Gaming Post 25: LarryBoy and the Bad Apple

A while back, the random number generator told me to write about one of the games that I’ve beaten, however, I’ve been procrastinating about it for some time now (of course while also playing lots of new games). The game was LarryBoy and the Bad Apple on the PlayStation 2. To explain why I played this particular game, I’ll need to explain what VeggieTales is and why it was so cool when it first came out.

74835_front

Nowadays, lots of our entertainment comprises of 3D rendered content, whether that’s monoscopic or stereoscopic 3D videogames, films, or television shows. It was not so prevalent when I was born though. There are plenty of full length 3D animated films available today, but the very first one was Toy Story which came out in 1995. Every film in this category came out in the past 20 years, which in the grand scheme of things is not a very long time. Before the first Toy Story movie came out, there was a “straight to VHS tape” series that was fully rendered in 3D. This series was VeggieTales, whose first episode came out in 1993, when I was 1. It must have been the coolest thing around.

Veggie93

pic2
At the time, there had never ever ever ever ever been a show like VeggieTales. They even say so in the theme song!

VeggieTales was really great. I think I discovered it when I was about 4, when VeggieTales was 3 years into its run and there were only 5 episodes of the show. I think one of my cousins showed it to me after discovering it himself when he went to college. At the time, 3D animation was very exciting no matter what age you were because it was so new and fun. I’m sure many of us don’t even notice it today when we see it, because it’s become such a staple of entertainment in our society. It’s a technology that no longer seems new.

Goddard_scooterPuss-in-boots_(Shrek)

pixar-logo

VeggieTales episodes often feature moral dilemmas, sometimes through the retelling of Bible stories but also through original stories. There is always some humor to be found in the episodes, even though the plots of some of them can be slow for older viewers. I kept up with the series until about 2001 when I was 9, but the show seems to have continued at a steady pace.

Larryboy_013

My favorite character was LarryBoy, the alter ego of Larry the Cucumber. Of the episodes that I watched, LarryBoy was in three of them, and was featured heavily in the two of them that took place in the fictional city of Bumblyburg. LarryBoy is a superhero similar to Batman, but he’s also a vegetable like most of the characters in VeggieTales.

517Yx7Qfo8L._SX940_
Sometimes characters can be fruits. After all, Bob the Tomato has seeds and is thus technically a fruit.

Years after I stopped following VeggieTales, I was going through a shelf of old PS2 games at a GameStop store, and I found a game called “LarryBoy and the Bad Apple”. The game is based on LarryBoy’s third adventure of the same name. I hadn’t seen the episode, so I figured that playing the game would be an approximation of watching the episode, but with added interactivity. That’s when I decided that I would play through the game.

veggietales-larryboy-and-the-bad-apple-usa

Larry-cave-larryboy-2575958-1280-960

s29285_ps2_15

It was a pretty fun experience simply because I grew up watching LarryBoy and had sort of thought that a game about him would be cool. The gameplay was especially good in the segments of the game in which LarryBoy has to fly through the air. As a whole, the game mostly consists of puzzles and platforming. There are cutscenes taken directly from the VeggieTales episode that the game is based on.

Fine_Hello
LarryBoy isn’t completely based on Batman. They went ahead and threw in a reference to Spider-Man too.

The main villain is an Apple who personifies temptation. This is especially interesting because as VeggieTales is limited to a cast of vegetables and fruit, casting the villain as an apple that tempts people cleverly draws a parallel between the villain in this story and the Apple of Eden that tempted Adam and Eve in the book of Genesis. In that way, this was both an original story and biblical. The thematic use of apples to represent temptation and evil is quite old and prevalent throughout literature and other media.

larryboyandthebadapple
The main villain is called The Bad Apple. She is an apple who tempts people. LarryBoy’s temptation is eating too much chocolate.
download
A witch tells Snow White that eating this apple will grant her a wish. Snow White gives into her temptation and eats it, but it is poisoned.
light-yagami-wallpaper_145917-1920x1080
The future that the forbidden fruit foretells… I shall change the dream into reality. -Death Note Intro Song English Translation
AssassinsCreed_Al_Mualim_holding_the_Piece_of_Eden
The Piece of Eden is temptation given form. -Al Mualim talking about the mechanical device called the Apple of Eden (Assassin’s Creed)

The villain, so called “The Bad Apple”, goes around tempting people to neglect their responsibilities to do other things they’d like to do instead, getting the mayor to vainly obsess over her appearance and a cook to watch an entire science fiction TV series. LarryBoy breaks people free from their temptations by completing levels, each one given the theme of the person’s temptation. Ironically, one of the people in the game who the Bad Apple has tempted is someone who wants to play video games all day. What’s ironic about this is that in order to make this character pay attention to their real responsibilities, you have to beat a level of this real life video game. The moral of that chapter is to not play videogames all day, and yet this is exactly what I did to finish this game.

