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Video Game / Nightmare Ned

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"Adventure that turns fear into fun."
Tagline to the game

A PC game released in 1997 by Disney Interactive and developed by Creative Capers Entertainment and Window Painters Ltd. It centers around a young boy, named Ned Needlemeyer, who is sent into a world of nightmares where he must face his fears to get out.

For the Television show, see here.

Tropes featured by the whole game:

  • Abnormal Limb Rotation Range: Some of the nightmare-dwellers are capable of this.
  • All Just a Dream: ...Or Was It a Dream?
  • At the Crossroads: The Quilt.
  • Arc Symbol:
    • The five Shadows are represented by five distinct symbols.
    • The patching and the sickly green color of the Quilt usually appears whenever something bad is about to happen.
  • Bloodless Carnage: In the game, Ned can get stabbed, decapitated, crushed, and other such fates with nary a drop of blood.
  • Body Horror
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: During the use of the game's menu, Ned will talk to the player.
  • Cats Are Mean:
    • Two black cats in Attic, Basement, and Beyond which injure Ned with shards from broken mirrors.
    • The word-animal cats in the Chalkboard area of Alcatraz Elementary.
  • Closed Circle:
    • The nightmare worlds.
    • Subverted when exit portals are used.
  • Cyclops:
    • The Gum Monster from in the Mouth and Cyco (Toilet-Paper Cyclops) from the Bathroom Nightmare.
    • As well as the Medical Shadow and Bathroom Shadow.
  • Darker and Edgier: The game has lost much of the cartoonish and silly nature of the show. Even the music is eerier.
  • Downer Ending: The first ending in which Ned is still terrified of his nightmares.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The Shadows and disembodied monster hands (pictured right) in the beginning.
  • Eldritch Location: Much of Ned's nightmare, but primarily in The Mouth and in the Attic, Basement, and Beyond.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: The second ending in which Ned has conquered his nightmares.
  • Family-Unfriendly Violence: Everywhere.
  • Foreshadowing: Many points during the intro.
  • Homage:
    • The game has the art class segment which is reminiscent of fighting games, namely Mortal Kombat and the use of its phrase, "FINISH HIM!".
    • The environment of the Graveyard Nightmare is known for bearing a strong resemblance to the works of Tim Burton and Edward Gorey.
  • Horrifying the Horror: As the game continues and the Shadows begin to reveal, their expressions become increasing chilled and terrified themselves.
  • Mad Doctor/ Depraved Dentist:
    • The Medical Shadow is shown to be the most insane and sadistic of the bunch.
    "I'm going to rip off one of your fingers, put it in a jar, and keep it as a souvenir!"
    • Also, in the end, if Ned can beat the Shadows and conquer his fears, the Shadows are shown to be still hiding in his closet. They contemplate what to do now that Ned has won, and the Medical Shadow suggests that "We could perform hideous, painful medical procedures on ''each other!''"
      • Subverted when it is shown that she was actually friendly and it just the child in Ned that made him fear doctors so badly.
    • Doctor Shots, who will stab Ned clean through with giant needles if he gets caught when the Mouth closes on him, one additional piece of his outfit changing from white to a tooth decay mix of browns each time. If the decay spreads to his coat, you're ejected from the level.
    • Drive-Thru Doctors that will swipe at Ned while he's rolling on the medical gurney.
    • The creepy nurse in Alcatraz Elementary School, though she poses no real danger to him.
  • Medium Blending: Artwork of both the background and some of the characters mixes with technicolor, Real Life artistry, etc.
  • Mooks:
    • The countless Attic, Basement, and Beyond mice are this to a fire-spitting furnace who repeatedly fries them, and also the Electro-Beavers in the Bathroom Nightmare are this to the rat overlords.
    • Played Straight with the Plaque Monsters from in The Mouth.
  • Not Afraid of You Anymore: Ned when he conquers all five nightmare worlds. At least in the Good Ending.
  • Our Vampires Are Different:
    • There is a vampire bat on the Chalkboard stage of Alcatraz Elementary spelled out with chalk and plaque vampire bats in The Mouth.
    • There's a straight vampire who's a milk carton sculpture labeled "Vilk" in the Art Class segment, complete with the background of a haunted house.
  • Red Herring: A toilet labeled "The Worst Toilet in Ned's Nightmare" which Ned chooses to outright avoid by leaping down into a chasm.
  • Rodents of Unusual Size: The mouse/ rat civilizations, and on a larger scale, an enormous realistic-looking ratnote  can be found in one of the cutscenes.
  • Secret Path: Escape portals between the Nightmare realms.
  • Scenery Porn/ Scenery Gorn: In the game. The 2D artwork and animation STILL look beautiful even years later.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The Attic, Basement, and Beyond stage in the game has a likely reference to Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds in which a flock of birds swarm in through a window and viciously peck at Ned. This only happens after you've knocked a fake bird out of its cage.
    • Ned's silhouette shakes hands with none other than Mickey Mouse.
    • In the School stage, the principal makes an accidental phone call to "the happiest place on earth" when trying to reach Ned's parents.
  • Throw the Book at Them: An angry librarian squishes Ned between a book in Alcatraz Elementary as does the skeleton man in the Graveyard Nightmare if Ned disturbs him. The latter had actually crushed some other poor people the same way and stuffed them into his bookshelf.
  • The Unfought: None of the Shadows are directly fought or confronted.

