Mail has been fixed; you should now be able to confirm your e-mail address, watch pages, and the like.
Please report any issues on Discord.

Spyro: Year of the Dragon

From The Cutting Room Floor
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Title Screen

Spyro: Year of the Dragon

Developer: Insomniac Games
Publishers: SCEA (US), SCEE (EU)
Platform: PlayStation
Released in US: November 1, 2000
Released in EU: November 10, 2000


AreasIcon.png This game has unused areas.
DevMessageIcon.png This game has a hidden developer message.
EnemyIcon.png This game has unused enemies.
SoundIcon.png This game has unused sounds.
SoundtestIcon.png This game has a hidden sound test.
Carts.png This game has revisional differences.
PiracyIcon.png This game has anti-piracy features.


ProtoIcon.png This game has a prototype article
PrereleaseIcon.png This game has a prerelease article

Spyro: Year of the Dragon is the last game of the original Spyro trilogy and the last Spyro game to have been developed by Insomniac Games. In this game, it's Spyro's duty to (once again) save a foreign world by defeating a tyrannical magic-using reptile and reclaiming all the stolen macguffin... also something something Year of the Dragon.

Subpages

Read about prototype versions of this game that have been released or dumped.
Prototypes
Read about prerelease information and/or media for this game.
Prerelease Info

Developer Messages

Located in the main directory of the disc is a file called 'SPYRO3.TRD' which contains the following text:

Now is the winter of our discontent...
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times...
Call me Ishmael...
Stately, plump Buck Mulligan...
Call me Jonah.  My parents did...
Gaily bedight a gallant knight...
Beware the ides of March...
Tyger tyger burning bright...
...
I always get the Shemp...

This series of extracts from famous literary works is also present in the files for both predecessors (in the "DRAGON.TRD" and "SPYRO2.TRD" files respectively) and was likely added to reduce any leftover space on the disc, which is further supported by its inclusion in the files of the playable Crash Bandicoot demos accessible in the series.

As for the word mentioned in the last line, 'Shemp', it is referenced multiple times in the Spyro series, starting with the first game’s boss called 'Dr Shemp', and later the name of a skateboard trick in the third game. It is thought to be an inside joke by the developers where whenever an unexpected error occurred, or when one of the developers messed up, they they would "get the Shemp".


Brian Allgeier, we love you.

Grouped in with the epilogue text within the Atlas is this sneaky message by Insomniac Designer Head Brian Allgeier, who at the time of Spyro 3's development was a level designer at the company.

Unused Text

The very last egg, no really it is.
Where do you think you're going with that egg. You just put that back this minute.
You can't trust anyone these days.

A rather long string of text which appears to have been inserted purely for the sake of humor and never shows up in-game, its length also making it far too long to fit properly into an Atlas description anyway.


Stop, thief.

Possibly tied to the above string, again rendering it as part of the developers' quirky sense of humour.


fuckety fuck fuck

A slightly ruder text string. A similar string is used in an earlier prototype of the game as an error handler, so it's possible that this was either used for debugging or error handling, too.

Dialogue oddities

Hunter

If the player completes both of the skateboarding egg challenges in Sunny Villa and then talks to Hunter, he will say the following:

You can go for the course record now, if you want. Whenever you hop on a skateboard, a timer will 
start. Score as many points as you can until the timer expires or you wipe out. Good luck!

While this is mostly true, wiping out doesn't end your run, as it is only over when you run out of time. This line of dialogue is simply a leftover from an earlier version of the game (as in two different demos of the game) where wiping stops the timer and resets your points to zero. As such, even if you had broken the course record during the run, then it wouldn't have been counted if you wiped out before the time was up. The difficulty of this may have been what motivated the change.

Most notably, while Hunter still says exactly the same dialogue, the audio file for the dialogue is missing. Given how late in development the demos were, it's possible that they changed the challenge after the dialogue had been added, but weren't able to re-record the line due to time constraints.

Sparx

Sparx also has dialogue left over from an earlier version of the game. In Honey Speedway, Sparx says the following:

Honeycomb Speedway is home to the fastest racing bees in the world. 
It's also one of the only speedways that operates at night!

"Honeycomb Speedway" is the early name for Honey Speedway, and it can be found in unused text strings in the earliest demo of the game. This is still present in Spyro Reignited Trilogy.

Unused Dialogue

Spyro3-DialogueTest.png

By pressing Square, Square, Circle, Circle, Square, Square, Circle, Circle in the pause menu it is possible to access a hidden dialogue test mode which can be used to listen to voice lines from the current level the player is in. This mode can be exited by inputting the cheat a second time, an can be navigated by using Up and Down to select the desired voice clip you want to hear, text indicating the chosen NPC and sound clip then appearing below the pause menu.

