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Video Game / Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaros' Treasure

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Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaros' Treasure is an Adventure Game released for the Nintendo Wii by Capcom in the year 2007; it was later released for the Wii U as a download title. The main characters of this title are:

  • Zack, a member of a pirate crew consisting mostly of rabbits (with the exceptions being Zack, a human boy, and Wiki).
  • Wiki, Zack's monkey friend, who has the ability to change him/her/itself into a bell.
  • Barbaros, once the greatest pirate in the world, now reduced to a talking golden skull due to a curse.
  • Captain Rose, the leader of the Rose Rock Pirates who constantly make trouble for the Sea Rabbits.

The plot, in a nutshell, is as follows: Zack, Wiki, and their pirate friends hear about a great treasure on a previously-uncharted island. Zack and Wiki find the treasure, a golden skull, which turns out to be Barbaros. Through the skull, Barbaros tells the duo that he will reveal the hiding spot of his vast fortune if they can find the rest of his now-golden skeleton and break the curse. Zack and Wiki accept this offer and travel across the island, solving a multitude of puzzles in order to collect the various pieces they're searching for. Most of these puzzles are solved by Wiki, who can magically transform enemies into items while in bell-form.


By the way, you'll probably die. A lot. In a number of ways that could put Dragon's Lair to shame. While the cel-shaded graphics look cute, this is NOT a game that young children can beat easily.

Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaros' Treasure provides examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: You can talk to Barbaros while he's a skeleton and get all sorts of responses from him. One of them is a request to tell Granny to stop staring and smiling at him all day.
  • Abnormal Ammo: Near the end, you have to man a cannon that shoots goons. This happens on more than one occasion.
  • Aerith and Bob: Zack, Rose, Johnny... Wiki and Barbaros?
  • Always Night: The Barbaros' Mansion themed levels are all this to enhance the creepy atmosphere.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: As a human, Barbaros sports light blue skin.
  • Anime Hair: Zack has two spikes as his hair.
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  • Annoying Video Game Helper: Invoked. In the prologue, Zack is falling to his death after a raid by Rose's crew. Wiki is flying beside Zack as he falls, cheerfully reminding him that he is perfectly safe while Zack will be squashed mind you, and helps him by teaching the player the controls. This leads to Zack finding a parasol, which would break his fall. Right after this, Wiki then teaches the player how to drop items...
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Mostly averted, but there are instances when the game allows you more time than what's realistic, for example at the end of "Relics of The Past" when the relics chase you, you have all the time in the world to alter the stairs. Same in "Keeper of the Ice", where you can take your time with shaking the trees so your footsteps vanish before the robot activates.
  • Big Bad: Barbaros himself, who manipulates Zack and Wiki into finding his body parts so that he can return to his original form, allowing him to reap all the goods on Treasure Island.
  • Big Ball of Violence: Appears whenever Zack fights someone's guards or goblins. Pretty much always followed by death.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: Barbaros' Castle is a haunted mansion and, fittingly, the place where you bring him back to his pirate form.
  • Big Eater: Captain Hulk is implied to be one. In his character bio, his favorite food is listed as "All".
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Sea Rabbits and Rose's Crew put a stop to Barbaros but at the cost of losing Wiki to a black hole. Though this may be subverted as it's greatly implied that Wiki found his way back to Zack.
  • Bleak Level: All the Barbaros' Castle levels take place at night and usually have ghosts, iron maidens, and other creepy stuff.
  • Bloodless Carnage: At one point, Zack can die from being impaled. Not a speck of blood is shown though, just a really surprised face.
  • Bookends: The game opens and ends with Zack opening a chest, being surprised by what he finds inside. It's strongly hinted to be Wiki, who survived his Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Barbaros' mother apparently always told him that pirates should, "Always play for about an hour" much to his confusion.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Those poor Goons... you use their hopeless bodies as stepping stones in almost every level (and even as ammo to be shot out of a cannon) and there's nothing they can do about it. To say nothing of their abuse at Rose's hands.
    • Johnny as well. He's a Dirty Coward and hides most of the time, but it doesn't help him much.
  • The Cake Is a Lie: It's pretty obvious from the get-go that Barbaros never had any intention of honoring his end of the bargain i.e. giving Zack and Wiki his Legendary Ship.
  • Catchphrase:
    • Johnny has fountains of them. "LORDY!", "OH MY!", "GOOD LUCK!"
    • Wiki: "Ding." since he's a bell.
  • Comically Missing the Point: When Captain Hulk was told that he was "A big guy with a big heart", he responded "Guess I should lose weight".
  • Convection Schmonvection: Being inches away from lava does not harm Zack in the slightest. This is, however, subverted with the goons, who, while they don't die from being near lava, visibly suffer.
  • Dragon Is A Mommy: The third boss. She only emerged because Zack made its child cry and, throughout the level, only sending the tagalong baby dragon into a crying fit will provoke it to attack you repeatedly. At the end of the level, it is perfectly content to leave you alone to get the treasure after being reunited with its child.
  • Dark-Skinned Redhead: Zack has tanned skin and peach pink hair.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Wiki has a few shades of this, such as remarking that at least Johnny got away when he abandons him and Zack during the raid in the beginning.
  • Dirty Coward: Johnny, up until the last level. He runs and hides while letting you do all the work, and then, jokingly, claims the Legendary Ship as his own.
  • Dramatis Personae: In the intro, All the characters (even the goons) are given a freeze-frame complete with Name, likes, dislikes, and favorite food.
  • Dumb Muscle: King Growl. As his in-game description puts it, he's "a few bananas short of a bunch."
  • Enemy Mine: Late in the game, Zack and Captain Rose are forced to team up against a Giant Squid, leading to a very unhappy Captain Rose. However, they end up allies.
  • Evil All Along: Barbaros, who's been playing our heroes the entire time so that he can get his body back to raid Treasure Island.
  • Evil Knockoff: In the level 「Mirror, Mirror」, we have "Zack?", a doppelganger of the main character who acts as the main obstacle, posing as the hero's reflection to prevent him from grabbing the chest in the other side of the room.
  • Expressive Accessory: Zack's hat mirrors his emotions, from depressed to happy to even surprised.
  • Expy: Wiki, being a robotic monkey who has a half-circular torso, is a dead ringer for Data from Mega Man Legends.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Just drives the point home that Captain Hulk is captain.
  • Flavor Text: Barbaros and Dimmy are a great source of trivia and interesting comments.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • In 「Mirror, Mirror」, the "mirror" does not reflect Wiki or any item Zack is holding, hinting that it's not really a mirror at all.
    • In "Relics of the Past", the relic chasing you in the beginning will break the bridge and fall down after you crossed it. This hints that you should not cross the next one while riding a controllable relic later on, otherwise game over.
    • You may notice that each of the chests have locks that look like Wiki's head. This is because Wiki was the one who cursed Barbaros.
  • Gentle Giant: Hulk, your leader, though you only know this by what Dimmy tells you since the captain doesn't say or do anything the entire game.
  • Ghost Pirate: These appear as standard one-hit kill enemies in the Barabaros' Castle stage. There's also Barbaros' undead pirate lackies, though they look more like pirate mummies.
  • Giant Spider: An enemy in a single volcano level. Naturally, it's on the list of ways to die.
  • Giant Squid: You fight one in 「The Great Chase」.
  • Gotta Catch 'Em All: Oh boy. There's all the secret treasures post-game completion (which are a pain in the ass to find unless you look it up), all songs, maps, pictures, items etc. practically anything you can get your hands on counts.
  • Gratuitous English: Johnny's voice clips are all English interjections like "Oh my!"
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • Most of the late levels have absurdly asinine solutions. Luckily, in-game hints can be bought in exchange for Oracle Dolls.
    • Also, the secret treasures in the aftergame. The vague hints the game gives you to find most of them will most certainly not be enough.
  • Harmless Freezing:
    • In one of the ice levels, Captain Rose is frozen solid and is simply thawed out shortly afterwards with no ill effects. She even attacks you upon being thawed out! Played straight for Zack though.
    • Averted during the battle against Frostbite, where Wiki will die from hypothermia should you fail to rescue him.
  • Heroic Mime: Zack is unable to talk and often relies on his many facial expressions and Wiki to communicate.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Zack and Wiki in the final boss stage. In order to seal Gygaros and Barbaros away, the duo jump into the newly formed black hole. Near the very end, Zack manages to escape and Wiki is left to take the brunt of everything. The ending however, strongly implies that Wiki survived.
  • Humongous Mecha: At the very last stage, we have Gygaros, the pirate reptile.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: Hypercompetent is maybe a stretch, but it's clear Zack wouldn't have accomplished much hadn't it been for Wiki's ringing ability. Deconstructed in Barbaros Land, in which half of the level requires to be cleared in Wiki's absence, recounting heavily how helpless Zack is without Wiki.
  • Idle Animation: When doing nothing, Zack will pant in the Volcano levels, shiver in the Ice world, and simply eat some chocolate everywhere else.
  • Incredible Shrinking Man: In one level, Zack can shrink to the size of an ant to go under a door, and then change back through mad science.
  • Informed Attributes: The goons have, according to their bio, each individual interests and tasks in Rose's crew, although we never see it.
  • Instant Sedation: On one of the first levels, Zack has to put a sleep mushroom into the goblins' soup to ride the bird shaped vehicle to the chest undisturbed. (If he doesn't, he ends up in the soup.)
  • Irony: Barabaros' situation.
    Barbaros: To think, I spent my whole life as a pirate in search of gold and now I'm made of the stuff!
  • Item Get!: Getting any named objects or opening any chest with treasure causes Zack to do this. Taken Up to Eleven with Secret Treasures, where Zack and Wiki dance for joy while the item just floats there.
  • Jerkass: Captain Rose is self-centered, is the most reluctant to team up with the the Sea Rabbits and has a Hair-Trigger Temper.
    • : Towards the end, when Zack and Wiki are on the verge to get pulled into a black hole, Rose's primary concern is their safety rather than getting away saving her own skin.
    Johnny: LORDY! The power's back! Let's blow this popsicle stand!
    Rose: Now just a minute! What about the boys?! They're still out-!
  • Joke Item:
    • The Golden Sword, which will simply break in combat unless you make all your strikes connect; then it will kill the zombie like the normal sword.
    • The Worm Straw, which is truly and utterly useless.
  • Lethal Lava Land: The third world has volcano-themed levels.
  • Letting the Air Out of the Band: 「Lake of Fire」 is all about getting the lava in the level into the crater where the treasure is. Attempting to get to the chest without the lava and instead cutting the wooden pillar down, will get the chest to the ground and make it seem like victory for a moment... and then the victory fanfare stalls and the chest wobbles off a cliff, causing Zack to sulk.
  • Light and Mirrors Puzzle: The basis for the second boss fight, which involves a laser beam and an ice monster.
  • Lions and Tigers and Humans... Oh, My!: Zack is a pirate of a crew consisting of rabbits, including the captain, and they all can talk. Then there's also his monkey companion Wiki.
  • Lipstick-and-Load Montage: Parodied. When we first see Captain Rose, we see her glitzing herself up so she can look her best while defeating the Sea Rabbits. She puts on some of her signature lipstick... and then puts some on her cheek to make it look like Tribal Face Paint.
  • Lock and Key Puzzle: Almost all the levels are like this, consisting of one puzzle that gives you a certain item, which you must then use in another puzzle to remove whatever threat is guarding the level's chest.
  • Lovable Coward: Johnny is known to simply run away when there's any trouble and come straight back when all is calm. Averted in the last levels in the game, where he is a huge help.
  • The Many Deaths of You: Squished by a giant boulder, fall into a river of magma, freeze yourself, fall off a waterfall, eaten alive... there's a multitude of ways to fail a puzzle, as the unsuspecting soon learn, and each death has a unique scene associated with it. See most of them here (and a sequel containing the rest.)
  • Marathon Level: The second to last level is incredibly long compared to all the other levels in the game, and there's no checkpoints.
  • Mars Needs Women: Johnny Style likes to hit on Rose, post Enemy Mine.
  • Mooks: Rose's goons are a bunch of generic enemies which you can dispose off with little trouble most of the time.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: Whether it be bodily harm by lava, frost breath, missiles, large falls, or Zack's personal use (sometimes semi-justified), the same seven goons will always appear in the next level ready for more punishment.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot:
    • Ghost pirates are enemies in Barbaros' Mansion, while undead pirates make an appearance in the final level.
    • Wiki is a magical golden hovering monkey bell pirate.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: Captain Rose excels at this trope.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: Wiki is this to Zack. Ironically, Zack is the only human in his pirate crew.
  • Nonindicative Name: No, you cannot edit the levels in this game.
  • Non Standard Game Over: In 「Frost Breath」, failing to properly align the mirrors three times causes Wiki to die for once. You still get a game over, though.
  • Nose Art: The Rose Rock pirates' fighter plane has a giant intimidating face for a nose.
  • Obviously Evil: Barbaros puts on a sweet façade the moment he realizes he can manipulate Zack to get his body back, but everything he says prior to that is a big indicator that he is up to no good.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Just take a guess at who the hint oracle is.
  • Parasol Parachute: Zack uses it on some levels, including the first one.
  • Pirate: The entire cast is made up of only pirates. Most are type 2 (the adventurous, benign kind) barring Barbaros.
  • Pirate Girl: Captain Rose is an Alpha Bitch with a very well-hidden heart of gold that acts as The Rival for the first few worlds.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything:
    • Most of your pirate friends just hang around the hideout and never do anything for most of the game, you're the one who's always working for the treasure day in and day out. The exceptions are Johnny, who will commonly scout out levels to give you some advice, and Maddy, who checks around other parts of the island to find treasure while you are off looking for parts of Barbaros.
    • This is Lampshaded in the character bios, mentioning that Loafrey and Dimmy seek out treasure in their minds while Maddy seeks out treasure in reality.
  • Poop Socking: Talking to Barbaros for a while eventually leads to him saying this:
    Barbaros: My mother always said that pirates should play for about an hour.
  • Portal Picture: There is an entire level which revolves around interacting with the paintings in an art gallery, complete with portraits that literally watch your every move.
  • Portrait Painting Peephole: As mentioned directly above, some of the gallery's paintings will continuously watch Zack as he moves around the room. The trope is played with, however, in that the paintings themselves are fully sentient and animate, able to move far more than just their eyes, combining this trope with Stand-In Portrait.
  • Power Crystal: The orange crystal used to power the robots in 「Relics of the Past」. It's even named this.
  • Red Herring: The game opens with an unknown voice recalling how they "met a young lad seekin' to become a world-famous pirate", before cutting to a shot of Zack opening a treasure chest and looking down at what's inside. At first we assume that the mysterious voice is Barbaros, since he's freed from a chest by Zack and Wiki at the start of the game. In the game's ending, however, a similar cutscene plays and confirms that the voice is actually Wiki, whom Zack finds in a treasure chest some time after the final battle.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Wiki, the cutest thing in the game bar none.
  • Rube Goldberg Device: The level 「Three Colossi」 has one that leads to Zack being crushed flat unless the player finds a way to activate it without him being in the way.
  • Rump Roast: Falling into magma causes Zack to jump up with his butt on fire.
