Author Topic: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)  (Read 14134 times)

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Offline Yoshidious

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #25 on: April 21, 2009, 11:51:27 AM »
This game is a favourite of mine, the "let's go 'round again" ending notwithstanding. I've played through it a number of times recently on GBA (both through the original game and the "arranged" mode with new and harder levels), but I popped in my Super Famicom cart for the first time in a while this week.

One thing that is very noticeable to me having played the Supergrafx version of the arcade Ghouls 'n Ghosts recently is how much more deliberately paced the Super NES game is. The walking speed is considerably slower,  and the inability to shoot upwards (swapped for the double jump) means that patience and care are definitely needed at times, but then at other times you need to know when to take your opportunity and run into space when it's there.

The levels are also a lot more drawn out in Super GnG, with sections like the scrolling raft sequence or rotating towers being way way longer than the parts in the arcade GnG. For the most part these are imaginative and challenging enough to sustain their length nicely, but the final levels seem to be lacking a bit of inspiration--gone are the parallax scrolling and big set pieces (tidal waves, avalanches etc) of the early levels, and instead we have simple backgrounds and repeating bosses. A case of being a little too faithful to previous games in the series perhaps, but the rest of the game is still great while it lasts.
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #26 on: April 21, 2009, 12:06:46 PM »
One thing that is very noticeable to me having played the Supergrafx version of the arcade Ghouls 'n Ghosts recently ....

Any idea how the Supergrafx version compares to the Genesis port?  We don't have the Supergrafx version in the US, so if I wanted to play it I'd have to settle for presumably inferior the Genesis version.  Is it still worth playing?

EDIT:  I guess the first question I should ask is should I even bother playing Ghouls 'n Ghosts after playing Super GNG or is it simply not as good as its sequel?

I don't really have much interest in playing the original Ghosts 'n Goblins.  Forgive my saying so, but the hardware seems a bit too primitive for the game concept.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2009, 12:09:19 PM by vudu »
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Offline Yoshidious

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #27 on: April 21, 2009, 12:16:01 PM »
Well, I haven't played the Genesis version, so I can't give you a first hand account of how they compare. With that said, from reading various impressions and watching videos, I thought that the Supergrafx version looked somewhat better, especially with respect to the animation on things like the bosses. There's also some extra detail in places, subtle stuff but definitely noticeable. The Genesis version still looks pretty close, and some people apparently prefer the music in that one (can't say as I prefer one over the other in that regard personally) so it may not be so bad to settle for that though.

One possibility to consider now is that the arcade version could come to VC Arcade, which is much more of a significant upgrade from the Supergrafx version than that is to the Genesis version, but even if that does happen I imagine we could be waiting a good while yet before it becomes available.
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #28 on: April 21, 2009, 01:34:01 PM »
Look what I found!  (Man, the Internet has everything these days ....)

Comparison: Ghouls n' Ghosts Genesis vs SuperGrafx

Verdict:  Supergrafx version looks better.  Both play about the same.  Genesis version has unlimited continues; Supergrafx version has only 3 continues.

I'd probably have to go with Genesis version if both were available here--a good part of the reason why I'm not frustrated by dying in Super GNG is due to the almost unlimited continues the game gives you.  If I were limited to 3 continues I doubt I'd ever beat the game (or even see the better half of it).
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Offline Yoshidious

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #29 on: April 21, 2009, 01:48:18 PM »
You aren't actually limited to 3 continues in the Supergrafx version--before the game begins, if you enter the Konami code (weird I know given its an NEC port of a Capcom game) it gives you an extra credit like putting a coin the in the arcade machine, so you can have pretty much as many as you like. The Genesis version also has more checkpoints in levels as I understand it, which would make it a fair bit easier in that sense too.
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #30 on: April 21, 2009, 01:58:26 PM »
The Genesis version also has more checkpoints in levels as I understand it, which would make it a fair bit easier in that sense too.

According to the video I linked to if you died on the first boss in the Genesis version you'd restart immediately before him.  In the Supergrafx version you'd start at the halfway point (like in Super GNG).
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #31 on: April 21, 2009, 05:33:23 PM »
Just beat the game.  And by "beat" I mean "got sent back to the beginning".

