Pandemonium! (video game)
|Developer(s)||Toys for Bob[a]|
|Publisher(s)||PlayStation, Sega Saturn & Microsoft Windows
Pandemonium!, known as Magical Hoppers in Japan, is a 1996 platforming video game developed by Toys for Bob and published by Crystal Dynamics for the PlayStation, Sega Saturn, Microsoft Windows, N-Gage, and iPhone OS. Pandemonium! features Fargus, a joker, and Nikki, who unwittingly casts a spell that destroys the town. The goal of the game is to reach the Wishing Engine, where they can wish the town back to normal. For each level, the player can choose which character to be. Each has a special move - Fargus can deliver a special spinning attack, and Nikki can double jump. The game consists of a great variety of unique gameplay objects, such as watermelons, clouds, spider webs and logs.
Pandemonium! employs "2.5D gameplay". While the game renders polygons in a typical 3-D fashion, gameplay is 2-D. The area of gameplay can be described as a two-dimensional surface twisting and bending in a three-dimensional world. Occasionally, this surface will overlap itself.
In the land of Lyr, there was a young sorceress called Nikki, a court jester called Fargus, and Fargus' stick-puppet Sid. They had gone to Lancelot Castle to attend a "Wizards in Training" seminar. Nikki, a talented acrobat with swift reflexes, had become irritated with her dull carnival life on the high-wire. After forgetting to feed the lions, and the trainer almost having his arm chewed off, she decided it was time to run away and become a wizard! Fargus and Sid had been spending their lives together traveling from fair to festival entertaining and embarrassing people here and there. Their act, however, was as old as the hills and usually turned into a bombardment of fruits and eggs. They, too, were a little tired of same old routine and had heard about the Wizards seminar.
Nikki, Fargus and Sid met at the seminar after bumping into each other. The seminar turned out to be rather boring, so they each did their own thing while waiting for it to end, with Nikki practicing back flips, Fargus sleeping, and Sid making spitballs. Finally Vu, the speaker at the seminar, terminated his speech and headed for the restroom. Nikki and her newfound friends decided to follow Vu as he went down the hallway. As they approached him, they noticed that he had been hitting the bottle a little. Tripping over a pleat in the carpet, an ancient book slipped out of his backpack. Nikki leaped and grabbed the thick handbook before it hit the ground. The book was titled "Ancient Wizards Spellbook", and contained warnings such as "Must be fully trained and licensed to use" and "May result in danger and death". This is exactly what they had hoped for, so they rushed up to the high balcony overlooking the village.
The adventure begins with Nikki performing spells from the magical book atop the castle. Fargus and Sid want to see something with more firepower and urge Nikki to perform a 10th level spell. With a few magical words a green monster called Yungo appears which consumes the entire village with one large gulp. With a slight panic in their voices, they search the book for how to rid the village of the monster. The book reveals that they'll have to obtain a boon (a wish) from the Wishing Engine. With a map from the book to help them, they set off on their journey.
When they find the Wishing Engine, the engine tells them to speak three wishes. Fargus elects himself to make the first wish, in spite of Sid's suggestion of wishing for a million wishes. He wishes for a chicken and is then scorned by Sid, though Fargus states it was to test it out. Nikki makes the second wish; she wishes that Yungo was sent back to his own dimension so the village could be saved. The heroes are then teleported back to the top of Lancelot Castle. They watch as Yungo spits out the village and is pulled back into his own dimension. Nikki however realizes afterwards that they've been cheated out of a third wish but Fargus guiltily admits that he "wanted to share his joy with the whole world" - wishing that everyone back home could be just like him! Lo and behold, everyone in the village has been turned into lookalikes of Fargus. As the scene fades, Sid exclaims, "Oh boy, I think we're gonna need another wish!".
Development and release
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The Saturn, PlayStation and PC versions have 18 levels, while the N-Gage version has 11. In the PlayStation and Saturn versions, rather than using a memory card as in most games released at the time, progress is saved using the older password system. The Japanese version of the game has considerable changes to the story, characters and cutscenes and is distributed by Bandai.
- "EA Mobile Unleashes Six New Games on Apple App Store". Electronic Arts Inc. Retrieved 2009-11-21.
- "EA Mobile Strengthens Commitment to Nokia N-Gage With New Global Games Line-up". Electronic Arts Inc. Retrieved 2008-10-30.
- Pandemonium for iPhone release information, GameFAQs.com.
- "How it all Began...", Pandemonium! instruction manual.