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Spyro (series)

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This article is about the entire Spyro series. You may be looking for the character from the classic series, The Legend series, Skylanders series, the original Spyro series, or The Legend of Spyro trilogy.

Spyro the Dragon is a popular platform game series starring the video game character Spyro, which was originally released for the Sony PlayStation. The success of the first game has let to many sequels and spin-off games, including The Legend of Spyro series and a spin-off franchise, Skylanders.

Spyro the Dragon series

Main Series Games

  • Spyro the Dragon: the first Spyro game, it was first released in the USA on the September 10, 1998, for the PlayStation. It was a platform game that placed the player as Spyro: a small, purple dragon set with the task of freeing his fellow dragons from crystal prisons scattered around their world. Each level was attained through 'portals,' accessed from a main 'home world.' The game culminated with a fight between Spyro and Gnasty Gnorc, the final boss and main antagonist of the first game. Although there were other boss levels guarding each home world, many of these were optional and did not have to be beaten to progress in the game. Spyro's primary abilities were gliding, charging and fire-breathing, which worked especially well for the PlayStation controller. The game sold well and most critics gave it favorable reviews. It also received acclaim for its musical score by Stewart Copeland. This game is now available for download to PS3 or PSP through the PlayStation Store.
  • Spyro 2: Ripto's Rage! (also known as Spyro 2: Gateway to Glimmer in Europe and Spyro x Sparx: Tondemo Tours in Japan) followed on from the success of the first title, making its release in Fall 1999. In the game, Spyro and Sparx, while looking for a holiday at Dragon Shores, accidentally stumble through a portal into the realm of Avalar, where the malicious wizard and main antagonist Ripto is taking over the once-peaceful lands. Spyro meets a number of new allies, including the Professor, Hunter the Cheetah, Elora the Faun, and Zoe the Fairy, and must face a new foe: Ripto, a tiny tyrannical ruler, equipped with a magic scepter. Ripto is also protected by Crush and Gulp, two dim-witted dinosaurs. The structure of the game is similar to the first, with levels being accessed from the three main home worlds, named Summer Forest, Autumn Plains, and Winter Tundra. The game introduces some new abilities for Spyro, including hovering after a glide, swimming underwater, climbing ladders, head-bashing, and many more abilities. Unlike the original game, boss fights were now mandatory to advance to the next home world, with Spyro fighting Crush, Gulp and then finally Ripto.
  • Spyro: Year of the Dragon was released in Autumn 2000, and it was the last Spyro game to be created by Insomniac. In this game, the dragons are celebrating the coming of dragon eggs, an event that takes place every twelve years. A mysterious rabbit girl, Bianca, along with an army of rhynocs, come by and steal all the eggs, and Spyro, the only dragon small enough, must follow her down a rabbit hole to the other side of the world - to the Forgotten Realms. There they meet many new allies, some of which are also playable characters in their own miniature levels - Sheila the Kangaroo, Sgt. Byrd the Flying, missile-shooting penguin, Bentley the Yeti, and Agent 9 the Hyperactive, laser-wielding monkey, as well as a brand-new foe: the Sorceress. As in the previous games, levels are accessed from a central home world, of which there are four: Sunrise Spring, Midday Gardens, Evening Lake, and Midnight Mountain. The third installment of the Spyro series also feature levels in which the player controls Sparx in a bird's eye view shooting game. Spyro and his new friends must find out why the Sorceress stole the eggs, what she plans to do with them, and how to stop her. Insomniac Games President Ted Price stated in an interview about Resistance: Fall of Man that they stopped creating Spyro games because the player character, Spyro, was too limited for them to add new features and actions (Ted states, as an example, that "he didn't even have hands, he couldn't even hold a gun.")
  • Spyro: Enter the Dragonfly (Released Fall 2002) was the first game in the Spyro series for PlayStation 2 and GameCube and was developed by Equinox Digital Entertainment and Check Six Studios. Spyro: Enter the Dragonfly had mixed responses from reviewers due to the numerous glitches, lack of storyline, originality, and long load times. The story kicks off right after the Sorceress' defeat in Spyro: Year of the Dragon. The baby dragons are now preparing to receive their dragonflies, a rite of passage in any dragon's life (although in the earlier games, none of the dragons besides Spyro has a dragonfly). It's a huge celebration filled with joy and happiness until Ripto comes to capture the dragonflies, making the dragons helpless. He casts his spell but messes up, instead scattering the dragonflies all over the Dragon Realms, and it is then up to Spyro to rescue them.
  • Spyro: A Hero's Tail (Released Fall 2004), the fifth installment in the Spyro series, was available for the PlayStation 2, Xbox and GameCube, and was created by Eurocom Entertainment Software. The story is that Red, a former Dragon Elder, came to the Dragon Realms to plant Dark Gems - structures that intend to flood the world with evil energy. It's up to Spyro to travel across the Dragon Realms, destroy all the Dark Gems and defeat Red and his army.

Spyro: Advance

The Spyro: Advance series was series of spin-offs on the Gameboy Advance developed by Digital Eclipse (the first three games) and Vicarious Visions (Spyro Orange).

