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Adventure Island

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Released: 1991

Genre: Platformer

Format reviewed: PC Eng/Turbografx-16

Publisher: HuCard

Developer: Hudson

Submitted by: aaran marbell

The main game in centred around a small village which acts as a sort of 'hub' to the surrounding levels. Each of these levels are gradually accessed over time with the acquisition of keys or new transformations. As the game progresses, you will find yourself transforming into five different creatures, which can (and need to) be switched between in special rooms. The lizard is the basic transformation and does little more than breathe fire at any passing fauna. Mouse man is a tiny little critter and aside from being able to fit under small obstacles, he can also run up and around special chequered walls and ceilings. Next up is a green amphibian that gives you the power to swim around freely, followed by a tiger man who swings his sword around in a wide arc, allowing you to break blocks above and below. Finally, there is the bird transformation which lets you fly around by repeatedly tapping the jump button.
While not the hardest of games to complete, the platform action is very enjoyable while it lasts, and the wise move to give this a less linear feel works well – there is enough incentive to try and unlock the next level or transformation and this keeps you playing. While the graphics are a little sparse and not much of a step up from their Master System equivalents, they are well drawn and cute enough not to complain about. The sound is fine, if a little soft, but the tunes are catchy and easy to listen to. If you're looking for a platform adventure that doesn't start you from level one every time you play, then you could do a lot worse than this.