Narita Boy’s slick discussion hooked me prior to I even got my digitized sword. 1980s tributes are almost played out, however Studio Koba’s action title handles to transform that retro design of cool with a creative discussion that goes an action even more than “let’s simply slap neon and grid lines all over.” Narita Boy’s gameplay doesn’t rather measure up to its killer looks, however if you can tolerate some headaches, it end up being a satisfying romp. 

I can’t worry enough how remarkable Narita Boy’s discussion is. Studio Koba obtains greatly from Tron because the whole video game is set inside a computer system world called the Digital Kingdom. Your objective: eliminate a wicked program and bring back the memories of the Kingdom’s human developer. This monarchy, including a desert kingdom and seaside town, to name a few areas, feels totally recognized, both in visual style and tradition. The synthwave soundtrack rocks, and the CRT-style overlay is the chef’s kiss of the entire bundle. I enjoyed looking at Narita Boy’s art, and even those doing not have programs understanding or fond memories for the time duration should value the imagination on display screen, like “what if digital horses were simply four-legged computer system rigs?” 

Narita Boy practically plays as excellent as it looks. The battle consists mostly of pleasing hack n’ slash action utilizing your famous sword, however you likewise have a shotgun side arm. The shotgun sounds cooler on paper than in practice; I routinely ignored it as it never ever feels beneficial or needed. Slaying opponents begins as a fundamental affair however ends up being more robust, and amusing, as you open brand-new sword attacks and screen-wiping summons. Color-coded power-ups use another cool perk; it lets you eliminate opponents of a coordinating color (represented by a flame) more quickly, though at the threat of taking more damage yourself. Best of all, Narita Boy administers brand-new capabilities and mechanics till the very end, consisting of cool, one-off series like piloting a huge mech variation of yourself. 

You’ll require all the assistance you can get because Narita Boy is no walk in the park. The game boasts a plethora of challenging enemy types and has no problem dumping them all over players, which feels overwhelming at times. There’s a fun challenge in figuring out how to use your arsenal of moves to take down combinations of vastly different opponents but a few of the enemy types are a flat-out pain to fight. For example, an armored foe with a nigh-impassable shield was never fun to deal with, and I always groaned when it appeared. The worst part about getting your pixelated butt handed to you are the inconsistent checkpoints that feel almost arbitrary. Some start you close to where you died, but too often are you kicked back further than you’d expect.

 

Combat isn’t perfect but offers a good time overall. I wish I could say the same for the platforming. Jumping feels stiff, slippery, and floaty all at once. I’d often land on a ledge only for the sensitive movement to take me over it. Jumping wall to wall can take multiple attempts due to how wooden your character feels. Upgrades like a rising sword attack/high-jump doesn’t feel satisfying since you can’t use it as an actual double-jump and hitting the Up and attack buttons at the same time is tough to pull off in hectic scenarios. 

It wouldn’t be so bad if the game was largely action with basic platforming, but Narita Boy falters by routinely introducing obstacle courses it doesn’t feel equipped for. Riding atop a computer horse sounds great until you’re crashing through spikes you can’t reliably dodge thanks to your character’s deliberate animations. The same is true of surfing atop a giant floppy disk; it’s awesome in concept, less so in execution. This becomes especially irritating in combat. One boss lobs energy cubes that require precise dodging; I crashed through half of them, and my survival boiled down to having enough hit points to absorb the onslaught. 

Still, as much as I didn’t like gingerly hopping across platforms and would yell “come on!” after failing another difficult combat arena, I couldn’t assistance however fall in love with Narita Boy’s design once the dust settled. I like every inch of its incredibly developed world, and the gameplay suffices to bring the experience. In a method, it’s like booting an old computer system. If you can tolerate the troublesome user interface and some out-of-date style, there’s a charm and gratitude in how it still handles to get the task done.