Log Post #1 of 3
From: warpio | Posted: 4/28/2015 07:27:00 PMUpdated: 11/21/2017 08:25:36 PM
|I first played this on an emulator after I already became a fan of the N64 Mystical Ninja games, and I absolutely hated how the localization named the characters as "Kid Ying" and "Dr. Yang".. They've always been Goemon and Ebisumaru to me. Those localized names just feel so wrong... anyway, I only got a few levels in before giving up due to the difficulty and then never touched this game again for a long time.|
This game is a major upgrade from the NES and GB ones, with fully developed 2D sections and towns with a lot more life/variety to them. A major thing this game added is... you have special "Judo attacks" that you can use with the X button while in a 2D section. They cost scrolls to use (which I've been getting a lot of along with money drops). But to gain these abilities, you have to go to a dojo and spend a lot of money to temporarily learn a single ability JUST for this one stage. I've never bothered with these because I never have any money left after stocking up on equipment.
Other minor changes... instead of the lucky cats upgrading your weapon from pipe to ryo, you can now switch freely between pipe and ryo attack (but ryo attacks now cost money). The cats now upgrade your pipe to a bigger pipe, then to a yoyo attack. There's also bombs you can buy at a shop and use in limited quantities as an attack, but they seem pretty useless. I like being able to throw money at enemies whenever I'm in a tough spot and my short range weapon isn't doing any good.
There's also a ton of minigames in this. The 3D labyrinth from the NES games is back, but it's now just an optional minigame to win prizes in. There's also like a bunch of arcade ports and shitty carnival games that I can never consistently win any money on. I'd imagine that if you played this game as a kid you would've been satisfied just playing all these minigames over and over, and not actually making any progress because the game is gets hard as balls later on.
The 1st level is really easy. You start off in a town that is haunted with ghosts roaming around, then you go through a 2D section, then a boss battle where you have to hit the ghost lady's projectiles back at her. The ghost woman turns out to be a cat, and says that I need to go to Shikoku to meet the cat boss Koban... with no other information given besides that, you return to town again and all the shops are now opened up, and people are attacking you now instead of ghosts. To get to the next level, you actually have to go to this one shop which is a travel agency, and buy a ticket to Shikoku.
The 2nd level... the enemies here are getting pretty tough already, you can actually die easily in town here if you aren't careful. Usually the earlier games the enemies weren't much of a threat, but here, the enemies are much more varied and unpredictable. There's this one really annoying enemy who runs across the screen and then jumps and throws coins at you, usually jumping at exactly the right moment to dodge my attack. The boss here is a masked guy holding a bunch of giant lanterns... then when you beat him and rescue the cat boss, he explains that he's part of a group of cats that protect the land of Edo.. and that these masked people are part of a group called the Otafu army, who have kidnapped Princess Yuki and found a way to block the cats' powers.
The 3rd level is an amusement park.. it is basically the minigame level. A whole bunch of minigames here to distract yourself with... there's no platformer/boss battle section, and beating the level only involves walking north across a bridge and killing a giant octopus.
The 4th level... this is where the platforming actually gets interesting. With gimmicks like switching between background/foreground, switches that rotate the stage around, a spinning platforms section, a trick path that leads you back to the beginning, and a weird slot machine section... The boss of this level is a couple of sumo guys, they are very easy, just throw ryo at their faces. After that, Yae appears, and says that we should go to mean the wise man in Iga... no other information given. I kinda like how this game is being intentionally vague with its story and only revealing little bits at a time.
By the 5th level, this game isn't messing around anymore. This level's 2D section is the Ninja Castle.. it's full of situations where if you get hit by an enemy or a spike, the recoil will usually guarantee you fall into a pit and die. I got game over here quite a few times, but found that it's not so bad after learning to deal with all the obstacles and knowing what to expect coming up. There are a couple of optional areas you can go to where you can get a gold cat doll (which temporarily increases your max health), and an elephant doll (which acts as a checkpoint).
The boss of this level is a bunch of ninjas on a kite. The last one is Sasuke, the robot ninja... This is the first boss I actually had trouble with, too. It wasn't until I was able to make it through the entire 2D section while keeping my armor and pizza, that I was finally able to beat him. After that, you meet the wise man, who says that you have to go to Izumo to get the white mirror next (again being very vague with the details)... he says that he can send us their using his new invention, the "Miracle Transport Machine", which is actually just a cannon. and it malfunctions and shoots us to the wrong place.
So, this game is where Sasuke and the wise man who built him are both introduced... I've never gotten this far when I played it before (probably gave up at the 4th or 5th level when the game started to get harder), but I'll beat it this time.