Due to the way audio streams are stored in this game, the voice clips override the music track and will loop infinitely in place of the level’s theme until you leave the area. It’s also possible to access several instances of unused dialogue, with most of it also existing in text format in the code, and all the unused lines also received translations in the PAL version.

Level Character Dialogue Audio Notes
Sunrise Spring Sheila Thanks for freeing me. Why don't you come visit me in my home world?
Since a cutscene plays immediately after freeing Sheila in which she thanks Spyro and enters the portal, this dialogue is never used in-game. It's possible that this dialogue was used when the cutscenes hadn't been implemented yet. There's also an unused dialogue trigger that can be reactivated by hacking, which causes Sheila to greet Spyro, use this dialogue and turn around and run into her portal.
Sunrise Spring Moneybags ... N/A This placeholder dialogue will display if the player manages to pay Moneybags without the cutscene playing - since Moneybags is unable to despawn, he can still be spoken to. This cannot occur under any normal circumstances, so this dialogue goes unused. Presumably, this would have been in use before the cutscenes had been implemented. Identical strings are present in the other three homeworlds.
Sunny Villa Hunter Now that you've mastered the basics, let's see you do some stunts! Try using the ✕ or △ button to jump off ramps and turn in the air...
Hunter says this in the earliest demo of the game instead of his "course record" dialogue.
Sunny Villa Hunter This is the most fun I've had since we chased King Flippy on the manta ray.
Hunter says this in the earliest demo of the game instead of his "course record" dialogue.
Buzz's Dungeon Sheila If you can charge toad boy into the lava, I think I can finish him off.
Probably cut dialogue intended to aid the player. Such unused dialogue can only be found in the first two boss arenas.
Midday Garden Sgt. Byrd Thanks for freeing me. Why don't you come visit me in my home world?
As before, there's never any need for this dialogue. The text string is identical to the others. Again there's also an unused dialogue trigger that can be reactivated by hacking, which makes Sgt. Byrd use this dialogue, turn around and waddle into his portal.
Midday Garden Moneybags ... N/A This placeholder dialogue will display if the player manages to pay Moneybags without the cutscene playing - since Moneybags is unable to despawn, he can still be spoken to. This cannot occur under any normal circumstances, so this dialogue goes unused. Presumably, this would have been in use before the cutscenes had been implemented. Identical strings are present in the other three homeworlds.
Enchanted Towers Jasper And now, for my latest experiment: 'Blast-Sculpting'! I shall attempt to carve an image of you with a single explosive detonation...
In the 2018 Insomniac Live Spyro: Year of the Dragon speedrun developer John Fiorito recalls that the NPCs in Enchanted Towers had to be "toned down" - this is probably a remnant from before they were changed.
Enchanted Towers Jasper Not too bad, eh? Very post-neolithic, wouldn't you say?
More dialogue from the earlier version of the Enchanted Towers NPCs. This dialogue may suggest that originally the Sorceress statue at the end of the level wouldn't have been completely destroyed - since total destruction is required to enter the skateboarding area, the portal may have been moved, too.
Bamboo Terrace Shui Thank you for offering to help Spyro, but surely even you wouldn't be able to defeat all those rhynocs until the power up is active.
While the dialogue suggests the superflame gate would have needed to be activated à la Spyro 2, curiously early screenshots - most likely from before the audio dialogue was recorded - suggest there wasn't originally a power up gate at all, and Spyro would have powered up upon stepping onto the boat.
Spike's Arena Sgt. Byrd If you charge into the lava boulders after I drop them, they'll explode against anything they hit.
Probably cut dialogue intended to aid the player. Such unused dialogue can only be found in the first two boss arenas.
Spike's Arena Sgt. Byrd Whenever you get low on health, just toast a chicken or two, and you'll soon be ship shape.
More dialogue intended to help the player.
Evening Lake Bentley Thanks for freeing me. Why don't you come visit me in my home world?
As before, there's never any need for this dialogue. The text string is identical to the others. There is an unused dialogue trigger for this text, but for some reason the audio dialogue doesn't play when it's triggered.
Evening Lake Moneybags ... N/A This placeholder dialogue will display if the player manages to pay Moneybags without the cutscene playing - since Moneybags is unable to despawn, he can still be spoken to. This cannot occur under any normal circumstances, so this dialogue goes unused. Presumably, this would have been in use before the cutscenes had been implemented. Identical strings are present in the other three homeworlds.
Evening Lake The Professor Oh dear... Oh dear, I've been trying to build a rocket to take you to Midnight Mountain, but I appear to have misplaced my plans!

Now I can't even remember where I was working...

There are no text strings representing this dialogue.
Evening Lake The Professor Don't worry about me, I'm just gathering my thoughts- eh, let's see... I was working on the plans, some ninjas appeared...

eeh, geh, then everything gets fuzzy.

