Maten no Soumetsu

Maten no Soumetsu came out in 1993 from Kodansha.  Kodansha also published Blue Almanac, another RPG for the Genesis in 1991.  Maten no Soumetsu is a game I’d define as another kusoge.

Graphically, I would say it is ambitious mostly due to a day night system that results in shifting colors across the game.  Since there are so few Genesis RPGs out there, it’s hard to condemn one for having unattractive graphics.  Maten no Soumetsu has bright colors, minimal badly used dithering, and some complexity in the sprites used.

Three beds, some pots in a side room, and the mom.

The inside of the Hero's home.

The introduction is a pretty simple “man takes baby from demon and raises baby” with added “baby should be dead due to electrocution of said demon.”  Kid’s 16.  Dad seems to die and the kid heads out to make his fortune.  King tells the kid to go pick herbs.  This is all fairly simple and typical.  There’s an option to rent equipment which is pretty nifty and you can explore the towns which seem to have activities for various times of day.

The hero examines a NPC.

Large sprites and bright colors make the town interesting.

However, it doesn’t take more than a minute to find out why the game is called a kusoge.  You see, the difficulty curve of the game is utterly broken.  You start at level one. To handle the herb quest, most sites reccommend level 6.  You can die walking from your home town to the first inn.  You cannot heal at your house.  You can die in the very first fight you encounter.

A river, mountains, and a town to the north.

One step south of the edge of the screen is the starting house. You can heal at the gray town to the north.

To get an idea how dangerous the enemies are, here are my stats after walking from the house to the starting town and back.

24/60 HP

You can lose over half your health in a short walk.

Battles are actually pretty attractive. There’s some nice pixel art on the battle backgrounds and the enemies have fairly large sprites.  Still, I’ve gotten no farther than losing all my equipment after getting robbed during the herb quest due to the difficulty.  Of course, if you bought armor prior to being robbed, you’re out a great deal of money, and it’s hard to come by in the game.

A single bat attacks the hero.

The font for this game is gigantic.

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