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Video Game / Tail of the Sun

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One of our protagonists, fighting a hippo.
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Tail of the Sun is a quirky, artsy caveman simulator released in 1996 for the PlayStation. It was developed by Artdink (A-Train, No One Can Stop Mr. Domino) and directed by Kazutoshi Iida (Doshin the Giant).

The ultimate goal of the game is to build a ladder to the sun using mammoth tusks. In order to achieve this goal, the cavemen must explore and gather resources in a large open world, and hopefully grow their tribe's cultural and physical levels enough to hunt the fearsome mammoths.

The cavemen also have an infamous tendency to fall asleep at the worst possible times.

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This game contains examples of:

  • Alien Sky: A mild example. The nighttime skybox features a wheeling effect with stars and multicolored planets.
  • All There in the Manual: The manual contains a (crude) map of the game world. Otherwise you're going in blind.
  • Catching Some Z's: These pop up when the cavemen fall asleep.
  • Fantastic Fruits and Vegetables: The flora in this game are sugar cakes.
  • Final Death: You choose a caveman to control from the ones in your tribe. When it dies, you may pick another one. If you lose them all, it's a Game Over. In order to avoid this, you must increase your village's population by consuming food and increasing your Propagate stat.
  • Gonk: Your caveman can have a number of different faces. While some are relatively normal, others are quite funky-looking.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: This is what your offensive capabilities start out as. By raising your culture level you can obtain increasingly more powerful weapons, which are useful for hunting.
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  • Min-Maxing: A requirement. Each of your stats are marked in the "Body" screen with a different color, indicating how strong they are (from weakest to strongest, the colors are: purple, blue, green, yellow, peach, and red). Stats cannot be of the same color, so you need to pick and choose which ones you want to raise.
  • The Monolith: Naturally included as a reference. You can find a group of five colored monoliths. Interacting with them imprints a tattoo on you that increases one of your stats.
  • Multiple Endings: There are a total of nine. Which one you'll get depends on which stats you increase and how you perform.
  • Power Tattoo: The monoliths give you these. Depending on which one you currently have on you, your Brain, Swim, Propagate, Jump, or Run stat increases. The Hand stat does not have a tattoo.
  • Power-Up Food: The sugar cakes you can find improve your different stats when you eat them.
  • The Six Stats: Features an unique take on the concept. The cavemen have six "Body" stats, which are as follows:
    • Brain - The Intelligence stat. The more you raise it, the quicker your culture level grows.
    • Swim - Gauges your Super Not-Drowning Skills (or lack thereof).
    • Hand - Measures your Strength. Your offensive capabilities increase as you raise it.
    • Propagate - The tribe's reproduction abilities. Raising this will make your village grow faster over time.
    • Jump - Indicates how high and far you can jump.
    • Run - The higher it is, the speedier you are.
  • Sleep Deprivation: When your character falls asleep, you might wake it up by Button Mashing. However, doing it too much will cause it to die of exhaustion.
  • Winged Soul Flies Off at Death: This happens to the cavemen when they die.
  • Wizard Needs Food Badly: It is possible to starve to death.
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