Video Game / Gex
The original Gecko Mascot.

Gex was a platformer franchise from Crystal Dynamics, featuring a gecko who entered TV and movie themed worlds. The first entry, the simply titled Gex, was a 2D platformer for the 3DO, and later the Playstation 1 and Sega Saturn. The next installment switched to 3D platforming, with Gex: Enter the Gecko. It was released for the PS1 and N64. The N64 port is noted for cutting out several levels due to space constraints and lacking cutscenes the game previously had (though to be fair, it featured one level that the PS1 version lacked). The final entry, Gex 3: Deep Cover Gecko, was again released on the PS1 and N64 (which did not have any of the FMVs).

Despite being fairly successful and its developer continuing most of its other franchises from the era into the next (and expectations that it would make the leap), the franchise ended with the release of the last game in 1999 and has not resurfaced.

The first game is available for PC on GOG

Examples throughout the series:

  • All There in the Manual: There's a LOT in the manual of the first game that isn't in the short intro before it.
  • Aloha, Hawaii!: Gex lives in Maui.
  • Anvil on Head: A stage hazard for the Toon TV stages in Gex: Enter The Gecko and the New Toon Land stage in the original Gex. Hazards include anvils, safes, weights, fat ladies, and kitchen sinks. Also lampshaded by Gex:
    Gex: "What is it with cartoons and anvils?"
  • Auto-Scrolling Level: The "Congo Chaos" level. Stepping on a switch early in the level activates the autoscrolling. It stops at the end of the level (and you can backtrack if you want to).
  • Bad Boss: Rez. Just read the signs he keeps around his lair that say things like "30 DAYS IN THE COOLER FOR TALKING"
  • Big Bad: Rez
  • Big Boo's Haunt: The Cemetery world (Gex) and Scream TV (Gex: Enter the Gecko)
  • Big Fancy House: Gex's mansion.
  • Bonus Level: A staple of the series.
  • Cameo: Nikki from Pandemonium!.
  • Catch-Phrase: "It's tail time!"
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Gex can be thought of as one, seeing as how his references are usually irrelevant to the situation at hand. One of his quotes even involve random barking.
  • Collection Sidequest: One in each game. It's a platformer released in the nineties so this is a given.
  • Conveyor Belt of Doom: Appears in Rez's stages in the original game and Enter The Gecko.
  • Crosshair Aware: Done beautifully on Gex: Enter the Gecko with the final boss, Rez. After a while, the perspective switches to Rez's eyes (while you still control Gex) with Rez firing rockets after he locks on to you.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Gex has his moments.
  • Dimension Lord: Rez is lord of the Media Dimension.
  • The Dragon: Mooshoo Pork was this to Rez judging by his pictures in Rez's inner Sanctum
  • Egopolis: Rezopolis
  • Evil Laugh: Rez
  • Excuse Plot: The original game has Gex getting sucked into a TV and has the villain, Rez the Media Dimension overlord, wanting to use him as his mascot to take over the world. Needless to say, Gex will have none of it and has to save the day. Amusingly, the manual has a much more elaborate backstory for Gex, meant as a parody of how older video games had more backstory in the original manual than in the actual games.
  • Far East: Kung Fuville and Kung Fu Theatre.
  • Forgot to Pay the Bill: Invoked occasionally whenever Gex rides on flying furnature in Enter the Gecko. "Who forgot to pay the gravity bill?"
  • Freudian Excuse: Gex's mother sold the TV to gypsies because Gex has been watching too much TV. He was so upset he ran away.
  • Goomba Stomp: Only works when Gex is preparing a Spring Jump. Otherwise you get hurt.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: The collectible remotes in each game are necessary to unlock new levels.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Happens a surprising amount, particularly in the third game.
    • Lake Flaccid. Ummm...
      • A sign in that area prohibits "premarital Gex."
    • "I'm flaming! In the... Manly way."
    • "I feel like Lester the Mo-Gexter."
    • And let's not forget the Caligula references in the desert level.
    • A sign in Out of Toon reads "Pimp Struttin' "
    • Let's not forget this classic family friendly knee-slapper after beating the Sun Snake in the first game:
    Gex: This is about as much fun as being Mike Tyson's cellmate on Valentine's Day.
  • Hockey Mask and Chainsaw: Cemetery stages in the first game feature burly enemies of this type, who for added benefit also wear red and green striped t-shirts.
  • Imaginary Friend: "The Mayor"
  • Incendiary Exponent: Each game as a fire power-up.
  • Interspecies Romance: Gex gets the girl in Gex: Enter The Gecko and Gex 3: Deep Cover Gecko. Both women are human, while Gex is a gecko.
  • The Jeeves: Alfred
  • Just for Pun
  • Lovable Rogue: Gex
  • Lull Destruction: Every moment of the game is filled with Gex cracking jokes.
  • Mad Scientist: Mooshoo Pork
  • Mascot with Attitude: Gex, of course.
  • Momma's Boy: "How could he use that mouth to kiss her mother?"
  • Multipurpose Tongue: Gex can use it to vomit fire, ice and slime with the right powerups, but he more commonly uses it to grab ledges instead of using his hands.
  • NASA: Gex's father worked there as a researcher. Now, Gex's mother owns it.
  • Ninja
  • Non Sequitur: Gex's various quotes are very rarely directly relevant to the situation at hand. Notable because he says them a LOT.
  • Notzilla: One level in Gex: Enter The Gecko has the titular lizard transforming into "Gexzilla".
  • Novelization: Written by Michael Teitelbaumnote  and published by Troll Communications L.L.C. It's mainly based on Deep Cover Gecko, though the events of the other games are detailed as backstory.
  • Oh God, with the Verbing!: One of Gex's impressions is of Jerry Lewis, "flavin" and all.
  • Or Are You Just Happy to See Me?: Used in one of the games: "Is that a lightsaber, or are you just happy to see me?"
  • Part-Time Hero
  • Piranha Problem: Piranhas appear as enemies in the first two games.
  • Power-Up: The original game had a large variety. This was toned down in the sequels, but each game still has a fire and ice power up.
  • Reference Overdosed: Invoked, due to Gex's addiction to the telly.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Gex's family became rich after great-uncle Charlie (the original model for Izod) died and left them over $20 billion. The family bought houses, cars, judges, politicians, 51% ownership of NASA, and Australia (since the kids wanted to go there).
  • Shout-Out: Has its own page.
  • The Slacker: Gex, who, upon finding out he was reach, boarded up his house, stocked up on tasty flies, and plans to spend the rest of his life living comfortably, watching TV.
  • Spin Attack: Gex's tail whip technically.
  • Spring Jump: Gex's trademark vertical mobility option. There are also jump pads in quite a few levels.
  • Suck E. Cheese's: Gex's mother bought NASA and converted Mission Control into a theme restaurant, Space Monkeys, featuring robotic dancing space chimps.
  • Super Not-Drowning Skills: Played straight in the first game, where Gex swims Mario-style, pressing the jump button to float upwards and not needing any oxygen. In Enter The Gecko, he doesn't need oxygen in the N64 version's Titanic level. Averted in Deep Cover Gecko, where Gex has an Oxygen Meter.
  • Take That!: Several in Gex's quips. For example:
    "Commander. They are of a strange species that find Adam Sandler funny."
  • Talkative Loon: Seriously. He does not shut up and the references he makes are so misplaced it goes straight from shallow parody into pure randomness.
    • The second game has a button specifically to make him say things.
  • Talking Animal
  • Third Is 3D: Actually, second is.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Flies.
  • Trapped in TV Land: Gex
  • Uncle Pennybags: Great-uncle Charlie
  • Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: Rez. Look at this guy!
  • Wall Crawl: Gex, naturally.
  • Wuxia: Kung Fuville (Gex) and Kung Fu Theatre levels (Gex: Enter the Gecko)

