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Video Game / Shrek 2

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Shrek 2 is a licensed game based off the hit animated movie of the same name. It's a Beat 'em Up action-platformer with collect-a-thon elements that was released on Playstation 2, Xbox, and Nintendo GameCube. The game was also released on PC as Shrek 2: Team Action, in order to differentiate it from a different game on the same platform also titled Shrek 2.

Unlike the first game, which completely eschewed the parent film's plot and setting in favor of an original story, Shrek 2 follows the movie's plot. Like most video game adaptation of films, Shrek 2 takes the Adaptation Expansion approach, adding in new events and expanding upon ones that were only briefly touched on in the movie proper.


Shrek 2 provides examples of:

  • A Day in the Limelight: This is incorporated through the Hero Time mechanic: once per chapter, the player will exclusively take control of one specific character instead of switching between four and go through a specific section of the level that requires said character's skills. Every single playable character gets one at some point in the game (except for Fairy).
  • Achievement System: The snapshots are obtained by completing various objectives within each level. Some are obtained by simply reaching a certain point in each level, while others require the player find optional collectables like magic beans, eyeballs or prisoners.
  • Adaptation Deviation: The final battle with the Fairy Godmother is modified from the movie. In the movie, Shrek and Donkey fought her while still in their human/stallion forms, and only reverted back to their original forms after she was defeated. In the movie, the battle with the Godmother happens after Shrek, Donkey and Fiona revert back to their original forms.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The game adds various elements that weren't in the movie and expands on minor plot points:
    • Shrek, Donkey and Fiona don't immediately make it to Far Far Away; in the game, they briefly took a detour though a haunted forest after a run-in with a witch led to their horses turning back into mice.
    • Rather than simply sneaking into the potion factory, Shrek, Donkey and Puss instead make a detour to Jack & Jill's Farm to intercept a package scheduled to be delivered to the factory.
    • Shrek, Donkey and the fairy tale creatures don't immediately go to the Muffin Man's, as they have to take a shortcut through a set of mountain mines first.
  • Adaptation Personality Change: Little Red Riding Hood in the original movie had little character beyond being afraid of ogres and otherwise appeared to be a normal little girl. In the game, Lil' Red was reinvented as a spunky, sarcastic, tomboyish softball pitcher who isn't afraid to sass villains and is good friends with Shrek, Fiona and Donkey.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: In the original movie, Little Red Riding Hood only appeared for a brief scene during Shrek and Fiona's honeymoon, where she was scared of them and ran away upon encountering them. As a result of her Adaptation Personality Change, Red isn't scared of Shrek or Fiona and actually befriends them, tagging along with them and Donkey on their journey to Far Far Away.
  • Adaptational Badass: In the movies, the Gingerbread Man and Lil' Red were non-combatants, with Gingy being primarily comic relief and Red being terrified of Shrek and Fiona. In the game, both are fully capable of beating the crap out of enemies; Gingy can use a candy cane and cookies as weapons while Lil' Red developed the ability to throw apples and use her basket as a blunt weapon.
  • Adapted Out: Pinocchio is completely omitted from the fairy tale creatures' prison break, with both Lil' Red and Fairy taking his place in the group.
  • Advancing Wall of Doom: Done twice at different points in Fairy Godmother's: first from Fairy Godmother sending a wave of magic that threatens to turn the team into rancid rump roast, and again from Prince Charming sending a giant cauldron rolling down the team's path.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: If stuck on a particular section, you can talk to the Magic Mirror for hints. His hints start off vague, but talking to him repeatedly results in him giving out clearer hints.
  • Armour Is Useless: For the knight enemies anyway, as they can be defeated by a small donkey, a gingerbread man with a candy cane and a little girl with a basket without much effort. The knights lampshade this numerous times:
    Why is armour useless?
    Ow! Stupid cheap armour!
  • Ascended Extra:
    • Lil' Red goes from a short gag early on in the movie to a full-on main character in the game, tagging along with Shrek and co on their adventure.
