Croc: Legend of the Gobbos

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Croc: Legend of the Gobbos
Croc Legend of the Gobbos.jpg
Developer(s) Argonaut Software
Publisher(s) Fox Interactive (PS, SAT & PC)
MediaQuest (PS & SAT) (Japan)
THQ (GBC)
Distributor(s) Electronic Arts
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
Designer(s) Nic Cusworth
Composer(s) Justin Scharvona
Kristian Hewett
Engine BRender
Platform(s) PlayStation, Sega Saturn, Microsoft Windows, Game Boy Color
Release date(s) PlayStation
  • NA 29 September 1997
  • EU 31 October 1997
  • JP 18 December 1997
Sega Saturn
  • JP 26 March 1998
Microsoft Windows
  • NA 26 November 1997
Game Boy Color
  • NA 6 June 2000
  • EU 1 December 2000
Genre(s) Platform
Mode(s) Single-player
Distribution CD-ROM, Cartridge

Croc: Legend of the Gobbos (also known as simply Croc, or in Japan as Croc! Pau-Pau Island (クロック!パウパウアイランド?)) is a platform video game published by Fox Interactive and developed by Argonaut Software for the PlayStation, Sega Saturn, Microsoft Windows and Game Boy Color. It follows main protagonist Croc, and his attempts to rescue the furry creatures known as Gobbos from the main antagonist, Baron Dante.

Plot[edit]

The Gobbo King Rufus is watching the sunset when he notices a small basket in the lake, containing a small, screaming baby crocodile. The Gobbos raise him and train him to become one of their own. The crocodile, named Croc, eventually grows to three times the size of a normal Gobbo.

All is peaceful, until one day, one of the Gobbos shouts out a warning... "Dantinis!". Suddenly, the evil Baron Dante arrives and invades Gobbo Island with the help of his demon rascals, the Dantinis. He imprisons many of the Gobbos, most notably their King, whom he keeps in a steel cage within his castle island. Before the Gobbo King is taken, he strikes a magical gong that summons a yellow bird called Beany. Beany shrinks Croc before whisking him away to safety. Croc then goes on a quest to free all the Gobbos and defeat the evil Baron Dante himself.

Gameplay[edit]

Croc is a free-roaming game title, with Croc's movement differing slightly depending on whether players use the directional pad or the analog controller to control him. His main moves consist of a tail whip attack that can temporarily destroy enemies, and a hit drop used for smashing open crates (the same move in the Super Mario series). Croc also possess the ability to swim in select levels. Throughout the game Croc collects crystals which serve as health in a similar fashion to golden rings in Sonic the Hedgehog, meaning the player will lose a life if hit without holding any crystals in their inventory. Crystals retained at the end of a level are stored, with Croc gaining an extra life for every 100 he collects.

Progressing through the levels involves finding and hitting the Beany Gong at the end of the level to move onto the next, facing two bosses during each island. However, to fully complete the game, Croc has to rescue the captured Gobbos throughout each level. Each level contains six Gobbos, including one hidden behind a door at the end of the level. This Gobbo can only be released by collecting five colored crystals throughout the level. Collecting all the Gobbos before a boss level unlocks an extra level in which a Jigsaw Piece can be earned. When the player collects all of these pieces, a new island is opened up, leading to the game's final boss, Baron Dante, in crystal form.[1]

Structure[edit]

Screen shot of gameplay. In this shot, Croc is on the snowy island, and in front of Croc there is a collectable gem which acts as his health.

Islands
There are four standard islands in the game, each of which has a unique theme. Starting with the forest themed island, then progressing on to the snow, the desert, and castle themed islands respectively. A secret island is unlocked after the player collects all Gobbos and Jigsaw pieces in the game.

Each of the four standard islands contain six standard stages, two boss stages and two bonus stages, as detailed below.

Standard Stages
In the standard stages (levels), Croc has to collect six Gobbos and five Coloured Crystals. The Coloured Crystals open the Crystal Door at the end of the stage which contains the sixth Gobbo.

Boss Stages
A boss stage comes after every set of three levels. Boss stages contain no Gobbos or Coloured Crystals. However, each stage does contain the standard crystals, of which there are always 50.

Secret Stages
After each set of three standard stages and the boss stage the player can access a secret stage if they have rescued all 6 Gobbos on the preceding three standard stages. These contain standard crystals and a Jigsaw piece at the end.

Secret Island
If the player collects all eight jigsaw pieces in the game they gain access to the Secret Island, which consists of five levels. This island contains four stages and a final boss.

