Magic Sword review - Super Nintendo
It is said that the Brave One came to save civilisation. It is also said that he said, “I will battle the hosts of hell and destroy the evil crystal, Black Orb, so that light may live again. “And it is said that everybody else said, “Oh, nice one!” and there was much rejoicing at the fact that the village weirdo who wore nothing but pants was at last off to embarrass another community!
The Brave One's task is enormous. When he reaches the Dragon's Tower he must battle his way to the fiftieth floor, using his sword skills and magical abilities. Upon reaching the penthouse suite of the tower, he comes face to face with Drokmar (the Evil One) and the inevitable battle to the death commences.
Luckily, the task is not as arduous as it sounds. When the Brave One unlocks certain doors in the tower, a warrior labouring under a comparable psychosis, joins him in his quest. Also, there are hundreds of chests to open on the journey which might contain something handy (or something lethal if you're unlucky).
On certain floors one of Drokmar's strongest minions is waiting to pit its wits against our friendly meathead and his buddy. A new, more powerful sword is the prize for victory. And it is said that, should the Brave One restore light to the world, he might be forgiven for his pant fetish, providing he doesn't wear any beige or maroon ones!
What the Mean Machines staff thought
Visually this game is superb. The sprites and backdrops are all expertly drawn and the animation really brings the characters to life. The idea of involving another warrior also succeeds, providing a further dimension to the game. Also in its favour is the range of options the game possesses, especially the floor select option which cuts out the tedium of completing earlier levels. What I didn't like is the bland approach to the gameplay. It is purely a mater of slash, swipe and stab throughout all of the 50 levels. The only chance I had to refine my games playing skills was when I came up against one of the bosses. Before and after that, things continue in the same style. The same goes for the many items that can be accumulated. Whilst they prove useful, they do not do enough to make the gameplay any more exciting. Ultimately Magic Sword fails to impress because behind the visual spectacle is a game severely lacking in originality.
In its favour, Magic Sword is quite a large game with plenty of slash 'em up action and some very good ideas, like being able to change your companions on the quest. The graphics are also pretty good with some great characters to blow up in a variety of mystical ways. The music and spot effects serve to boost the atmosphere no end as well. So why isn't Magic Sword a mega game? It's quite simple. It's just far too repetitive for its own good. Once you've got over the variety in all the different companions and worked out which objects are the best, there is very little more in the gameplay to provide. The shoot 'em up/slashing action does not vary enough between each level and I must admit to getting pretty bored after ten stages. There are forty stages after that, but it was just too much of a chore to be worth bothering with. Magic Sword is okay, but is only recommended to people who really loved the coin-op and I doubt there are many of them to be honest.
I recently had the chance to rediscover this game thanks to it being included on Capcom's excellent Classics Collection Remixed on the Sony PSP. The Mean Machines guys are spot on once again. This is a lightweight game with very little in the way of originality. It plays a lot like Capcom's other fantasy platformer Black Tiger, but that had a lot more action in it. Magic Sword is simply a case of walk along, collect coins, slash baddies, pick up extra warrior, face boss and then repeat. It gets very boring after the first few levels and there is very little incentive to progress to the end.
Dan - 08 Apr 2009, 12:27 GMT
this was orate, defo not anywhere near a masterpeice, but there were loads of worse games out there. Ideal to lend or rent, but purchase was for the fools......