    • While Gingy was a recurring character in both movies, he wasn't relevant to the story until the point where the fairy-tale creatures all had to band together to break Shrek, Donkey and Puss out of prison. By virtue of the team system requiring four characters at all times, he takes on a much more active role as the fourth member of the group, tagging along at both the swamp and the journey to the potion factory along with his canon role.
    • Fairy, who takes the fourth character slot in the prison level as the designated Glass Cannon.
  • Back for the Finale: After being completely absent for the second half of the game, Fiona returns as a playable character for the Final Boss.
  • Big "NO!": This is one of Shrek's quotes upon dying.
  • Boss-Only Level:
    • Ogre Killer exclusively consists of a boss battle against Puss in Boots.
    • Final Fight has Shrek, Donkey, Fiona and Puss go up against the Fairy Godmother and her army of enemies from across the entire game.
  • Bleak Level: Spooky Forest takes place in a haunted forest. Prison Break also counts, taking place in the Far Far Away Maximum Security Prison, which is very dark and creepy and features the groans and howls of prisoners echoing in the distance.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Enemies fall and disappear with no blood or cuts on them.
  • The Cake Is a Lie: The Little Pig in front of the henhouse promises to make you an omelet if you catch enough eggs, though when you do so, he doesn't actually follow through.
  • Canon Foreigner: Fairy and this game's Lil' Red don't appear anywhere in the movies. Especially noticeable with the former, as at least a different portrayal of Red Riding Hood was shown, but Fairy, unless if she's supposed to represent a different fairy from the movies, only appears here for one level.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: One mandatory quest in Shrek's Swamp requires Fiona to use Bullet Time to catch several fairies for a leprechaun to let the group though to the next area. One of said fairies ends up reappearing much later on in the Prison Break level, where she acts as the group's Glass Cannon.
  • Collection Sidequest: Each level has certain things you need to collect or rescue to obtain snapshots, such as the seven dwarves, magic beans or prisoners. Your scrapbook has these categories and shows what you've cleared.
  • Comical Overreacting: Donkey sometimes screams "Donkeys don't deserve this!!!" in a dramatic fashion when he dies.
  • Dash Attack: Each character has a rushing attack that functions differently from their standard combo and can only be used while running.. Human Shrek & Horse Donkey can also perform a unique charge attack as their special move, which can break specially-marked objects and deals heavy damage.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Sometimes when the team dies and respawns, Shrek will sarcastically state "Great job, guys!"
  • Defeat Means Playable: Puss in Boots joins the team in Walking The Path after being soundly defeated in Ogre Killer.
  • Degraded Boss: In Spooky Forest, a fat knight with his face showing first shows up as a boss, yet later starts showing up as a regular enemy of that level.
  • Demoted to Extra: Due to most of Fiona's subplot being skipped over, her human form only appears in one cutscene right before the Final Boss and isn't playable like human Shrek and stallion Donkey are.
  • The Dividual: Human Shrek and stallion Donkey are considered one character.
  • A Dog Named "Dog": Along with series mainstays Donkey the donkey and Puss the pussycat, the game features a playable fairy called Fairy.
  • Easter Egg:
    • Pressing the action button when not near any interactive objects results in the current character doing an Idle Animation.
    • When a specific combination of two characters are in the party together, a unique Idle Animation involving them may play if they're left idle long enough; Shrek tries to ride on Donkey only to crush him with his weight, Gingy trips Shrek up with his cane and Shrek gives him a look, etc.
  • Escort Mission:
    • In Spooky Forest, after a run-in with a witch ends with the three blind mice reverted from horses to mice, Shrek, Donkey, Fiona and Lil' Red have to escort the mice through the titular forest in search of a magic potion to change them back into horses.
    • One mission in Far Far Away puts the player in charge of escorting Cinderella through a shopping district, protecting her from an army of muggers.