Tropes appearing in specific titles:

    open/close all folders 

    The original Gex 
  • Anticlimax: After beating Rez, you get sent back to the real world and watch Gex wonder what's on HBO and change the channel to the credits. Riveting.
    • If you've cleared Planet X, you get a much longer ending, though it consists mostly of text.
  • Anvil on Head: How you defeat the Flatulator, the boss of the New Toonland level.
  • Auto-Scrolling Level: The "Congo Chaos" level. Stepping on a switch early in the level activates the autoscrolling. It stops at the end of the level (and you can backtrack if you want to).
  • Big Boo's Haunt: The cemetary level.
  • Bonus Level:
    • There is a "Break the barrels" bonus level.
    • Beating the bonus level of every world will net you the remote for Planet X, an entire world of bonus levels.
  • Book Ends: The game begins and end with Gex lying around on the couch, surfing the tube.
  • Collection Sidequest: Fly coins.
  • Cute Ghost Girl: Spit N' Puke, the boss of the cemetary level...until you start damaging her.
  • Everything's Deader with Zombies: In the cemetary level, you can fight zombie geckos.
  • Fartillery: How the Flatulator propels himself.
  • Fireballs: Gex can spit them out after getting a fire Power-Up.
  • The Maze: "The Project", the penultimate level of Planet X. The maze is absolutely huge, and, combined with how little of a level you see around Gex at any given time, very difficult to navigate. There are also false exits that send you to the end (in one case, through one of the developers, who must be defeated before he kills you) without the remote for the next level.
  • Password Save
  • Place Worse Than Death: In the horror movie-themed levels, Gex will compare his surroundings to Detroit.
  • Power-Up: The game includes:
  • Rebel Relaxation: Gex on the cover.

