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Video Game / The Adventures of Lomax

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The Adventures of Lomax (known in Europe and Japan as simply Lomax) is a 2D Platform Game for the original PlayStation and PC and a spin-off of the Lemmings series. It was released by Psygnosis in 1996 and designed by Erwin Kloibhofer and Henk Nieborg. It is sometimes considered a Spiritual Successor to the earlier games made by those two developers, namely The Misadventures of Flink and Lionheart for the Amiga, due to sharing the same art style and several gameplay elements.

The player controls Lomax, a Lemming hero who must save Lemmingland from Evil Ed, a dark Lemming wizard who has transformed almost all of Lemmingland's populace into evil monsters to do his diabolical bidding. In order to restore peace to his homeland and free his friends, Lomax must use his magical helmet and an array of skills, including some lifted directly from the mainline Lemmings games themselves like bashing (called "Digging" here) and building. He'll also receive help from the Old Wise Lorock, an elderly wizard who can give our hero advice for the journey ahead.

Not to be confused with The Lorax.


This video game provides examples of:

  • 1-Up: The relatively rare 1-Up balloons. You also get one when you collect 100 coins.
    • A pot containing one of these is found at the end of every bonus level you enter.
  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: Although the game is almost entirely in 2D, there are a few elements (towers, arches, windmills) that are, for some reason, made in 3D, and due to their low level of detail it's rather noticeable. The most egregious examples are obstacles that attempt to use 3D perspective, usually only creating confusion about whether they're currently in a position where they can hit you or not.
  • 2½D: The game utilizes this at times, with you moving between various planes of the level set in the background and foreground. There are also some obstacles that attempt to use 3D perspective, like spiky balls that are attached to a chain and swing towards and away from the screen.
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  • Abnormal Ammo: The bullets shot by the cowboys from the third world are somehow alive, and start walking on their own after landing on the ground. They explode after a few moments.
  • Action Bomb: The barrel enemies from the first world stop dead and explode after a brief moment when you get close.
  • All There in the Manual: Both the story and Lomax's personality are only described in the manual. Interestingly, the Japanese manual gives a more detailed description of the story, whereas the American/European ones focus on Lomax's character, with only a few sentences actually telling you about Evil Ed's plot.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • The game is very generous in providing plenty of pots that pop out of the ground and contain either spare helmets or additional uses of an ability. It helps in situations where lacking a helmet or an ability would make the level unwinnable, and in such crucial moments, these pots will keep infinitely reappearing if you run out of either.
    • If Lomax dies during an Airship boss, the boss will retain its damage after Lomax respawns.
  • Auto-Scrolling Level: The boss stages in the first 3 worlds.
  • Background Boss: Every boss in the game. At the end of the first 3 worlds, it's airships shooting rockets at you. At the end of the fourth world, it's Evil Ed who causes bombs and boulders to appear on the stage.
  • Bald of Evil: Evil Ed, although he has some hair on the sides of his head.
  • Beat the Curse Out of Him: The Lemmings that have been turned into monsters are turned back to normal Lemmings when Lomax "kills" them.
  • Bee Afraid: The bees from the third world, which mostly act as an obstacle flying in a predictable pattern.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: The second world is a sort of a haunted forest with zombies, vampires, werewolves and such, also with occasional levels near water and on haunted ship wrecks.
  • Blob Monster: The enemies from the space world. They look like blobs of green goo when walking, but turn into a humanoid shape when attacking.
  • Bombardier Mook: There are enemies in the first world who fly in balloons and throw bombs at you.
  • Bonus Stage: When you defeat fifty enemies, the exit at the end of the current level will bring you to a bonus stage, where you have a limited time to collect loads of money, with a pot containing a 1-Up at the end of it all. The stage itself is made entirely out of money, too. No enemies to be found, and dying only brings you to the next level.
  • Boss-Only Level: Downplayed a bit in that there's a short platforming section before the actual boss fight.
  • Bottomless Pits: Plentiful. Especially annoying in The Wild West world and right before the fight with Evil Ed.
  • Character Title: Especially in the European/Japanese versions, where it's simply called Lomax.
  • Checkpoint: Crossing a rope hanged between two sticks saves your progress on the level.
  • Collision Damage: In a typical platformer fashion, touching enemies hurts you.
  • Cowboy: The main enemies in The Wild West world. They carry guns that shoot out walking bombs, of all things.
  • Death from Above: In the first world, the enemies who fly in balloons and throw bombs at you.
  • Dem Bones: The skeleton enemies from the haunted ship levels. They're also one of the few enemies that aren't Lemmings that have been turned into monsters.
  • DreamWorks Face: Just look at the game's cover.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: As expected from a platformer like this.
  • Excuse Plot: Big time. There isn't even any actual explanation about the story in the game itself (only in the manual, and even then it's incredibly short, at least in western releases). You just go around, defeating enemies and going through worlds that are hardly connected to each other (Lemmingland, Horror World, The Wild West and Space Zone), culminating with you fighting against the game's Final Boss that you saw earlier only on the world map shown between levels.
  • Exposition Fairy: The Old Wise Lorock. Touching his floating hat makes him appear and share some gameplay tip.
  • Ghost Pirate: Some of the second world's sections invoke this trope, with pirate skeletons, shipwrecks, and sharks.
  • Good Smoking, Evil Smoking: Evil Ed, when seen on the world map between levels, keeps smoking a cigarette.
  • Goomba Stomp: Subverted - you can jump on enemies, but you only bounce off their heads, without damaging them.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: The coins and freed Lemmings.
  • Hand-or-Object Underwear: When you hit a werewolf, it transforms into a small naked Lemming who does this.
  • Hat of Power: Lomax's helmet. It can be thrown like a boomerang, it can be thrown to explode (somehow multiplying itself in the process), its plume can stretch and grab certain surfaces, it can work like Helicopter Hair, and of course, wearing the helmet provides a protection from being a One-Hit-Point Wonder.
  • Helicopter Hair: The Hover Helmet ability makes the plume of Lomax's helmet work like this.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • The airship's evil Lemmings on rockets will explode if they hit a background rock, causing the lemmings to fly back at it and hit the balloon.
    • Evil Ed causes boulders to appear on the stage, and you need to throw them at him in order to defeat him.
  • Idle Animation: Lomax looks around when standing still.
  • Improvised Platform: Lomax can put floating wooden platforms down with the "Builder" skill in order to reach higher areas.
  • Incendiary Exponent: One helmet ability allows Lomax to throw his helmet, except on fire. This kills all regular enemies in one hit, even the cowboys who normally take two. It also penetrates enemies instead of rebounding off the first it hits.
  • Infinite 1-Ups: There are a few levels where there is more than one 1-Up available, enabling you to get all of them, kill yourself, and repeat as many times as you want.
  • Informed Flaw: The manuals for the NTSC-U and PAL versions of the game interestingly make a point of Lomax being somewhat of a coward (noting a fear of heights and monsters). However, in-game he shows absolutely no fear whatsoever, being as brave as your typical platformer hero. Not even the advertising materials make mention of this supposed cowardice.
  • Invulnerable Attack: Lomax's spin is this against most enemies. It prevents Collision Damage with Mooks with the exception of the cowboys' exploding bullets.
  • Knockback: Happens when Lomax is hit. Can be rather annoying if it happens while you're jumping over a Bottomless Pit...
  • Law of 100: Collecting 100 coins gives you an additional life. Averted with defeated (Lemming) enemies - you gain access to a bonus level after defeating only 50 of them.
  • Mercy Invincibility: Standard for platformers, as long as you're wearing a helmet. It comes with a certain annoyance: if you get hit, your spare helmet that is placed in the slot at the top of the screen starts falling down ala Super Mario World; if you can't catch it in time, you are left with none and become a One-Hit-Point Wonder.
  • Mook Maker: In the second world there are coffins that sometimes pop out of the ground and start spitting out zombies. They keep doing that until they run out of zombies or until you destroy them.
  • Mythology Gag: The hot air balloons that the bomb-dropping Lemmings use in the first world are the same one used in the intro of the original Lemmings game, which in turn double as a reference to the Amiga "Boing Ball."
  • Nintendo Hard: There's lots of precarious platforming segments and a good number of respawning, dangerous enemies in the game. Expect to lose a lot of lives.
  • Not Quite Dead: Deployed two times by Evil Ed. First, destroying the floating rock that he's standing on will make him fall down, presumably to his doom, but then he pulls off a One-Winged Angel moment. Then he falls down again but hangs to the stage for his life. Only making him fall for the third time causes him not to come back.
  • Obstructive Foreground: There are clouds of smoke(?) in The Wild West world that act like this, possibly deliberately.
  • Obviously Evil: Evil Ed, natch. What else would you expect from a guy with a name like that?
  • Oddball in the Series: Most Lemmings games are puzzle games that follow the same general gameplay: you have to lead a number of Lemmings to safety, utilizing all sorts of skills. This game, on the other hand, is a platformer. It shares the title of an oddball together with Lemmings Paintball, which is an isometric Third-Person Shooter.
  • One-Hit-Point Wonder: Lomax without his helmet.
  • One-Hit Polykill: Lomax's Fire Helmet ability does this as opposed to his regular helmet which rebounds off the first enemy it hits.
  • One-Winged Angel: Evil Ed transforms into a huge grotesque version of himself when defeated for the first time.