    • To get one snapshot in Walking The Path, the team has to escort Billy Goat to the end of a bridge, though this mission is much easier since you can defeat all of the enemies before doing so.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Upon being defeated, the Fairy Godmother calmly notes that she "can be defeated" before fading away.
  • Flipping Helpless: Turtles can be knocked onto their backs if hit, leaving them vulnerable to further attacks or for Shrek to pick them up.
  • Flunky Boss: The giant spiders have eggsacs that endlessly make spiders until you destroy the eggsac.
  • Game-Over Man: Fairy Godmother and Prince Charming occasionally laugh at you should the team die. And should Shrek and Donkey die during their hero time in The Mines:
    Fairy Godmother: (mocking Shrek's Scottish accent) Waah waah waah. I'm Shrek. I'm never gonna see/embrace my beautiful Fiona again. (normal) Pathetic.
  • Gate Guardian: Lucky Larry the leprechaun usually makes you give him gold to get past him. The first time you meet him, you have to catch fairies in the area he's in. Played with in his final appearance in Cookie, Cookie, where he tries to force the team to pay him a billion gold... and then gets stepped on by Mongo.
  • "Get Back Here!" Boss: There are two of these.
    • At the end of Spooky Forest, Dragon and Donkey have to save Fiona from being taken away by witches.
    • In The Mines, Shrek & Donkey's hero time involves them chasing the Fairy Godmother though dangerous mine tunnels.
  • Giant Food: In Jack and Jill's Farm, there are giant carrots used to keep you from entering certain places. Until you break them, which is apparently pretty easy.
  • Giant Spider: Both the dungeon levels and the mine levels have these.
  • Glass Cannon: Gingy and Fairy are great at attacking enemies from afar and have great crowd-controlling abilities in Gingy's cookies and Fairy's floating magic, but are very frail and can't take much punishment.
  • The Goomba: Snails are the first enemy you encounter in the game and are used to demonstrate the game's combat mechanics. They don't attack and go down in two hits - one to remove the shell, the second to kill them outright.
  • Gotta Catch Them All!: Snapshots are the main collectable of the game, and are earned for completing various objectives within each level. They're completely optional and are used to unlock additional content in the bonus section.
  • Ground Pound: Shrek, Donkey and Big Bad Wolf can each jump up and do one.
  • Guide Dang It!: Obtaining upgrades can be obtuse to the point where plenty of players have gone through the game without even knowing they exist. Lucky Larry, the character you have to talk to in order to purchase them, can only be found in certain levelsnote , and in rather out of the way places the player is likely to miss on their first playthrough, and the game itself doesn't explicitly tell the player about upgrades at any point.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Keeping with the movie, Puss in Boots does this, going from a boss to a playable character.
  • Hold the Line: Mongo's hero time at the end of Cookie, Cookie works in this fashion: while Mongo works to open the drawbridge to the castle, Shrek has to protect him by shooting down the hot air balloons coming his way.
  • Honest John's Dealership: Lucky Larry's item shop tends to command ridiculous amounts of coins for certain items. Played with in Cookie, Cookie where, when he tries to force the gang to pay him a billion coins, only for Mongo to stomp on him.
  • Idle Animation: Each character (barring Puss) has several. Most notable are the special animations that may play when certain characters are in the party together:
    • Shrek and Donkey: one animation has Shrek pet Donkey's back while another has Shrek pull Donkey under his legs to ride him, only for Donkey to crumple under his weight.
    • Shrek and Fiona: Shrek and Fiona slow dance together.
    • Shrek and Gingy: one animation has Gingy use his cane to knock Shrek over while another has Gingy repeatedly tap Shrek on the back and dodge away before Shrek can see him, only for Shrek to catch him off-guard and crumple him into a ball.
    • Donkey and Gingy: Gingy rides Donkey like a horse.
    • Donkey and Lil' Red: Lil' Red gives Donkey an Apple.
    • Gingy and Fairy: Fairy uses her magic to make Gingy's candy cane float into the air while he's throwing it.
    • Lil' Red and Big Bad Wolf: Wolf sneaks up on Lil' Red and Jump Scares her.
