Video Game: Graffiti Kingdom

From left to right: Tablet, Palette (top), Pastel (bottom), Prince Pixel

A 2004 PlayStation 2 game by Taito Corporation and Garakuta Studio.

Graffiti Kingdom follows the story of Prince Pixel, who, while wandering around his family's castle one day, comes across a Graffiti Wand, a tool allowing its user to bring drawings to life. In his playing around with it, he awakens its previous owner, a girl turned dog called Pastel, as well as the Devil - yes, that Devil - who proceeds to unleash his minions and power upon Pixel's unsuspecting kingdom, transforming the castle and nearby lands into his own creation and taking the human inhabitants as slaves. As it turns out the two of them were sealed inside a drawing together by Pastel herself, and since Pixel broke that seal, well, it's his job to battle the Devil, have him re-sealed, and save his parents and people with the power of the hand-me-down Graffiti Wand.

Rather unknown/overlooked, the game is a spiritual sequel of sorts to another rather unknown/overlooked game by the name of Magic Pengelnote , both in that it was created by the same companies and in that they share the same major gimmick - they allow you to draw your own creatures. While Magic Pengel played it in an RPG, Pokemon sort of style, Graffiti Kingdom instead uses it for a more platformer-style. Instead of sealing the creatures you create and releasing them when it's time for them to fight, your drawings become forms Pixel can take, more or less free to run, pounce, and fight through the game's stages.

This game provides examples of:

  • Aerith and Bob: Niss, Easel, Telepin, Deskel, Acryla... and ''Carlton''. Huh.
  • Affably Evil: A number of the demons seem to be pretty friendly in themselves. Tablet almost suggests late in the game that they are only really evil for the sake of it or because evil and demons are automatically associated.
    • Even the Big Bad is pretty blasť...that is, after you beat him.
  • Anime Hair: The colors on some demons go without saying, but what of Tablet's massive hairspike?
  • Art Initiates Life: The concept around which the game revolves.
  • Awesome but Impractical: Some of the more talented veterans of this game can make some very impressive creatures to look at, but sometimes the engineering put into making a creature look and function the way it does comes at the expense of the finished project having access to certain moves that would make it useful in the actual gameplay.
  • Barrier Maiden: Pastel.
  • Breath Weapon: Many attacks of your own creatures and enemies, notably The Mega Breath used by Tablet in his wyvern form.
  • Broken Bridge: Bridges to levels take the forms of rainbows that only appear if you've gotten a key from the previous levels' boss. And naturally, the Devil can only be reached once you've taken every boss' key.
  • Cain and Abel: Tablet and Palette seem way less than fond of each other.
  • The Cameo: Reimu Hakurei appears in the game under the name of "Flying Maiden". Makes sense since ZUN was involved in the development of the game.
  • Clipped Wing Angel: Tablet does this in his face-off with Pixel after becoming the new Satan.
  • Cute Bruiser: Telepin, may look cute. But, he's one of the hardest bosses in the game.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Satan
  • Death Mountain: Wind of Pan Ravine.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Tablet and Pixel. To people who haven't played before, they're universally mistaken for girls. The skirts and female voice actors DO NOT HELP.
  • Eyes Always Shut: Telepin
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: Princess Palette is a subversion.
  • Evil Tower of Ominousness: The Devil's palace gets a nice dramatic introduction. All you can see of it until entering the place is its huge, spooky silhouette along with one of the Devil himself looming over it.
  • Exposition Fairy: Pastel, though Pixel usually isn't listening.
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning: The main elements of your attacks, as well as Palette's triple-shot attack.
  • Flunky Boss: Perhaps Carlton would be easier to deal with if you didn't have to deal with a swarm of his "Wannabes" surging after you and coming back shortly after they've all been taken out.
  • Gotta Catch 'Em All: Optional. You can gather cards of the graffiti creatures you fight, and once you've collected them, you can use them yourself, mini-versions of the bosses included.
  • Guide Dang It: Some of the bosses. Just... ugh.
  • Giggling Villain: Telepin, especially when you fight him.
  • Idiot Hero: Pixel.
  • Kick the Dog: Or rather Palette kicks a chibi demon ghost.
  • One-Winged Angel: Each boss has an alternate form they use in battle, presumably a graffiti-form they shift into between their introductory cutscene and fight.
  • Level Ate: Palette's level is made primarily out of sweets, with her coliseum being located atop a cake.
  • Lost in Translation: Niss, Telepin and Carlton's names seem to break the Theme Naming pattern. However, in the original Japanese version, their names were Varnish, Turpentine and Carton (A play on the word "Cartoon"), respectively. Either the translators didn't want to use their actual names, or they didn't bother translating them at all and just decided to use what the names vaguely sounded like in the raw Japanese dialogue for the English version.
    • In the original Japanese version, Easel's one quirk was that when he spoke, he was obnoxious and often switched between speaking in Japanese and English, explaining why Pixel thought he was a "Weirdo". Understandably, this wouldn't make much sense when translated to English, so they just made him stereotypically Western instead.
  • Mega Manning: After each boss battle, a card with the boss's graffiti form appears. You grab it, you get the form for use later.
  • Nice Hat: Easel wears his even in ghost form.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The very beginning of the game.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Pastel, and Telepin which is hilarious since he's one of the toughest bosses in the game.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Telepin, one of the more frustrating bosses, is a pink rabbit in a kimono with a Bubbles-esque voice.
  • Royal Brat: The Devil's kids, though Palette is the only really bratty one.
  • Satan
  • Sealed Evil in a Can:Played straight as a line. The Devil was sealed away by Graffitticians who were bestowed with the power of graffiti by God.
  • Swiss Army Hero
  • Some Dexterity Required: Drawing creatures: Easy. Drawing creatures well: Tough.
  • Talking Animal: Pastel the dog, who keeps claiming to really be a human girl. Which she is.
  • Theme Naming: The main cast are Pixel, Pastel, Tablet, and Palette. Also part of the theme are bosses Easel, Deskel, and Acryla.
  • Tickle Torture: This is how Tablet punishes Acryla. He promises to stop as long as she does not reveal his true motives to Palette. Unfortunately he chose to tickle her midsection, unaware that Pixel was watching the entire time.You can imagine what he had to explain.They don't buy it
  • Toy Time: Cannon of Block Valley.
  • Tsundere: Pastel, though you can't exactly blame her for being annoyed with the Idiot Hero.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifter: Graffiti users, as well as demons.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Constantly, especially at the beginning. Pixel's kind of an asshole.
    • A particularly amusing example comes up when Pastel is kidnapped. After having spent so much time together, it seems that the duo may actually begin getting along and caring about one another. Pixel's reaction? "Whatever." Pastel is not happy.
  • Yasunori Mitsuda
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Tablet and Palette. Human!Pastel and Acryla, also, with green hair.