Gameboy Advance Games

  • Spyro: Season of Ice (known as Spyro Advance in Japan) (July 2001), this game featured an extremely simplified version of the PlayStation games' gameplay. The storyline picked up after Year of the Dragon and involved the Rhynoc Grendor freezing all the fairies in the Fairy Realms in ice.
  • Spyro 2: Season of Flame (October 2002), this game expands upon the simplistic gameplay of Season of Ice — if Spyro is defeated, the current count is retained, as opposed to Season of Ice, where all of the 'collection items' must be collected/activated within one life. Other additions include the return of other playable characters and Powerup Gates .
  • Spyro: Attack of the Rhynocs (known as Spyro: Adventure in Europe) (October 2003), this game rearranged the collection-based gameplay of the series, making it so that sub-items had to be collected to receive the game's primary items, Hearts. The levels were also interconnected to the larger Dragon Shores homeworld rather than divided into smaller homeworlds. The plot involved Ripto stealing the Fireflies, robbing the dragons of their fire breath.
  • Spyro Orange: The Cortex Conspiracy (known as Spyro: Fusion in Europe and Spyro Advance: Waku Waku Tomodachi Daisakusen! in Japan) (June 2004), half of a crossover with Crash Bandicoot, this game features gameplay in a 2D overworld, and rather than levels, Portals all lead to various minigames. The plot involves Ripto teaming up with the Crash Bandicoot villain Dr. Neo Cortex, causing Spyro to team up with Crash to defeat them. The other half of the crossover is Crash Bandicoot Purple: Ripto's Rampage.

Mobile Phone Games

  • Spyro (June 2003) In this game, Spyro is the special guest of the Fairy Queen for the Royal Ball. But just before the beginning of the party, none of the fairies are ready: their dresses are still locked in the magic chests. The player must help Spyro give each fairy her clothes in the right order or the party will be canceled. In 'classic mode' Spyro has eighteen levels, the first three of which are practice tutorials. In 'arcade mode' the game is unlimited. Spyro has to help the fairies to find the right costume for the Great Ball of the Millennium. Each fairy has its own look and it is Spyro's job to locate the right clothing and accessories. If the clock runs down, as traditionally happens, the fairy can change her mind and throw off her costume. In arcade mode, the fairies are more impatient, ultimately leaving their dressing room. After two failures, it's game over.
  • Spyro: Ripto Quest (November 2004), Ripto and his army have attacked the three worlds of Ice, Grass and Fire. They've managed to damage the machine that protects the worlds. Spyro and Sparx must recover the 4 damaged machine parts and return them to the Professor. Spyro breathes his traditional fire, casts spells, can teleport, jump and fly around 3 magical worlds and 7 levels of gameplay. Along the way, Spyro must talk to various characters to obtain new missions to defeat Ripto's rhynoc army. At the end, a new villain appears: a giant snake that Spyro has to defeat to beat the game.
  • Spyro the Dragon (Not the same game as the PS1 title. Despite the name, it is similar to Shadow Legacy.) (August 2005), A powerful, evil sorcerer has captured all of the dragons. It is quite a disaster to the Dragon Realms, everyone has disappeared. Spyro's friends are counting on him becoming a true kata, the magic/martial arts dragon power master to free the dragons before they are trapped in the alternate dimension known as the Shadow Realm forever. Each world has two versions of itself, a normal version and its shadow counterpart. Swapping between the two allows Spyro to advance past obstacles that appear on one version of the Realm but not the other. Spyro has three different types of moves, one for attacking in the normal Realm, one for attacking in the Shadow Realm and one for smashing breakable objects. To 'level-up' Spyro's moves (as in an RPG) gems need to be collected. There are 25 gems in all. There are three different colors, for each of the three different moves. The more gems of a specific color that are found, the higher Spyro's level is for that color.

Flash Games

There have been many different games available online, notably the Crash and Spyro Adventure World, a promotion by Kraft foods. Inside Nabisco Fruit Snacks and Jell-O Pudding Bites consumers found cards with codes. These codes could be typed in online to unlock up to eight different games.

The first Spyro flash games were on Universal Interactive's (now VU Games) Spyro website. These games and the website can no longer be found.

Then the original Insomniac Spyro game websites included minigames to play, with the exception of the website for the first game which did not contain any proper flash games. One of these games still survives, Spark's Pond.

