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Many SPOILERS are contained throughout these posts. You have been warned!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Ganbare Goemon: Kurofune Tou no Nazo (GB) playthrough log

Ganbare Goemon: Kurofune Tou no Nazo screenshot Ganbare Goemon: Kurofune Tou no Nazo screenshot Ganbare Goemon: Kurofune Tou no Nazo screenshot
The North American version of this game was titled "Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon", but I don't like calling it that because this game is so bad, it's an insult to the N64 game that shares the same title.

This game is entirely in top-down perspective, just like the first GB Goemon game. However, it's worse than the first GB game in pretty much every conceivable way. The platforming is almost non-existent. Some screens just have a few holes on them which you can jump over without any problem.. most of the gameplay involves killing/avoiding enemies and playing minigames.

Also, you can't enter any houses other than shops/inns. All the NPCs are just standing outside their houses. Why? The first GB game let you go inside houses, this is some lazy shit.

Here's the intro story: "A mysterious group of bandits calling themselves the Black Ship Gang appears in a black ship and begins committing indiscriminate thefts."
Goemon: "Blast that Black Ship Gang! They're committing indiscriminate thefts!"
the first NPC you talk to: "Have you heard? The Black Ship Gang comes from the Black Ship!"

...yep, we're off to a great start.

The hit detection in this is kind of awful. You have to be exactly lined up with an enemy in order to hit them. Also I keep getting stuck on the corners of walls causing me to get hit more than I should.

Already this first level is starting to repeat its environments. I'm seeing the exact same rooms with slight variations over and over again. This level just goes on way too long, and there are no health pickups or shops other than at the beginning.. AND you only get one life, if you die you have to start the level over from the beginning. wtf?

The levels are very non-linear, and you have a Zelda-style map that lets you see where you've already been. The first objective in this level is to find this one NPC who teaches you to walk across a river on bamboo sticks. You have to beat a target shooting minigame to learn it. Then there's an easy boss, then you go through a bunch of identical looking caves, then another boss.. then when you beat this boss, he challenges you to a racing minigame where you just have to tap A.. it's practically impossible to beat without autofire. and also if you lose the minigame you get gameover and have to start over from the beginning. I'm not even gonna bother trying to beat this legit.

After you beat the minigame, the bad guy, Baron Skull, reveals this was all part of his plan and he captures Yae while you were distracted. This is why you can only play as Goemon, Ebisumaru or Sasuke in this game. They all have different movement mechanics but their attacks are basically the same.

The 2nd level is a village invaded by giant ants.
- some NPC: "I've failed. I may as well blow myself up with this bomb."
that's the village elder that you're supposed to find. you convince him that you'll get the bad guys and he gives you the bomb instead, which is needed to progress further in this level. Then a bunch more repeating caves.. the boss of this level challenges you to tug-of-war, which is another A mashing minigame.

Level 3 is a harbor town. You get a pass from someone by beating a dumb quiz game, and that lets you board the Black Ship itself. It seems the enemies here have actually gotten EASIER than they were at the beginning of the game. also I keep finding health upgrades in chests, so the game progressively gets easier as you go on... the boss here can be beaten just by standing in front of him and throwing shurikens... he challenges you to a "spot the difference" sort of minigame.. then a 2nd black ship appears.

This 4th level is just another identical looking ship, and all of the previous bosses are here and they all challenge you to different minigames.. like concentration, etc..

Then you get to the last level, Skeleton Island. This level has a town that I'm pretty sure looks identical to a previous town.. and then some identical caves with a couple of easy caveman bosses.. then you get to the last boss.

Baron Skull: "If I sacrifice a green-haired girl tonight, the Demon Karz will awaken! I will use the demon's power to rule the world!"
"What's this? You mean to fight me? In that case I'll run away then. Goodbye."

...what. he just abandons his plan right then and there. Yae is rescued and gives you the conch shell. Then you chase him to some other place, and then he declares he doesn't need to summon the demon anymore, and instead summons the Skull King. This starts an Impact battle.

This is about what you'd expect from an Impact battle on the gameboy. An arrow shows you which side of the screen the boss is about to pop up at, and you have to try and punch him before he attacks you.. repeat until he's dead. He gets a lot faster in later phases.. this is really the only part of the game I'd say is the least bit interesting. Unfortunately it still makes you start the whole level over again if you die once.. so I still have to use savestates to beat this broken game.

That was definitely the worst Goemon game yet.. I don't understand how they managed to fuck this one up so badly. The first GB game wasn't exactly a spectacular game either, but it was way better than this garbage.. Fortunately it's very short and I was able to beat it in one sitting. It seems like this game was just made as a lazy companion game to the N64 Mystical Ninja without any effort put into it.

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