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Alex Kidd In High-Tech World

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Released: 1989

Genre: Platformer

Format reviewed: Sega Master System

Publisher: Sega

Developer: Sega

Alex Kidd In Miracle World was great. In fact, many of you loved it so much that it featured highly in voting for our top 25 Master System games, eventually finishing in second place. A game that received far fewer votes was Alex Kidd In High-Tech World. In theory, adding puzzle elements to the excellent Miracle World platforming should have been an easy recipe for success – so what went wrong?

As it turns out, the problem was that it wasn’t adding to the Alex Kidd platforming in the first place. Alex Kidd In High-Tech World is actually a localised version of the Japanese game Anmitsu Hime, an anime licence starring a tomboyish princess in a modern world with feudal Japanese elements, with roots going way back to a manga that started in the Forties. Unfortunately, Anmitsu Hime was a pretty terrible game.

The problems start right from the beginning of the game, when you’re tasked with assembling a map from pieces of paper. This is a frustrating section full of trial and error, with arbitrary and unfair deaths aplenty. If you try to use the computer, it’ll electrocute you; if you try on the suit of armour, you’ll be trapped in it. These items exist solely to end your game without warning. But once you’re out of the castle, a terribly-designed platform section filled with ninjas awaits, bringing only more frustration. Given that the next two sections are just as bad you’re better off cutting your losses, even if Alex fails to reach the arcade.

If you still have fond memories of Sega’s pre-Sonic mascot, why not pick up a digital copy of Retro Gamer issue 123 via GreatDigitalMags.com? Alex Kidd was was voted gaming’s greatest underdog in the issue, and received a six page retrospective.