The Legend of Spyro Trilogy

Console Games

  • The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning marked the third title to be released on the PlayStation 2 and GameCube and the second on the Xbox, released in Fall 2006 and developed by Krome Studios. Portrayed as a reboot to the series, Spyro is sent on a quest to find the captured Guardian dragons so the Dark Master does not return from his prison. An evil dragoness named Cynder uses her dark minions to harness the power of the four Guardian dragons (fire, electricity, ice, and earth) in order to open the Dark Master's prison, bringing terror throughout the lands. Although it was first advertised as a prequel to the first Spyro game, this game is in fact a reboot to the series, starting off from scratch and having nothing to do with the previous games.
  • The Legend of Spyro: The Eternal Night, a sequel to A New Beginning, was released on October 2007 for the PlayStation 2 and Wii consoles and was once again developed by Krome Studios. In this game, the Ape King Gaul planned to free the Dark Master from the Well of Souls on the Night of Eternal Darkness, and Spyro - having faced several visions of the threat - embarked on a journey to stop him. The Eternal Night received slightly less acclaim than its predecessor, usually in part to its difficulty and controls.
  • The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon is the third installment in the reboot series and it is the first Spyro game to feature free-flight, cooperative mode and the first game to allow the player to play as Cynder. Spyro finally faces the Dark Master in this installment. The game is on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Nintendo DS and Wii. The game marked the tenth anniversary for the Spyro the Dragon franchise.

Gameboy Advance Games

The mobile games in The Legend of Spyro Series were developed by Krome Studios (A New Beginning) and Amaze Entertainment (The Eternal Night).

  • The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning (October 2006), portrayed as a 2D adventure title like Spyro Orange. It was ultimately shown as one of the weaker adaptations of said game according to average scores at GameRankings and Metacritic.
  • The Legend of Spyro: The Eternal Night (October 2007), again shown to be a 2D adventure title albeit more akin to action titles like the Castlevania handheld games.

Nintendo DS Games

All current Nintendo DS videogames have been developed by Amaze Entertainment, while the last was developed by Tantulus Interactive.

  • The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning (October 2006) is generally seen as an improvement to Shadow Legacy's control system, as well as switching the RPG focus of the latter to an action-oriented title.
  • The Legend of Spyro: The Eternal Night (October 2007) is the Nintendo DS version of the game. It is presented in a similar fashion to its predecessor, except that the top-down game style of the other DS titles was replaced with a 3D game engine.
  • The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon (October 2008) is the last Legend game for the Nintendo DS, and the last Spyro game to be released on that system. Unlike its predecessors, this game was developed by Tantulus Interactive, and is mostly a side-scroller and has a few 3D on-rails flight levels.

Mobile Phone Games

  • The Legend of Spyro (October 2006) This is the mobile phone version of The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning.
  • The Legend of Spyro: The Eternal Night (October 2007) The game's mobile phone version.
  • The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon (October 2008) The game's mobile phone version.

Skylanders series

Because he is one of the franchise's compatible toys, Spyro appears in every Skylanders game. However, only the following games, novels, and comics prominently feature him:

Console Games

  • Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure is the first game in the Skylanders franchise and a spin-off Spyro game. It is announced to be the first Spyro title to be released on the 3DS, was released in October 2011 for the PS3, 360, Wii and the PC as well. Portrayed as a second reboot to the Spyro series that has nothing to do with the previous Spyro games, including The Legend of Spyro trilogy, players take on the role of a Portal Master who can control over 32 different characters, including the beloved fire-breathing dragon, Spyro. Players will embark on a fantastical journey into an amazing world, where they will explore mysterious, mythical lands, battle menacing outlandish creatures, collect gold and treasures, and solve interesting puzzles while on a quest to save their world from Kaos, an evil Portal Master.

Handheld Games

  • Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure: The 3DS version of the game features a much greater emphasis on platforming, as well as a different Portal of Power that loads toys into the game two at a time for portability. The game also features a unique plot set in the Radiant Isles with a different antagonst, Hektore.

Novels

To view more Skylanders games and content, please go over to the Skylanders Wikia.

Comics

Media

Spyro will appear as one of the main stars in the upcoming Skylanders animated Netflix television series, Skylanders Academy.[1] This will mark Spyro's first debut in an animated television series.

Common Gameplay Elements

Games in the Spyro franchise typically allow the player to control the titular Spyro the Dragon through levels, collecting items and defeating enemies. Spyro can usually charge, breathe fire, and use some form of flight, usually gliding.

Most games represent free flight, either with designated flight areas such as Speedways, the ability to fly slightly above the ground to move faster and cross water (in Skylanders), or even the ability to fly freely at any time (in Dawn of the Dragon).

Some games provide other playable characters. The original series allowed players to control several unique characters for varied gameplay, such as Sheila, a kangaroo who jumps much higher than Spyro, or Agent 9, who wields a ray-gun. Dawn of the Dragon featured co-op gameplay with another dragon, Cynder. The Skylanders series features Spyro alongside a much larger pool of playable characters, the titular Skylanders.

All games also feature enemies to battle. The original series' enemies were defeated in one hit, a standard platformer trait, while The Legend of Spyro placed much greater emphasis on melee combat, and Skylanders used hack-and-slash gameplay.  

Reoccuring Themes

Several characters have appeared in multiple continuities:

Additionally, several other elements are used in multiple series. Both the original and Skylanders series feature balloonists, sheep, and flying vehicles outfitted with dragon wings. The Portal of Power from Skylanders is said to be based on the classic portals, and the character Auric resembles Moneybags. All three series depict Sparx eating butterflies. Also, Shadow Legacy, The Legend of Spyro, and Spyro's Skylanders biography mention Purple Dragons being a special, more powerful breed. 

References

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