New Game Minus
Check it out! RetroHate has leveled up and will now be a regular feature on 1MC! Be afraid for your childhood. Be very afraid.
So today I’m turning the LHC (Large Haetron Cannon) on a single game (or series) that has frustrated me and many others to no end: Ghosts n Goblins. This arcade/NES game and its subsequent series is widely known as possibly the most difficult game of all time. Part of this is due to the fact that you can only get hit twice; once you lose your armor, twice you lose your skin. Another thing that makes the game so gruelingly, “Nintendo/arcade hard” (“Dark Souls hard” for you younger gaming whipper-snappers) is that the game deliberately tries to screw you at every turn: Zombies continually and randomly pop up from the ground, even beneath your feet; enemies constantly flood every part of the screen, re-spawning if you so much as walk two steps backwards; wizards cast spells that turn you into a frog; your weapon is slow & weak; weapon “upgrades” can actually hinder you from progressing in the game; and the overall level design is designed to make things as difficult as inhumanly possible.
But here’s the kicker: When you beat the game, if you beat the game, YOU HAVE TO DO IT AGAIN!! Apparently the the final boss room is, and I quote: “an illusion and is a trap devised by Satan, Go ahead Dauntlessly! Make Rapid progress!” Ok, poor translations aside, fine. So I just have to fight Satan again. I can do that. I’ve already made it this far.
I have to play the entire game over again? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!? I JUST MURDERED THE ENTIRE HOST OF HELL, INCLUDING SATAN HIMSELF, IN MY UNDERPANTS!! NOW I HAVE TO DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN? Why? This makes absolutely no sense. This is worse than Mario and the whole “your princess is in another castle” thing. At least there you kept playing different levels so there was some sense of progression. Here, there is none. You have to beat the same game twice before the game will even recognize your success.
This is a part of the “arcade mentality” that I really hate; setting you up for failure just so you’ll stick more quarters in the machine. It may make economical sense in an arcade, but on consoles it just frustrates and annoys, especially when it’s something as cheap as “oh that brutally difficult game you just beat wasn’t real, go do it again”. I like a good challenge as much as the next person, but when your game reaches Kobayashi Maru status, I get turned off. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go play Dark Souls.