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In many platform games, there is one common object that is rather rare in Real Life (except around swimming pools): springboards. They usually look like plates with springs attached to the bottom, but they can take many forms, sometimes more practical but sometimes much more bizarre.

Things that can sometimes also function as springboards in video games:

  • Cloth balconies
  • Trampolines
  • Couches
  • Tires
  • Jump pads
  • Geyser steam bursts
  • Some of the bouncing clouds

Some springboards will launch the player up whenever he lands on them, but sometimes a jump button needs to be pressed on a springboard to jump higher. When the latter is implemented poorly, the Springboard Problem, a form of Fake Difficulty, occurs when it's easy to miss the exact timing and jump much lower, possibly into a Bottomless Pit.

See also Goomba Springboard, Spring Jump. Spring Coil is for when the springs are on a character's person.

Examples of springboards in video games:
  • Cloth balconies and cheeses in Sly Cooper
  • The Super Mario Bros. series has them. In many games, springboards can also be carried.
  • The Sonic the Hedgehog series has them all over the place.
  • So does the Jazz Jackrabbit series. They've even shown in animated cutscenes.
  • Nuts & Milk has springboards, too, unfortunately with the famous Springboard Problem.
  • In Spelunky, they're hidden inside the ground.
    • One release of a beta version accidentally included a hotkey function that created such a springboard in front of the player. This version was pulled shortly after discovery.
  • In Karoshi, they can often lead to a quick death. Fortunately, that's the purpose of the game.
  • Sunday Funday/Menace Beach has some which can easily lead to quick death. However, unlike in Karoshi, this is not the point of the game.
  • Some of the levels in the Mega Man series have a lot of springs. Examples are Plant Man's stage and, obviously, Spring Man's stage.
    • And when there aren't any, you can probably use Rush Coil.
  • Battletoads has them in final level.
  • Konami's Noah's Ark has them, too. Even in the jungle.
  • Speaking of Bible-based games, Bible Adventures features them in its Baby Moses game.
  • LostWinds has these, too.
  • Crash Bandicoot
  • Ape Escape
  • Toxic Crusaders NES game has these with the usual Springboard Problem.
  • Wonder Boy and Adventure Island have these all over the place, too.
  • As does the Felix the Cat NES game.
  • Circus Charlie has them during horse riding stages.
  • McKids has those too. Sometimes not in the best places.
  • Lost Vikings has them in numerous places. Since in the first game, 2 out of 3 characters cannot jump on their own, it's kinda useful.
  • A few of them can be found in the second installment of Loco Roco.
  • They also appear in Kid Niki games.
  • Purple has springboards in several places, especially boss fortresses.
  • Portal 2 introduces Aerial Faith Plates, giant springloaded panels that propel any object on them great distances. For the more intricate puzzles, you have to utilize them in series for truly spectacular jumps. Oh, and they were originally designed to test subjects' puzzle solving skills... In Space. As with most other Aperture Science technologies, this didn't turn out well.
  • A few springboards appear in Mr. Gimmick.
  • Tomb Raider II had these in very few levels and are needed to reach other high areas. Approaching a springboard the wrong way could get you seriously hurt or possibly wind flinging yourself to instant death.

Examples of other objects that function as springboards:

  • Mushrooms and clouds in Sonic 3 and Knuckles.
    • Sonic games normally have strange spring things all around, in one case it being an enemy that hides like normal ground spikes until it picks up its head and shoots at you but its spikes are bouncy. Some of the mid-series games as features lever springs that don't bounce you nearly as high as red or yellow springs but are intended for short vaults.
      • The oddest example of a unconventional spring was the whole floor of the Sonic CD Wacky Workbench zone.
  • Couches in the Home Alone 2 game.
    • In the Sega Genesis Home Alone game, Kevin can collect and drop tires to use as temporary springboards. As above, couches are also present.
  • Jump pads in the Unreal series. Became more common starting from Unreal Tournament 2003.
  • Tires in Donkey Kong Country.
  • "Launchers" in Jumper series. A green coloured block with upward-pointing arrow on them. Variations include one-time use orange ones. Jumper Three uses actual springboards.
  • Half Life: Starting on the Surface Tension level, organic craters start appearing in Black Mesa. When you step on one, it emits a stream of gas that propels you upwards. They're a vital part of several jumping puzzles later on, and even necessary to defeat the Final Boss.
  • Bug!! has a different type of spring for each level (sometimes, a level may have two kinds!)
    • Insectia had mushrooms, and rather stiff-looking leaves that jutted out off walls.
    • Reptilia had mini-geysers.
    • Splot had swamp gas geysers.
    • Quaria used beach balls.
    • The Burrubs had leaves (like Insectia), and for some reason, mushrooms.
    • Arachnia had gas vents as well as mushrooms (don't ask)
  • Bio Miracle Bokutte Upa had spiral notebook binding.
  • Flink had spring-loaded lily pads.
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