Friday, 27 February 2015

Lei Nu Ji Shen (Game Boy Color)

It seems like it's been a long time since I featured a Game Boy game, and even longer since I featured a Chinese pirate original. Lei Nu Ji Shen (possibly also known as "Future Robot") stands out from the usual Chinese crowd by eschewing most of their common flaws.

As far as I can tell, though the look of the main character (and the game in general) is definitely heavily influenced by 90s mecha anime, the setting is original. The visual presentation in general is of a particularly high standard, with nice backgroundsand detailed sprites. There are also some amazing looking full screen graphics for an intro and ending and also for static post-boss screens. The music doesn't live up to the looks though, being a shrill, beeping cacophony.

The game itself is a cut above the norm too, as the controls are tight, if not original, and the game is actually at a playable level of difficulty. The way your robot plays is just like Megaman: he can jump, he can shoot three normal shots or one charge shot, and he can dash/slide by pressing down and jump together. The only addition is that the robot in this game can also double jump. There's even an idle animation, which is just another way Lei Nu Ji Shen shows the extra bit of polish it has above its peers.

The stage design is unfortunately the game's weakest point after the music, as every stage consists of walking from left to right, while constantly shooting and occasionally jumping over a bottomless pit. Even the combat is boring, since there's rarely ever more than one enemy onscreen at a time. The boss fights add a bit of variety, though the stages between them seem to be incredibly long.

Although Lei Nu Ji Shen is, as I've said, a lot better than the usual pirate original, especially the ones that appear on 8-bit consoles, I can't recommend it. Even though it does look really great, it's just not very exciting to play at all.

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