Last week, Nicalis got to delight the world with the news that they will be doing a physical release of Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap for Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 and now it’s Headup Games’ turn! Why? Because they’re handling the European and Australian release and they’ll be out next year:
Much like with Overcooked: Special Edition, Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap was another indie title that when released on Switch, fans and players instantly demanded a physical release. Well it’s taken some doing, but a physical release is in the works for North America and the ever great Nicalis is the publisher in which we have to thank for our wish coming true:
For anyone who is looking for a good reason to revisit Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap, the devs behind the game (Lizardcube,) have just released a mega update that even sees fixes and changes to audio, as well as hard mode and we’ve got the complete patch notes for all versions of the game, right here:
Platform: Nintendo Switch (eShop)
Category: Action, Adventure & Platformer
Release Date: 18th of April, 2017 (JP, EU & NA)
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Normally Jack pens most of our reviews but I thought I would have ago this time so where should I begin? Well if you love the old style games where saving progress was unimaginable and gameplay was so hard at times, that it was a good thing that game controllers were quite tough and durable after the amount of times they would get thrown. Well, Here is a remake of one of those games that was originally released on the SEGA Master System back in 1989.
Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap is about an adventurer who, after defeating the Mecha Dragon, is cursed and turned into a Lizard-Man. They must then travel through the different worlds and defeat all the other Dragons in order to change back into their original form. After defeating each dragon, the adventurer will be turned into another creature including, Mouse-Man, Piranha-Man, Hawk-Man & Lion-Man.
This remake takes the original game and builds on it so much so that it almost feels like a different game. All the modern graphics were hand-drawn and the music given a complete overhaul. However, fans of the original game can still get that retro feel if they like as you are given the option of changing the graphics and music to a more original setting just by the click of a button. I must admit though that after flipping through both options I much prefer the new HD graphics as the retro graphics are much harder to distinguish what is backgorund and what are platforms.
Gameplay is fun enough and plays a lot like Shantae as regards to different forms grant different abilities, buying equipment to aid attack & defense and varying platforms and terrain which means you will have to come back once you have gained a new transformation. It is easy to see that WayForward probably got a lot of inspiration for Shantae from the Wonder Boy series and vastly improved on the formula.
That’s not to say that Wonder Boy: The Dragons Trap is not a good game, It is actually quite a fun game but you are sorely limited to what you can do. In Shantae, you can transform at will whereas in Wonder Boy, you can only change after touching the floating spirit of the dragon you have just bested or if you find a secret transformation pedestal which changes you every time you step on it.
A lot of the old features are still in the game like the Password feature but a lot of new features have been added as well. You can choose the difficulty mode between Easy, Normal & Difficult. You can also choose to be Wonder Boy or Wonder Girl (which in turn will change the Title Screen). There are secret areas to find that weren’t included in the orginal game and some features have been removed like the need to acquire charm stones for when purchasing equipment.
If you have a fair level of experience with games like these, than you will do well. Those of you that require handholding to get to the next stage will have some trouble as this game has a knack to punish you every step of the way including ill-placed enemy spawn areas that hurt you when coming out of a door. Some enemies that can one-hit kill you with a single touch (unless you have some decent armour on) and the lack of direction when trying to get to the next dungeon will have you going back and forth like a Yo-Yo until you decide that enough is enough and look up a walkthrough online.
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This game is a mixed bag of sorts. It has a lot of pluses and a fair few negatives which seems to drag out gameplay rather than extend it. It’s fun to play casually but when you decide to take it seriously, you can find yourself scratching your head as you try to find which way you are suppose to go. The Retro mode is a nice touch but one that I will rarely ever use due to how poor the Retro mode looks as it is difficult to distinguish the ground from the background and viceversa. I do enjoy the gameplay but I fear it will only last as long as the main playthrough as I don’t think I will replay it much afterwards unless a new mode is added or if a second player co-op mode is introduced but I am just surmising. However, I am sure there will be some dedicated souls out there looking to set the best speed-run record.
With my negative thoughts aside. the gameplay is fun, the music is enjoyable to listen too and the price tag of €19.99 is not going to break the bank and doesn’t take up too much space on the Switch’s internal memoriy either. I feel this game deserves an 8/10 in respect for what it is, the love that has gone into it to be remade and given new life whilst not being to costly either.
THE VERDICT: 8/10
If you count yourself as an indie lover and own a Nintendo Switch, then get ready to part ways with some of your hard earned cash as Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap has arrived and it is everything Wonder Boy fans wished it would be!
But if you have never played a single Wonder Boy title, or know anything about this 2017 release, here’s DotEmu to fill you in and talk about their plans to bring Wonder Boy to PC this Summer: Continue reading Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap Arrives on Switch!
For quite some time it has been known Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap is coming to Switch, but what wasn’t known was its release date, until now.
Straight from the typed words of DotEmu, the France based publisher has announced that the long awaited Wonder Boy is to release on multiple platforms on the 18th of April next month, with a PC launch for Steam planned a little later on this Spring. Below you will find some of what is shown in the new press release: Continue reading Wonder Boy Launches on Switch, PlayStation 4 & Xbox One on April 18th
As far as Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap is concerned, developer and publisher Lizardcube and DotEmu are going well out of their way to ensure this remaster is the very best it can possibly be and today a new trailer has been released that showcases the Retro Feature and an update that provides additional details. Both of which can be found right here: Continue reading Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap is a Game of Then and Now! (The Retro Feature)
Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap is also confirmed for the Nintendo Switch with a March 2017 worldwide release and below you can find the official announcement:
“It was hard to keep the secret, but finally we can spill those edamame beans…Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap is coming to the Nintendo Switch™ in 2017!
A few months ago Nintendo contacted us. A reunion was held in mushroom kingdom under a veil of absolute secrecy, where they suggested we could bring the game over to their upcoming platform. Needless to say it was a unique opportunity and as soon as we saw the system we knew we wanted to get the game on it. We started working on it and well, HERE WE ARE!
The game plays fantastic on the Nintendo Switch! It runs at a smooth 60 FPS, the screen and colors in handheld mode are amazing, and it plays just as well in full HD when docked. We can’t wait to show you more!
In the meanwhile, you can check out the official console page if you would like to know more about the Switch (available worldwide in March 2017!).
If you don’t plan to dock yourself on the Switch bandwagon just yet, rest assured, the game will also be coming to other platforms! We will announce them as well as the game release date as soon as we are ready… and we’ve got a bunch of other cool news coming.”
Source: The Dragon’s Trap (Blog)