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Video Game / Dinosaur

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"You are Aladar..."note 

Dinosaur is a series of video games based on the 2000 Disney film Dinosaur.

The games follow the basic plot of the movie; the heroic Iguanodon Aladar and his family are forced to leave their peaceful island home when a meteor shower destroys it. They join a herd of survivors on their way to the haven of the Nesting Grounds, and become True Companions with the elderly members of the herd. Aladar and his family have to not only contend with Kron, the herd's stubborn leader, but also the various predators and natural obstacles that make their migration to the Nesting Grounds a difficult one.

Though the games follow the basic plot of the film, they are not without their differences. Expect Adaptation Expansion and Adapted Out to be used, and the games also feature prehistoric creatures not seen in the film. The most notable addition to the game is Flia, a Pteranodon who is part of Aladar's family from the beginning, and an original character loosely based on the Pteranodon seen in the film's opening sequence.


Each character has a special set of skills that can depend on the platform; for example, Aladar is the most physically powerful member of the trio, Zini is the only one who can collect fruit, and Flia is the fastest thanks to her flight and can scout an area quickly.

Tropes featured in the game include:

  • Adaptation Expansion: The majority of the game is an expansion of the film, with the levels representing actual events from the film being close-enough adaptations of it. Notable missions that are entirely made for the game are A Strange New World, Finding Neera, Confronting Kron and Mountain Pass. Meanwhile, the levels that specifically expand on scenes from the film are:
    • Island Paradise: You have to clear the island of predators after raising Aladar to adulthood. The island was free of carnivores in the film.
    • A Strange New World is an expansion of the "They're All Gone" scene in the film, as it shows the characters on the beach of the mainland after escaping the fireball.
    • The Lake: The trio and Baylene have to free up water around the lake bed, and also protect Eema and Url.
    • Confronting Kron: Aladar's initial confrontation with Kron, and getting left behind by the herd, only happens after taking Url for a walk and Flia having to find the herd.
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    • Unpleasant Company: The gang has to race a Carnotaur to the herd, when in the film, only Aladar raced to the herd and hid from it the whole time.
  • Adaptation Induced Plothole: The gang's terror at encountering raptors (and their first predators) in the movie cutscenes loses a lot of weight considering the past two missions had the group fighting through hordes of just as nasty predators.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Kron's more of a straight-up villain here since the game doesn't really flesh out his visible desperation to lead the herd to safety, which made him more of an Anti-Villain than anything.
  • Advancing Wall of Doom: "Unpleasant Company" has you fleeing from a Carnotaur the whole time.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: Finding Neera is the only level set at night and you have to race through the darkness to save Neera from a Spinosaurus, in a spooky area with even spookier music.
  • Breather Episode: The fairly laid-back Babysitting is this, coming between the desperate search for water to save a dying Eema in The Lake and the more nightmarish Finding Neera.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: Confronting Kron, despite its' title, comes off as a Breather Episode where you have to, of all things, take Url for a walk. Then you get an easy fly-over mission with Flia to find the herd. Then as Aladar you go find the herd, and face a vicious boss battle with Kron.
  • Combination Attack: The three heroes can attack all at once when they're united. It's highly recommended to kill the final Carnotaur by using both Flia and Aladar's lighting abilities, using Flia to put it in a daze and then use Aladar's ground stomp to knock it off the cliff.
  • Composite Character: Zini is the only playable lemur in the game. He ends up taking the role filled by Suri in the movie as the lemur who befriends the young Iguanodon, and also Plio to a minor extent; Zini is the only party member who can collect healing fruit from trees and bushes, like how Plio found a plant with healing properties in the cave for Bruton.
  • Compressed Adaptation: The cutscenes from the movie play like this. Bruton is killed, then suddenly the heroes make it to the Nesting Grounds. The final Carnotaur is killed, then suddenly Aladar and Neera have kids and it's the end of the film!
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Apart from the movie cutscenes, Baylene and Eema disappear from the game after The Lake. Url also disappears after Confronting Kron.
