|After getting the mouse form from the mummy dragon in the desert world, I noticed a couple new paths from the town are now opened up... there's the upper part of the tall building, that leads to the desert/pyramid, which just has a shop with a bunch of expensive items that I don't have enough charm for... and then there's the path to the west of town... That way leads to the forest. it's a long easy path (made even easier when you have the boomerang, an item you can use infinitely as long as you re-catch it), and then a long mouse climbing section with slightly harder enemies... then you get to the zombie dragon, and beating him gets you the Piranha-Man form.|
With this form, you can swim in the water instead of just walking slowly. There's an underwater section in the desert with some extra stuff to find... and then there's the water/island section to the east of town which I explored before as the dragon to find the key to the desert tower... a bunch more stuff here that I need to come back for later... I'm a lot more powered up, but now where do I go from here? Oh yeah, there's that path to the east of the desert, which I was way too weak for when I was the dragon...
Now I can get through this rocky lava pit area easily... found a shop with a "Dragon Armor" which is weaker than my current armor, but it protects you from lava, which is needed to make further progress... then I got to the first "Form-switching room" in the game. I switched to the mouse in order to get up to a treasure containing a sword powerup... not equipment, but an actual ability that lets you destroy the breakable blocks... great I totally forgot where those are.
Back at town, I found there's an easy access form-switching room you get get to by breaking a block... explored some more to find some more shops/treasure, and then eventually found a new path in the island beach area leading to a sunken ship level... this place was very easy with all the new armor I've got.. then I killed the very easy pirate dragon boss, and got the Tiger-Man form.
The very obvious new path that is opened with Tiger-Man is some breakable blocks you can only hit with the Tiger's vertical sword swing, which goes to a path below the town with another shop, some stuff I need to come back with the mouse form for, and a long tunnel leading to an old style Japanese manor in the forest. This series of hallways inside the house is the longest and toughest part of the game yet... it's not too bad if I have a boomerang with me, but without that I get destroyed by the blue samurai enemies and ninjas... I had my first death of the game on the way through this area...
Made it to the 2nd last boss in the game, the samurai dragon... this one is actually really hard! You have pathetic horizontal attack range in the Tiger-Man form, and the samurai dragon always hits me whenever I try to go into attack... so I'm guessing I have to really quickly go to attack it just before it does its projectile attack? Died against this boss without even getting a hit in.
A theme I'm noticing with this game is VERY long repetitive corridors... I guess they're supposed to be like the linear stages of the normal Wonder Boy. By the time you're at these linear parts, you pretty much already know where to go and you just have to deal with the "action" part of the game to finish that "world" consisting of several "stages" and get to the boss... it's a pretty clever way of blending the classic Wonder Boy gameplay with the nonlinear metroid style gameplay...