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Talking Time Presents: The Top 60 Video Game Enemies Exhibit at the Valdez Museum of Video Game Box Art

WildcatJF

I would be liking that greatly!
(he / his / him)

Hi!.....what's this?

Dadz didz the sketchz four todai

It's not...particularly...it's subpar. There. I said it.

Yeah. Yeah...yeah.

Mapz

*ahem* The fans are expecting SOMETHING today. Hm. Marina. I have an embarrassing request to ask of you.

.........look. I get that line of reasoning. I'm an Octoling, yes. But......fine. I suppose it's for the fans.
 

WildcatJF

I would be liking that greatly!
(he / his / him)

OCTOROK (Legend of Zelda)

#27 (71 points, nominated by Johnny Unusual [21], Positronic Brain [14], Rascally Badger [21], Kirin [17])
First Appearance: Legend of Zelda


These are among the first enemies "The Hero of *Insert Highfalutin Title Here*" encountered in the original Legend of Zelda, Octoroks have become a staple of the series. While their initial appearance featured two colored variants (blue being tougher), the "Hero's" shield could deflect their rocky projectiles with ease. Later games would up their threat factor, but they increasingly became more waterbound as the games moved on (in contrast to their land based origin), and their stony bullets became more difficult to deal with in 3D. Perhaps most memorable is their Wind Waker appearance, where they are enormous creatures capable of sucking up the boat of "The Hero named the Same as The Others but is TOTALLY different" in a whirlpool caused by their girth.

You better include one of my songs after that. You owe me WildcatJF!
 
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Torzelbaum

????? LV 13 HP 292/ 292
(he, him, his)
Octoroks - not on my list this time but they were #7 on my list of Zeldentities.

Here's what I had said about them back then:
They are the first ambassadors of the weirdness that is endemic in the fantasy world of Hyrule. And they also make for a good starter enemy. They're like goombas but somewhat more threatening.
(That is mostly about their Zelda 1 incarnation.)

Octorocks! But will we have Leevers? And Tektites, too?
Maybe. We still have 27 more entries to go.
 
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Kishi

Little Waves
(They/Them)
Staff member
Moderator
I don't understand why "Daddy Mulk" was posted...but I approve.

Octoroks are good—the Goomba of the Zelda series. Even had the perfect attendance award until Twilight Princess dropped the ball.
 

Lokii

It's always time for burgers
(He/Him)
Staff member
Moderator
I don't like how in the 3D games they turned into annoyance turrets.
 

Beta Metroid

At peace
(he/him and such)
^Agreed. Dekus kinda moved in on their turf as well (and then were neglected...I want more Scrubs!).

Octoroks are cool and good! And so are Shy Guys! My spiel about my favorite Shy Guy variant has already been quoted, but there are so many different types to appreciate in their crew (A crew that had the wonderful name of the 8 Bits Club early on, though I don't know where that name actually came from). I love how the standard ones in Yoshi's Island look back and forth, pause, wander in short spurts, maybe turn around if they feel like it. It's so much more lively than the mindless patrolling typically seen of grunt-level enemies.

But I also have a silly little anecdote about mindless patrolling Shy Guys! When I was first learning video games as a concept, the SMB trilogy was among the initial games I had access to. When playing SMB2, my older cousin taught me that the difference between pink and red Shy Guys were that "the pink ones are shy, so they don't walk off edges." Which explained their name (except the red ones weren't shy, but whatever). She also advised me to use that information to ride red ones across spikes found in an early stage.
 

Kirin

Summon for hire
(he/him)
Oh hey, another thing I voted for finally! While they are one of the first enemies you ever see in Zelda, I dispute the comparison to Goombas - Goombas can't shoot at you! Granted you can deflect the rocks pretty easily, but dealing with these guys takes multiple verbs. And as a family they're quite versatile, moving at different speeds (or not at all, turning into a turret - which yeah, isn't my favorite incarnation but still) and shooting in different patterns. And in Zelda II they translate perfectly to side-scrolling enemies, learning how to jump and filling the same role as Snifits. Occasionally they even get wings or are inflatable, or grow to enormous size.
 

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
Back when the original LoZ came out, I had a pet theory. Octoroks scrape up debris with their beaks as they move, which they internally compress into the stones they spit out of their repurposed siphons.
 

WildcatJF

I would be liking that greatly!
(he / his / him)
IN TODAY'S INSTALLMENT OF FLASHBACK THEATRE...
Actually 26



BIRD (Ninja Gaiden)

#26 (75 points, nominated by Dracula [3], Positronic Brain [9], Johnny Unusual [19])
First Appearance: Ninja Gaiden (NES)


"squak"

Here's what some of our donors had to say:​
In a world full of cyborg zombies, ninja demons, gun-wielding mercs, and probably Satan himself, the most dangerous thing ever is a regular old bird. ~ Dracula
Damned birds. #1 cause of death among ninjas since 1989~ Positronic Brain


"we got you the bird pal!"
 
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Issun

My Neighbor Chocobo
I forgot about this when the Hammer Bros. discussion was going on, so I'm posting it now.

 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
Look, I'm not a "get gud" player by any means. A game being harder doesn't make it more fun or exciting for me. But those birds left a controller throwing impression. I also feel like its one of the few times we see baddies feel like they are REALLY trying to kill you, as the birds are smart enough to attack you in a very vulnerable state.
 

Lokii

It's always time for burgers
(He/Him)
Staff member
Moderator
Bird presents threat if moving forward -> move backwards -> bird's erratic pattern makes it difficult to dispatch, but do so despite cost to life bar/frustration levels -> move forward, bird has respawned. The cruelest trick.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
While nowhere near the level of threat of their Ninja Gaiden counterparts, the Birds in Castlevania also deserve note; hovering just out of reach until they make a beeline directly at your face, usually when you’re trying to jump over something. Only the fact that they don’t instantly and endlessly respawn spares them.

that and CV being a slowerpaced game, so you have the opportunity to deal with them one at a time
 

Zef

Find Your Reason
(He/Him)
While the Ninja Gaiden birds are definitely a danger, especially when you have precise wall-to-platform jumps to make, or enemy/enemy projectiles bearing down on you, on even terrain they're not quite as much of a handful as bats are. Bats are tiny and so are their hitboxes, they move in sharp and fast sinusoidal patterns that are hard to time with your sword, and they often blend into the background. And they tend to show up in the same situations birds do.
 

Dracula

Video Nasty
(He/His)
The birds' most powerful moment of course comes in the mid-point of the final stage of the first Ninja Gaiden, where one particular combination of bird and dagger-tossing guy will totally ruin your day. If you don't have good ninpo, there's a non-intuitive strategy for getting through the gauntlet safely (it involves letting the knife guy de-spawn himself), but until you learn it you'll be repeating this one section ad nauseam. Factor in how any death at the final boss sends you back to the beginning of the stage, and you're gonna get real acquainted with this one bird.

Even more rude of these birds is how they will spawn in the direction you're facing, so if you have to turn around to reposition yourself, the bird may come back at a new, less convenient angle. And then, making matters yet worse, you might turn around and cause the same bird to spawn at the other side of the screen, while the first one is still alive. Ninja Gaiden is a game about momentum, and the birds are what happen to you if you lose it.
 

Torzelbaum

????? LV 13 HP 292/ 292
(he, him, his)
We still don't know what bird are but we do know at least one thing about them - they fucking hate ninjas.
 
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