| paleface [sys=PS2; cat=Platformer; loc=JPN] |
|Hamster's "Oretachi Game Center" series is an oddball one, that's for sure. Here they are releasing ports of single old, sometimes obscure arcade games at budget prices, including custom phone cards, two mini-discs, and several instructional booklets.|
It seems particularly odd that they give this extremely generous treatment to a game like Trio the Punch, because Trio the Punch, basically, sucks. I didn't know this when I bought it, but I have learned it quickly, and I share this knowledge with you as a warning.
You pick from one of three poorly drawn warriors on a character selection screen where the portraits just seem to have come out at random sizes and positions. Things get worse from there, because then you actually have to try controlling the character you selected as they progress along a flat, ugly level with some platforms and bushes in the background. The character I picked, sort of a ninja type fellow, could jump, and swing a short sword, and throw throwing stars. There's only the one attack button, though, so when he's on the ground, he swings, and when he's in the air, he throws.
This might not sound so bad on the face of things, but now imagine that the levels set you up in positions where you have nasty opponents at some distance from you, out of sword range. Well, this happens quite a bit, as you can imagine. Some of them have fast attacks so poorly animated that you can't really avoid them, so naturally, you'd prefer to take them out from a distance. So you end up doing this awkward "let me see if I can jump straight up and then throw just before landing" dance which, while certainly effective once you get good/lucky enough, certainly isn't fun.
The poor animation strikes throughout, so that moving is just another form of torture. Hazards come along in all sorts of bizarre shapes and sizes, and you have nowhere near the degree of jump control that would be required to avoid them.
The wacky enemies were I guess what sold me on the game, from the screenshots, and they are indeed wacky, but so frustrating to try to fight that they really aren't as fun as they should have been.
For some reason you can bounce on peoples' heads. It doesn't hurt them or you. The movement is so cludgey that it's kind of a crap-shoot as to when you'll land in the right spot to get it, but if you do, suddenly your character is jerking up and down in a ball shape on top of your foe. If they're near the top of the screen, you're above it, and can't see yourself. Worry not! You're just bouncing up there.
Trio the Punch is a crappy game. This isn't Oretachi Game Center's fault, although you could ask just what the hell inspired them to port it. As with the other games in the OGC series, you get a small Japanese text menu by pressing L1+R1, from which you can adjust screen scaling, button mapping, and save/load. It's crude but it gets the job done. No matter what way you scale the screen (note that the default stretches to fill the screen, so the aspect ratio is not quite right), the graphics have that slight blurring that scaling always inflicts, which doesn't particularly help Trio's already heinous graphics.