There are no text strings representing this dialogue.
Midnight Mountain Moneybags ... N/A This placeholder dialogue will display if the player manages to pay Moneybags without the cutscene playing - since Moneybags is unable to despawn, he can still be spoken to. This cannot occur under any normal circumstances, so this dialogue goes unused. Presumably, this would have been in use before the cutscenes had been implemented. Identical strings are present in the other three homeworlds.

Agent 9 also has his own "Thank you for freeing me. Why don't you come visit me in my home world?" line, but it is not technically unused for reasons explained in the next section. However, most players would still not encounter this dialogue due to its obscurity. There is no audio component to this line.

By using the dialogue test cheat in Evening Lake, two unused dialogue strings of The Professor can be heard, as explained above. In Fireworks Factory, Greta mentions that the rhynocs stole the blueprints for the Professor's 'wocket' that would you from Evening Lake to Midnight Mountain, but the Professor himself is only seen in-game in Agent 9's Lab. Paradoxically, in Agent 9's sublevel (which can normally only be accessed after the Rocket has been built) Agent 9 mentions that he's helping Handel recover some rocket plans that the Sorceress stole from the Professor.

Unused Dialogue Animations

If the player chooses to defeat the Sorceress before freeing Agent 9 - something many players would not do - Agent 9 will appear outside his portal. When talking to him, the "Thanks for freeing me" dialogue is shown, but remains silent due to the lack of an audio component for this line. After speaking to him, Agent 9 runs into his portal. It's possible that the devs didn't see a reason to record his dialogue as, by that point in development, the dialogue was intended to be replaced with the cutscene with Moneybags instead. Agent 9's positioning was changed slightly between versions though, so there is no explanation for why they didn't choose to add the dialogue in later despite fixing his positioning.

Curiously, if the player uses glitches or hacks to defeat the Sorceress without freeing one of the other critters, then their cutscene will play upon approaching their portals, unlike with Agent 9. Before the cutscene plays, the animal cage can be seen waiting outside each of their portals but neither Moneybags nor the alternate character is seen. Despite the fact that animations for greeting Spyro and walking into the portal can only be witnessed under normal circumstances with Agent 9, the one character who wasn't given audio dialogue for this situation, the other three critters have their own speaking animations associated with this dialogue and they even walk into the portal behind them after the animation has played out. These animations can only be seen through hacking.

Bentley appears to not have his speaking animation implemented, causing the audio component of his dialogue to be unused even if the player manages to get him to display this unused dialogue.

Unused Sounds

Two leftover sound effects from Spyro 2 can be still found in Spyro 3's WAD file, unsurprisingly going unused this time:

The page turning sound effect from the Guidebook.

The fanfare heard after a level is 100% completed.

Unused Music

Hmmm...
To do:
Gather information on other builds of the game, particularly the original US Version 1.0. Do they contain the Greatest Hits Tracks?

Multiple areas across the game reuse prior level themes in earlier (and in some cases final) releases of the game, such as Enchanted Towers playing the same theme used for Sgt. Byrd's Base. Whilst this is a common practice in platformers and adventure games, Year of the Dragon is notable for level themes differing depending not merely on the build of the game, but on its region, multiple music tracks remaining exclusive to NTSC builds of the game and not occurring at all in PAL versions. Even more strangely, some of the corresponding themes are present on the PAL disc, and it is unknown as to why they don't play in-game.

The themes for Evening Lake and the Sorceress' Lair, both used in their intended areas in NTSC-U Revision 1, are actually still present in all other versions of the game. Despite this, the themes are unused in each of these versions - this is due to a couple errors in the game's music table. The rest of the themes that were introduced in NTSC-U Revision 1 are not present in any other version, even unused.

Unused Graphics

Hmmm...
To do:
Get direct texture rips of the sprites, or at least screenshots

Unused Shell Fragments

Spyro3-UnusedShellTexture1.png Spyro3-UnusedShellTexture2.png

In earlier versions of the game, dragon eggs released gold, intricate fragments upon hatching. These shell fragment textures still exist in the final game, and although they usually go unused, for some reason every egg in the game releases one shell fragment upon hatching that uses the older texture. Usually, the angle and speed that the fragment is released with means it almost immediately clips through the floor, making it hard to see, but for some eggs the fragments are released in such a way that the incorrectly textured piece shoots to the right of Spyro instead of down, and at a speed slow enough to give the player a nice long look at its texture.

The shell can be seen to the left of Spyro.

