Beginner's Guide to Snake Pass

Use your Noodle, and think like a snake.

Snake Pass by Sumo Digital is a game that definitely warrants a beginner’s guide. This is because while the mechanics and “snake physics” are relatively straightforward, they can be tough to master. However, with enough practice and patience, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a Snake Pass master!

To help get you started, we’ve put together a quick beginner’s guide to Snake Pass!

Remember to Save

Noodle appreciates it when you slither over save points in Snake Pass.

In Snake Pass, there are checkpoints on the ground that you can slither over to save your progress. You’ll want to activate these checkpoints as frequently as possible, especially when you reach some of the harder levels later on. While Noodle doesn’t exactly take damage in a traditional sense, there are many ways to “kill” him.

Which can be rather inconvenient, as dying will cause you to respawn at the last checkpoint you activated. Meaning that if you managed to find a Keystone after activating the checkpoint, then died, you’ll need to head back and collect that Keystone again. A good rule to follow is if you see a checkpoint, slither over it, then proceed on your way.

Use a Controller

Do you really want to drop this adorable snake into a pit of lava?

I cannot stress this one enough… use a controller! If you’re playing Snake Pass on PC, there are USB controllers you can purchase in various styles such as PS4, Xbox One, and the Steam Controller. Take advantage of the controller support in Snake Pass, it really is much easier than using your mouse and keyboard.

By using a controller, you’ll be able to better control Noodle and avoid unnecessary falls (like into a pit of boiling lava).

Additionally, if you’re playing Snake Pass on the Nintendo Switch, you're able to handle Noodle better when using the Pro Controller as opposed to the Joy-Con Grip. However, if you prefer using your Switch in handheld mode, the positioning of the Joy-Cons is decent enough to enable you to capitalize on Noodle’s full range of motions.

Have Doodle Hold Your Tail

Doodle can prevent Noodle from falling over the edge.

Speaking of falling over the edge, don’t forget to have Doodle hold your tail. This mechanic exists in Snake Pass for a reason, so make sure you use it whenever possible. For example, say you’re heading out to collect a Gatekeeper Coin that’s hovering below a slim bamboo pole a few inches over the edge of the map.

If you slither straight toward it in an attempt to begin coiling around it, your tail may slide over the side and drag you down before you can get a firm grip. However, if Doodle is there holding your tail, you’ll find it easier to traverse the bamboo pole, pick up your Gatekeeper Coin, then return to the level and save at a checkpoint.

Get Used to Moving the Camera

Don’t be afraid to move the camera around while you’re playing Snake Pass. True, the camera can be a little wonky at times, but you still have the ability to freely move it around Noodle and Doodle whenever you like.

This will help you locate hidden items, figure out complex problems, and maneuver around a level in general.

You may be thinking to yourself, “Duh, I knew this already.” However, it’s worth paying attention to when accomplishing tasks in Snake Pass. Are you slithering straight for the objective, or are you looking around as you make your way forward through the level so that you don’t miss out on any hidden items?

Hidden Items

If you're having trouble finding an Orb in Snake Pass, chances are it's hidden away in a small crevice like this one.

Speaking of hidden items, are you having a hard time finding last Gatekeeper Coin? Trying to hunt down a few more Orbs? Well, Gatekeeper Coins are often hidden behind trees and over the side of each map in Snake Pass.

As for Orbs, look around for holes you can slither through. Oftentimes, these are where the last few Orbs are hidden. Additionally, try to look in unexpected places, like behind the Gate at the end of the map, or at the very top of a tall platform.

Coil, Wrap, Grip

Whatever you do, don't let go.

Snake Pass uses a unique set of “snake physics” which can be manipulated in a series of ways. In the game, you have the ability to slither forward, lift your head, wrap around objects, and then grip those objects to avoid falling off. To climb, you need to make use of a “coil, wrap, grip” type of system.

Essentially, when you spot a bamboo pole, try to coil up by lifting your head and spinning around. Next, wrap your neck (do snakes have necks?) around the pole, hold down on the grip button, then repeat the process. Be careful when loosening your grip to inch your way forward.

Noodle has no idea he's about three seconds away from falling.

Letting go for an extended period of time could result in a nasty fall. When it comes to gripping in Snake Pass, it’s important to remember that simply twisting Noodle’s long body around an object won’t prevent him from falling. You really have to make use of the grip command in order to climb up and around platforms. To quote that one Spongebob episode, “Firmly grasp it!”

Slow and Steady

Avoid racing up bamboo poles in Snake Pass, otherwise you may slide back down and have to do it all over again!

One of the best ways to master Noodle’s movement is following the age-old mantra “slow and steady wins the race.” This is one I learned the hard way while venturing underneath a bridge in Paradise Path to retrieve one of the five Gatekeeper Coins. However, this method can also be applied to just about everything else in Snake Pass as well. 

Remember to coil, wrap, and grip! 

Try to remember that if you continue to hold down the button to move forward, even if you’re not slithering, you’ll still move. At least a little bit. This can make climbing through difficult areas a pain, as you won’t have enough time to wrap yourself properly. Instead, use the aforementioned “coil, wrap, grip” method, then gently tap on the button to move forward once you’ve got a firm grip. 

It’s not the quickest way to climb, but it’s definitely the most efficient.

Want to help out your fellow Snake Pass players? Be sure to leave your tips and tricks in the comments below! By following this beginner’s guide, you should have a better understanding of how to play Snake Pass.

Morgan is a writer, indie game lover, and socially awkward coffee addict. Need something? Morgan can be reached at or if you like, you can say hello using GIFs on Twitter.

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