Revisiting the Classic That is Ghosts N Goblins
After trying to get my ageing fingers moving around all the buttons of the Xbox 360 controller to play a game, a return to good old-fashioned retro games is always welcome. In this case, the game is Ghosts N Goblins on the Nintendo Entertainment System or to the retro gamer community the NES. Why so welcome? Because it has just a 4-way joypad and 2 buttons to play the game.
Starting the Game
The game of Ghosts n Goblins starts with a short animation in which your sweetheart is taken by a demon. Now it’s time to get her back, traverse the country and fight the ghosts n goblins of the title along the way to her salvation. To help in your quest you have two tools at your disposal, a missile fire which can fire various missiles depending on what you pick up along the way.
The game starts in a graveyard where your foes are zombies coming up out of the ground from in front and behind you. You have a suit of armour which is lost as soon as you’re hit, the next hit results in you dying (nicely animated with you turning to a skeleton and then dust). Jump the gravestones, fire daggers at the zombies and move always to the right in the usual platformer direction. Then you come across the next type of enemy, a nasty flower which fires deadly balls at you and although it can’t move it can aim in different directions to get you.
As you progress the enemies change, from ghostly knights which bounce up and down as they come towards you, and ghosts with billowy nightdresses which come at you quickly and change height as they go. When you encounter a couple of enemies coming from different directions, things can get pretty frantic. The game isn’t as easy as you might think either because as well as avoiding or killing enemies you also have the platformer style jumps to make whilst evading the titular Ghosts and Goblins.
How it Sounds
The sound is quite decent for an 8-bit game, and the graphics and animation are also above what I expected to find on the NES. Gameplay is set nicely between impossible and too easy, giving a bit of a challenge, but one which isn’t too frustrating as to make you give up.
Ghosts n Goblins the Final Verdict
The final word then is don’t be scared of the Ghosts n Goblins, return them to hell and have fun doing it. 7 out of 10 is the score I’d give this NES Classic. Now I’m off to bust some more ghosts with the spirit of Ray Parker Jr’s song running around my head.