Power-Up Icons

Through a little bit of hacking, the power-up sprites can be viewed in the pause menu. Only three power-up gates are featured in the final game - superflame, superfly and invincibility. The ice breath power-up from Spyro 2 was removed in Spyro 3, and as a result the ice cube sprite which would normally go atop the power-up meter goes unused. The weird blue ball sprite is also a leftover from Spyro 2, where it represented the underwater variant of the superflame power-up in Aquaria Towers (though the icon would display even if Spyro was not underwater, meaning that this cannot be replicated in Spyro 3 by simply going underwater with the power-up active).

Spyro3-UnusedIcons.png

Icy Peak Rhynoc Head

Spyro3-IcyPeakRhynoc.png
Among the graphics used in Icy Peak is a single unused frame of a Rhynoc's head. The Rhynoc matches the ones seen in the ice dancing minigame, except without a helmet, just like in this early screenshot. A full set of animation frames can be found in the game's second demo, but only one frame remains in the final game.

Bamboo Terrace Counter Icons

Spyro3-BambooTerraceRhynoc.gif
A prerelease screenshot of the game indicated that in earlier versions of the game, there was a counter in one of the Bamboo Terrace minigames. A zero is used in place of where the animated icon would go. In the final, no such counter is present, but animation sprites for the an icon matching the minigame do exist.

Frozen Altars Cat

In the cat hockey minigame in Frozen Altars, a single sprite of a cat is placed between the animation sprites for Spyro and the rival Rhynoc. Once again this was probably the first animation frame for some sort of counter, but given that the game already has counters tracking both the player's and the AI's score in the final game, it's not exactly clear what this would have been used for, or why it became unused.

Spike's Arena Zero

An extra "0" is found in the graphics files for Spike's Arena, after the animation files for the sprite of Spike's head. Like in the screenshot previously mentioned, this was probably used as a placeholder when the animated sprite wasn't complete.

Sgt. Byrd Texture Oddity

In early pre-release versions of the game, Sgt. Byrd used a texture which more closely matched his official artwork, wearing a silver studded hat, using flat purple vertex colouring inside of his mouth and having an orange-yellow-white gradient on his chest. By comparison, the final texture features a green hat and a belt, as well as a dark red mouth and a plain white chest. This early texture is actually seen in-game a few times, namely in the "Bianca Strikes Back" cutscene, where Sgt. Byrd is briefly seen using his earlier texture (and what appears to be a much larger model than his playable one) as he sits trapped in a cage guarded by some Rhynocs (which, incidentally, were originally intended to be used in Sunny Villa, as seen in early screenshots).

In both NTSC-U versions of the game, Sgt. Byrd is also seen using his earlier model in Midday Garden when he is locked in Moneybag's cage, though both PAL builds use his final texture here instead. Loading the level without its overlay code causes all the models in a level to appear whilst disabling object updates - using this in Midday Garden reveals that Sgt. Byrd actually has two separate models which are placed side-by-side, with the first using the earlier model and the second the final one. This is actually due to the fact that the two models are different objects - the caged Sgt. Byrd uses object ID 70 and the freed Sgt. Byrd object uses object ID 669. The PAL versions correct this discrepancy by making object ID 70 use the final model.

Interestingly, in all versions of the game, the signs next to Sgt. Byrd's portals depict him wearing his earlier silver hat. Moreover, it's also worth noting is that while every subsequent Spyro game (including the game's remake) uses the final "white belly" design, Sgt. Byrd's design in Spyro: A Hero's Tail more closely match his earlier appearance.

Unused Areas

Spyro: Year of the Dragon contains several unused areas. It is likely that the majority of these areas were meant to be accessible, but this would end up not being the case in the final game.

Midday Gardens Tunnel

The lower-poly version of the level's geometry, showing the room.

In Midday Garden, inside the room where the Balloon, Whirligig or Rocket is found, is a texture of a locked door paved over what seems to have been intended to be the doorway to another room. Using the swim-in-the-air glitch to view the outside of the room, or by using a level model rendering tool, one can see a tunnel of some description appear behind the door in the low-poly version of the level's model.

Enchanted Towers Rooms

The lower-poly version of the level, showing one of the rooms and its entrance.

Hidden behind some of the level geometry in 'Enchanted Towers' are two entirely unused rooms. Neither of these rooms are present in the highest polygon count versions of the level, existing only in the low-poly model, with the entrances to these rooms each blocked by the cliffs' geometry. The first room is located in the cliffside surrounding the area where the Sorceress' statue once stood, and the second one is found in the rock formation where the portal to the Rescue the Lost Wolf minigame is.

In both cases, these entrances are in places that are not easily accessible in normal gameplay using Spyro, which means they would have likely only been accessible with Sgt. Byrd. As such, its then possible that these two rooms would have held a couple of the lava toads placed throughout the level.


