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04-15-21 10:30 PM
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04-15-21 10:30 PM
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The Dark Souls of Action RPG games (contains spoilers)

 
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Sound
Addictiveness
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7
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9
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9

04-15-21 10:30 PM
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thejunkcan
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Out of all the arcade games I have played, this is one of the best in terms of gameplay. Yeah, the difficulty is brutal even on easy, there are a few cheap shots here & there and the system on how shields and armor works isn't immediately told to the player in the game, making it difficult to know which armor is being sold at the cheapest price, while still being the most effective defensively.


Now, I have one grudge with the original arcade version, and that is the fact Wonder Boy in Monster World was made on the system 2, at a time when the superior System 16 was available. I mean, the system 2 used PSG, but the monster that is the YM2151 made excellent sounds. Not to mention that the System 16 had a Motorola 68000 processor at the time, which was vastly superior than the System 2.
I just can't wait for the time this game would be reprogrammed on a System 16...


But anyways, back to the actual graphics. For a system 2 game, this is as run-of-the-mill as you can get. Bright colors, moderately detailed graphics, and more miscellaneous stuff that I won't mention for now.


Now the sound...what is this, modern chiptune music? This is missing a retro vibe, but I'm fine with it. There are still some bangin' sounds in this game, for example, the Metal Dragon theme. When you use noise & PSG together, you can make something like this. Then there is the calm Underwater theme. But I'm not sure what is the problem with this song, but the scratchiness of PSG sounds make this a bit tense, and I like it. It's almost they made it scratchy on purpose to denote the tense gameplay throughout every stage, you fighting hostile enemies constantly and defeating bosses to progress throughout the game & each stage. This deserves 8 points. Yeah, its a system 2 game so it doesn't sound that great today, but it was impressive at its time.



In the world of archaic arcade video games, you have to get 2 things right in order to have a good game; sound & addictiveness along with gameplay. Without good bangers, how are you going to remember the game better & be more willing to play it? Sound indirectly contributes to the likeliness you'll play this game again, but Wonder Boy in Monster Land strikes an above average balance, in a positive way. The gameplay for its time was unique. And lets be honest, you've seen games borrowing heavily inspiration from the Metroid series or Castlevania, yet nobody will take the legacy of Wonder Boy in Monster Land's gameplay and keep it going with its good gameplay. In Monster Land, you have to obtain a certain amount of points to get an extra life. When I mean "life" I refer to the amount of hit points you have until you die, and when you die its an automatic game over. You also need to obtain as much gold as you can, because you'll need that to get shields (shields are at its prime during the early game), armor and items. Now, it is possible to complete this game without even buying or obtaining a shield, but this increases the difficulty as some bosses & enemies will throw projectiles at you, and you'll need to dodge them. But without a shield, you cannot block them. In another sense, if you don't take a shield you won't get moderate knockback from tanking a projectile to your shield, but this makes recovering your movement from a projectile's knockback harder. You see how many things you need to keep up with the game, but most of them are done by just playing it? This encourages the player to keep playing knowing they can get better equipment, as long as they just play the game. I kept the addictiveness at 9 and 9 only.


Now the story is just run of the mill, it isn't unique or impressive. It's just another case of "bad guy take over land for no known goal" storytelling, which plagues early arcade games because they were known for gameplay, not story. If you don't know the story in Monster Land it goes something like this:

Spoiler:

11 years after the first Wonder Boy, the evil Dragon has taken over the land. The hero named Tom Tom (whose nickname is Book in the credits) has decided to stop this foul dragon, but little does he know the dragon was actually a robot, disguised as a regular Dragon



Yes, the story is like that. Loosely connected to the original game, but takes place after it.


Now about depth...This game has 11 levels (referred to as "rounds" in the game), the 1st being the path to the town, the second being the town itself, in which a cave nearby the town connects it to the castle, which is the 3rd level. The 3rd level is where the game's difficulty takes a sudden spike, especially with the boss. The boss is a red knight, who attacks by swinging what seems to be a claymore at you. He can also attack while leaping to another location, making him mobile while attacking. On paper, this sounds easy, but ingame this is hard...VERY hard for the unprepared. The 4th stage is a path leading to the coastal town of Baraboro, in which there is an armor shop & shield shop. Level 5 is a path leading to a well, which leads to an underground cave that hosts one of the most difficult bosses in the game, Giant Kong. Giant Kong acts like the Red Knight, except he throws moderately sized boulders at you, which on impact turn into 4 small rocks. He also makes large jumps around the battlefield. He's just difficult, ok? But hey, he's optional but if you don't defeat him you won't get access to an upgraded sword he drops. But I think you get the gist, most of these stages are paths leading to a structure which contains a boss. The depth here is put at a 8, considering the amount of secrets there are.


There is a reason why I have the title of this review as "The Dark Souls of Action RPG games) and that's because this game may look easy at first, but when you get pass round 3 the game ramps up in difficulty, and any round above 6 just gets very difficult for the unprepared and unexperienced. I wouldn't recommend this game to casual action game players, but rather the hardcore ones that have the skill to beat this game. I'll put it at a 9 for now.






