riostarwind's Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap (eShop) (Nintendo Switch) review

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A new coat of paint may update this yet that doesn't mean the gameplay manages to retain its luster.

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From one direct remake to another with one very notable difference. While Punch Out had added new challenges this is 100% the same game with a new coat of paint. Sure they did add in Wonder Girl mode but other than it being awesome it adds very little to the overall game. Which leaves me pondering if a old Sega Master System game can still be fun to this day.

Being able to swap directly to the old game at a touch of a button is always a nice touch.
Being able to swap directly to the old game at a touch of a button is always a nice touch.

Storywise Wonder Boy has traveled through the land to face the dreaded Dragon that rules over all. After felling the beast it turns out he had one last trick up his sleeve since he curses the boy that slayed him. Now in Dragon form he heads out to find out how to retain his original form. Afterward the game pretty much leaves it up to the player to figure out where they must go to continue. Since each form has a unique power it is pretty obvious where you’ll have to go since the world isn’t that big.

Combat is rather basic no matter which form you end up being they all have similar attacks. The Dragon can spit a few fireballs, the mouse has normal attacks while being able to climb walls, the fishman can swim, the lion is really strong and finally the bird form can fly. Each of these forms must be used to solve dungeons to complete the game. While each form changes slightly it never changes how the game is laid out. The same enemies you face at the beginning will just show up again later with the main new aspect being that they do more damage now.

Making use of the right form does make their unique sections easier.
Making use of the right form does make their unique sections easier.

The game is rather short but it did start to get repetitive pretty quick. Sure each form may be slightly different but the gameplay remains the same. Roam around and kill stuff. No real puzzles other than the really cool final level that makes use of all forms. The extra challenge rooms are interesting too. Yet the obvious awesome thing about this package is the art and music. From that angle this is great if only the gameplay held up better.

Overall I just didn’t enjoy playing this that much. The world just doesn’t make use of the extra powers in a way that made me want to come back to play more once the credits were over. Sure when they were making it all they wanted to do is create a simple action game and it is that. Yet that also means I don’t think it really holds up in a modern sense. If you were were of fan of this series I expect it might hold up better for you. Otherwise it is a very lovely looking game that might be a bit to simple.

Other reviews for Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap (eShop) (Nintendo Switch)

    Far away from mucky muck 0

    This remake feels like it should be the template for retro remakes. The core game has problems, sure, owed to the obtuse nature of open world action/adventure games of its era (think of it as a far less impenetrable cousin to Castlevania II: Simon's Quest), but the care that developer Lizardcube put into this game's audio/visual makeover and the work they did to preserve the original release's look and sound should be the benchmark for how these sorts of things are handled.The newly drawn art st...

    1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

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