(Source: Hwd45)

Fireworks Factory Cave

Near the start of the level 'Fireworks Factory' is a walled-off cave with a 1-up butterfly jar inside of it that cannot be reached through normal means. It's likely that this cave was intended to be entered by ramming the wall blocking it, much like the cave in 'Bamboo Terrace'. While possibly left inaccessible due to an oversight on the developers' part, the cave ended up being removed in the game's remake, though the 1-up jar still remains in its original spot, now floating in the void.


(Source: Kyle Haeberle on Twitter)

Dino Mines Arena

An image of the level in a level viewer.

Hidden behind a cliff in 'Dino Mines' is a normally inaccessible portal which can only be reached by using a swim-in-the-air glitch. Doing so and swimming through the portal will transport Spyro to an empty unused arena-like sub level with a slightly raised platform in the middle. The area was likely intended to be the home to an ultimately scrapped mini-boss battle to obtain an egg, which is supported by a the layout of the area being similar to Sleepyhead's arena in Spooky Swamp, as well as the fact that earlier versions of the game are missing the "Take it to the bank" egg, with "The Bailey gang's last stand" in its place. This reveals that the idea for some kind of battle with the Bailey Gang made it relatively far into the game's development before being ultimately shelved, leaving Midnight Mountain as the only homeworld to lack a mini-boss fight.

Another parallel with Sleepyhead's arena is the presence of an invisible portal in the middle of the arena. Using the portal, Spyro can return to the main level, in most cases spawning Spyro on the ground at the bottom of the cliff in front of the entry portal. However, simply exiting the level may prove better, seeing as Spyro will occasionally spawn in the void below the entry portal, causing him to fall to his death repeatedly as he has no ground to stand on upon exiting.

Midnight Mountain Island

In the Midnight Mountain homeworld, far out in the distance and out of the player's reach during normal gameplay is a tall island which hosts three 1-up jars. This island was actually home to the Super Bonus Round portal before it was ultimately relocated, as revealed by former Insomniac senior artist Craig Stitt:

A long time ago the portal to the Super Bonus Round was on that island.
The only way to get to that island was beat the Sorceress in the final
battle. Once you had done that a VERY VERY tall whirl wind would appear
in the room just outside the entrance to the final boss round. This
whirlwind would take you up high enough that you could glide ALL the way
out to that island. If I remember right it was like a 20 or 30 second
glide. It was very cool. I was actually the artist who modeled the level.

Unfortunately, the way vacations that year worked out, I needed to take
mine right before we shipped the game. When I came back I discovered
that the Super Bonus Portal had been moved MUCH closer and that the
super-whirl-wind had been removed (for unknown reasons). Unfortunately,
the artist who made all the changes (as per the programmer's and
designer's request) failed to remove the old island way off in the
distance. Same with the programmer who overlook removing the goodies
that had been placed there.

By the time I was back from vacation the game was done and out the door.

Stitt also later went on record saying that the whirlwind worked perfectly, and that he was rather bothered about its removal given how when he left the game was all but finished, and final polish as well as extra bug testing was all that was left to do. While the whirlwind was entirely removed, this video of a modified version of the game gives us a glimpse of what this whirlwind might have looked like (ignore the egg on the island at the end as it was also added by the modder).

Interestingly enough, this large whirlwind later ended up being re-implemented in the game's remake, with it appearing after defeating the Sorceress as it was originally intended in the base game. Moreover, while the Super Bonus Round Portal is still in the same location as its original counterpart, the three 1-Up jars remain on top of the island.


(Source: Neoseeker)

Unseen Level Geometry

A few levels in Spyro: Year of the Dragon feature an assortment of polygons which were presumably intended to be used, but even when it was decided this would not be the case, their remains were left present in the game.

Country Speedway Door

The lower-poly version of the level showing the door in the level.

There is what appears to be a door under the entrance to Hunter's area in Country Speedway. The door fits the entrance's shape and size perfectly. This piece of geometry is only present in the low-poly model of the level, and because of this, it doesn't have a texture.

Unused doors

If a level contains a sublevel featuring one of the critters that hasn’t been freed yet, then said sublevel’s portal will be covered by a door - for example, Sgt. Byrd's sublevel in Molten Crater, Bentley's sublevel in Bamboo Terrace, and Agent 9's sublevel in Fireworks Factory. However, there are four levels in the game which contain a critter sublevel that is unlocked with a previous world’s character (namely Spooky Swamp, Charmed Ridge, Crystal Islands, and Desert Ruins), and it turns out there exist unused corresponding door geometry (and textures) for these levels.

The location of the Desert Ruins door. Due to backface-culling, it's not usually visible from this angle.

While the doors for Crystal Islands and Desert Ruins aren’t placed over their respective portals, they're instead located in places that are somewhat more difficult - if not impossible - for the player to see during normal gameplay. The Crystal Islands door is placed beneath its portal, inside the level geometry, while the Desert Ruins door is nowhere near its portal, instead being found at the bottom of a cliff.