Tropes featured in the intro/outros and cutscenes:

  • Dodgeball Is Hell: The passage from Alcatraz Elementary to the Medical nightmare results in Ned getting clobbered in the head several times by this, with a bump on his head for good measure.
  • Multiple Endings: More specifically, a good ending and a bad ending.
  • Phoney Call/ Evil Phone: Ned answers the phone while his parents are away, but before we find out who it is, he gets tangled in the phone cord and freaks out thinking something has got him.
  • "Psycho" Strings: As the view of the hallway begins to stretch out in the intro.
  • Spear Carrier: The enormous pair of clawed monster hands—a likely Eldritch Abomination—that casts Ned into the Shadows' Nightmare World does not appear again unless the player ends with the good ending to which it brings him to the final battle. It is also seen on the game cover, but portrayed as more slender and presented in a much less cartoonish manner.
  • Swarm of Rats: In the Medical to Bathroom Nightmare cutscene.
  • Void Between the Worlds: When Ned is first cast into the Nightmare World by the Shadows.
  • Vomit Discretion Shot: In the cutscene from Alcatraz Elementary to the Bathroom Nightmare.

Tropes featured in the Graveyard Nightmare:

Tropes featured in the Medical Nightmare:

  • Afraid of Needles: A big part of the nightmare.
  • Benevolent Architecture: In the Mouth stage, the dental brace can be used both as trampolines to jump over obstacles and as a sort of tightrope that Ned can use to climb across dangerous/ impassable areas. Also, bloody veins can be used to climb up to secret areas.
  • Blob Monster/ More Teeth than the Osmond Family: The Gum Monster.
  • The Elevator from Ipanema: The pitch black waiting room where you choose which stage to visit has Muzak playing.
  • Fake Ultimate Mook: The Gum monster can't move its mouth far enough to bite Ned, but he can knock his teeth out in one shot.
  • Hospital Gurney Scene: First part of the doctor level.
  • Mood Dissonance:
    • The Uvula song being performed in a bloody, diseased Eldritch Mouth.
    • Muzak being played in a dark waiting room, alongside a chair that either takes the form of a gurney with clamps or a dentist chair that eats anyone that sits in it.
  • Strapped to an Operating Table: A spinning one attached to a wall, no less, and it has to be stopped at one of eight jars of organs (depending on how many were taken at the start) to free Ned.
  • Umbrella Drink: Rotted toothmen can be seen drinking from these during the Uvula Song.
  • Womb Level: One-half of the medical nightmare in the video game takes place in a giant mouth.

Tropes featured in the Alcatraz Elementary School:

  • Insane Troll Logic: The principal punishing Ned for clogging the bathroom toilets because he was the only one there at the time, not because of any substantial evidence.

Tropes featured in the Bathroom Nightmare:

Tropes featured in the Attic, Basement, and Beyond Nightmare: