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Phantasy Star II

"This is Motavia, a beautiful, beckoning jewel - gripped by madness."

“This is Motavia, a beautiful, beckoning jewel – gripped by madness.”

Year: 1989
Genre: JRPG
Developer: Sega
Publisher: Sega
Platform: Sega Mega Drive

Phantasy Star was a success for Sega. The game sold well enough for a sequel to be made quite quickly, and while one would be forgiven for expecting it to be a direct sequel again starring Alis, it turned out to be something else entirely and just as important to the growth of Japanese Role-Playing Games.

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Puggsy

Total Object Interactivity™

Total Object Interactivity™

Year: 1993
Genre: Platformer

Developer: Traveller’s Tales
Publisher: Psygnosis
Platform: Sega Mega Drive, Sega Mega CD, Commodore Amiga

Traveller’s Tales have an interesting history in that though they’ve been around since the early 90’s and have developed a lot of great selling games (i.e., the Lego series of games), they’ve never actually had their own intellectual property – they’ve always done work for other people. They started off working with Psygnosis (now known as Studio Liverpool and sadly made defunct by Sony Computer Entertainment) on Leander, an Amiga game similar to Shadow of the Beast and a game based on the movie Bram Stoker’s Dracula for the Mega Drive and Super Nintendo (other console versions were handled by Probe Entertainment or an internal Psygnosis team). Their third game, Puggsy, is something special.

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Devil’s Crush

Year: 1990
Genre: Pinball
Developer: Compile
Publisher: Naxat/NEC
Platform: TurboGrafx-16
Also on: Mega Drive

Do you like pinball? How about 16-bit metal? Are you a fan of hitting demons with a steel ball? If you answered “yes” to any one of those, you’ll find something to like about Compile’s heretical pinball release. It improved upon their previous “Crush” game, Alien’s Crush, in quite a few ways – the major one being that the table now scrolls with the ball. In Alien’s Crush, when you hit the middle of the screen, it would blank out for roughly half a second and change to the other part of the table. As you can guess, that got annoying pretty quickly. There’s also a lot more going on this time around. A giant woman’s face grafted to some bizarre machine/armour contraption is in the absolute centre of the play-field, the “She Giant” bizarrely highlighted on the rear of the box. The more you thwack it with your ball, the more it slowly transforms from human to some unsettling demon-snake hybrid. It changes back afterwards, but it’s still very odd. Also notable, right up the top is a big glowing pentagram with robed “followers” circling it, whom you can hit and destroy. They’re obviously bad people and deserve to be hit with a big ball of metal that’s roughly twice the size of themselves.

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