Special 3 is the third of the eight Special Worlds in Super Mario 3D Land. The level takes place in a flowery field at night, like the others, with several hills and trees in the background. It is unlocked by defeating the Special 2 Airship. The world is one of the few that lacks a boss at the end. The world contains 6 levels and one Mystery Box.
The level contains several swinging platforms, as well as Donut Lifts. There are some block platforms scattered through the area. Para-Biddybuds are the primary foes in this level. Mario begins on a group of block platforms before getting on a swinging platform. He must then cross two Donut Lifts and jump onto another swinging platform, then fall onto another swinging platform, and then jump onto another. After crossing another group of block platforms, Mario and Luigi will have to ride two more swinging platforms before reaching another group of platforms with the Checkpoint Flag. He must then get on an automatically swinging platform, followed by jumping onto an orange bouncy platform and another swinging platform. Next will be a group of Donut Lifts, with five Para-Biddybuds floating above them. The path then splits here. On one end is a swinging platform, followed by an orange, bouncy platform and more Donut Lifts. On the other is platform followed by swinging platform and more colored platforms, with some Biddybuds, then the Donut Lifts. Next is a group of automatically swinging platforms, then the Flagpole.
This level is designed after World 4-3. The level contains mostly colored spinning blocks, but has some of the checkered grassy platforms. Mario begins on one of the grass platforms. After jumping on one of the orange platforms, he lands on a blue spinning platform. After leaping onto another, the player must jump onto one of the Paragoombas here in order to reach another grass platform, if not Tanooki/Statue Mario. By using the Flying Question Block, the player can reach an upper platform containing two Question Blocks, one of which provides a Statue Leaf. On the ground is a Spiny. This platform is followed by a series of rotating platforms, another platform, two rotating blocks, yet another platform, and three more rotating blocks before the player reaches a rather large grass platform with the Checkpoint Flag and a Piranha Plant. Leaping up the platform will allow the player to see two more Piranha Plants, and then a bouncy orange block leading to more rotating blocks. Past these is a platform with the end flag on it.
The level is based on World 7-3. However, it take place at daytime and the music is different. It also only give the player 30 seconds to complete it, but there are several + Clocks scattered around, and the Midway Flag does not appear in the level. Mario starts the level on two tree platforms, with a tightrope dividing them and two Stingbies. The player must then climb several more tightropes, avoiding Fuzzies and a Venus Fire Trap to reach a Warp Box. This area takes Mario to an area close by, with three more tightropes and a Fuzzy. On a large wood platform is another Warp Box leading to another area where Mario must climb up tightropes, avoiding two groups of Fuzzies, a Venus Fire Trap, and two Para-Biddybuds. The Warp Box here leads to the end of the level.
Special 3-Mystery Box
The possible contents of this Mystery Box are:
This level is similar to World 7-2. The beginning has Mario having to dodge several fast-moving spiked cylinders on chains and two Boomerang Bros. to reach a door. Behind the door is the midway flag and a platform that tilts with Mario's weight, like with World 7-2; the player, however, must dodge large spiked balls that spawn out of portals instead of spiked cylinders. The first obstacles after entering the fortress again are two Boomerang Bros.; defeating them gives the player a Boomerang Flower. The player must then avoid more chained spiked cylinders, this time fully rotating, along with some Donut Lifts to reach the exit. Outside are three sets of Donut Lifts, along with three more chained and fully rotating spiked cylinders, and the flag.
This level has a similar design to World 6-4; however, unlike 6-4, whenever a Beat Block appears, the one that appeared before disappears. This could result in a Tanooki Mario requirement. The level begins with Mario on on a wood platform. Crossing three Beat Blocks takes the player to another platform with a Wallop on it. The next platform after the second set of Beat Blocks has three Question Blocks and two Prongos, and the raised part of the platform has a Wallop before the door. Beyond the door is another Wallop guarding the path onward. After climbing up several Beat Blocks, there is a door leading to the Checkpoint Flag. Just past the Beat Blocks are two Wallops on separate platforms. Moving onward, the player must use the Beat Blocks to get up to the next platform. He or she must then cross several Beat Blocks while avoided spiked bars rotating like Firebars. Afterward, there is a platform with a Prongo, followed by two sets of Beat Blocks with chained spiked bars as a hazard; between these is another platform with a Prongo on it. After this is another set of Beat Blocks and the Flagpole.
In order to access the level, the player must have acquired 140 Star Medals. The level is similar in design to the World 2-Airship, but the screen scrolls faster, and there is no battle. The player begins at the front of an airship, with three Rocket Engines stacked on top of each other. On the end is a tightrope leading to another airship; here, two Bullet Bills are shot at the player, with a pair of Bullet Bill Blasters in the distance. Mounted on the second airship are three Bullet Bill Blasters. On the next airship, there is a Bill Blaster shooting Bullets toward the Question Block, as well as a Rocky Wrench. Afterward, there are two more Bullet Bill Blasters, one off in the distance and one on the next airship, which can be access by a plank with several Crates on it. The next ship has several Rocket Engines on it. The player must then jump across to the airship with the Flagpole on it; however, if the player heads down to the lower part of the ship, there are three Tanooki Toads that give him or her coins.