Like a zombie emerging from a graveyard, Capcom’s classic Ghosts ‘n Goblins series has come back to life and made its way onto Nintendo Switch in the form of Ghosts’ n Goblins Resurrection. But this storybook-style semi-sequel is anything but braindead, reinventing and remixing the best elements of the ’80s Ghosts’ n Goblins and Ghouls’ n Ghosts, and offering a plethora of flexible difficulty options to make it by far the best. more accessible. entry into the action platformer series to date. Of course, that doesn’t mean it’s still not as hard as coffin nails if you want it to.
Ghosts’ n Goblins Resurrection has come a long way from the simple sprites of early games – and from the slightly lumpy 3D look of Ultimate Ghosts and Goblins on the PSP, by the way. Everything from armored Sir Arthur to the show’s mainstays like pigs and cyclops has been hand-drawn and animated by the quirky movements of murderous shadow puppets, and staged in fantastical reinterpretations of Classic series levels like Graveyard and Crystal Forest (now Crystal City). As a result, Resurrection is the most visually striking and rich in personality Ghosts’ n Goblins game.To be honest, I’ve always seen most of her beauty through a red haze because despite its fairytale appearance, Ghosts’ n Goblins Resurrection is anything but child’s play. Hordes of demonic enemies continually reappear in each area to keep you perpetually attacked from all angles, which can be scary to endure but exhilarating to defeat. It constantly bothers you: you can never be sure that the hidden treasure chest you have discovered is home to gold-plated armor or a wizard waiting to morph you into a helpless frog.
Meanwhile, there is very little story to dig into during Arthur’s quest to save his damsel in distress from an evil demon lord, which seems like a missed opportunity to restart the lore in something that fits the bill. charm of artistic style. Instead, the only words uttered between “Once Upon a Time” and “Happily Ever After” were the series of roughly five-hour profanities I provided as I made my way to the climax of the resurrection.
Five hours isn’t exactly an epic length, but each of Resurrection’s seven levels introduces a series of unique gameplay twists that keep the action from ever getting stale and keeping me from relaxing into a beat. In one stretch, you could ride a series of stone dragons through the air while dodging giant electrified squids, which feels just as exhilarating and brutal as a roller coaster through a hailstorm. In another, you must simultaneously ward off the two zombie hordes and an intensifying sense of claustrophobia as a gaping mouth closes around all four edges of the screen, threatening you with rows of spindly teeth if you mess up. of a leap of millimeters.
Its playtime is extended a bit by the fact that after completing Resurrection the first time around, you have access to Shadow versions of each stage, which rearrange enemy types and locations and add environmental effects like fog to make the platform even more dangerous. I welcomed the challenge of playing through Resurrection a second time around as it cropped each stage like a whole new obstacle course, although I was slightly disappointed that the end-level boss fights in the regular stages and that their corresponding shadow shapes remain the same.
Pass the torch
There are eight different weapons Arthur needs to get his hands on, most of which have their own strengths and weaknesses – from the classic spear which can be lobed over long distances but only deals a medium amount of damage, to the hammer. which delivers a more devastating shockwave but forces you to get uncomfortably close to enemies to be effective. Some weapons are also better suited to certain environments than others, like the bladed discs that can be hovered over hilly terrain towards their target, or the spiked bullet that can be thrown like Donkey Kong’s barrels at Cascading platform sections in order to skittle the enemies below. .
Initially, you can only pick up one weapon at a time, which means that yes, during significant times of Resurrection you will likely find yourself struggling with that eternally useless bastard of a flaming torch. However, by collecting hidden “ shadow bees ” at each stage, you can upgrade Arthur with magic skills and abilities, and very early on beeline umbrella for the Kitted Out upgrade which allowed me to carry two or even three weapons in its fully upgraded form. Carrying a small arsenal made me better equipped to counter the different attack patterns of each boss fight, which felt like my eventual victories had been earned through my strategic intelligence rather than a blind luck.Arthur’s charge of magical powers can be configured between levels, and I regularly relied on them to save my bacon by throwing walls of fire to block swarms of death birds or briefly turning Arthur into a rock of stone to cross overwhelming zombie hordes. Use of these abilities is limitless, but there’s still a lot of risk involved in performing them, as charging them while holding the attack button leaves Arthur momentarily exposed. Their use should therefore be timed intelligently rather than just being seen as a last second win button.
Still, given the option, I’d probably trade almost all of those special attacks for the ability to double-jump or fire weapons on a diagonal axis, because even with these extra upgrades Arthur is still as stiff as the rigor mortis. as for its fixed – archery jump and foursome are concerned (with the exception of the crossbow, which shoots two bolts diagonally but cannot be fired in a straight line horizontally or vertically). I realize that Arthur’s rigid move set is by design and true to the arcade originals, but there were times in the later more pressured levels where I couldn’t be completely sure if the adhesion Resurrection’s steadfast resurrection to long-established boundaries Arthur was scratching a nostalgic itch or happily plucking old wounds.
Abandon the ghost
Arthur’s moves may be as stubborn as ever, but Resurrection’s difficulty options are surprisingly flexible. I chose to play on the second most difficult setting, “Knight”, and while I didn’t regret it, it made me sweat. Luckily, while you can’t permanently lower the overall difficulty once your quest begins, Resurrection still gives you a small amount of Mercy if and when you need it: Die multiple too many times in an area of control. , and you’ll be asked if you’d like to lower the difficulty for the rest of this level, thinning out enemy herds and reducing the amount of damage it takes to defeat the boss. Yes Resurrection of ghosts and goblins can be thought of as a side-scrolling form of sadomasochism, so these optional mid-level difficulty drops serve as a safe word for it. Your overall point bonus for completing the level is penalized, but it’s a small price to pay to keep your progress from stalling for too long, and I’m not too proud to admit that I gladly took these buoys. rescue on a handful of more desperate. occasions during my two playthroughs.
The two lower difficulty levels are even more accommodating. “ Squire ” allows Arthur to withstand more hits before collapsing into a pile of bones, and even lets you slow enemy movements to half speed if you’re still struggling to avoid their attacks. Meanwhile, “Page” is effectively divine mode, giving you the ability to respawn on the spot with unlimited lives rather than bringing your armored ass back to a checkpoint. I wouldn’t say this would be the perfect way for someone to experience the Resurrection, as a Ghosts’ n Goblins game that’s completely friction free is likely to have as short a runtime as Arthur’s underpants. , but there is certainly no harm in Capcom, including for the youngest. And before you die, fans are protesting, there’s always the extremely punishing “ Legend ” mode if you’d rather play Resurrection with gritted teeth and your controller’s well-being under constant threat.
It is also possible to play Resurrection in two-player co-op, which is a first for the series. However, since this is only a local multiplayer mode, I was unable to test it as part of this review process as the only potential co-op partners I have are my kids and they are way too many. young people to be exposed to it. the full extent of their father’s swearing vocabulary. Nonetheless, the inclusion of this feature, which allows a second player to act as a Guardian Angel by protecting the first from attacks or transporting them safely to more perilous expanses of terrain, is at the very least fair. another example of the inclusion of all players. The resurrection aims to be.