The latest episode of Game Maker's Toolkit, a YouTube series exploring design choices in popular video games, lifts the lid on the Super Mario series.
Focusing on Wii U title Super Mario 3D World, the video explains how Nintendo's approach to level design can be broken down into four parts: introduction, development, twist and resolution.
The model is based on an Asian philosophy of narrative design called Kishotenketsu, according to the game's director Koichi Hayashida.
"Essentially, the stages are four-part, self-contained showcases for new ideas, where a mechanic can be successfully taught, developed, twisted and then thrown away in about five minutes flat," video creator Mark Brown explains.
You can watch the video below.