The four stages are themed in-order of the original standard island themes and consist of parts of the stages from those islands put together as a new stage. They contain more enemies than before and are more difficult. There are no Gobbos or Colored Crystals to collect and the only aim is to make it to the end of each stage.

Worlds[edit]

There are five islands (worlds) in Croc Legend of the Gobbos

  • Forest Island
  • Ice Island
  • Desert Island
  • Baron Dante's Castle
  • Crystal Island

Characters[edit]

  • Croc, the protagonist and playable character. A single toothed, vegetarian crocodile raised by the Gobbos.
  • King Rufus, the ruler of the Gobbos/Pau Paus. Distinguishable from others by the golden crown he wears.
  • Baron Dante/Bad Magician, the primary antagonist, a large reptilian creature dressed in armor and a cape.
  • Beany Bird, Croc's method of transport throughout the islands and main teammate.
  • The Gobbos/Pau Paus, cute, fuzzy orange-brown creatures. They are a peaceful race who raised Croc.
  • The Dantinis, Baron Dante's underlings. They appear in many different forms and colours.

Bosses[edit]

  • Tooty the Feeble, a duck transformed by Baron Dante, also known as "The Willy-Stick Man".
  • Flibby, a giant boxing ladybug.
  • Chumly, a creature given a rocket pack which frequently malfunctions.
  • Demon Itsy, a group of mountain goats combined to form a strange monster.
  • Neptuna, a fish transformed into a merman with a trident.
  • Cactus Jack, a giant sentient walking cactus who shoots spikes.
  • Fosley, transformed from a pink child with a balloon to a huge monster who throws dynamite.
  • Baron Dante, the game's final boss and main antagonist. He transformed the rest of the Bosses. This boss has three phases.
  • The Crystal Boss (or The Secret Sentinel), Baron Dante's spirit trapped in a Crystalline form. (Rumored, but not much is known about what the Secret Sentinel actually is, apart from resembling Baron Dante in shape.)

Development[edit]

Croc: Legend of the Gobbos started development as a 3D platform game Mario spinoff starring Yoshi that was intended to be made exclusively for Nintendo 64. Argonaut pitched the game to Nintendo but was rejected. The failed pitch essentially ended the relationship between the two companies that started with the development of Star Fox. Due to the game being rejected, Argonaut had to find other publishers to finance and publish the game. The Japanese publisher (Mitsui) selected the Sony PlayStation, the Sega Saturn, and PC as the platforms. The original contract focused on Sega but the market shifted and the Sony PlayStation became the primary platform. The game was executive produced at Argonaut by Jez San and John Edelson. The lead programmers were Lewis Gordon and, Anthony Lloyd, and the lead designer was Nic Cusworth. The 3D Yoshi game concept later served as an inspiration on the development of Super Mario 64.[2] The music for Croc: Legend of the Gobbos was composed by Justin Scharvona.[3] Kristian Hewett was also involved.

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings (PS) 79.14%[4]
(SAT) 76.67%[5]
(PC) 60.50%[6]
(GBC) 54.00%[7]

Croc: Legend of the Gobbos received mixed to positive reviews upon release. Aggregating review website GameRankings gave the PlayStation version 79.14%,[4] the Sega Saturn version 76.67%,[5] the PC version 60.50%[6] and the Game Boy Color version 54.00%.[7] Praise went to the game's graphics, unique gameplay and music whilst criticisms went to the game's camera angles and repetition.

Croc: Legend of the Gobbos was a bestseller in the UK for 2 months.[8] It was Argonaut Games' best-selling title.[2]

Sequels and spin-offs[edit]

A sequel, Croc 2, was released in 1999. Three (now taken down) mobile phone games were released as well: Croc Mobile: Jungle Rumble, Croc Mobile: Volcanic Panic! and Croc Mobile Pinball.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Croc: Legend of the Gobbos at IGN
  2. ^ a b McFerran, Damien (4 July 2013). "Born slippy: the making of Star Fox". Eurogamer. Gamer Network. Retrieved 5 July 2013. 
  3. ^ Justin Scharvona official website
  4. ^ a b "Croc: Legend of the Gobbos for PlayStation". GameRankings. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "Croc: Legend of the Gobbos for Saturn". GameRankings. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  6. ^ a b "Croc: Legend of the Gobbos for PC". GameRankings. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  7. ^ a b "Croc for Game Boy Color". GameRankings. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  8. ^ Gallup UK PlayStation sales chart, January 1998, published in Official UK PlayStation Magazine issue 28

External links[edit]