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Märchen Maze
  opened by paleface at 02:10:49 06/21/04  
  last modified by paleface at 22:57:58 03/20/24  
  paleface [sys=PCCD; cat=Shooter_4way; reg=JPN]
Gosh only knows what Namco meant by "Märchen," but in this Alice in Wonderland-inspired top-down shooting type game, you trundle a little blond girl around various checkerboarded mazey layouts, bopping Tweedle Dee-esque fatboys, evil robots, witches and slimes with flashing balls.
It may be surprising that they could do it in PCE, but this game has physics! You don't directly destroy baddies with balls (except bosses) but bash them backwards, bumping them over the brink!. But they do the same to you! Boss balls in particular pack a whallop and can knock you far backwards, so unless you're right in the middle of a big platform you're probably going over the edge.
You can jump over balls and ledges, but so can some badguys. Additionally, you can hold fire to charge up a big fat ball that will really bowl those baddies over! But if you jump while charging, your ball goes poof.
I think you can see the ball-bouncing possibilities here, and lest you need more help, I'll just drop one sample hint: conveyor belts.
There's probably a lot more they'll inflict on you later but I haven't got that far yet, because the game is hard. You can restart at any stage you've reached but that, of course, is cheap.
The graphics look pretty good--a tad too colorful, if anything. Nice and bold though, but don't look at screenshots of the arcade version because then you'll realize that the PCE port took the exiciting isometric view and turned it in to an overhead view that is rather flat by comparison. Ah well. The music verges toward the annoying side of the sugarplum, as do some of the sound effects (*thinks about the rabbit shield sound effect, shudders*).
  paleface 18:53:06 06/24/04
Thanks to exodus for pointing out that "märchen" is German. According to babelfish, it means "fairy tale." Why a Japanese game has a half-German, half-English title is another question!
  paleface 15:55:28 05/18/19
  paleface 22:57:58 03/20/24
Eye-watering color-cycling fields on some stages. : P

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