Tonic Trouble

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Tonic Trouble
Tonic Trouble box cover.
Developer(s) Ubisoft Montreal ;
RFX Interactive (GBC version)
Publisher(s) Ubisoft
Distributor(s) Ubisoft
Platform(s) Nintendo 64, Game Boy Color, PC
Release date(s) Nintendo 64
  • NA August 31, 1999
  • EU October 24, 1999
Game Boy Color
PC
  • NA December 6, 1999
Genre(s) Platform game

Tonic Trouble is a 3D platforming video game by Ubisoft Montreal, first released in Europe on the PC in early 1999. The story follows the main character, Ed, after a magic potion spills on the Earth and causes vegetables to become living killers. The game was subsequently released on the Nintendo 64 in North America and Europe on 25 August and 24 October 1999 respectively, and to the North American PC market on 6 December 1999. A version of the game was released on the Game Boy Color in 2000, however this version was only available in Europe.

Additionally, a beta version for the PC was released as Tonic Trouble: Special Edition, published by Guillemot. This version featured very different level designs and control schemes. It was given away by Compaq with new computers running Windows 98 in parts of Europe in mid-1999. A few differences are the additional guards not encountered in the Retail Version, larger and more open level designs, red spades instead of thermometers for health power ups, and the lack of a final boss.

Plot[edit]

Story[edit]

The game begins with Ed, the protagonist, cleaning up the spaceship he is on. In the PC version, he is contemplating giving a present to a girl he loves (but fails when she's already with Ed's formal father, named Burk). While he is working, he finds a bug similar to a woodlouse and tries to swat it in N64 (or flees Burk in the PC) and then finds a can full of a strange substance sitting on a table. He drinks it, but when a terrible sensation happens in his mouth, he doesn't like the horrible taste, and spits the fluid out onto the floor, and some screws come to life. Depending on the version, Ed either screams, runs round, and disposes of the can out a garbage chute or accidentally drops it into an open hole caused by the screws opening up.

The can falls to Earth and lands near a man named Grögh. He notices the drink’s mutagenic properties when it transforms the surrounding environment; when he drinks it, he is pleased with the results. When Ed’s superiors find out what happened and discover that it's all Ed’s fault, he is ordered to clean up the mess he's made.

Ed is to travel to Earth to retrieve the can, so that the scientists on the ship can make an antidote for the liquid. With the help of the doc and his daughter, Suzy, Ed gathers the parts required for a machine that will catapult him to Grögh's Kingdom. Ed enters Grögh's kingdom and confronts Grögh, who is driving a fearsome robot; in the end, Ed defeats Grögh and gets the can back from him.

Characters[edit]

Agent Ed : Ed is the main protagonist of the game, an alien. He has to repair his disaster. He is voiced by David Gasman.

Suzy : She is the daughter of the Doc and Ed's girlfriend. She is helping Ed in his adventure.

The Doc : Once free, the Doc helps Ed to go to Grögh's Castle to get his can back by inventing a machine.

Grögh : Grögh is the main antagonist of the game. A former drunkard Viking who, after getting himself evicted from a bar for not paying his tab, managed to drink the Tonic and thus as a result, he is now the master around the world, stating that from then on, drinks are on him, and everyone would get a taste, and Ed must stop his reign.

Agent XYZ : Another character who helps Ed; this is a newspaper guy who explains to Ed how to get through his adventure.

Enemies[edit]

Tomatoes : Tomatoes either skip or roll around. Tomatoes can't die unless they hit a wall or fall off where they're rolling.

Torches : Found in almost every level. They're round, red, mechanical, and a short white tube that resembles a flame thrower sticks out of it. About half of the base is attached to the wall. Fire comes out of the tube. Torches spread fire for only 3 seconds and then stop for 6. It's assumed that they are some type of security.

Cobs : Met after fixing a popcorn machine, Cob confronts Ed as an act of rebellion along with others. Cob can be easily defeated by moving in front of targets when he spits a seed at Ed, which bounces off and hits him. Then he falls apart and pops in the lava below him. If Ed revisits this place, another cob will take the previous place.

Robosuitcase : Robosuitcase is a not so intelligent robot that has gone haywire. Even though the only weapon it has is a duster, that is more than Ed can say for himself at the moment. Robosuitcase is defeated by Ed because he is lured onto a switch which requires someone heavy to activate. The switch raises a grate covering a popcorn/crunch depositer turning Ed into Super Ed, who then pummels robosuitcase.

Carrots : Carrots spin around at a high speed in spots and if hit, will move around. The more common and slightly stronger ones are purple.

Beanstalks : Beanstalks throw their beans which explode when they hit ground. Sometimes, beanstalks can leave their beans and let them only explode when something comes near it.

