Saturday 29 June 2024

Keith Courage in Alpha Zones (TurboGrafx-16 / PC Engine review)

Developer: Advance Communication Company
Publisher: Hudson Soft, NEC
Released: 1989

Keith Courage in Alpha Zones is an action-platformer that was packed-in with the console in North America.

+ Has similarities to Wonder Boy in Monster Land (1988, Sega Master System) in terms of gameplay and upgrade options.

+ Being able to upgrade weapons is a great incentive to keep playing, and the game even affords you unlimited continues.

- Level design leaves a lot to be desired, as there's copy/pasted layouts and little difference between each area.

- Overworld areas only feature rudimentary platforming, while underworld sections include far too many leaps of faith.

- Relentless enemy respawning, as they attack incessantly from all angles and often knock you back into instant death pits.

- Grinding to pay for more powerful weapons can be excessive, especially as your coins halve with each continue used.

- Controls never feel tight enough, as they're too stiff in the overworld and too slippery when adopting the Nova Suit.

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