  • Improbable Weapon User: Red throws apples at enemies.
  • Invincibility Power-Up: Blue potions make the entire team invincible to all sources of damage for a short time.
  • I Want My Mommy!: The knight enemies will sometimes shout "Mommy!" when you defeat them.
  • Jiggle Physics: Fiona's breasts jiggle whenever she moves.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Human Shrek and Horse Donkey hit almost as hard as ogre Shrek does, but attack much faster, possess a powerful projectile in the magic potion throw, and have an incredibly strong charge attack that can kill most enemies in a couple of hits, even without upgrades.
  • Long-Range Fighter: Fairy does not have any melee attacks, but can rapid-fire magic blasts to hit enemies from afar.
  • Mighty Glacier: Shrek is a little slow to attack and can't jump particularly high, but he hits hard and has the most health out of any character.
  • No Name Given: Fairy's name is never actually mentioned.
  • Out of Focus: Fairy never appears before the prison break, is only playable for for that single level, never gets any name other than her species, is the only playable character to not have their own hero time, and never shows up again after that level.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: The game's events are translated relatively well, but with some tweaks in order to ensure four players are always able to play. Some of the more major changes include adding the Gingerbread Man and Lil' Red into certain scenes they weren't present for in the movie, cutting out most of Fiona's subplot to put more focus on Shrek and Donkey's journey, and additional areas such as a haunted forest and Jack and Jill's farm (the former appearing to have been transplanted in from Shrek 4-D) were added to stop the game being too short.
  • Reformulated Game: While the console versions are a Teamwork Puzzle Game with Beat 'em Up elements, the PC version is a much more standardized platformer with only one character being played at a time and a vastly different selection of levels, and the GBA version is a 2D platformer. The console and PC versions are so different that the original console version would be ported to PC a year later under the subtitle Team Action to differentiate it from the original PC version.
  • Regenerating Health: Some of the obtainable upgrades allow your characters to slowly regenerate lost health.
  • Rhymes on a Dime: Lucky Larry speaks entirely like this, to the point where even his upgrades' descriptions rhyme! He even lampshades it at one point.
  • Secret Art: Each character has an exclusive ability only they can use:
    • Shrek: Ogre Lifting - Shrek can pick up stunned enemies and specific objects and throw them.
    • Fiona: Stop Time - Fiona can slow down time for everything except herself.
    • Donkey: Burro Blast - Donkey launches a powerful kick that can knock enemies away and break locks.
    • Gingy: Cookie - Gingy throws a cookie that attracts enemies.
    • Lil' Red: Rotten Apple Bomb - Red throws an explosive apple that deals heavy damage to enemies when it explodes.
    • Puss in Boots: Tightrope Walking - Puss can walk on chains and tightropes too narrow for anyone else.
    • Big Bad Wolf: Huff 'N Puff - Wolf exhales a powerful gust of air capable of blowing enemies away, extinguishing fires and activating machinery.
    • Fairy: Fairy Dust - Fairy uses her magic to make allies and enemies alike float into the air.
    • Human Shrek & Stallion Donkey: Charge - Donkey rushes forwards as Shrek stabs his sword, which heavily damages enemies and breaks locks.
  • Shield-Bearing Mook: The knights.
  • Shout-Out:
    • One of Shrek's lines upon hitting an enemy is "Ogre smash!", likely referencing the Catchphrase of the Incredible Hulk; "Hulk smash!"
    • Another of Shrek's lines is "It is easy being green.", a nod to The Muppets song "Bein' Green", which had a verse called "It's not easy being green."
    • One of the snapshots in Shrek's Swamp is called "Fairies-gotta catch them all!"
    • If you start causing chaos during the Far Far Away Level, stars will appear on the left side of the screen and the local law enforcement will come after you. Doesn't it remind of you anything?
    • The introduction for the Prison Break level has the Magic Mirror mention that the fairy-tale creatures' breakout plan will test "the fellowship of this thing".