It's quite as soul-crushing because I knew it was going to happen.  Still, I can only imagine being a ten-year old boy who valiantly fought his way to the end, only to be sent back to the beginning unexpectedly.
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Offline adadad

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #32 on: April 21, 2009, 05:56:21 PM »
As ridiculously defensive this must sound, I didn't find repeating the game to be too bad. It was a huge shock of course but when I started again it was satisfyingly easy (OK, easier...). Anyway it definitely ensures that the player has mastered the double jump and then some! Bit like what the guys said on RFN about Super Metroid not making the most of it's final sequence, I'd argue that the final boss here is too easy and simple after such a hard, artificially doubled endeavour!!

Offline Dasmos

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #33 on: April 21, 2009, 08:21:52 PM »
I like the daggers as the best overall weapon.  However, they all seem to have their purpose (except the damn fire bomb).

The lance is good if you need a weapon that shoots straight but hits a little harder than the dagger.  It's good if you have a lot of enemies that you need to jump to hit.

The ax is good if there are small enemies that are hard to hit (because it has a wide range of attack due to its loops).

Arrows are good if you have a lot of enemies that are much higher than you are.

The scythe isn't the best weapon if you're wearing normal armor, but if you have the magical armor it's pretty powerful.

The fire bomb is the only one that I find completely worthless.  It's hard to hit most enemies due to it's short range and awkward throwing arch.

The Daggers or Arrows are the only really useful ones as the fire the fastest and the upgraded arrows are homing. The other weapons are useable, but I'd only use them if I accidentally got a weapon from a enemy or back into a weapon I had jumped over or something. As vudu said the only completely unusable one is the fire-thing. There is honestly no situation where it has an advantage over another weapon.

Well I'm upto stage 4 I think, haven't played it for too long though.
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #34 on: April 22, 2009, 11:25:42 AM »
I have two complaints about Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts.

The first is that the bosses are pretty forgettable.  After playing some great Treasure games lately, these guys just don't stand up.  In fact, I can't even remember what the boss of the second level looks like and I just beat him a week ago.  They're not flashy.  They're not especially difficult.  They're just ... there.

The second complaint is that from level 4 until the end of the game you need to use the arrows.  It's not just that the arrows are the best weapon to use--the other weapons will actually hurt your chances of progressing.  There were a few times when I accidentally picked up another weapon and I wasted several lives until I got the arrows back; I just couldn't progress through the game without the arrows.  Most of these levels involve climbing and/or enemies flying above you; if you don't have the arrows you're going to find it incredibly difficult to hit them.  The last two bosses (not counting the final boss that I haven't fought yet) are invulnerable everywhere except their head.  Fighting them with any other weapon would be pretty difficult.  I really wish a little more thought went into weapon balance.
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Offline Dasmos

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #35 on: April 22, 2009, 06:31:19 PM »
I disagree, I basically use nothing but the daggers. I mean I can see the use of the arrows, but I personally don't use them at all.
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #36 on: April 22, 2009, 07:46:47 PM »
So I've started my second way through the game.  I'm up to level 3 and finally got the bracelet.  Due to its limited range, it kinda sucks.  Do I have to keep it until the end of the game, or can I get another weapon and then just grab the bracelet on the last level?  Speaking of which, what happens if I get to the end of the game and I don't have the bracelet--does it send me all the way back to the beginning again?
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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #37 on: April 23, 2009, 04:30:00 PM »
So I've started my second way through the game.  I'm up to level 3 and finally got the bracelet.  Due to its limited range, it kinda sucks.  Do I have to keep it until the end of the game, or can I get another weapon and then just grab the bracelet on the last level?  Speaking of which, what happens if I get to the end of the game and I don't have the bracelet--does it send me all the way back to the beginning again?

You can change weapon and it's not a problem, you only have to have it at the end of the last level. If you do for some reason beat the boss with a different weapon it'll send you back, but only one level. So the last level with all the annoying flying, swooping orange guys.

I'd recommend forgetting about the bracelet until the final level and then if you can get good at the level it should be relatively easy after a bit of practice to get the bracelet and get to the boss. You just have to make sure you explore fully in order to get all of the treasure chests in the correct order (it's a simple linear order so this isn't usually a problem). I'll give you some help now by telling you that there are 5 chests, the first one is useless as it is always a weapon and the subsequent four give the armour upgrades etc and finally the bracelet on the last one. After you get the bracelet it is worth trying to keep the magic armour for the bosses as the weapon is more powerful with it (difficult to see the difference as the attack looks almost the same). As you can probably imagine already, the laser firing, fire breathing last but one bosses are a bitch with the bracelet - as you said earlier the arrows are very useful for them as you don't have to get in harm's way to attack.

