YS 3 / Falcom / Super NES

Even though it has aged pretty badly, and some of the boss fights were a little too crazily difficult to begin with, I have a soft spot for the SNES port of Ys 3. Sure, it's basically a watered down version of the TurboDuo original, but back around 1991 no one in my neighborhood had a TurboDuo. At the time, anime in games was still a relatively new thing (and not sold in mainstream stores the way it is now so it was still kind of a Mysterious Thing from the East we only got peeks of on Saturday Japanime on the cartoon network.) Plus it was a side-scroller with RPG elements, which were pretty rare at the time, the only comparable titles were Faxanadu, Zelda 2, maybe Cadash if you wanna be liberal about it. So we enjoyed this one even though the gameplay is loose and kind of halfassed and it requires a bunch of grinding (and even then some of the bosses are super cheap.)

All you're missing out on from the TurboDuo version is voice acting, fully animated FMVs, and Redbook Audio music. Otherwise, the resolution is a little lower on the graphics and the color palette and details aren't quite as good, but the gameplay is virtually the same. Whoever ported this one did about as good a job as can be expected for SNES hardware during the early generation of the console. I think some of the chiptunes renditions of the original audio actually sound better than the original audio here.

The previous two Ys games, released together for the TurboDuo and separately on the Japanese MSX computer, featured an overhead Zelda view where you bumped into enemies to fight them, and basically the stronger character survived, so this was a major gameplay step forward. The gameplay still has a super loose and floaty feel, however, and it's one of those deals where enemies don't respond to your hits at all, they just mindlessly charge you constantly and damage you by touching you.

If you want to give this one a shot I'd check out the somewhat little known remake on the PS2, which tightens up and "modernizes" the gameplay quite a bit from what I've seen. If you don't have a nostalgic connection to the SNES version you likely won't get much out of this one, but if you do I suppose it's worth a few bucks just for the soundtrack alone.

Videos :

* Gameplay Video
* fuck yeah valla-balla-whatever castle
* fuck yeah MOAR