It’s also worth noting that if the player uses glitches or hacking to find their way into the aforementioned levels without having freed each of the critters, then as Spyro approaches the signs found beside the portals an empty dialogue box will show up. Under normal conditions, these signs tend to contain taunts from the Sorceress or a message from the critter advising them to finish their homeworld, first.

Cutscene Oddities

Despite the fact that the game's cutscenes appear to reuse level models seen elsewhere throughout the game, the cutscene models are actually separate from those used in levels. There are a few minor differences between some of these models that suggest they reflect an earlier version of the level that they derived from.

Midday Garden

Cutscene Model Level Model
Spyro3-MiddayGarden-Cutscene.png Spyro3-MiddayGarden-Level.png

The ladder texture in Midday Garden is replaced with some sort of vine texture in the Hunter's Tussle cutscene.

Spooky Swamp

Cutscene Model Level Model
Spyro3-SpookySwamp-Cutscene.png Spyro3-SpookySwamp-Level.png

In the credits sequence, Sheila's sublevel of Spooky Swamp is briefly shown. In this model, the breakable walls use a brick wall texture instead of a cracked wall texture.

Fireworks Factory

Cutscene Model Level Model
Spyro3-FireworksFactoryCave-Cutscene.png Spyro3-FireworksFactoryCave-Level.png

In One Less Noble Warrior, the inaccessible cave in Fireworks Factory is wide open.

Cutscene Model Level Model
Spyro3-FireworksFactoryDoor-Cutscene.png Spyro3-FireworksFactoryDoor-Level.png

Furthermore, the door blocking Agent 9's sublevel is seen mistakenly using the ladder texture.

Unused Models and Objects

Mister Fister

Hidden in the background of the Hunter's Tussle cutscene, next to the portal to Spooky Swamp, is a model of "Mister Fister", a cut enemy concept from the second game. It has one 52-frame animation for stretching and looking up which plays just once before returning to its resting position, leaving it static throughout the rest of the cutscene. While not strictly unused, it's far enough away from the camera that players would be unable to examine its intricacies without the use of external tools.

According to some of the game's developers, this model was placed into the background of the cutscene as an Easter egg, and in fact another statue of the character later appeared as an Easter egg in the Insomniac title Ratchet and Clank: Up Your Arsenal!. It had also previously appeared as a completion reward in Spyro 2, where an image of the character is shown alongside the name "Mister Fistus" in the Faunas Mortas section of the epilogue.

As this is a cutscene-specific model, it does not relate to any in-game object.

Object 442 - Scorch's Pit Enemy

The enemy performing its running animation.

Scorch's Pit has an unused enemy similar to the fire trolls with object ID 442. The model is a little different to the fire trolls, and it's green instead of orange. It doesn't seem to have any sort of attack though, and its only animation is a running animation.

Despite the fact that Sorceress' Lair does not use the fire troll enemy, object 442 is also contained within the object table for that level, still going unused.

Object 707 - Scorch's Pit Power-up Variants

There are two unused variants of the power-up Bentley provides you with in Scorch's Pit. The first, depicted with a spiked ball model, acts as a 'smart bomb', killing all other entities on the battlefield (both enemies and chickens, but there is no effect on the boss). The second is a temporary invincibility function, which acts like the standard invincibility power-up and is represented by the same small shield icon which is seen in the invincibility power gates. Both objects use the same internal object ID as the used variants of the item.

Object 752 - Dino Mines Dinosaur Parts

Objects which appear to be based upon various parts of the dinosaurs' bodies - even down to wearing a scarf like the other dinosaurs do - but with a colorless, spotty texture. It's not known what this could have been used for, but it's somewhat similar to the objects used by enemies which explode into various fragments upon death.

These objects are only present in the Dino Mines main area and the Agent 9 sublevel, and explicitly not present in unused sublevel.

Object 764 - Dino Mines Egg

An egg reminiscent of the ones the lava lizards hatch from in Skelos Badlands in the second game. Cracked shell objects also use this object ID and seem to use the same texture the aforementioned eggs in Spyro 2 use.

These objects are only present in the Dino Mines main area and the Agent 9 sublevel, and explicitly not present in unused sublevel.


Version Differences

Hmmm...
To do:
Clean up this section and maybe put everything into a table. This link might be helpful.

Miscellaneous differences

The game had a few noticeable changes between each of the four releases:

  • The original NTSC-U release version - NTSC-U Revision 0 - was built around September 14th, 2000.
  • The original PAL release version - PAL Revision 0 - was built on September 29th, 2000.
  • The PAL revisional release - PAL Revision 1 - was built on October 24th, 2000.
  • The NTSC-U revisional release - NTSC-U Revision 1 - was built on October 31st, 2000.

