Today I thought that I would entertain myself with a few games of Ghouls 'n Ghosts, a classic platformer and a fantastic Atari ST conversion by Software Creations for US Gold. However, I only ended up laughing out loud whilst I suffered numerous deaths in utter frustration! For those that have been living on another planet, this is the sequel to Ghosts 'n Goblins, another game which I'm not particularly great at. Sigh... when will I ever learn? Okay, I'm sure every ST nutter has played this game but I'm unsure just how many have completed it, at least without cheating! It's a beautifully crafted conversion and very close to the original but gameplay remains absolutely rock solid and will take many moons to learn each level. Even then, it's so cruel with so many creatures all ready to eat you alive!
Ghouls 'N Ghosts features a captivating tune and certainly one of the most memorable I have ever heard. Pure chiptune excellence, timeless! The visuals are lovely with smooth scrolling and superb sprites - who doesn't love it when Arthur bumps into a baddie and somehow loses his clothes? It sure doesn't make any sense but it has our 7-year old laughing her cotton socks off which is a win in my book. In fact, all sprites are beautifully drawn with gorgeous details, just look at the buzzards in my capture, above - stunning! However, the animations are probably the weakest and pretty lame. Not that it matters much here but only a couple of frames to display little Arthur? Wow...
If you've not played this since the 90s then I'd say boot it up right now because it is still a super-duper game and I love its spooky atmosphere. However, don't kid yourself for too long because only pro-gamers need to apply - unless you're going to use an infinite lives trainer! I imagine you won't get too far with it and that's a shame because I think the computer versions needed more lives rather than fake credits. Ghouls N Ghosts is a difficult game alright but what an amazing experience and, so long as you enable infinite lives, this is a brilliant platformer to enjoy.
- Trained and hard drive installable versions are available from both D-Bug and 8BitChip.
- AtariMania features Ghouls N Ghosts within their ST database website.
- Hall Of Light might be for that other computer but they sure have some cool maps!
- The mmm gorgeous chiptune is available via SNDH Archive.
- SNDH Record has Tim Follin's awesome tunes converted to mp3 files <listen>