Sega Master System / Mark III / Game Gear
The evil Prince of Darkness has returned to our fair pleasant lands, leaving a trail of death and destruction wherever he goes. Sir Arthur the Knight is one man who is particularly annoyed with this evil being's antics - mainly because the cunning demon has kidnapped his girlfriend!
Pausing only to jump into his special hardman's suit of armour and collect his magical lance, Arthur sets off for the final confrontation with this twisted creature. But five levels of scrolling action await before his woman can be safely returned - and the Prince of Darkness has infested the route with all manner of ghouls and ghosts. Not surprisingly, all of these creatures won't be satisfied until they've got Arthur's head on one of their demonic lances...
Some treasure chests enable Arthur to take a trip to an equipment shop - but this is a shop with a difference - the items are free! The only slight downer is that only one object can be taken per visit. Among the items available are:
Four levels of power are present in each item. From the lowest to the highest they are: silver, red, green and gold.
There are five levels crammed into the Master System of Ghouls 'n' Ghosts - and they're reasonably close to the arcade version. The game starts out in the graveyard, where the undead attempt to butcher our hero. Later levels include a burning town (complete with windmills), icy caverns and the Prince of Darkness' deadly lair! Each level also has a colossal end-of-level gatekeeper...
Arthur has all manner of magic at his disposal, and this can be selected on the pause screen. The magic can be used simply by holding down button one on your pad. Once the meter is flashing letting go of the button unleashes Arthur's magical might! Some of these magic marvels weren't even found in the Megadrive or arcade versions!
Reviewed in issue one of MEAN MACHINES, Ghouls 'n' Ghosts was rated at 92% and is highly recommended to all Megadrive platform addicts. Funnily enough, according to Sega, it's their biggest selling Megadrive cartridge in both the US and Japan!
Every so often, a treasure chest appears. Simply by blasting them, their contents can be revealed. Some hold very valuable items - others are less helpful...
Okay, so the graphics look a little ropey and the sound annoys after a short while - but Ghouls 'n' Ghosts is still a pretty good Master System conversion of the monster Capcom coin-op. The playability of the coin-op still remains in this version and battling the meanies with all manner of weapons and magic is quite fun. The game is also really challenging - some of the levels have actually been expanded from their arcade counterparts! Ghouls 'n' Ghosts is quite a nice product and is well worth taking a look at.
The Ghouls 'n' Ghosts coin-op is brilliant, and the Megadrive version is superb. But how well has it translated to the Sega Master System version? Well, I'm pleased to say it's great. When you first see it, you mightn't think so - the sound is horribly miserable and the graphics only just manage to capture the atmosphere of the original coin-op. However, it's in the playability stakes that Ghouls 'n' Ghosts scores highest. There are plenty of extra tweaks to make up for the graphical shortfalls, and there are new twists to enhance the gameplay and keep even arcade experts on their toes - I love all the extra power-ups you can now get! There's plenty of challenge and later on things get very tricky indeed. If you're after an enjoyable and entertaining game, try this one out.