Hope this helps!

Offline Jonnyboy117

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #38 on: April 25, 2009, 07:44:44 AM »
Could someone please tell me how to survive the tidal wave in the first level?

And boy do I hate the jumping controls in this game.
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #39 on: April 25, 2009, 07:49:26 AM »
You need to be on the tall pillars when the wave hits.

The jumping takes some getting used to.  Keep in mind you don't have to wait until you're at the top of your first jump to perform a double jump.  If you need to cross a gap that's just out of reach jump and then jump immediately afterward--you'll travel farther than you would with only a single jump and you won't overshoot your target.
Why must all things be so bright? Why can things not appear only in hues of brown! I am so serious about this! Dull colors are the future! The next generation! I will never accept a world with such bright colors! It is far too childish! I will rage against your cheery palette with my last breath!

Offline Yoshidious

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #40 on: April 25, 2009, 11:51:45 AM »
You need to be on the tall pillars when the wave hits.

I believe you also have to be crouching when the wave hits--think of it as Capcom's version of the "duck and cover" method for surviving a nuclear blast.
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #41 on: April 25, 2009, 11:52:49 AM »
You're certainly free to duck, but you don't have to.  (I didn't.)
Why must all things be so bright? Why can things not appear only in hues of brown! I am so serious about this! Dull colors are the future! The next generation! I will never accept a world with such bright colors! It is far too childish! I will rage against your cheery palette with my last breath!

Offline Jonnyboy117

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #42 on: April 25, 2009, 04:07:32 PM »
You need to be on the tall pillars when the wave hits.

Thanks.

Quote
The jumping takes some getting used to.  Keep in mind you don't have to wait until you're at the top of your first jump to perform a double jump.

I don't think you understand -- I know how the jumping works.  I can do it.  I just hate it.  I hate that you cannot change direction, ever, in mid-air.  Super Mario Bros. pioneered mid-air controls in the mid-80s, and it basically made platformers playable.  That Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts does not take advantage of this advancement, even by the early 90s, is an unacceptable controls faux pas for me.  It makes the game beyond frustrating, even before you account for the enemies that spawn in thin air immediately in front of you.

Is there any material difference among the difficulty settings?  I couldn't identify anything when I dropped it from Normal to Easy, except maybe more continues.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2009, 04:42:36 PM by Jonnyboy117 »
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #43 on: April 25, 2009, 06:06:08 PM »
I hate that you cannot change direction, ever, in mid-air.  Super Mario Bros. pioneered mid-air controls in the mid-80s, and it basically made platformers playable.  That Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts does not take advantage of this advancement, even by the early 90s, is an unacceptable controls faux pas for me.

From the NWR VC Mondays review:

Quote
The restrictive jumping system actually takes a lot of the blame off the game if you die, since you need to be aware where you'll land when you hit the jump button.

Long live Windy.
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Offline Jonnyboy117

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #44 on: April 25, 2009, 10:30:31 PM »
I'm not surprised Windy likes this game.  I strongly disagree with both of you that the restrictive jumping makes the game better or somehow imbues it with a special kind of player accountability, especially when enemies frequently appear in your trajectory after you hit the jump button.  (This is particularly common after the second jump, when you are fully committed.)

This discussion reminds me of how Resident Evil fans used to claim that its poor controls and awkward camera angles made it a better game.  Then RE4 fixed those flaws, and the series reached new heights of greatness.  I can certainly see a lot of promising elements in SGnG, most of which were also in Ghosts 'n Goblins too.  But this series could never become anything I would consider great or even fun with such awful controls.

There are two things I like about SGnG: the music and the spin-offs.  Gargoyle's Quest, Demon's Crest, and Maximo are all far better games.
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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #45 on: April 26, 2009, 01:10:29 AM »
Jonny first of all every videogame you have to take accountability for all of your actions in games. You mess up in your decision making abilities you are going to pay for it. Weather it is not judging the distance of a jump in Megaman or Alerting your self to some guards in a stealth game.

Second of all I don't think anybody said that RE old controls made them better games.


Finally just take your time through the levels. Analyze the problems and deal with them then move on.
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Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #46 on: April 26, 2009, 07:28:41 AM »
I strongly disagree with both of you that the restrictive jumping makes the game better or somehow imbues it with a special kind of player accountability, especially when enemies frequently appear in your trajectory after you hit the jump button. 

