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Promotional flyer for the original arcade iteration of Ghouls'n Ghosts
Sega Master System
|Genre(s)||Hack and slash, Platform game|
|Mode(s)||Single player, multiplayer|
|Display||Raster, standard resolution, horizontal orientation|
Ghouls'n Ghosts, originally released as Daimakaimura (大魔界村), is a platform/run and gun video game developed by Capcom and released as an arcade game in 1988, and subsequently ported to a number of other platforms. It is the sequel to Ghosts'n Goblins and the second game in the Ghosts'n Goblins series.
The gameplay for Ghouls'n Ghosts is similar to that of Ghosts'n Goblins. The player controls the knight Arthur, who must advance through a series of eerie levels and defeat a number of undead and demonic creatures in his quest to restore the souls stolen by Lucifer (Loki in the English-language Mega Drive and Sega Master System versions), including the soul of his lover, Princess Prin Prin. Along the way, Arthur can pick up a variety of weapons and armor to help him in his quest. While the core gameplay remains the same as its predecessor, the game now allows Arthur to fire directly upward and directly downward while in mid air.
By jumping in certain spots, players can cause a treasure chest to erupt from the ground. By firing his weapon at the chest, players may uncover new weapons, gold armor or an evil magician that changes Arthur into an elderly man or a helpless duck. The gold armor allows players to charge up the weapon to release a powerful magical attack. Each weapon has its own special attack.
There are five levels and Lucifer's chamber at the end, considered a sixth level in itself. To defeat the game, Arthur must complete level 1 to 5 twice. Upon completing level's 1 to 5 the first time, Arthur is taken back to level 1 again but this time a special weapon appears during the game. To enter Lucifer's chamber the player must have this special weapon equipped and defeat the penultimate boss.
The original soundtrack for the arcade version was composed by Tamayo Kawamoto. Many computer ports of the game include the soundtrack by Tim Follin which consists of arrangements and some new songs. Follin's soundtrack – especially Commodore 64, Atari ST (which both implement each machines' 'chiptune' synthesizers although the selection of pieces and some scoring differs slightly between computers) and Amiga versions (of which the playlist is again slightly different) – is respected among computer game music listeners and also gained appreciation from reviewers when the game was published.
- Ports of Ghouls'n Ghosts were released in Europe in 1989 for the Amstrad CPC, Commodore Amiga, Atari ST, Commodore 64 and ZX Spectrum. These ports were all handled by Software Creations and all omit a great deal of detail from the arcade version even on very capable 16-Bit machines like the Amiga.
- A Mega Drive/Genesis port of Ghouls'n Ghosts was also released by Sega in 1989 in Japan and North America; and in 1990 in Europe. MegaTech magazine noted that although it was a good game, they felt the price of £45 was too high, This version was re-released as a handheld TV game with Street Fighter II: Special Champion Edition in 2005 and as a downloadable Virtual Console game for the Wii in 2007.
- Sega also released a Master System port in 1990. This 8-bit version made changes to the game by introducing a power-up system that allows the player to enter secret shops and upgrade parts of their armor. This includes helmets, which give the player access to new weapons and magic spells; chest armor, which allows the player to sustain more damage; and boots, which increases the player's speed.
- The Supergrafx port of Daimakaimura released by NEC Avenue in 1990 was one of the five games released for the short-lived system.
- A pixel perfect version of Daimakaimura was released by Capcom in 1994 for the Sharp X68000.
- In 1998, Capcom released Capcom Generation 2 for the PlayStation and Saturn in Japan, a compilation which included Ghouls'n Ghosts along with Ghosts'n Goblins and Super Ghouls'n Ghosts. The PlayStation version of this compilation was released as a bundle in Europe with three other volumes titled Capcom Generations (in plural) under the title of Capcom Generations: Chronicles of Arthur. Capcom later released in North America Capcom Classics Collection Vol. 1 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox in 2005 and Capcom Classics Collection: Reloaded for the PlayStation Portable in 2006, which includes all the Capcom Generations titles. The emulation on a number of these compilations is slightly off, in that the screen display is too dark.
- "Zzap!64 100th Issue Pull-Out Special Page 5". Zzap64.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-02-11.
- MegaTech rating, EMAP, issue 5, page 78, May 1992
- Mega magazine issue 1, page 76, Future Publishing, Oct 1992
- Ghouls'n Ghosts at the Killer List of Videogames
- The Ghosts'n Goblins Series Online
- Ghouls and Ghosts Remix (released under GNU GPL license)
- Ghouls'n Ghosts at World of Spectrum