Larryboy49

Am I subject to temptation? Absolutely. Do I give in to my temptation? Oh yes, definitely. That’s how I beat so many games.

And so with that, I’ve finished another article on Zelgerath.com. Maybe I can get back in the swing of things. As always, Thanks for Reading! =)

Advertisements

Gaming Post 22: Lego Island 2 (GBA)

The random number generator has chosen for me to write about an old mediocre game for the Game Boy Advanced (GBA). Lego Island 2!

0131

Now, don’t get me wrong, Lego Island 2 is pretty fun on the computer. Like the original Lego Island, it had a full 3D rendered world, but it also included a lengthy story which brought the main character, Pepper the delivery dude to two other islands and even into outer space. The premise is that the resident criminal of Lego Island, the Brickster, has escaped from jail and stolen the pages of the Constuctopedia, destroying many of the buildings of Lego Island. It’s Pepper’s job to bring those pages back and chase after the Brickster so that Lego Island can be rebuilt. The watered down version of the game on the GBA included a story similar to the PC version, but it lacked the 3D rendered world.

download
On the street, you are limited to moving on the sidewalks and crosswalks. Allowing Jaywalking would have made this game less tedious but more dangerous.

As such, the game is filled with okay jokes and fetch quests, which is actually sort of boring in the way it was implemented. The first time I played this game, I struggled through only to run into a game breaking glitch. While on his skateboard, my character accidentally glitched into a fence, and I couldn’t get out. I saved because I thought it would help, but it actually just ensured that I couldn’t continue the file, because part of the save data includes your exact location.

LEGO Island 2 - The Brickster's Revenge-2-full
All your bricks ARE belong to us.

I may have given up at that point. I can’t remember, but because I couldn’t remember, I played through the game recently when I had literally nothing else to do. I was in Maine and I had just bought my copy of Paper Mario Sticker Star, but I wasn’t in the mood to start it quite yet because I still had New Super Mario Bros. games to finish.

lego_island_2_the_bricksters_revenge

I finished the game while waiting to go to my cousin’s wedding, finishing just before we had to head to its location. Some good things I can say about this game are that its music is good, and also the mini games are fun. The mini games usually (if not always) need to be cleared to continue in the story.

0 (1)

The best mini game is probably the one where Pepper has to go underwater to retrieve lost pieces of a Lego bridge that fell apart. That is one of the highlights of the game.

0 (2)

Another highlight was some side scrolling platforming before the final showdown with the Brickster.

0

I finished the game in Maine, and when I was in Maine, I got a lot of Humpty Dumpty Barbecue Potato Chips. They are my favorite food and they are only sold in Maine, New Hampshire (Supposedly Vermont and Upstate New York) and Canada.

HD BBQ

Listen guys, there’s no food that makes me happier than Humpty Dumpty Barbecue Potato Chips. If you live in the Maine/New Hampshire area where they are sold, maybe we can work something out so I can get the chips on a semi-regular basis. =D

Please let me know! My Twitter is @Zelgerath

And as always, Thanks for Reading!

Gaming Post 16: 007 From Russia with Love

The random number generator has determined that the next game I should write about is James Bond’s 007 From Russia with Love. I played it on the GameCube, and it probably was the first James Bond game that I beat.

007 - From Russia with Love 1

Not that I was unfamiliar with 007 games; I always looked to James Bond games for multiplayer, starting with Goldeneye on N64. I fought AI Bots for the first time in 007 The World is Not Enough, and in my opinion, the best multiplayer experience in the series came from the game NightFire for GameCube.

james-bond-007-from-russia-with-love-20051014052915356-000

From Russia with Love had a pretty interesting multiplayer mode too, but I don’t remember playing it all that much. I think that was because I like first person shooters better than third person shooters. The game modes had interesting premises. Most notably, I remember a stage in which there was a huge rocket in the center of the level. If someone found the launch key, they could ignite the rocket from behind protective glass and cook anyone who happened to be in the main room of the level.

gcnfromrussia2

From Russia with Love’s single player mode is pretty good too. It was interesting to me because it was a depiction of the second James Bond film staring Sean Connery, and I had only played 007 games that featured Pierce Brosnan’s portrayal of Bond.

bond_istanbul

hqdefault

The story brought me to a city called Istanbul. At the time, I didn’t realize just how important Istanbul was as a city of the world, but now I do. In fact, I had no idea that I would years later travel to another virtual version of the city via Assassin’s Creed Revelations.

ACR-gamepage-SS_139158

I would recommend this game to fans of the 007 movies, although I’m pretty sure that it has aged a bit since its original launch. This game made me want to see all of the James Bond movies. In college, I watched most of them. I think I got to the end of Pierce Brosnan’s run and stopped there. I’ll see Daniel Craig’s Bond movies eventually, but I’ll wait to watch them until some random day in the future.

From_Russia_with_Love_game_screenshot

Thanks for Reading! =)