Boxing Mushrooms : Boxing mushrooms wear shorts and fight hand to hand. If Ed brings out his peashooter, the mushrooms will spin on their heads quickly towards Ed.

Turnips : Turnips use pitchforks to attack. Turnips are only fought at the entrance of vegetable HQ. One hits tomatoes at Ed near the entrance to the glacier cocktail but can not be fought.

Jalapeño Pepper : Only found once in the vegetable HQ. Jalapeño pepper can only be hurt if Ed eats the popcorn/crunch turning into super Ed.

Electric Spike Balls : Electric spike balls appear more commonly in each level later on. They float above the ground and sometimes move in patterns. If Ed touches one, they explode. They're most likely meant for security.

Electricity : Electricity is either a small ball that hovers in a pattern or two balls across from each other that create a line of it in between. It is found in almost every level, maybe as some type of security.

Helling Guards : These are Grögh's henchmen. They are very strong, shirtless men who have long, wavy mustaches. Guards are filled with hot air. A lot of them are armed with shooters resembling toilet plungers. There's an exception of their weapons being replaced with pistons shooting sharp ice at the glacier cocktail. When Ed defeats one, they inflate and pop. All types of guards have goggles that cover up their four eyes.

Flying henchmen : Flying henchmen mostly fly in one spot shooting at whomever is against them. They fly using propeller caps just like the ones Ed collects at the north plain.

Cyborg henchmen : Cyborg henchmen attack with electricity that they control. Electrical conducts are used to charge them up. Cyborgs cannot be hurt except on their back because of their open flaps.

Old teeth : Found only in the reverse pyramid, these teeth will attack Ed by chomping him and move doing so. They take three hits before falling apart. If Ed brings out the pea shooter, they will turn invisible and stand still.

Mummies : One of the few enemies that talk, the mummies are fought all at once in their wheelchairs. With the exception of the first one which is seen at the end of a long gap filled with poison water shooting bugs through a blowpipe. If a mummy is hit once, they'll roll away for a while.

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings (PC) 70%[1]
(N64) 53.32%[2]
Review scores
Publication Score
AllGame 3/5 stars[3]
Electronic Gaming Monthly 6.12/10[4]
Game Informer 7/10[5]
GamePro 3/5 stars[6]
Game Revolution F[7]
GameSpot 3/10[8]
GameZone 7.7/10 (incorrect score is "8.5")[9]
IGN (PC) 6.3/10[10]
(GBC) 6/10[11]
(N64) 5/10[12]
Nintendo Power 7.4/10[13]

The game was met with very mixed reviews, as GameRankings gave it a score of 53.32% for the Nintendo 64 version,[2] and 70% for the PC version.[1] Critics cite poor controls, a wordy exposition, and sloppy graphics. The PC version of the game is a port of the original N64 version with noticeable differences, such as a substantially different opening due to the lack of processing power needed to render cutscenes, and different music in certain places. The game is often compared to another game published by Ubisoft, Rayman 2: The Great Escape, because both are 3D platformers, both have main characters of a similar design (hands and feet without arms or legs), and both were released around the same time, although Rayman 2 received much better reviews. The Game Boy Color version was only released in Europe, and was met with equally mixed reviews.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Tonic Trouble for PC". GameRankings. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  2. ^ a b "Tonic Trouble for Nintendo 64". GameRankings. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  3. ^ McCall, Scott. "Tonic Trouble (N64) - Review". Allgame. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  4. ^ "Tonic Trouble (N64)". Electronic Gaming Monthly. 1999. 
  5. ^ Helgeson, Matt (August 2000). "Tonic Trouble (N64)". Game Informer (76): 64. Archived from the original on 2000-05-22. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  6. ^ The Freshman (1999). "Tonic Trouble Review for N64 on GamePro.com". GamePro. Archived from the original on 2005-02-13. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  7. ^ Liu, Johnny (January 2000). "Tonic Trouble Review (N64)". Game Revolution. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  8. ^ Stahl, Ben (1999-06-24). "Tonic Trouble Review (N64)". GameSpot. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  9. ^ Suzi Sez (2000-01-14). "Tonic Trouble Review - PC". GameZone. Archived from the original on 2009-02-06. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  10. ^ Lopez, Vincent (1999-12-17). "Tonic Trouble (PC)". IGN. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  11. ^ Jones, Tim (2000-05-30). "Tonic Trouble (GBC)". IGN. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  12. ^ Casamassina, Matt (1999-10-13). "Tonic Trouble (N64)". IGN. Retrieved 2014-05-21. 
  13. ^ "Tonic Trouble". Nintendo Power 124. September 1999. 

External links[edit]