Spyro Agnew: Eternal Nixon: Part 2: Electric Boogaloo :: Overuse of Colons : The SATs

In day 2 of our Spyro experience, Leah spends several hours trying to defeat some scorpions in a gladiatorial arena, where one of the times she gets killed, the game gets confused and gives her a cutscene anyway, which we accidentally skip, thinking that it’s the cutscene from when she respawns. Frodo blacks out and wakes up back at Sir Ian McKellan’s house, where he learns the power of Earth, leaving only Air and Heart (What kind of a lame power is Heart, anyway?). The power of Earth involves spiro having a six-foot long energy tongue with a giant bulbous nodule on the end. Frodo also learns a new finishing move, which is exactly like Eruption and Blue Balls, but it’s green. He receives instructions to travel to Mount Doom The Well of Souls before the rare astronomical conjunction whereupon the evil forces will be able to bring about Eternal Darkness, which was a Gamecube survival horror game with Lovecraftian overtones and a neat gimmick where they would represent the player character’s growing madness by things like having little bugs appear on the screen or claiming that the disc was damaged (Once, my gamecube really did crash, and it took me several minutes to work out that the game wasn’t just dicking with me.)
Frodo wakes up, and has to fight a flying boat with the head of a shark. From time to time, the boat crashes, and you can kick the ass of the pirate inside, which hangs out the tail end of the boat while it’s crashed for extra damage. Unfortunately, once you deplete its life bar, the game does one of its favorite tricks: refills the life bar and makes the monster more dangerous.
Frustrated, Leah goes off to get some soup, leaving the game unattended, whereupon we learn the trick to this boss: if Frodo just stands stock-still in the center of the ring, the flying boat can’t hit him more than once every two of three minutes
The Power of Earth turns out to be a red herring, as Leah spends four hours trying to defeat the damned thing, before I suggest she switch to her much upgraded Power of Fire, and kills the thing on her third try. Back in his cell, Frodo laments that he can’t escape because of the wooden gate that blocks his cell, and a mole named Moliere gives him some fan mail. After that, Frodo is sent to fight the Dilldozer executioner, who can kill him in one hit.
The Executioner nonetheless proves to be a much less aggravating adversary than the flying boat, whereupon the pirate king brings out Frodo’s Girlfriend and orders them to fight. Before they can, though, flying monkeys attack, kidnap the girl, and bust shit up enough for Frodo and Fry to have a go at escaping.
Hours later, Leah’s still fighting her way though this fleet of flying pirate ships, fighting enemies with names like “Tribad Whitespace” and “Ebikat Snakebeard”
Finally, Frodo defeats the boss pirate, and he and Fry fly off into the sunset, revealing that he can fly, so why the hell does he keep on dying by falling to his death when jumping between platforms?
In mid-air, Frodo the Narcoleptic Dragon has another metaphysical experience, gaining the Power of Electricity,, which means he can now summon Captain Planet, and also perform her new Fury move, the Electric Boogaloo.
Sir Ian goes on break, so Frodo has a vision all on his own, seeing his ex, who is bound and being threatened by the monkey goat thing who is going to turn out to be the penultimate boss of the game. (Right now, he’s the boss, but he’s planning to ressurect some sort of ancient evil force of some sort, which undoubtedly he will, and you’ll fight.)
Frodo wakes up on a ruined island, where Fry claims they’re stranded, as they can only fly when the plot demands. This appears to be the same place as the temple of Magneto that Frodo keeps narcolepting to, except that it’s ruined, and possibly sideways. Fortunately, someone set all the broken ionic columns to “levitate” so Frodo can use them to jump around the ruined temple.
Eventually, Leah hits upon a section where Frodo must solve puzzles to awaken enemies. This gets me thinking, Spyro’s very egregious about it, but you see this throughout the genre, say, in Zelda. There’s a huge element of “The goal of this puzzle is to cause monsters to show up and attack you, because real progress is only made by defeating monsters.” If Spyro had any sense, he’d just stop lighting braziers and electrifying switches and pushing things onto pedestals. It never does anything good.

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