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Proto:Spyro the Dragon (PlayStation)/Tabloid Demo

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This is a sub-page of Proto:Spyro the Dragon (PlayStation).

Hmmm...
To do:
A few of the differences are only in place due to it being a demo version, as opposed to being because of its status as a prototype. Ideally these differences should be explicitly specified or put into their own section.

The Tabloid Demo, named as such due to the newspaper-themed packaging one demo disc featuring it was released in, is the earliest released prototype version of Spyro the Dragon, featuring the first homeworld along with two of its levels.

While the build date of this demo is unknown, the PETE.WAD file (named after Spyro's working title, Pete) is found in identical form in the Speciale Demo, where it has a modification date of May 25, 1998. This may suggest that this demo was built sometime around or after May 25, but this evidence is somewhat tenuous.

Subpages

Blank.png
Dialogue
All of the dialogue differences and unused text.

General Differences

  • Some differences, such as level restrictions, are not due to this build being a prototype, but due to it being a demo. It's natural that certain changes would be made to confine the player to only the areas that were meant to be shown.
    • Some of the later protos/demos feature music that didn't match the intended theme for the level, and once again this was a choice that was made because the builds shown were demos and not because the levels actually used this music at this point in development. As such, it's possible that any music mismatches in this build might have not reflected the music actually used by those levels at this point in development.
  • The only levels accessible to the player are the Artisans home, Stone Hill, and Dark Hollow.
  • Spyro's charging animation lingers for about a second before it can properly transition into a different one, making the gameplay feel somewhat less responsive. As such, there's a slight delay when the player stops charging, which can also cause Spyro to start gliding with his head down if the player jumps into a glide immediately afterwards.
  • The HUD differs slightly from the final game. Specifically, the life and Dragon counters have swapped positions.
  • When all gems in a level are displayed, the counter at the top does not indicate this to the player. In the final game, if the player were to collect all (for example) 100 gems in a level, upon collecting the final gem the counter will read "100/100".
  • There is no option to quit the game in the pause menu.
  • There is no option for speaker setup in the options menu.
  • The inventory is quit using either X, Circle or Square instead of the Triangle button.
    • Quitting out of the inventory puts you back into normal play instead of returning you to the pause menu.
  • Dragon eggs in the inventory do not display next to the level they correspond to.
  • Many Dragons do not feature cutscenes at this point in development. Most of these Dragons instead display a full-screen text prompt containing dialogue.
  • When speaking to the balloonist, the dialogue is displayed similarly to the aforementioned text dialogue Dragons.
  • Dragon egg and key cutscenes cannot be skipped.
  • Many sound effects are missing or different.
    • Dragons do not make their signature "rumbling" sound, nor do they rumble at all.
    • Many of the smaller Gnorcs make a different sound when they're killed.
    • Sparx does not make his usual chime sound when picking up a gem.
    • Thieves don't make any sounds when taunting the player.
    • There appears to be an audio glitch that occurs if the player flames whilst gliding and presses the triangle button to cancel the glide, which will simultaneously cut off the flaming sound effect.
    • There is no sound effect for the gem count when travelling between levels.
  • Extra life statues are gold instead of silver.
  • At the end of each level is a home vortex. In this version of the game, the base of the vortex uses the dragon pad model instead of a unique model. Additionally, in some levels a gem can be found floating inside the vortex.
  • Stepping on dragon platforms does nothing except light them up. No fairies appear, either.
  • The Game Over screen is extremely basic in appearance - simply the words "Game Over" in the portal lettering on a plain black background.

Level Differences

Artisans Home

Hmmm...
To do:
Pictures of the blocked off portals in this demo would be nice.
  • This world uses the title theme music instead of its usual theme.
  • Town Square and Toasty's portals have been completely blocked off for the sake of restricting where the player can go in the demo.
  • Sunny Flight also cannot be accessed. Specifically, stepping on the stones in the water does not reveal the area with the portal. If you do manage to get into the area containing the portal, the portal archway is seen to be entirely empty. Walking through causes Spyro to jump as though he was entering a portal, but no level is loaded.
    • The stones are a bit different from how they appear in the final game.
  • The gem placement is somewhat different:
    • There's a key behind one of the pillars below the portal to Town Square. This opens a locked chest on the platform near the entry to Toasty's area. Neither the key nor the chest are present in the final.
  • The Artisans dragons seem to use different voice actors (or, at the very least, different vocal characterisation) and different cinematography and animations when compared to the final game. The dialogue between Spyro and these dragons also differs from the final game. For more information, see the Dialogue subpage.
  • When speaking to Nestor, if the player attempts to skip the cutscene it will instead display "...THIS IS IMPORTANT..." at the bottom of the screen.
  • Tomas is called Silvus in this version.
  • Argus is absent from the homeworld, though his cutscene data is still present (see the Dialogue subpage).
  • The balloon is lower than it normally appears.
  • The balloonist uses a different color scheme from his final design, instead being light blue with a red scarf in the Artisans homeworld.
  • An invisible wall is behind the balloonist, blocking Spyro from moving towards the balloon.