  • Sealed Evil in a Six Pack: Barbaros was a near deity-level pirate captain that was sealed away into several pieces of treasure. Each piece of treasure carries its own magical properties.
  • Sea Sinkhole: The final location of the game, Treasure Island, is hidden in the very center of the Earth, and accessed when Barbaros punches a circular hole into the ocean and clear into the Earth's interior. The main characters get there by simply sailing their ship right into the hole.
  • Sequel Hook: At the end, Zack finds Wiki in a box washed ashore after he previously lost him in the final boss fight.
  • Shout-Out: Bonelich von Skeleski, Barbaros's personal composer, can be found in certain levels to enact a music-based minigame where you ring your way through classic Capcom level themes. This includes tracks from Mega Man II, Ghosts 'n Goblins, Bionic Commando, and more.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: The second world is ice-themed.
  • Smurfette Principle: Granny is the only female among the Sea Rabbits. Rose is the only main female character, and the only female in her own crew.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: In the last level in the fourth world, you are required to liquify animals using a large machine. The music that plays during the process is peppy and silly.
  • Space Pirates: The final level requires our heroes to become this.
  • Spoiler Opening: When Zack and Wiki first find Barbaros' skull, Barbaros is really surprised that Wiki doesn't remember him considering that Wiki was the one to originally curse him in the first place.
  • Stealth-Based Mission: A lot of times you have to navigate around guards or mooks in a level. A notable example is "Operation Takeback!" where the whole point of the mission is to infiltrate the plane, take the map, and get out all while being unnoticed.
  • The Stinger: After you beat the story, a new cutscene shows Barbaros (somehow) regaining his body, only to be trapped in a black void. Vowing his return, he challenges the player to find the rest of his treasures hidden throughout the world.
  • Stupidity Is the Only Option: You are given one final clue about Barbaros' true intentions when he viciously demands you to ring Wiki to restore him to normal. There is nothing you can do about it, he must be brought back to life in order to progress in the game.
  • Tears of Blood: 「Bell Tower of Requiem」 has a stone face bleed out of its eyes into a bucket of water.
  • Tech Demo Game: One of the best examples of a non-first-party Wii game that exists to show off the cool applications of motion controls in gaming.
  • Token Human: Not in the whole game, but the only human in the Sea Rabbits crew is Zack. The whole game limits to Zack, Barbaros, Rose and her seven goons.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Zack's chocolate bar. He'll cheerfully take it out and munch on it in his regular idle animation. Actually, all characters are introduced with listing each of their favorite foods individually (Roast Beef for Barbaros, Whipped Cream for Rose etc.), but Zack is the only one shown eating his (chocolate) as an Idle Animation.
  • Treasure Map: One is awarded after every boss battle (minus the last three), which unlocks the next area.
  • Tribal Carry: Any death involving goblins inevitably ends with Zack in this position.
  • Tribal Face Paint: Captain Rose always sports some, albeit her "paint" is actually just some pretty expensive lipstick.
  • A Twinkle in the Sky: A possible way to die in "Operation Takeback!" and just one of the many ways to get a Game Over.
  • Unexplained Recovery: The Treasure Island level concludes with Zack and Wiki reverting Barbaros to his gold skeleton form, which sinks to the bottom of a fountain. However, in the following level, Barbaros inexplicably returns in his human form, setting the stage for the final boss battle.
  • Vague Age: Zack and Rose. Zack is merely said to be a "young boy" in-game, and no information is given on Rose's age. note 
  • Verbal Tic: Wiki regularly says, "Ding♪"
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: One of the hidden treasures requires you to itemize the Growling Goblins and throw them into the soup pot. You can optionally de-itemize them and watch the Goblins drown in boiling soup.
  • Weird Moon: In 「Bell Tower of Requiem」, you have to pick up its reflection out of a pool of water.

Alternative Title(s): Zack And Wiki