Bowser in the Fire Sea
Bowser in the Fire Sea, also called Bowser's Lava Sea or simply the Fire Sea, is the second Bowser level in Super Mario 64 and Super Mario 64 DS, located in the basement of the Mushroom Castle. This level is made of concrete and mesh platforms above a huge lake of lava, sharing Lethal Lava Land's background of a vast lava ocean with a fiery sky. Several Bullies and Goombas guard these platforms and the route to Bowser's arena. This level is unlocked by completing Board Bowser's Sub in Dire, Dire Docks, and its own completion unlocks the Mushroom Castle's second floor, which leads to Snowman's Land; Wet-Dry World; Tall, Tall Mountain; Tiny-Huge Island; and Chief Chilly Challenge (DS version only).
The entrance to Bowser in the Fire Sea is found in the same room of the Mushroom Castle as the entrance to Dire, Dire Docks, which requires 30 Power Stars to enter. Before the player obtains the first Power Star from Dire, Dire Docks, the blue portal to the water level will be in front of the entrance to Bowser in the Fire Sea. Once the first Power Star of Dire, Dire Docks is obtained, the blue portal will move to the back of the room, allowing access to Bowser in the Fire Sea. One Power Star can be found in the Nintendo 64 version of the game, while two can be found in the Nintendo DS remake.
The player starts on a small platform with a metal platform near it. Stepping onto the metal platform will cause it to move. At certain points, the platform will dive under the lava, so the player needs to jump to nearby tilting platforms in order to avoid taking damage. After the moving platform's stopping point is a series of blue platforms that constantly go under the lava, then resurface. Beyond those is a Bully followed by three Goombas situated around a Spinning Heart. A rising pole, circled by an Amp, will help the player reach the tilting platforms above. To the right of the platforms is an area with a yellow block containing three coins, and the pole to the left at the end of the platforms leads to a cage with an elevator that brings the player up to the next level.
The second level first contains a moving platform that goes through a flamethrower, which leads to a sloping mound. After the slope is a hanging grate the player can use to climb to the other side of the lava pool. Beyond that are two moving platforms, followed by a couple of Bullies, and a tall set of moving interconnected platforms with a Keronpa Ball that will lead the player to the next level.
The final level starts with a stone slope, containing a flamethrower, a Bob-omb, and a yellow block. After the stone slope is a row of sinking and rising platforms that are protected by flamethrowers and Amps. Beyond those is a stone structure containing rising and falling poles. Finally, a falling bridge leads to the warp that sends the player to the Bowser fight.
The tactic to defeat Bowser is the same as that for the fight in Bowser in the Dark World, though he has some additional moves. Bowser will immediately start the battle by jumping up and landing, causing the stage to tilt toward him. The same will happen if the player throws Bowser off the stage but misses a mine, making Bowser land and cause the stage to tilt. Bowser can also warp to a different spot if the player is close, and charge at the player if they are far away. Throwing Bowser into a mine will defeat him, granting the player the Big Key to the castle's upper floors.
Two Power Stars can be collected in this course, with one being exclusive to the DS version of the game.
8 Red Coins
Like in Bowser in the Dark World, there are eight Red Coins to be collected. These are the locations of the Red Coins:
After the player collects all eight Red Coins, the Power Star will appear atop a wall shortly before the warp that leads to Bowser. The player must wall-jump, triple-jump, or use Luigi's Backward Somersault to reach it.
Switch Star (DS only)
Near the first Star is a Star Switch. Upon the player pressing the switch, the Power Star will appear on the far side of a lava pool that the player must quickly backtrack across in order to reach it before it disappears. If playing as Luigi, the player can backward-somersault over the lava to the Star.
Names in other languages