Review by GalagaFan
"A nonstop swarm of enemies lurching, flying and leaping toward you 100% of the time! What fun!"
Ghosts 'n Goblins: just say those three words and most gamers would probably cringe. Torturing countless people over the last 25+ years, Ghosts 'n Goblins is undoubtedly one of the hardest games ever made. Some people have the honor of saying they've conquered it, others can't get past the first stage. But one thing's for certain: it is a good game. It's just satanically difficult.
GRAPHICS: 6/10 - Although the game is nearly 30 years old, the graphics have held up fairly well. In terms of the NES, they're fine. Fire looks like fire, water looks like water, zombies look like... you get the point. It's standard NES graphics, so don't expect anything special.
STORY: 4/10 - It's your run-of-the-mill damsel-in-distress story: Arthur the knight and his maiden are resting near a graveyard (?) when suddenly, a demon in a white cape appears out of nowhere, swoops down and kidnaps the girl. Arthur then dawns his armor and sets out to rescue her. It's very straight-forward, and isn't exactly involving, but it works for the game.
CONTROLS: 6/10 - For first-time players, controlling Arthur will more than likely be awkward. His movement can be a little sluggish, which is especially annoying when enemies keep coming out of seemingly nowhere. Also, there's his jumping. Apparently, Capcom integrated realistic physics into Arthur's controls, because once you jump, you can only go in one direction: forward. If you miss a moving platform above the water, you're going for a swim. If an enemy pops out of nowhere, and is standing where you're supposed to land, you're going to collide with it. As for using weapons, it controls well: just a push of the button and he throws a dagger. (or sword, or fireball, or shield) The only real thing you need to worry about when playing the game is jumping: timing will be key if you want to save your fair maiden from the forces of Satan.
GAMEPLAY: 8/10 - This game will definitely keep you on your toes. As you progress to the right, you'll constantly be bombarded by attacks. You also have to be very careful: two hits and you're dead, three deaths and it's game over. Plus, one hit will leave poor Arthur to fight off the enemies in his underwear. Not exactly heroic when you have to face a giant leaping troll in nothing but your briefs. Nonetheless, it's still a fun game, even though it may leave you tearing your hair out. The difficulty gives you a great challenge, while not leaving you absolutely hopeless, so you don't feel cheated or that the game is being unfair.
REPLAY VALUE: 8/10 - Of course it has replay value! It'll take you at least 100 tries before you beat it, trying to master the game and not lose all your lives on one stage. It may become a little too frustrating, though, which might put some people off.
OVERALL: 6/10 - Ghosts 'n Goblins isn't a masterpiece, but it is a good game. It offers a huge, but not impossible, challenge for the player to overcome, and plays good too. The graphics are sub-par, the controls are a little annoying, and the story is plain but fitting, but these are all small cosmetic problems in the big picture. In the end, Ghosts 'n Goblins is an experience that will either leave you feeling like a champion, or, the more likely result, you'll walk away from a smashed controller with a headache and sore thumbs.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 04/16/12
Game Release: Ghosts 'n Goblins (US, 12/10/07)
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