  • Orcus on His Throne: Evil Ed doesn't make much of an effort to stop you on your quest. In fact, the most you see him do in the game until his battle (and even a little bit in that battle) is stand around and smoke a cigarette.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: The werewolves are humanoid creatures that jump at you when they see you. Hit them once and they turn into a tiny, embarrassed Lemming who will turn back into their werewolf self after a bit of time. Hitting them when they're tiny will turn them back to normal.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: First, they fly as a bat over your head. When they land, they turn into a fanged Lemming dressed like someone from The Matrix and shoot a bolt of energy at you. If you won't defeat them quickly after they do that, they'll just turn back into a bat and fly away.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: The Technically Living Zombie variant. The zombies you encounter in the second world are blue and do the Zombie Gait at first, but start running angrily when hit once, and turn into normal Lemmings when you hit them the second time. You can, however, one-shot those that pop out of the ground/coffins since they start out in "angry" mode.
  • Password Save: After every level, you receive a code consisting of 8 symbols, which happen to be the classic PlayStation symbols. They're present even on PC. They preserve which level you reached and how many lives and continues you have.
    • The Japanese version has this and a save feature that saves your lives, continues, and abilities you have collected.
  • Reforged into a Minion: What Evil Ed does to all the Lemmings except Lomax and the Old Wise Lorock.
  • Regional Bonus: As stated above, the Japanese version features a traditional save system as opposed to the NTSC-U/PAL versions being restricted to only passwords. What makes this save system a tad more useful than the normal password system is its ability to save the amount of skills you have (meaning that if you still have a few Hover Helmets lying around, it's possible to cheese a really hard section with them).
  • Respawning Enemies: The enemies have a fascinating tendency of appearing (and sometimes even disappearing) where you were a second ago the first moment the spawn area is off-screen.
  • Rewarding Vandalism: Destroying pots sometimes causes an additional coin to fall out.
  • Scenery Porn: The backgrounds and overall looks of the levels are quite pretty for their time, a given considering they're the work of Henk Nieborg and his knack for detail.
  • Single-Use Shield: Wearing a helmet allows you to take one hit without dying.
  • Space Zone: The last world. It kind of looks like pieces of moon's surface suspended in space, with flying souls and the occasional lunar castle in the background. Despite its looks, the world functions just like the previous worlds and there's no difference in gravity and such.
  • Spikes of Doom:
    • Patches of spikes found on the ground/ceiling will hurt Lomax no matter what direction he touches them from.
    • Long spikes that periodically poke out of the ground start appearing from the Wild West world onwards. They only hurt Lomax if the sharp end pokes him. If he touches the sides, he'll be unharmed, although they do block his movement.
  • Spin Attack: The only attack Lomax can use when not wearing a helmet. Since nearly every enemy is susceptible to it and you are invincible to nearly every attack while you do it, you are very likely to keep using it without ever bothering to use the helmet attack instead.
  • Super Drowning Skills: Lomax is a Lemming, and they can't swim. Downplayed, however - if Lomax falls into water, he can still jump out once if you're fast enough. Fall back again into water without getting back on land first, or don't jump out fast enough, and he'll drown.
  • Tactical Suicide Boss:
    • All three of the Airships. It fires evil Lemmings on torpedoes at Lomax from the background... If they hit one of the background object stones, the torpedo explodes and the lemming flies back into the airship, damaging it instead.
    • Evil Ed himself. If he didn't summon rolling boulders that Lomax could spin back into him, he'd be completely invincible.
  • Tennis Boss: Evil Ed causes boulders to roll around the screen, and Lomax needs to spin them back into him to hurt him.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: The Pirate Skeleton enemies attack Lomax by throwing their sword at him. Unfortunately for them, they only can do this once, and a simple Spin Attack from Lomax will knock the sword away harmlessly, rendering them weaponless unless they go offscreen.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Defeated enemies turn into normal Lemmings. It can be heartwarming to see them happily run away and then float away on their umbrellas... until you reach the levels with water and then see them merrily jump into water and drown themselves immediately after rescuing.
  • Threatening Shark: In some of the levels with water present, sharks appear from time to time to either start swimming in one direction and chomp continuously, or outright jump out of the water to bite you.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: You can make it your holy mission to defeat every single enemy you come across, since most of them are turned back into normal Lemmings.
  • Video-Game Lives: You have a limited amount of lives. Should you run out of them, you have 3 continues available that bring you to the beginning of the level with 3 additional lives.
  • The Wild West: The third world, complete with cowboy enemies.
  • A Winner Is You: You defeat the Big Bad and he falls down in a bunch of explosions. Then, the Old Wise Lorock pops in and tells you that you saved Lemmingland. Bye! Roll credits.