Stone Hill

  • Uses the end credits music instead of its usual theme.
  • All dragons display screens with written dialogue instead of cutscenes with audio dialogue. For more information, see the Dialogue subpage.
  • One of the platforms, where the dragon "Gildas" is located, was made slightly bigger in the final game. This change was probably made to make the glide from there easier.

Dark Hollow

  • Like Stone Hill, all dragons display screens with written dialogue instead of cutscenes with audio dialogue.
  • The big-bellied Gnorcs don't make a sound when hitting or roaring at the player.

Unused and Missing Text

Level Names

MACHINISTS

An earlier name for Gnasty's World.

ALPINE CLIFFS

A string which indicates Alpine Ridge had a slightly different name at this point in development.

The demo is devoid of any of the level names from Beast Makers onward despite containing the names of all the homeworlds. The boss level and flight level names are also missing, with the game simply referring to them as "Boss" and "Flying" respectively.

Dragon Names

An unused name from the final is present, as well as what would eventually be Silvus' name in the final.

FINLAY
GALE
TOMAS

It's interesting to note that Tomas' name is found amongst the Town Square dragons instead of the Artisans dragons. In a similar vein, Thor's name is amongst the Dry Canyon and Cliff Town dragons despite being a Town Square dragon.

Misc.

DRAGON X
THIGH MASTERS

As in the final game, a couple unused strings can be found above the level names.

LEVEL D
LEVEL C
LEVEL B

A few placeholder level names.

FLYING
BOSS

"Boss" would be used for the boss level names and "Flying" for the flight level names in this version, though they're never seen in the demo.

I'm Goin' In.  Cover Me!
Bye Bye.....It's Been Fun

Some developer humor just after the dragon text, found before and after the demo timeout code.

Inventory Data

Even though only the first page of the Inventory can be viewed under normal means in this demo, the gem and dragon totals for the remaining pages are still present in the game's data. There are a vast number of differences from both the final build and the next released prototype - the June 15th Prototype.

Below are the values used in the first three worlds. For all levels after this, placeholder values of 200 gems and 5 dragons are used instead (even in flight stages which never normally contain any dragons). For the most part (the exception being the number of dragons in Dark Passage) these values are significantly different from the ones used in the final game, or even any known later prototype. This seems to line up with the fact that all levels after the Magic Crafters world use placeholder names in this version.

Curiously, these placeholder values extend beyond the game's 35 levels - according to the gem counts there are 40 levels, and according to the dragon counts there are 42. This may be purely a coincidence and the number of placeholders that were given was just a random large amount that was just enough to cover all levels, but curiously 42 levels are what would be expected if the game had 7 worlds of 6 levels, and 40 levels is consistent with one of these having two fewer levels like Gnasty's World had at this point in development. It is thus a possibility that these values are leftover placeholders that would have been used when the Aquifiers world was planned as is mentioned in some press materials for the game.

It should also be noted that as the data only reflects what is seen in the Inventory - the true number of gems or dragons per level at this point in development may have diverged from the Inventory values, even for the levels that aren't using placeholder values. Furthermore, due to Argus being removed for the demo, the dragon count for the Artisans was purposefully lowered to 3 instead of 4 for this demo.

Level Name Inventory Total (Tabloid) Inventory Total (June 15th) Inventory Total (Final)
Artisans 100 Gems 100 Gems 100 Gems
3 Dragons* 4 Dragons 4 Dragons
Stone Hill 200 Gems 200 Gems 200 Gems
4 Dragons 4 Dragons 4 Dragons
Dark Hollow 100 Gems 100 Gems 100 Gems
3 Dragons 3 Dragons 3 Dragons
Town Square 300 Gems 200 Gems 200 Gems
4 Dragons 4 Dragons 4 Dragons
Boss
(Toasty)
200 Gems 100 Gems 100 Gems
1 Dragon 1 Dragon 1 Dragon
Flying
(Sunny Flight)
300 Gems 300 Gems 300 Gems
Peace Keepers 400 Gems 200 Gems 200 Gems
3 Dragons 3 Dragons 3 Dragons
Dry Canyon 400 Gems 300 Gems 400 Gems
4 Dragons 4 Dragons 4 Dragons
Cliff Town 300 Gems 400 Gems 400 Gems
4 Dragons 4 Dragons 3 Dragons
Ice Cavern 400 Gems 400 Gems 400 Gems
5 Dragons 5 Dragons 5 Dragons
Boss
(Doctor Shemp)
200 Gems 300 Gems 300 Gems
1 Dragon 1 Dragon 1 Dragon
Flying
(Night Flight)
300 Gems 400 Gems 300 Gems
Magic Crafters 400 Gems 200 Gems 300 Gems
3 Dragons 3 Dragons 3 Dragons
Alpine Cliffs
(Alpine Ridge)
400 Gems 300 Gems 500 Gems
4 Dragons 4 Dragons 4 Dragons
High Caves 300 Gems 400 Gems 500 Gems
3 Dragons 3 Dragons 3 Dragons
Wizard Peak 400 Gems 400 Gems 500 Gems
3 Dragons 3 Dragons 3 Dragons
Boss
(Blowhard)
200 Gems 300 Gems 400 Gems
2 Dragons 2 Dragons 1 Dragon
Flying
(Crystal Flight)
200 Gems 400 Gems 300 Gems