Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Rygar - Review

Rygar is a terrible little NES game.  It's really ugly, unresponsive and confusing to navigate.  Oddly enough, though, it's a fun game to play.  Maybe it's the fact that it's short enough to finish in a couple of hours, or the old-school NES adventure appeal that games like Zelda and Startropics also possess.  I don't know.  Because it's a really bad game.

Basically, it's a fairly non-linear game (or at least gives the illusion of non-linearity) in that there's a big world map area with several places to explore.  The levels are mostly sidescrolling, but the world map is from a top-down Zelda-esque perspective.  The problems come when the game tries to do the latter; being artistically challenged, I'm not exactly sure what the problem is, but it's sort of like the game tried to make a sidescrolling section move in all four directions.  It just doesn't look right.  Like they're mixing perspectives or something.

Another huge problem is the difficulty.  The screen kind of just floods itself with enemies until things get to be too hard to dodge.  Luckily you can go into a late level early on, fight some tough enemies and get stronger while you carefully make your way back to a healing room.  After you buff up a little bit, the game becomes really pathetically easy... well, for the most part.  There are also these grappling hook sections where you zipline across a chasm.  This would be fine except sometimes the grappling hook just decides not to work and you fall in a hole and die.

Add to that a terrible ending, some really unbalanced magic, and some pretty cryptic areas (complete with awful NES translation) and you have an awful game.  Despite all of that, though, it's still pretty fun to play.  It hasn't aged well at all, unlike some NES classics, but the game really feels like the epitome of the NES era.  It's confusing, overly difficult, yet a lot of fun.  Not a good game, but check it out if you're into the retro scene at all.


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