Follow TV Tropes


Video Game / 40 Winks

Go To
We're here to send that grumpy Nitekap to beddy-byes!
Winks are happy little creatures who bring good dreams to humanity. Their job is also to stop the HoodWinks, their Evil Counterparts who bring people nightmares. And for the most part, this cycle of giving dreams and stopping nightmares goes smoothly... until Nitekap, a mad scientist/sorcerer-type guy with raging insomnia, decides that if he can't sleep well at night, well, no one will. He and his sidekick Threadbear kidnap all of the Winks until there are only 40 left, and even those he manages to snatch up.

Enter Ruff and Tumble, a pair of siblings who have taken it upon themselves to rescue the Winks from Nitekap and Threadbear. Fearlessly, they enter the world of dreams to hunt out the missing Winks. Armed with only a candle and a teddy bear (and the ability to transform into a number of more powerful forms), the two siblings set out to stop the evil Nitekap and ensure the world's good dreams continue for all eternity!

This Platform Game was developed by Eurocom, published by GT Interactive Software, and released in November of 1999 exclusively for the original PlayStation. A Nintendo 64 version of the game was planned, advertised, and completed, but due to financial troubles, it was never released and its existence was considered an Urban Legend of Zelda... until 19 years later, when a Kickstarter campaign was created by Piko Interactive to finally give the Nintendo 64 version a proper release on the system, making it the first game to be published on the Nintendo 64 since its discontinuation sixteen years prior in 2002.

40 Winks contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Action Girl: Tumble, especially in her Ninja and Superhero costumes.
  • Bears Are Bad News: Zig-zagged with Threadbear. On one hand, he's a threatening-enough boss, and The Dragon to Nitekap. On the other hand, he's so beleagured, he almost falls into Minion with an F in Evil status.
  • Big Bad: Nitekap's the main villain of the game, being the one commanding the HoodWinks and creating some of Threadbear's vehicles.
  • Collect-a-Thon Platformer: A rather rigid one too, with plenty of collectibles that are obligatory for progression.
  • Damage-Sponge Boss; The final boss, moreso than all previous bosses. There isn't much challenge in beating him; the real problem comes with having the patience of damaging him 15 times.
  • Distaff Counterpart: Ruff and Tumble to each other; the only difference being their hair color, hair style and color of their pajamas.
  • The Dragon: Threadbear does the heavy lifting for Nitekap and controls the game's bosses.
  • Dream Land: Most of the game takes place in a dream world, aside from the final boss battle which takes place just outside Nitekap's clocktower.
  • Eternal Engine: The space-themed levels tend to incorporate heavy machinery into their aesthetics.
  • Evil Brit: Nitekap and Threadbear are both British-accented villains (though that label is debateable in Threadbear's case).
  • Evil Counterpart: The HoodWinks to the Winks, being tiny creatures that create nightmares instead of dreams.
  • Exploding Barrels: Appears once in Haunted Hijinks, some parts of Astral Antics, and in abundance in Pirate's Ahoy.
  • Exposition Fairy: Wakey Wakey the alarm clock. In early levels, you can touch icons of his face for advice, but in later ones, he just describes the levels to you.
  • Floating Limbs: Both the Winks and the Hoodwinks have feet but no limbs. Wakey-Wakey also has hands and feet but no arms or legs.
  • Gangplank Galleon: There's a whole pirate-themed world!
  • Goomba Stomp: It's doable, if not always feasible.
  • Gotta Catch 'Em All:
    • The titular 40 Winks, of course, but each world has 12 Dream Keys that need to be collected to fight the world's boss.
    • Within the levels, you've also got to typically find all 40 cogs to complete it.
  • Heel–Face Turn: After breaking his clocktower and letting him get a good night's sleep, Nitekap does a complete 180 in personality and becomes a good guy.
  • Hub Level: The house is the main hub, but each of the individual worlds also has its own hub from which you access the sub-levels and enter the world's race.
  • Idle Animation: When idling, the kids will usually yawn and stretch in place.
  • Improbable Weapon User: The kids' default weapons are a candlestick, and a teddy bear.
  • It's a Wonderful Failure: There are three Game Over cutscenes where the game taunts you for your failure.
  • Kid Hero: Ruff and Tumble, of course. Comes with the territory of being Player Characters.
  • Minion with an F in Evil: Despite serving as the recurring boss character, Threadbear is often seen lazing around Nitekap's clocktower or getting patched up from his injuries instead of doing anything to directly help Nitekap.
  • Ninja: The Ninja costume, of course.
  • Oxygenated Underwater Bubbles: There are underwater vents that spew breathable bubbles. Just running through them is not enough, however; you have to linger on them to get a full-sized gulp of air.
  • Padded Sumo Gameplay: Even the Mooks in the very first levels of the game have ridiculous amounts of health! You yourself have 50 hit points, but they drop away fast. However, it's possible to lower the enemies' health in the difficulty settings.
  • Palette Swap: Most enemy types have two or three different color variants. They're pretty much the same in terms of damage and health, they just provide some variety.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Tumble wears a pink nightshirt, while Ruff's is blue.
  • Prehistoria: The prehistoric level, Ancient Adventures, of course. However, its individual levels hop around a bit in theme.
  • Punny Name: Threadbear is a pun on both his status as a teddy bear, and on "threadbare," or worn-down. There's also Ruff and Tumble...
  • Purely Aesthetic Gender: You can choose between playing as Ruff (male) or Tumble (female), but they're identical. In the N64 version, however, a second player could control the one you didn't.
  • Racing Minigame: Each world has one, against Threadbear's Champion in that area. The N64 version would've had/does have (depending on your opinion on things) multiplayer racing.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Aww, wookit the cute widdle Winks!
  • A Rotten Time to Revert: Scattered across the levels are jack-in-the-boxes that allow the player characters to transform into one of four different Super Modes: a ninja, a caveman, a fairy/jester, and a superhero. Each of them possesses unique powers in and out of battle, including Super Not-Drowning Skills, but unfortunately, the transformations are on a timer. Reverting to normal can be merely inconvenient if you needed the caveman's ground pound or the superhero's jetpack to access hidden areas, or, if you're in battle or underwater, dangerous.
  • Screams Like a Little Girl: Ruff's scream attack is actually much more high-pitched and louder than Tumble's.
  • Spin Attack: The Ninja costume has a spinning attack you can use while running. Keep pressing the button, and you'll keep spinning—but do it too long, and your character gets dizzy!
  • Super Mode: All transformations, but especially fairy/clown. Not only do they jump high and run fast like the ninja transformations, but they're invincible and have Super Not-Drowning Skills.
  • Super Not-Drowning Skills: The Fairy/Clown transformation can breathe underwater, but all other forms have an Oxygen Meter.
  • Super-Scream: Your basic ranged attack, when not transformed, is a scream attack.
  • The Unfought: The kids never confront Nitekap himself. Somewhat justified, as Threadbear reveals that he's not really a bad guy, just "tired and grizzly" because of the clock that keeps him up at night.
  • Varying Tactics Boss: Threadbear is the boss of every world, but each time he's fought he's piloting a different vehicle or riding a new creature.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: The caveman form's special attack, which pukes bones all over your enemies.
  • Who Names Their Kid "Dude"?: "Ruff" and "Tumble"?