Sunday, 2 May 2010

Danan the Jungle Fighter (Master System)

Danan the Jungle Fighter isn't a very well known game. Most Master System games aren't that well known on the internet to begin with, but this is pretty obscure even among those.
It's a platform game, but with a bit of dialogue here and there (not much by today's standards, but tons compared to most 8-bit games) and it has experience points and equipment. The plot is okay, better than most 8-bit games: in ancient times, a legendary warrior sealed away an evil god and saved the world, and now the tribe next door is trying to bring back that evil god. This is all pretty routine stuff for a videogame plot, until about halfway through the game, you get to the shocking twist that it's actually an army of psuedo-nazis trying to resurrect the evil god, to turn the tide of a war they're losing. There's even a surprising bit of vague racism when you meet one of the Nazi bosses. The end of the game is a bit rubbish. You "fight" some evil priest guy, which looks more like you're repeatedly stabbing him in the bum, then the evil god appears, and dies incredibly easily. I don't know how not-hitler expected to win the war with that thing's aid when it can be easily defeated by a half naked man with a knife. Sorry about the spoilers, if anyone was planning to go and play this game.
The levelling up via experience points only raises your max HP, to make your attacks more powerful, you have to find the knives that are hidden in the game. Not very well hidden, though.
The graphics are pretty good, and the animation, though simple, looks nice enough. Danan's attack animation looks like he's shanking someone, prison style, though. The music is boring and repetitive, but you'll probably barely even notice it's there.
Oh! Another thing, you can collect monkey faces, that allow you to summon animal helpers. But you never will, they're a bit useless, and the game never gets hard enough that you need any help anyway.
And that's the main problem with Danan: it's both easy and short. It's less than an hour from start to finish, which wouldn't be a problem, if it weren't for the fact that you'll probably finish it on your first go. There is an option at the start to take either the normal route, or "A Very Rugged Path", which is supposedly harder, but the guy doesn't actually let you take the rugged path. i thought it would possibly be unlocked after finishing the game, but that's not it either. Strange.