|Genre(s)||Horizontal scrolling shooter|
Magical Chase (マジカルチェイス Majikaru Chieisu?) is a scrolling shooter video game developed by Palsoft and released by Quest for the TurboGrafx-16 in Japan in 1991, and in North America in 1993. The game was also ported for Windows in 1998, and as Magical Chase GB to the Game Boy Color in 2000.
The game's protagonist is a witch called Ripple flying on a broomstick, along with two anthropomorphic stars which serve as Gradius-style options. The game has many notable similarities to Cotton, released for the console by Success the very same year.
There are a total of six levels in the game which can be played on the normal and hard difficulty settings. Only the first three can be played on the easy difficulty setting. As enemies are destroyed, they leave behind different colored gemstones which serve as the game's currency. Twice during each level, a shop appears where power-ups, health, and extra lives can be purchased (except for the third and sixth levels, where it only appears once). Touching obstacles and the ground does not kill the player such as in Gradius but it does impede progress. If the player gets trapped behind objects at the left-hand side of the screen, "scrolling damage" will occur. Each stage is presented with the name of the mid-boss encountered, and keeping with the magic theme, is titled as a magical seal. Each level has a mid-boss and end-boss.
The protagonist Ripple is a young student of magic, an apprentice to a terrifying witch. Ripple has just broken a promise she made to the witch and took a peek inside a forbidden book, freeing six demons. Unless she can catch all six and get them back inside the book, the witch will turn Ripple into a frog. Ripple sets off on her quest with her two Elf-Star friends, known as "Star Maidens": Topsy and Turvy.
Magical Chase was originally released for the PC Engine in Japan in 1991. Its late 1993 release in the U.S. at the end of the TurboGrafx/Turbo Duo's life, coupled with extensive hype, makes the game harder to find and more expensive than earlier releases. The first port of Magical Chase to appear outside the NEC console family was a Windows 95 port released on April 10, 1998. Magical Chase was later ported to the Game Boy Color by Micro Cabin and released in Japan on August 4, 2000. Its soundtrack was released in 2013.
Magical Chase was a bestselling game on the PC Engine in Japan during late 1991 and early 1992. Retro Game Age gave the original version eight stars out of ten: "I can guarantee you’ll enjoy every moment of it. It is a shame that such an enjoyable game is so hard to find at a decent price however if you do I urge you to go for it." IGN's Lucas M. Thomas included both Cotton and Magical Chase ("two different games, one same idea") among top ten "unreleased TurboGrafx games".
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