Wonder Boy The Dragon's Trap (Xbox One, PS4 and Switch).
So it's finally here the remake, or should that be remaster, of the Master System classic. And it is fantastic.
Lizard Cube have taken the Master System game and applied gorgeous new graphics and updated the audio. And unlike other remakes such as Castle of Illusion this really does play just like the original. The way the characters control, move and react is just like it should be. You can even swap between a widescreen version of the original game and the update at the press of a button. You can also select to play the retro music on top of the new graphics. You can even enter your password saves from the original and they will work!
If you haven't played the Dragon's Trap before it is a mixture of scrolling platform action and adventure game with light RPG elements. There is a central village which acts as a hub for your adventures and you can collect money to purchase upgrades for your weapon, armour and shield. You character can also carry additional special weapons and reviving potions in case of the worst.
Central to the games premise is the use of the different characters Wonder Boy (or Girl now too) is transformed into which have differing abilities and allow you access previously inaccessible areas.
This being a fairly old game it isn't as friendly as say Shantae and will require a bit of back tracking with the different characters. It's sometimes not obvious which character is best used later on in the game.
I have to admit when I fired this up last night I really was smiling as I played. This is a great way to let people discover an underrated classic. It just feels right and the new art style is a delight. GotY 2017.
One of my favourite games along with SOTN and I would say yes, Metroidvania-ish - well pre-Metroidvania, you'll have a few sub weapons along with sword, armour and shield but these dont have additional attributes (with the exception of maybe one armour) just better stats. But, you will gain abilities - a bit vague, but I really like this game so no spoilers from me! I have this on JPN PC Engine and I didnt really get stuck, however I did own the UK SMS version but this was when I had a Saisho Walkman.
I too am waiting to see if a physical copy becomes available. I heard Shantae: Half-Genie Hero is worth checking out, that got a physical US release, don't know if Videogamesplus still undervalue items to pass customs free?