The PlayStation Network version is based on NTSC-U Revision 0. The revisional releases are often inaccurately referred to as "Platinum" and "Greatest Hits", but in actuality, there were black-label releases for both of these versions.

  • In the PAL versions, the "PRESS START" was replaced by an option that allows the player to change the game's language to either English, French, German, Spanish or Italian.
  • In NTSC-U Revision 0, the cutscene "Spike is Born" goes unused. It can still be accessed via the cutscene cheat once the game is completed. This was fixed in all later versions of the game, where it plays directly before the Spike's Arena boss fight.
  • In earlier versions of the game, skill points obtained via the skating minigames aren't awarded until after the timer is up, whereas in later versions of the game it is awarded the moment the player obtains a score beating the course record. This may be due to the fact that in unfinished versions of the game, you have to both beat the record and not fall off your board to obtain the skill point, so it makes sense that they would require the player to last the full 2 minutes before awarding the point.
  • The name of the final boss level was changed slightly between versions, stylised as "Sorceress' Lair" in the original release and "Sorceress's Lair" in later releases.
  • If the player chooses to defeat the Sorceress before freeing Agent 9 - something many players would not do - Agent 9 will appear outside his portal. In the initial release, Agent 9 is seen looking towards the sign next to his portal, and upon talking to him, Spyro seems to have some trouble finding where to stand as he continuously walks into the sign while the dialogue box is up. In later releases he faces away from the portal and there's no glitching with Spyro's movement.
  • The PAL revisions are not modchip protected.

Music differences

Each release came with its own changes to the soundtrack, with the game's remake basing its soundtrack off of the soundtrack from NTSC-U Revision 1.

  • In all versions but NTSC-U Revision 1, the themes that were intended to be used in Evening Lake and Sorceress' Lair go unused, despite being present on the disc.
    • In all versions but NTSC-U Revision 1, Evening Lake erroneously uses the theme for Sunrise Spring. Its intended theme is restored in NTSC-U Revision 1.
    • In NTSC-U Revision 0, Sorceress' Lair erroneously uses Sunrise Spring's theme. In both PAL releases, it uses the theme used in Spike's Arena, and its intended theme was restored in NTSC-U Revision 1.
  • Many levels that reused themes in earlier releases were given their own unique themes exclusively for NTSC-U Revision 1:
    • The theme used in Enchanted Towers' sublevels was changed from Desert Ruins' theme to a unique one. The track used in NTSC-U Revision 1 is actually an uncut version of the menu theme used in demo versions of the game. The main area of Enchanted Towers still uses Sgt. Byrd's theme though, specifically because Sgt. Byrd can be used in that section of the level.
    • Lost Fleet's theme was changed from the music used in Super Bonus Round to a remix of Sheila's theme.
    • Crystal Islands' theme was changed from Seashell Shore's track to a unique one.
    • Haunted Tomb's theme was changed from Cloud Spires' theme to a unique one.
    • The theme used in Dino Mines was changed from Molten Crater's theme to a unique track.
    • All of the speedways except Harbor Speedway were given unique themes.

Speedway glitch

Hmmm...
To do:
  • Confirm that the NTSC-U version is also fixed using this method
  • More info on a method to reproduce the glitch - it seems that only attempting and failing the race, then as long as the race is not won, saving anywhere and quitting triggers it in PAL Revision 0

A rather notorious glitch in early releases of the game would prevent the player from progressing should they leave a speedway before finishing - If one were to attempt and fail one of the challenges in a speedway and then quit the level before obtaining the egg in question then that egg would be rendered completely unobtainable. This glitch was fixed in the revisional releases in both regions.[1]

If the glitch is present on a given save file in the PAL Revision 0 release, it can be remedied by loading said save file in the PAL Revision 1 version of the game:

  • If the race had never been won in Revision 0, winning the race in the Revision 1 will still award the player.
  • If the race had been won in Revision 0 but no egg was given to the player due to the glitch and the game saved after that, simply loading the file in Revision 1 and saving is enough.

The save file is still compatible with the original release after the issue has been resolved.

Anti-Piracy

Elementary, my dear Cactus.
This needs some investigation.
Discuss ideas and findings on the talk page.
Specifically: Verify consistency. All of these increase in severity as time goes on as progress is made. This is not a full list, but this should cover most effects.

This game is known for having quite a lot of anti-crack "booby traps", checking for alterations to the game alongside the existing copy-protection. One wrong bit and the trap is triggered, making any deliberate attempt at cracking the game a real pain. Here's an article by one of the developers, explaining the whole process.

Thanks, narc.

