If you are a gamer that grew up in the 80’s then you would have highly likely heard of Wonder Boy. It was a great platformer that first appeared in the arcades and during the 8-bit era was available on the home computers and Sega Consoles. Now 26 years later we have Wonder Boy Collection available for the Nintendo Switch, so now modern gamers can experience the awesome platformer from the golden age of gaming.
Publisher: InIn Games
Developer: Bliss Brain
Release Date: 3rd June 2022
Thanks to PR Hound for the review code.
Wonder Boy was a popular game in the arcades and I remember playing many hours while on holiday at a local seaside resort. So, when I heard that there is a new collection coming out that features 4 of the titles on the Nintendo Switch, then of course I had to try it out. Bliss Brain have opted to keep the visual style of the Wonder Boy franchise and have included four games from the series. Below we will take a quick look at each one in the collection.
Wonder Boy is the title that started it all that was released back in 1986. It featured a character called Tom Tom, who is a blonde, mop top cave-boy who cold ride a skateboard through the scrolling levels and with the aid of power-ups could throw axes at enemies. Thankfully the chunky visuals have been retained and thanks to the Switch, the game looks crisp and colourful and able to take it out on the go thanks to handheld, so you can play anytime, anywhere. The aim is to complete a stage which has four levels and then fight an end of stage boss to advance to the next stage. It plays as good as the original which means a great fun time.
Wonder Boy in Monster Land
This is the sequel to Wonder Boy and is a combination of a Role-Playing Game and action platformer. This time around you play Tom Tom when he was a teenager and he has medieval armour and a sword to defend himself around the world. This time he is on the hunt for an evil dragon that he must slay to save his people from being hurt. Released in 1987, it keeps the same scrolling, linear platform gameplay and you must kill enemies to collect coins which can be exchanged for upgrades and magical items at the shops around. Having it available on the Switch is great and so much fun.
Wonder Boy in Monster World
This is the 1991 Sega Mega Drive/Genesis release and it is a follow up to Wonder Boy in Monster Land. As this was released in the 16-bit era it is a more graphical enhanced version of the 1987 title. It plays pretty much the same as well with the RPG mechanics, so if you enjoyed it then you will enjoy it on the Switch as well. This was the Proto-Metroidvanias of the 90’s.
Monster World IV
The last game on the collection is this is the 1994 that weren’t released outside of Japan until 2012. Released on the Virtual Console it had a great script, some amazing visuals for the time and was pushing the 16-bit power to the limit in Japan. This time you play a female lead rather than Tom Tom, which is why the Wonder Boy was dropped from the title. The style is very much based on the Monster Land sequel with new weapons and now they give you a sidekick to help on your adventuring quest.
The Wonder Boy Collection is a compilation of four great games in the series to give a familiar retro feeling. Three of the games are of similar style which I would have like to have seen a bit more variation, but this is still a fun couple of hours gameplay. If you loved the franchise or just new to the whole Wonder Boy franchise this is a worthwhile purchase.