    • This line courtesy of Papa Bear, himself a clear parody of Smokey the Bear: "Now will you get that lunatic cookie monster out of my town?!"
  • Skippable Boss: The troll in Prison Break can be skipped altogether by taking a secret back route.
  • Slo Mo: Fiona can do this whenever you get an hourglass. This makes catching those fairies in Shrek's Swamp much easier.
  • Smash Mook: The stone monsters in the mine levels. In the Far Far Away level there's a troll like this.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Mama Bear, who was killed and turned into a rug for Lord Farquaad in the first movie, shows up alive and well in the Cookie, Cookie level here.
  • Spin Attack: Lil' Red and Fiona each have one.
  • Spider Swarm: Giant spiders have eggsacs that endlessly produce spiders until you destroy the eggsac. There is one giant spider who doesn't have any eggsac, who is a boss.
  • Stealth-Based Mission: Prison Break features searchlights and knights with lanterns to avoid. Getting detected means having to fight a large army of knights before you can continue the level.
  • Super Drowning Skills: Falling into any body of water, no matter how shallow, results in instant death and a trip back to the previous checkpoint.
  • Teamwork Puzzle Game: You're almost always playing as a team of four, though which characters are in the team varies depending on the level; each has their own set of abilities that allow them to do things the other members cannot. Shrek can pick up and throw enemies and specifically-marked objects, Donkey can kick open specific locks and activate machinery, Puss can walk on tightropes, etc.
  • Tennis Boss: Trolls can fire bombs from their mouth, which can then be knocked back at the troll by attacking them. However, the troll can also knock them back at you, meaning you have to carefully time the hit to make sure they don't blow up in your face. Trolls can also be damaged from explosive barrels, but those do a microscopic amount of damage by comparison and aren't present in every encounter, meaning the only real way to defeat the trolls is to hit the bombs back.
  • Throw a Barrel at It: Shrek does this with explosive barrels.
  • Turtle Power: Shrek's Swamp features turtles as enemies. They take two hits to defeat, but are otherwise very weak and can be rendered helpless if flipped on their back.
  • Unique Enemy: Robin Hood and his Merry Men, who you fight at one point in Shrek's Swamp, yet aren't treated as anything more than standard enemies.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • You can hit citizens and break things in Far Far Away.
    • If you get angry at one of the playable characters who you're not playing, you can hit them!
    • There's one section in Spooky Forest where Shrek can endlessly throw the Blind Mice into a waterfall, killing them instantly. Letting the mice die results in an instant trip back to the last checkpoint, but fortunately, the developers were kind enough to put a checkpoint right at the waterfall area, letting you kill them as many times as you see fit.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Both Lil' Red and Fairy completely vanish from the story after they help break Shrek, Donkey and Puss out of prison, not even appearing in the ending like the other playable characters.
  • What the Hell, Player?: If you attack another playable character, they'll call you out for it with a comment along these lines.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: Shrek's moveset includes various wrestling moves: his Ground Pound is a body splash, the final hit of his melee combo is a dropkick, and he has the exclusive ability to pick up stunned enemies and throw them away.
  • You All Look Familiar: The Fairy Godmother and Lil Red's grandma actually use the same character model, although the former has wings and glasses that the latter lacks. The game gets around their resemblance by only showing the latter hiding behind her door for the one cutscene she appears in.
  • You Dirty Rat!: Rats appear as enemies in Spooky Forest and Far Far Away.
  • You Have GOT to Be Kidding Me!: One of Big Bad Wolf's quotes upon encountering danger has him say the trope word-for-word.
  • You Don't Look Like You: The Fairy Godmother looks somewhat different from her movie incarnation: her dress is pink, she's noticeably older, and she's missing her earrings, among other oddities. This could be said for all other characters that appeared in the movie, due to the game's graphical limitations.
  • Zero-Effort Boss: The Pied Piper: while his army of rats are quite vicious, the Piper himself goes down in one hit and doesn't physically attack when finally confronted face-to-face.


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