I'm not arguing that the restrictive jumping makes the game better.  I'm arguing that it was a choice the developers made and it works within the confines of the game and level design.  The jumping system wouldn't work in Super Mario Bros because the levels aren't built around it.  But Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts was designed around the jumping system.  There are very few platform sections in the game, and the ones that are there generally have few (or no) enemies.

Have you tried using the arrows?  They're weak, but because of the angle they fire at, you don't need to jump to hit airborne enemies.  Might make things a bit easier.
Why must all things be so bright? Why can things not appear only in hues of brown! I am so serious about this! Dull colors are the future! The next generation! I will never accept a world with such bright colors! It is far too childish! I will rage against your cheery palette with my last breath!

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #47 on: April 26, 2009, 05:31:46 PM »
I'm not surprised Windy likes this game.  I strongly disagree with both of you that the restrictive jumping makes the game better or somehow imbues it with a special kind of player accountability, especially when enemies frequently appear in your trajectory after you hit the jump button.  (This is particularly common after the second jump, when you are fully committed.)

This discussion reminds me of how Resident Evil fans used to claim that its poor controls and awkward camera angles made it a better game.  Then RE4 fixed those flaws, and the series reached new heights of greatness.  I can certainly see a lot of promising elements in SGnG, most of which were also in Ghosts 'n Goblins too.  But this series could never become anything I would consider great or even fun with such awful controls.

I don't quite understand your take on it Johnny, firstly why would you go around jumping all the time directly into enemies? Sure you have to jump up their height sometimes to attack them and you have to be careful about it but that's it. I think the game is designed well enough that this never becomes an issue so I'd be interested to know what is giving you difficulties. The only part of the game where I could ever consider your comment to be slightly true (I say slightly because I never had any particular difficulties so it's hard for me to relate) is in the second half of the first level with those pink things that start small and then swell up.

Secondly I find the jumping controls to be a bit of a breath of fresh air. It's nice and simple with some mastery to it and once you know how the system works then you know that every jump is the same distance, there is no question of how far the player can jump and as a result the platforming sections are a lot more fun than games that require tricky pixel perfect platforming. It's just a change in emphasis and I don't think it's fair to equate this with tank controls. There's no worrying about Arthur's momentum to make a jump and it's rare that you're required to ever push the limits of how far you can jump platform to platform if you see what I mean. I find it a relaxing turn of pace from something like Super Mario Bros. Actually let's just say I found SGnG a hell of a lot less frustrating than SMB and especially the Lost Levels (you think SGnG is hard compared to this mofo?!), not because of the difficulty but because there's a pure platformer and there's SGnG, and for the most part I prefer the Ghouls and Ghosts style - it's an entirely different sort of game.

Ok that's that done and dusted. No offence Johnny.

Offline vudu

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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #48 on: April 26, 2009, 07:01:25 PM »
The only part of the game where I could ever consider your comment to be slightly true (I say slightly because I never had any particular difficulties so it's hard for me to relate) is in the second half of the first level with those pink things that start small and then swell up.

I think the last part of the 7th level requires some pretty tricky jumping (in fact, it's really the only tricking jumping part of the whole game).  First you run against two of the bird heads that shoot fire balls, which--if you get unlucky--can trap you quite easily.  Immediately after that, the section with the ghosts can be difficult to get past because they spawn from all directions.
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Re: Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (RetroActive #5 Discussion)
« Reply #49 on: April 27, 2009, 09:45:15 AM »
The only part of the game where I could ever consider your comment to be slightly true (I say slightly because I never had any particular difficulties so it's hard for me to relate) is in the second half of the first level with those pink things that start small and then swell up.

I think the last part of the 7th level requires some pretty tricky jumping (in fact, it's really the only tricking jumping part of the whole game).  First you run against two of the bird heads that shoot fire balls, which--if you get unlucky--can trap you quite easily.  Immediately after that, the section with the ghosts can be difficult to get past because they spawn from all directions.

Ok I will concede on these points, but if you're playing the 7th level with the bracelet then those bird heads are easy - with the magic armour your attack destroys their fireballs. Ghosts were occasionally a problem, I guess the trick is just to run as fast as you can, but they're extremely predictable, because there's the swirl of mist to indicate where one will appear, and if I remember rightly, once the ghost has started on its trajectory it stays on it then in a straight line.