I ever played were those old Fancy Pants Man games on NG. It was intuitive and the ability to seamlessly transition between sliding/rolling and jumping made it rad as hell, and I find myself coming back to it every so often. Hell, it even made wall-jumping fun, and I normally hate wall-jumping.

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Mine probably be the Food Submarine Castle from Mystical Ninja: Starring Goemon, an entire dungeon nearly dedicated to food enemies and obstacles. The music is a major keeper (slowly grows more epic the further you go through it), coupled with the fact you use quite a bit of all of your allies’ abilities is just sublime. (Heck every castle dungeon is amazing, but that stands out to me the most).

Believe me the music in that game is awesome and quite catchy, I doubt you’ll regret listening to it.

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Most everything from Super Mario Galaxy; it was a fun ride. Also, Ratchet & Clank, at least the trilogy on the PS2. It handled pretty well, especially when Clank was upgraded with the helipack and rocket booster.

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I know pokemon X and Y is not exactly a “cherished” game by the pokemon community. As for myself, well, it’s my favorite pokemon game, and my favorite area in that game was the tower of mastery, i mean, you got the dope music, the whole tower has a “simplicity is beauty” kind of vibe to it, and you can use roller skates to go up and down the spiral staircase, which was funny, albeit concerning. With that said, I hope anyone reading this has a swell day! ;D

the first 3 levels in snake rattle and roll are pretty good.
they are all pretty “content dense” and use the 3d well to keep platforming challenges close to the main path and keeping backtracking from being annoying. they also ramp up in difficulty in a good way

the first level does a great job at introducing stuff to the player I think I also like how the warps are. you can find them without nintendo power and they’re fast to get to when you know them

the second level gives you a speed boost item and good area to run around in with it. the mountain at the end is nice, I’m not sure exactly why I like it so much though. it also has the best song in the game

the third level is where the game properly starts. it has the best example of “content denseness” where if you go 2 tiles forward from where you start you can see 4 challenges to do. it also has the best warp placement because it’s easy to figure out what to do but you have a time limit to get there. so you get to feel smart for figuring it out and also skilled because of the challenge and time limit

I think that it’s worth mentioning that it’s water level (8) was decent, it just overstay it’s welcome

I would say most of the levels are good but the later levels jump in difficulty a bit to fast and become a bit to linear. they do still keep the “denseness” up well and it’s part of why I like the game so much compared to most other 3d platformers

I like cool cool mountain and whomps fortress from Mario 64.
because they are basically cone shaped you can get anywhere on the level pretty fast if you know the shortcuts/tricks. it also helps that both have teleports to the top and cannons

tiny-huge island is also good in a similar way to the other 2 and have a pretty cool gimmick. that gimmick also lets you get to places pretty fast as well

tick tock clock has some missed potential. it has some of my favorite platforming challenges but most stars can be collected without the clock moving and the upwards spiral design makes it a bit dull to climb since there are basically no branching paths and lots of repeats

just as an aside if anyone wonders how basic fat mechanics (character gets slower and jumps lower) plays, then you should try out Mario 64 DS and play as Wario (if you do I recommend using ToxInput so you can use an analog stick instead of the d-pad to move)

not really a platforming game but cp_process in tf2.
because of all the ramps, different heights of floors and platforms and the high ceiling at the chokes on mid it makes it perfect to rocketjump around on it. you can do some pretty sick rollouts


Gotta be all the Sly Cooper games. Also Portal 2.

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ray man 2 and ray man 3, they range from sprawling areas where you’ll fight tons of enemies to platforming puzzles, be WARNED the end boss battle is RM3 is killer and will test your patience all the previous battles less so.

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A bit late, but personally, some of the most fun i’ve had with a 3D platformer has been with A Hat In Time, the levels all look fantastic, and it is a joy to move around


I actually bought a hat in time about a year ago, all the dlc along with it, and I haven’t even opened the game once lol.

Super Mario 3D World is just one of my favorite 3D platformers with unique level designs.

Rayman 3: hoodlum Havoc. The level where the sniper is trying to get Rayman and you see your player(Rayman) from second person and have to guide him out of the way of the bullets. The rest of the game isn’t bad either.

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