Cover of the US Sega Genesis version
|Release date(s)||June 14, 1991|
|Mode(s)||Up to 2 players (co-op)|
|Distribution||8-megabit cartridge (Mega Drive version)|
Arcus Odyssey is an action role-playing game video game developed by Wolf Team. The game was released in 1991 for the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis, Sharp X68000 and Super Famicom. It featured an isometric perspective and cooperative gameplay.
The game is a cross between fantasy and science-fiction themes, with hack and slash gameplay reminiscent of dungeon crawlers such as Dragon Slayer, The Tower of Druaga and Gauntlet. Arcus Odyssey is part of the Arcus franchise, which also included Arcus in 1988, Arcus II: Silent Symphony in 1989, and Arcus III in 1991. The music for the game was composed by Motoi Sakuraba, who also did the music for the Star Ocean series.
An American version for the Super NES was planned, but it was cancelled following Sega's acquisition of Renovation Products (American publisher for Wolf Team and Telenet games). The Super NES version was, however, released in Japan, with the title Arcus Spirits.
Hundreds of years ago, the powerful evil sorceress Castomira sought to destroy the land of Arcus and remake it a place of chaos and darkness in her own image. The only person powerful enough to stop her was Leaty, a kindly princess and the granddaughter to the legendary King of Light. Leaty challenged Castomira and the two fought for days on end, but the powers of the Light eventually overwhelmed the Dark Sorceress, who was banished to the Dark World for all eternity. Foreseeing the possible return of Castomira, Leaty forged a magical sword capable of destroying her, that came to be known as "The Power of Leaty", and trusted its safekeeping with the King of Arcus.
Now, a millennium later, the followers of the Castomira have stolen the Sword, in order to resurrect their mistress as the power of darkness grows stronger by the day. Only the powers of four brave warriors can stop her minions and prevent a second coming of Castomira that could spell doom for all of Arcus: Jedda the Swordsman, Diana the Archer; Erin the Warrior-Maiden and Bead the Mage.
The player takes on the role of one of four different heroes, and proceeds through each level in order. The players may move, attack, defend using a projectile-blocking shield, and use a variety of offensive, defensive, and recovery items and magic, all of which can be found in chests scattered throughout the levels. Some levels require the players to accomplish sub-quests in order to proceed, such as extinguishing a fire blocking the door to the next level. Other levels give the player an ally for some parts of the game.
The game primarily has an isometric view, although the player's characters can move freely in eight directions. After defeating most bosses, players receive a power boost; this boost either gives them more health or more power.
|This section requires expansion. (January 2012)|
GamePro hailed the Genesis version as "the best so far" isometric action game, adding that its "intro is this masterpiece has to be one of the best around!" EGM gave the SNES version 7 stars out of 10, adding: "Previously a Genesis game, this has an interesting perspective and enough characters to keep things interesting. It is basically like Gauntlet with it's [sic] arcade-style action, so fans of that game may want to check this one out."
- Buchanan, Levi (2008-06-17). "Top 10 Renovation Games". IGN.com. Retrieved 2009-11-06.
- GamePro 55 (February 1994), p.40-41