    Gex: Enter The Gecko 
  • Aside Glance: Pulls one off at the end when Rex reveals that he is Gex's father.
  • Badass Baritone: Gex in the UK dub, courtesy of Leslie Philips.
  • Badass Boast:
    Gex: "I'm the ultimate weapon, baby. Yeah!"
  • Bear Trap: A stage hazard for the Toon TV stages.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: The Scream TV levels.
  • Bonus Level: They are unlocked using silver remotes (they even have "BONUS" written in the TV screen) are all collection sidequests which unlock gold remotes. Gold remotes are used to unlock more varied Secret Levels.
  • Briefcase Full of Money: How the government recruits Gex.
  • Circling Stars: Happens when you jump straight into a wall (which doesn't do any damage) or get knocked down from an enemy hit.
  • Collection Sidequest: This is how the bonus levels play out in Gex: Enter The Gecko. In the standard levels, it also has you collecting thematic items which change and grant you a 1-UP after getting 30 and 40. Collecting 120 (50 after the second, permanent item change) gets you a silver remote, used to unlock secret levels. The collectibles are:
    • Carrots, cans of spinach, and TNT Plunger Detonators in the Toon TV levels.
    • Skulls, tombstones, and hockey masks in the horror-themed Scream TV levels.
    • Starfish, treasure chests, and necklaces in the Titanic-themed level.
    • 9 Volt batteries, red LED's, and ...some strange atom thingy in the cyber-themed Circuit Central levels.
    • Boxes of noodles, yin-yang symbols, and kabuki masks for the chinatown, Kung Fu Theatre levels.
    • Little rockets, laser guns, and mini astronauts for the Rocket Channel space levels.
    • Drumsticks, cow's skulls, and mini, blue brachiosauruses in the Pre-History channel.
  • Cool Shades: Puts on a pair during the intro en route to the Media Dimension.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: The title of the first Circuit central level:
  • Everything's Deader with Zombies: Justification for the presence of zombies in the Scream TV levels.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: Zombies, scorpions, hunters, tikimen, ghosts, robots, ninjae, suits of samurai armor, chinese dragons, aliens, demented pumpkins, dinosaurs, bees, mutant pig-cow hybrids, and bear traps okay. But flowers, smiley faces, capacitors, and semiconductors?
  • Evil Laugh: Rez during his boss fight.
  • Friendly Local Chinatown: Averted. Everything is still out to kill you in the chinatown themed Kung Fu Theatre levels. Even ninjae.
  • Fungus Humongous: Present in the Toon TV level.
  • Gotta Kill Them All: Quite a few red remotes are obtained from killing/destroying X numbers of enemy/destructible Y.
  • Government Agency of Fiction: The people who hire Gex.
  • Gratuitous Ninja: Justification for the presence of ninjae in the Kung Fu Theatre levels, despite being China themed for the most part.
  • Green Hill Zone: The Toon TV levels.
  • Hammerspace: In the Toon TV world, the dancing flowers can pull hammers out from behind their backs to attack you. Afterwards, they just hide the hammer behind their backs again, seemingly into thin air.
  • "Have a Nice Day" Smile: Appears as an enemy in the Toon TV world.
  • Hub Level: The Media Dimension.
  • Improvised Zip Line: In the Kung Fu Theatre levels.
  • Incendiary Exponent: When Gex eats a fire-fly, he is set on fire and leaves a trail of fire when he attacks. He is also invincible.
    Gex: "Is it just me or am I ENGULFED IN FLAMES?!"
    Gex: "I'm flaming! In the...manly way."
  • Kaizo Trap: If you collect a remote and die before landing on the ground (falling off a cliff, run out of air, etc.) the game will act as if you had died, but will still register that you obtained the remote. Not particularly useful, unless you really don't want to go back to the Hub World, but not very frustrating either since the remote collection still counts.
  • Kill It with Fire: In Gex: Enter The Gecko, creating a circle of fire around an enemy while under the effects of the fire-fly grants an instant kill via rising tower of flame. Notably, this is the only way, asides from its ice counterpart, to dispose of the corpses of zombies (which is not necessary or useful in anyway but is still very cool).
