Moonwalker review - Sega Master System
The plastic pop star strikes back! Michael Jackson, all-round good guy and champion of "the kids" makes it to his own console game, based on the "massive" movie.
In case you didn't know, Mr Big has kidnapped all of the kids and is ready to subject them to the horrors of drugs! Michael is a bit miffed at this to say the least, and pausing only to jump into his Smooth Criminal designer gear, decides to risk five levels of Mr Big's domain in an effort to rescue the kids and bring Mr Big to justice. Hooray!
There's four rounds to each level and in each, Michael has to run around the platform environment dishing out magical death to any crony that decides to cross his path. Our hero must search the level, opening doors and moving scenery to find and rescue the kids. When all the kids have been safely rescued, Mr Big appears and sends some of his most terrifying henchmen to try and dispatch Michael.
When they're safely out of the way, it's on to the next round with yet more kids to rescue. Each level has its own Michael soundtrack, including the funky Smooth Criminal, Beat It and Bad!
What the Mean Machines staff thought
The Master System version of Moonwalker manages to capture just about everything from the Megadrive game, and even manages to add some features that weren't in the original. There's only a couple of problems. The walk-around-and-find-the-kids gameplay is very repetitive and after a while it becomes more of a chore than anything else. Also, Megadrive Moonwalker scores because of the amazing audio-visuals. The formation dancing and Michael's various "oohs!" and "aaows!" are missing from the Master System game, and the music isn't astounding. The graphics and gameplay make the game initially very addictive though, but do try to see the game in action before purchase.
I'm amazed at how close this is to the Megadrive version - the graphics are very similar indeed, and the game plays very much in the same way. It's pretty good fun at first, and there's plenty of high-kicking action as you wend your way around the landscape freeing the kiddies from their captors. However, the difficulty level isn't set very high, so experts will find themselves finishing the game pretty quickly. Moonwalker is a fun game with plenty of neat touches, but if you're a competent player, try before you buy.