Out of all the arcade games I have played, this is one of the best in terms of gameplay. Yeah, the difficulty is brutal even on easy, there are a few cheap shots here & there and the system on how shields and armor works isn't immediately told to the player in the game, making it difficult to know which armor is being sold at the cheapest price, while still being the most effective defensively.


Now, I have one grudge with the original arcade version, and that is the fact Wonder Boy in Monster World was made on the system 2, at a time when the superior System 16 was available. I mean, the system 2 used PSG, but the monster that is the YM2151 made excellent sounds. Not to mention that the System 16 had a Motorola 68000 processor at the time, which was vastly superior than the System 2.
I just can't wait for the time this game would be reprogrammed on a System 16...


But anyways, back to the actual graphics. For a system 2 game, this is as run-of-the-mill as you can get. Bright colors, moderately detailed graphics, and more miscellaneous stuff that I won't mention for now.


Now the sound...what is this, modern chiptune music? This is missing a retro vibe, but I'm fine with it. There are still some bangin' sounds in this game, for example, the Metal Dragon theme. When you use noise & PSG together, you can make something like this. Then there is the calm Underwater theme. But I'm not sure what is the problem with this song, but the scratchiness of PSG sounds make this a bit tense, and I like it. It's almost they made it scratchy on purpose to denote the tense gameplay throughout every stage, you fighting hostile enemies constantly and defeating bosses to progress throughout the game & each stage. This deserves 8 points. Yeah, its a system 2 game so it doesn't sound that great today, but it was impressive at its time.



In the world of archaic arcade video games, you have to get 2 things right in order to have a good game; sound & addictiveness along with gameplay. Without good bangers, how are you going to remember the game better & be more willing to play it? Sound indirectly contributes to the likeliness you'll play this game again, but Wonder Boy in Monster Land strikes an above average balance, in a positive way. The gameplay for its time was unique. And lets be honest, you've seen games borrowing heavily inspiration from the Metroid series or Castlevania, yet nobody will take the legacy of Wonder Boy in Monster Land's gameplay and keep it going with its good gameplay. In Monster Land, you have to obtain a certain amount of points to get an extra life. When I mean "life" I refer to the amount of hit points you have until you die, and when you die its an automatic game over. You also need to obtain as much gold as you can, because you'll need that to get shields (shields are at its prime during the early game), armor and items. Now, it is possible to complete this game without even buying or obtaining a shield, but this increases the difficulty as some bosses & enemies will throw projectiles at you, and you'll need to dodge them. But without a shield, you cannot block them. In another sense, if you don't take a shield you won't get moderate knockback from tanking a projectile to your shield, but this makes recovering your movement from a projectile's knockback harder. You see how many things you need to keep up with the game, but most of them are done by just playing it? This encourages the player to keep playing knowing they can get better equipment, as long as they just play the game. I kept the addictiveness at 9 and 9 only.


Now the story is just run of the mill, it isn't unique or impressive. It's just another case of "bad guy take over land for no known goal" storytelling, which plagues early arcade games because they were known for gameplay, not story. If you don't know the story in Monster Land it goes something like this:

Spoiler:

11 years after the first Wonder Boy, the evil Dragon has taken over the land. The hero named Tom Tom (whose nickname is Book in the credits) has decided to stop this foul dragon, but little does he know the dragon was actually a robot, disguised as a regular Dragon



Yes, the story is like that. Loosely connected to the original game, but takes place after it.


Now about depth...This game has 11 levels (referred to as "rounds" in the game), the 1st being the path to the town, the second being the town itself, in which a cave nearby the town connects it to the castle, which is the 3rd level. The 3rd level is where the game's difficulty takes a sudden spike, especially with the boss. The boss is a red knight, who attacks by swinging what seems to be a claymore at you. He can also attack while leaping to another location, making him mobile while attacking. On paper, this sounds easy, but ingame this is hard...VERY hard for the unprepared. The 4th stage is a path leading to the coastal town of Baraboro, in which there is an armor shop & shield shop. Level 5 is a path leading to a well, which leads to an underground cave that hosts one of the most difficult bosses in the game, Giant Kong. Giant Kong acts like the Red Knight, except he throws moderately sized boulders at you, which on impact turn into 4 small rocks. He also makes large jumps around the battlefield. He's just difficult, ok? But hey, he's optional but if you don't defeat him you won't get access to an upgraded sword he drops. But I think you get the gist, most of these stages are paths leading to a structure which contains a boss. The depth here is put at a 8, considering the amount of secrets there are.


There is a reason why I have the title of this review as "The Dark Souls of Action RPG games) and that's because this game may look easy at first, but when you get pass round 3 the game ramps up in difficulty, and any round above 6 just gets very difficult for the unprepared and unexperienced. I wouldn't recommend this game to casual action game players, but rather the hardcore ones that have the skill to beat this game. I'll put it at a 9 for now.






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