troperville

tools

toys


main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
Kickstarter Message
TV Tropes Needs Your Help
X
Big things are happening on TV Tropes! New admins, new designs, fewer ads, mobile versions, beta testing opportunities, thematic discovery engine, fun trope tools and toys, and much more - Learn how to help here and discuss here.
View Kickstarter Project
Video Game: Plok

Plok is an irresistible, irrepressible, unstoppable, highly improbable and downright dangerous bundle of pure energy.
Plok does not like fleas.
Plok has the amazing ability to fire all his body parts at will.
Plok can really throw a punch.
Plok has a very short fuse; at the slightest irritation those limbs begin to fly.
Plok hates fleas.
Plok is a true hero, with a heart of gold and joints of the highest-quality velcro.
Plok is a man with a mission. He is dedicated to ridding the world of the dreaded Fleas.
Plok is a dreamer, a wanderer, a free spirit. He's suave and elegant. He's grade-A, first-class prime cut.
Plok REALLY does not like Fleas.
Plok is the king of the beautiful island called Akrillic, part of the archipelago Poly-Esta.

Describe Plok he

Sorry. The above editor lost his hands halfway through typing.

Plok was a Super Nintendo game developed by Software Creations in 1993. It's a platformer starring Plok, an animated pile of clothes, who wakes up one day to find out that the flag on his house (a family heirloom) has been stolen. After retrieving it from nearby Cotton Island, he returns to his island of Akrillic and finds out that it's been taken over by fleas! He travels through his colorful, surreal island, vanquishing fleas along the way and eventually entering the Flea Pit to battle the Flea Queen.

Plok's special power lies in how he can launch any of his limbs at will to damage enemies. Once the damage has been done, they return to Plok until he decides to attack again. Another integral use of this ability is using it to solve puzzles that involve having to "sacrifice" one of Plok's limbs to activate switches. Once a limb hits a switch, it is placed on a hanger that may be right next to the switch or several screens away. If he loses all his limbs, he becomes a defenseless bouncing ball-thing. With an amulet found halfway through the game, he can collect shells and use their power to transform into a buzzsaw when he jumps.

The game's most notable feature is its prog rock-inspired soundtrack, which was composed by Tim Follin and pushed the SNES to its limits.

Unfortunately, Plok was released right when colorful platformers were facing a massive backlash, and it quickly fell into obscurity.

There's a fan website for it. Some very cool pictures and insights on the game are over here on the website of John and Ste Pickford, the creators of the game. In August 2013, almost exactly twenty years after the game was first released, the Pickfords started work on a weekly comic called "Plok The Exploding Man", the first page of which can be found right here.

There have been two attempts at fan sequels: a higher-res 2D game developed from 2006-2009, and a 3D game created in 2012, which is still in development.

A rerelease on the Virtual Console looks unlikely, as the Pickford Bros. are unsure who currently owns the rights to the game, but they have dropped occasional hints over the years of possibly making a sequel. However, Plok himself did show up in another game - as a miniboss in the Atari Lynx game Zaku.

This game contains examples of:

  • Added Alliterative Appeal: The Shprouts come in several forms: the Shcuba Shprouts, the Shcuba Shield Shprouts, the Shky Shcuba Shield Shprouts...
  • BANG Flag Gun: The cowboy suit has this as a weapon, and it does pretty much nothing.
  • Bee Bee Gun: Plok can find hornets' nests and sic the hornets on fleas.
  • Berserk Button: Plok is quite protective of his grandpappy's flag.
  • Bonus Boss: All the bosses become this in Child's Play, since they only show up when getting a continue just before the point at which you'd normally fight the bosses. The Penkinos were very obviously designed to work like this, since the previous level practically gives the player one.
  • Bonus Stage: Hitting certain HP-restoring fruit when they're at their maximum size will take you to bonus stages (instead of just destroying them), which allow you to collect tons of shells or warp 2-3 levels ahead.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Text in the game comes in three colours: red indicates narration (and Cotton Island levels), yellow is Plok's dialogue (and Akrillic levels), and blue is enemy dialogue (and fleapit levels).
  • Detachment Combat: Plok can fire out both his arms and legs at the enemy.
  • Dummied Out: The Brendammi Bog, Badream Fens, and Breezy Beach levels, as well as a test level for vehicles.
  • Easy-Mode Mockery: Playing the "Child's Play" mode leaves you unable to enter the Fleapit. Or Legacy Island, or several of the game's other stages (largely boss fights). Although one of the particularly annoying skipped boss fights becomes unskipped if you continue from a certain stage after gameovering.
  • Fake Difficulty: The Fleapit in its entirety. Every stage involves a new and different vehicle, most of which have touchy controls and hard-to-use weapons.
  • Giant Spider: Womack Spider.
  • Goofy Print Underwear: Plok finds polka-dot boxers instead of his flag at the end of the first level.
  • Identical Grandson: The only thing that differs Plok from his grandpappy is a mustache.
  • Kung-Fu Proof Mook: Shprouts, which need to be hit a second time immediately after the first hit to defeat them; taking too long resets their vulnerability. They become even more kung fu proof in later stages, where they carry shields that render them invincible unless they are hit in the back.
  • Leap of Faith: Two of them at the end of "Plok's House". A bridge appears from under you if you jump off a certain spot.
  • Meaningful Name: The boss Rockyfella is a monster made of rock.
  • Mercy Invincibility: Present in this game for Plok. AND his enemies!!!
  • Monochrome Past: The flashback levels, which also use silent film-style title cards and piano music.
  • Mook Maker: The aforementioned Budd.
  • Nintendo Hard: Many people actually never get to complete the game without the help of an emulator. Who would've thought a cute-looking game would be hellishly hard?
  • Noob Cave: The Cotton Island levels.
  • Pun:
    • There is a giant miniboss flower called the Budd, which spits out mini versions of itself called Budd Lites.
    • Also, Rockyfella.
  • Raymanian Limbs: Sorta...except Plok came out two years before Rayman.
  • Retraux Flashback: The Grandpappy Plok dream sequence (see Monochrome Past above).
  • Rocket Punch: What happens when you shoot your arms out. One of the powerups gives Plok an even better version of this.
  • Save Point: Averted. If you die and run out of continues (or "Plokontinues" as they're called), you have to start over. Since this game is so long and difficult, few people actually manage to finish it. Luckily, modern emulators allow you to save whenever you please. But still...
    • Plokontinues are actually single-use save points that are tied to the level you got them it. Think of them as save states that get deleted as soon as you load them. It is possible for you to go backwards through the game, forcing you to replay levels you've already beaten, as Plokontinues get used up without obtaining more.
  • Power-Up Letdown: The Secret Super-Vehicle hinted at in the manual and shown only in silhouette. It's a football helmet, spring shoes and a can of Flea Spray. Arguably, you'd have an easier time taking on the final boss without it.
  • Short Range Shotgun: One of the powerups gives Plok a short range blunderbuss that fires out a spread of 5 bullets that travel a rather short distance. Much more useful than you'd think, because it overrides the enemies' Mercy Invincibility.
  • Turns Red: Almost all the bosses.
    • The Penkinos are four flying, penguin-like things that drop damaging stars down on Plok. When low on health, they will drop those stars in rapid succession.
    • Womack Spider shoots many more green glob projectiles once his health gets low.
    • Rockyfella the rock monster summons more hands for his rock throwing attack as his health gets lower.
  • Unexpected Gameplay Change: Again, the Fleapit, where each level puts Plok behind the wheel of a different vehicle that arguably cripples Plok (in exchange for letting him fly or jump wide gaps or whatever the stage calls for).
  • Warp Zone: Due to any save system (even passwords) being absent, the developers placed a number of warps throughout the game, allowing players to skip through levels as fast as possible.
  • What Could Have Been: A sequel, announced 1997, but it went to Development Hell.
  • Wolfpack Boss:
    • The Bobbins Brothers. That's the first time you fight them. The second time (which is actually in a flashback), you have to fight THREE of them with Plok's grandpappy.
    • The Penkinos also count.

The Plok The Exploding Man comic contains examples of:

  • Alien Invasion: Turns out the Fleas were aliens - and there's more where they came from.
  • British Accents: Plok speaks with one, as evidenced by his frequent use of British slang (more obviously than in the video game).
  • Cowboy Cop: Zob, who has no qualms about stepping over others jurisdictions in pursuit of the Flea Queen.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Rockyfella - the last boss Plok fought before entering the Flea Pit - is a nice guy now, though this may be more a case of him mellowing out in the two decades since their previous encounter.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: Plok can apparently explode now. This "ability" (though it's more of a hindrance, really) was never mentioned in the original game.
  • Rip Van Winkle: Remember when Plok took a well-deserved power nap at the end of the game? Well, he just woke up from it. Twenty years later. (This is because nobody woke him up for the Sega Genesis or Game Boy ports or sequel that never came back in The Nineties).
  • Take That: Plok and Rockyfella are more than happy to engage in some Bubsy bashing, right up to Plok being floored to learn that the game which "killed" platformers still managed to get three more sequels than he did.
    • "XBone" was also introduced as a character, pretty much solely for the Kinect voice and image recognition gags.
  • Wrong Medium Savvy: Plok thinks he's still in a video game. He's actually in a comic strip.
Pit-FighterUsefulNotes/Super Nintendo Entertainment SystemKiki Kai Kai
Fighting ClownImageSource/Video GamesPokémon

alternative title(s): Plok
random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
24034
33