  • Kill It with Ice: Functionally identical to the fire-fly, the ice-fly allows Gex to also instakill enemies.
  • Laser Blade: Gex plays with a lightsaber in his idle animation in the Rocket Channel space levels in Gex: Enter The Gecko, complete with sound effects. Sadly, he cannot use it in combat. They are also used by certain enemies in the same level.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: The title of the second non-bonus Rocket Channel level is name "Pain In The Asteroids".
  • Lethal Lava Land: The Pre-History Channel levels.
  • Loin Cloth: Gex dons one in the Pre-History channel levels.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Rez tries pulling this at the end, though Gex's real father was killed in a rocket explosion. The novelization tries to reconcile this, revealing that Gex's father became Rez as as a result of the explosion.
  • The Men in Black: They recruit him to help get rid of Rez again.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Mooshoo Pork, the second boss. The upper part of a pig with the bottom part of a cow. Also has a curly mustache and High-Class Glass.
  • Mood Dissonance: Hearing Gex's wise-cracks and Non Sequiturs make the horror themed levels very silly, even if they aren't meant to be taken seriously in the first place.
  • Only in It for the Money: Gex's motivation in Gex: Enter The Gecko.
  • Oxygen Meter: Used in the Rocket Channel space levels. There are air refueling centers and boxes filled with air bubbles littered across the level.
  • Portrait Painting Peephole: Some of the portraits in the horror themed "Scream TV" world.
  • Savage Piercings: Gex has a Stock Femur Bone attached to his nose in the Pre-History dinosaur themed levels.
  • Secret Level: They are unlocked using gold remotes obtained from Bonus Levels and bosses. They reward the player with secret cutscenes.
  • Selective Localisation: For some reason, there was a British version made wherein the only difference was all of Gex's lines were dubbed over in a British accent. It is a very nice accent, though.
    • Actually, it would appear that the vast majority of Gex's lines were rewritten in the UK release to suit British sense of humour and reflect British pop culture more accurately.
  • Sequence Breaking: It is possible to skip a large portion of the "Fine Tooning" Toon TV level by jumping on top of a domino and jump kicking past a gap, as shown here. Normally, you would need to follow the moat river to another section of the level to find a boat which acts as a platform, as shown here.
  • Sequel Number Snarl: The previous game in the series is simply called "Gex", and the next game is Gex 3: Deep Cover Gecko...but this game isn't called Gex 2, leading to confusion for those who missed out on the original (e.g. N64 owners.)
  • Space Zone: The Rocket Channel levels.
  • The Stinger: See Top Ten List
  • Tennis Boss: The first boss.
  • Developers' Foresight: In the canyon section at the end of "Out of Toon," A series of expertly-timed jumps can get you on top of a wall that's apparently not meant to reached, save for the fact that there's a TV containing infinite lives.
  • 13 Is Unlucky: In order to get a Red Remote in the second horror themed level, it is necessary to activate a switch which makes a clock strike thirteen.
  • Top Ten List: Gex goes through one at the end of the game explaining why "It's cool to be me, Gex." as a stinger.
  • Translation Train Wreck: Made fun at in "Samurai Night Fever", where there is an advertisement for a deal on subtitles, 2 for 1.
  • Under the Sea: The majority of the N64 exclusive Titanic level.
  • Vader Breath: Plays in the background of the Rocket Channel levels. Gets faster as your air gets lower.
  • Variable Mix: Certain sections of levels have specific music cues that play when the player get to them.
  • Wholesome Crossdresser:
    Gex: "Last time I was here I was dressed as a woman. Yes!"
  • A Winner Is You: In the N64 version of Enter the Gecko. Because the N64 was incapable of FMV sequences, the ending from the PS1 version was cut and replaced with text that just said, "Congratulations!", followed by the credits over gameplay footage.
  • World of Pun: Almost all of level names are puns:
  • Your Head Asplode: If you hit the Green Grey aliens just right, you can induce this trope.

    Gex 3: Deep Cover Gecko