General Effects

  • Early on in the game Zoe will inform you that this copy of the game is hacked.
  • The game often soft-locks and the Pause functionality is completely gone.
  • The language chosen in the PAL copies will randomly change.
  • Some enemies don't drop gems.
  • The game will occasionally return you to the wrong home or stage upon exit of level, and can also unexpectedly be booted out of a stage without warning.
  • All the stages in Midnight Mountain are replaced with the ones from Sunrise Spring.
  • The final boss fight against the Sorceress will start off as normal, but soon the game will boot you out, bring you back to Sunrise Springs, and will wipe out your save data (as seen in this video).

Sparx is now green by default in the sense that he only has one hit point left, and eating butterflies will bring Sparx's health down by one hit point from current until he hits green (Green Sparx can disappear if a butterfly is eaten, but eating another will bring him back). This also affect Sparx's levels and the health bar within the levels , seeing how the health pickups in those levels do restore hp but don't change Sparx's color as he stays green regardless. If you have no Sparx and destroy a 1-up butterfly jar you get a gold Sparx instead of green (which might be a bug in the effects of a triggered copy?).

Moneybags is also affected by the anti piracy, namely the option to free Sheila comes up a second time with payment being optional, freeing Bentley doesn't penalize your gem count, Agent 9 is already unlocked with payment once again optional, and the Moneybags "payback" in Midnight Mountains will not return the amount you are supposed to get.

Collectibles

Gems can vary based off a number of unknown factors. Using file number 2 can produce different missing gems compared to file number 1. It's also worth noting that Agent 9's section in Fireworks Factory is locked; and getting back to it is not possible at some point due to measures.

Stage Name Gems Missing
Midday Garden 1 Gem
Enchanted Towers 3 Gems
Sgt Byrd's Base 6 Gems
Spooky Swamp 215 Gems
Bamboo Terrace 5 Gems
Evening Lake off by 7 Gems
Frozen Alters 10 Gems
Firework Factory Unknown
Charmed Ridge 6 Gems
Bently's Outpost 10 Gems
Crystal Islands 3 Gems
Desert Ruins 1 Gem

Dragon eggs are also affected by the anti-piracy:

  • The last egg in all friend stages gets reset periodically (early effect).
  • Collecting the above egg(s) adds to total each time. It will be reset at some point in the session or after a reset of the game (sometimes it stays).
  • Spooky Swamp is off by 2 eggs, Sheila's section being closed off and will not open. This also affects missing gem count.
  • Tracking all egg resets is not possible without resetting. Resetting makes more eggs reset. Might not be possible to track all resets.
  • Some eggs reset consistently (Last egg before stage exit appears).

Incompletable Stages

Note: This is only counting those that can get the "Level Complete" message even if eggs reset later in time. You might lose access to some stages but they CAN be completed.

  • Sunrise Spring Home
  • Sunny Villa
  • Cloud Spires
  • Molten Crater
  • Seashell Shore
  • Mushroom Speedway
  • Sheila's Alp
  • Crawdad Farm
  • Buzz's Dungeon
  • Icy Peak
  • Country Speedway
  • Spider Town
  • Spike's Arena
  • Lost Fleet
  • Honey Speedway
  • Starfish Reef
  • Scorch's Pit
  • Haunted Tomb
  • Dino Mines
  • Harbor Speedway
  • Agent 9's Lab
  • Bugbot Factory

Transportation

  • Transportation between worlds will not work unless the player collects the eggs from Sheila, Byrd, Bentley and Agent 9's respective stages.
  • The way the travel machine is also different, occasionally bringing the player back where they came from after trying to go to another homeworld.
  • The rocket can bring you to virtually anywhere, even already defeated bosses.
  • Once the rocket is available it change "Midnight Mountain" to "Sorceress' Lair" and instead send you to "Buzz's Dungeon". Exiting Buzz's Dungeon after the above happens you will be placed in the closed doors to the Sorceress' Lair, forcing you to go back to the dungeon.
  • After time in Midnight Mountain, returning to the rocket will only leave Sunrise Spring available.
    • If you took the above transport, it will have the rocket and hot air balloon colliding on land, and you'll hop out twice.
    • At this point you can only ride the hot air balloon.
    • If jumping into the hot air balloon at this point you can go back to Midnight Mountain in the hot air balloon (which is not supposed to happen).
  • If you want to go to the other stages, you must "complete" each stage again to get each option back sequentially (Cannot confirm but might be possible. Double-checking Needed).

By traveling to Sorceress' Lair as described above the Atlas will show all stages in Midnight Mountain are fully cleared except the homeworld. The Sorceress door opening cutscene will try to play if you get close to the doors. They will not open once the cutscene concludes. Resetting the system at this point will take you to the proper location in Midnight Mountain, but Scorch's Pit will be skipped (returning to Evening Lake and back will proceed as normal.)

(Source: PixelButts)