  • Damsel in Distress: Flia in A Strange New World and Neera in Finding Neera. Flia was injured during the meteor strike and needs fruit to heal, while Neera is trapped in a confined space with a ''Spinosaurus.
  • Demoted to Extra: Plio, Suri, and Bruton only appear in cutscenes lifted from the movie.
  • Escort Mission: Several.
    • Keeping Up With The Herd has you lead Baylene, Eema, and Url to the safety of the herd.
    • The Lake to a lesser extent, but Eema and Url will venture off on their own and it's recommended you accompany them.
    • Babysitting has you find four baby Iguanodon and escort them back to the herd.
    • Confronting Kron has to have to take Url for a walk as Zini.
  • Fantastic Racism: Mentioned in Confronting Kron - Zini and Flia mention that the herd will listen to Aladar over them since he's a dinosaur.
  • Flight: Flia, a Pteranodon, can fly with her wings.
  • Fragile Speedster: Flia is the fastest member of the group since she can fly, but she is very fragile and not as strong as Aladar. Also the case with Zini, since they're of course smaller than a fully-grown Iguanodon.
  • Friend to All Children: Zini is the only one the baby Iguanodon will follow.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: Yar cannot be harmed by any of the carnivores despite the fact he can be directly in the path of them. Similarly, you cannot be harmed when you bring down a cave-in on the first Carnotaur. Baylene, Eema and Url can't be harmed in their mini-cutscenes that play when you meet them.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: Baylene, Eema, and Url join the party in Footprints in the Sand, and remain with you until The Lake. After that, Url returns for one more level in the party during Confronting Kron, after which the trio do not appear in regular gameplay, only in cutscenes.
  • The Juggernaut: The Carnotaurs cannot be injured by the attacks you use everywhere else in the game. You can only kill them using Aladar's special attack to bring down cave-ins on the first one and to push the second Carnotaur off a cliff.
  • Lava Pit: Babysitting and Mountain Pass feature lakes of lava.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Besides the Carnotaurs, Kron is a difficult boss if you haven't leveled up properly since he's very fast and powerful.
  • Living MacGuffin'': A few levels feature these.
    • Flia is injured by the meteor shower and must be healed in A Strange New World.
    • Eema is dying of thirst in The Lake and you must replenish her health every now and then.
    • The baby Iguanodon in Babysitting must be brought back to the herd.
    • Neera needs to be rescued from a Spinosaurus in Finding Neera.
    • Url must be protected while you take him on a walk in Confronting Kron.
  • The Mentor: Yar will give you advice on most levels that may or may not be helpful. In the first level he is the explanation for the lightning bolt power-ups.
  • Nintendo Hard: The first level is quite difficult, especially fighting the Oviraptors. The rest of the game, however, evens out dramatically as you level up.
  • Player Nudge: Done in "The Lake" to explain how to complete the level. When you spawn in, Aladar, Flia, and Zini are separated from each other, and Baylene is placed a short walking distance away from the three of you. The cutscene plays in which Aladar observes that if they get something heavy on the cracks in the lake, they may be able to free up some water. A player will likely then unite the three player characters - at which, Baylene will begin walking towards you, following the united party as she did in the previous level. The initial separation is meant to explain how you are to lead Baylene to the cracks in the lake to find water.
  • Save-Game Limits: You are only able to save your in-level progress at mysterious monoliths.
  • Seldom-Seen Species: Champsosaurus, Icaronycteris, and Albertosaurus are featured as enemies. The PC version adds in Dryptosaurus.
  • Shockwave Stomp: Aladar's special ability. It's instrumental to beating the Carnotaurs.
  • Shout-Out: The mysterious monoliths that you save your progress at, what with they being places that record progress on prehistoric earth, are reminiscent of the monoliths from 2001: A Space Odyssey.
  • This Is Something He's Got to Do Himself: Aladar at the end of "Confronting Kron". Both Zini and Flia are too tired after taking Url for a walk and flying to find the herd, respectively, but they also make the point that the herd is too prejudiced against non-dinosaurs to listen to anyone but Aladar.
  • Took a Level in Badass: You do this as your three characters. It's very satisfying when in Confronting Kron, the Oviraptors that gave you so much trouble in Island Paradise are no longer a threat.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: You are able to push some enemies into the lava featured on Babysitting and Mountain Pass.

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