Wonder Boy in Monster Land (Sega Master System, 1988)
|Wonder Boy in Monster Land is the sequel to Wonder Boy. Eleven years have passed since Wonder Boy, then known as Tom-Tom, defeated the evil king. In this game you must take control of Wonder Boy and defeat the Meka Dragon.
Meka Dragon has moved his army of monsters into the once peaceful Wonder Land. As a result, Wonder Land is now known only as Monster Land. Take Wonder Boy through 12 levels filled with monsters and mayhem. Collect gold to use for the purchase of weapons, armor, shields, helmets, and shoes.
Stop at stores, taverns, and hospitals to become more powerful on your way to stop the Meka Dragon in Wonder Boy in Monster Land.
Wonder Boy has a life meter which consists of a series of red hearts; he starts the game with five red hearts. Whenever he sustains damage those hearts turn black. When all the hearts turn black, Wonder Boy dies, and the game ends. Players score points whenever Wonder Boy defeats enemies and collects certain treasures, and at certain point intervals Wonder Boy receives an additional life heart. Players earn gold throughout the game in order to purchase weapons, magic weapons, and other items in shops and rooms. Gold is obtained from enemies, while some are hidden in odd places such as trees and clouds. The game has an "Hourglass Timer" on the top of the screen; whenever the Hourglass Timer runs out, Wonder Boy loses some life. The Hourglass Timer can be refilled by collecting hourglasses or by visiting hospitals or taverns.
In the Master System version of the game, pressing one of the buttons takes players to the Status Screen which primarily shows what items they currently have. Other information displayed in the Status Screen include types and strengths of weapons and armor equipped; gold; life remaining; special items collected; and types of "Magic Weapons" collected and their quantities. Magic Weapons include bombs that roll on the ground, fireballs that fly through the air, small tornadoes that run on the ground and attack enemies, and "thunder flash" which damage all enemies on the screen.
Throughout the game, the player must investigate the surroundings through finding and entering doors. These doors contain shops where players can buy equipment, rooms which provide additional information needed in the quest, traps which contain powerful enemies, and exits to the next level which can be opened after finding a key. Some of the doors in the game are hidden and can only be found through by trial and error. At the beginning of the game, shops are visible and are clearly marked with the appropriate signs. Later on in the game, as Wonder Boy gets closer to the MEKA Dragon, the shop doors become unmarked while others are traps set by the level's bosses; near the end of the game, many of the shops are invisible and contain more powerful weapons. There are four types of shops throughout the game: boot shops allow the player to buy boots which make Wonder Boy jump higher and run faster, armor shops contain armor which makes Wonder Boy incur less damage from enemy attacks, shield shops contain shields which allow him to repel fire from enemies, and magical shops allow players to purchase Magic Weapons. There are also various rooms in the game which the player can enter and receive additional assistance in the quest: taverns where players can buy drinks and receive information from the bartender, Fortune Teller rooms where players may receive information about future events, and hospitals which allow players to refill their life meter and Hourglass Timer for a small price. Other rooms contain a boss in which the player must defeat to get the key to the next level, to earn additional gold, or to upgrade to a more powerful sword.
The Master System version of the game was reviewed in the June 1988 issue of Computer and Video Games, which gave it an overall score of 9 out of 10. It described the game as a "total mix of arcade, strategy and adventure" with "role playing elements" such as "interaction with other characters and the ability to develop your character". It further stated that the "graphics rate as some of the best seen to date on a Sega game" and the "playability is supreme", concluding that it pushes its game design "to new horizons, all of which makes for longterm playability and interest". It was also reviewed in the April 1989 issue of Dragon by Hartley, Patricia, and Kirk Lesser in "The Role of Computers" column. The reviewers called it "a good game with a bad name", considered the game play superb, and concluded that the game "is one of SEGA's classic products". They stated that the arcade, strategy and role-playing action elements combine to make it "a truly original and enjoyable game" and that Sega has "done an excellent job" overall, giving the game 4½ out of 5 stars. Allgame also gave the game 4½ out of 5 stars, with reviewer Jonathan Sutyak describing it as "one of the best games I have ever played on the Master System". IGN in 2009 described the Virtual Console release as an "interesting platformer/RPG hybrid" game.
|Publisher||Sega of America, Inc.|
|Game||Wonder Boy in Monster Land|
|Platform||Sega Master System|
|Genre||Action/Adventure, Role Playing, Classic Arcade|
|Number of Players||1|
|Game Series||Wonder Boy Series|
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