I’ve always had a fascination with Gex. Despite only ever playing the Game Boy Color version of Enter The Gecko, I feel like I have an extensive awareness of Gex because he was plastered across what seemed like every other page of every gaming magazine in the late 1990s. Shamefully, despite having all of this awareness, I’ve never actually sat down to play one of Gex’s 3D platformer adventures.
A speedrun is the best way to get the strangest parts of a video game funnelled into your brain at maximum speed, and Mysticore does a great job of showing the clunky levels and bizarre character designs that seemed to be everywhere in 1998. The story of the Gex games is always based around Gex going into different genres of television and films, and Enter The Gecko wanders through space, a Looney Tunes level, and a haunted mansion that actually looks pretty cool (among other levels, of course).
While we joke about crossovers like Smash Bros. or Kingdom Hearts, there really isn’t a game franchise as committed to parody and pastiche as Gex was during those golden years at the end of the millennium, and seeing the entire game in less than an hour really drives that home. Maybe it’s for the best.
I’m glad that I sat down to see what Enter The Gecko was all about while also watching a well-executed speedrun. It’s a classic two birds, one stone scenario.