- Manufacturer: Razorsoft
- Machine: Sega Genesis
After the disappointment of RazorSoft's dismal TechnoCop, I wasn't looking forward to Stormlord. After all, it's a rare thing for a video-game publisher to take criticism to heart and change its ways. But Stormlord is a real pleasure, outperforming Ghouls 'n' Ghosts (the closest match to Stormlord in construction) in many areas.
Born of lightning, you are the Stormlord, summoned to the Enchanted Realm to rescue the imprisoned Princesses. The elfin Princesses have been enclosed in floating spheres by the Crone, a gal after Mizrabel's own heart. The spheres have been placed behind locked oak doors at the bottoms of pits and traps and suspended above the Earth in chained platforms and other similarly inaccessible and hostile locations. With your inexhaustible supply of knives and magic fire bolts, you do battle with countless otherworldly creatures: dragons, wizards, man-eating plants, ghouls, skeletons, hellhounds and all the familiar icons of fantasy fiction.
What does Stormlord do that the others don't? It breaks with convention. Gone are the predictable big bosses at the end of each level. Gone, too, is the unimaginative linear game play, wherein life is a perpetual right-to-left scroll. Beating Stormlord requires you to think creatively, jumping from one area to another with the help of a willing eagle. Gone is the simplistic "kill 'em all" psychology; in this game, the real trick is in either avoiding the nasties or maneuvering found objects so as to distract them. Of course, it's necessary to commit a good deal of mayhem, blasting those adversaries you can't handle any other way, but cleverness is the key to progress. Lastly, gone are the two-dozen continues that allow you to complete the entire game the first time you power it up. No matter what, you'll never get more than two continues, so there's no way in the world you'll finish this game in one night.
To add to the challenge, there's a timer ticking away in the background. A window displays a sun, which eventually scrolls to a crescent moon, signaling the end of your life. I often found that working at top speed and knowing exactly what I had to do (and in what order) for each level, there was still barely enough time to accomplish it all. So your progress will be slow, since you have two tasks to work on simultaneously: finding the methods for overcoming obstacles and finding the most efficient order to do them in.
The graphics are a far cry from Techno Cop's amateurish scrawl. The characters and backgrounds resemble Boris Vallejo's lush Conan paintings - much like the graphics of Golden Axe, only darker and more foreboding. The animation is smooth and realistic; at times it's downright spectacular, such as when you're resurrected in a whip crack of lightning and thunder. Stormy weather is a recurring theme in Stormlord; there's barely a screen where you can't see realistic flashes of lightning off among the clouds. The only thing I missed was the parallax scrolling of other Genesis games.
Razorsoft seems to do music and sound effects very well, and Stormlord will not damage that reputation one bit. The digitized thunder, moans, creaks, caws and flaps are all first-rate, and the music, while less funky than that in Ghouls 'n' Ghosts, is still cool.
What's missing from Stormlord? Not much. The game play's complex and interesting, the action is nonstop, the sounds and images are excellent and the game is obviously different enough from any competition to not come across as one of those "me-too" games we see so many of. Congratulations to RazorSoft for putting some desperately needed variety in the Genesis lineup.
Stormlord DownloadsStormlord download
You are a mystical old man on a journey to rescue the fairys that have been kidnapped. Get weapon power-ups!
Thunder booms in the distance and flashes of blue lightning illuminate and eerie, dark, and mysterious landscape. Stormy Genesis weather? Perfect for the StormLord!
StormLord from RazorSoft is a combination action-adventure-puzzle title with intriguing gameplay that you'll find hard to walk away from.
Not Just Another Pretty Face
In fact, in this one-player game you'll do a lot of walking as you try to rescue a multitude of enchanted princesses who are trapped in bubbles.
OK, so the basic storyline isn't original. At least you get 10 levels with up to eight imprisoned princesses per level, and there's a time limit.
You have to scour the desolate countryside to find all the royal prisoners. Each horizontally-scrolling level is actually a cleverly illustrated, complex maze of obstacles including locked doors, pits, cliffs, boiling lava, fire-breathing statues, and more. Living obstacles also abound in the form of sorcerers, man-eating plants, hopping goblins, spear-carrying gargoyles, fire vultures, flying dragons, and others too horrible to contemplate.
Try to destroy the eggs containing blue gargoyles before they hatch!
Hopping goblins are easiest to avoid if you simply crouch and let them hop over you.
What makes the game interesting is that you can't rescue the princesses in a linear fashion. For example, obstacles and monsters may force you to journey far to the right towards the end of the level to rescue one princess, and then backtrack to the middle of the level to free another, and so on.
As you advance to each new level you'll discover that the princesses are more difficult to rescue and that the enemies are more numerous and relentless. You have until the Moon is high to complete each level or your game ends.
On the Wings of an Eagle
The StormLord, however, is in no hurry. He kind of heel-toe's it through each level, but you can pick up the pace by catching a ride with Reizarb the eagle. Just stand on certain magic stones and he flies you to and from different areas of the level.
You take care of business by casting magic stars and tossing swords, but the real key to success is learning how to make clever use of the multitude of special objects you find scattered throughout the land such as Umbrellas, Winged Shoes, and Honey.
Remember, Umbrellas come in handy when it's raining.
Winged Shoes help you to make mighty leaps.
Water is useful for putting out fires.
Bees certainly love Honey, but don't hang around when they come to teed.
You begin with five lives, but you can earn additional lives during the Bonus Rounds at the end of each level.
This One Won't Burst Your Bubble
Three cheers for a hack and slash game that features action-packed game-play where you use your mind as well as your controller to achieve ultimate victory. Original game-play bolstered by gorgeous graphics and nifty sound effects should enable this game to take gamers by storm!
RazorSoft's got a 4-meg monster named Stormlord lurking somewhere in the shadows, and it's about to bust loose onto a Genesis near you. This detailed action adventure puts you on a mufti level quest for hidden treasure and much, much more. The famed mystical princesses are trapped inside a gigantic prism of light, and unless you save them they'll remain there for eternity. To find your way to the fair ladies you must battle it out with gruesome creatures such as the Draconian Fire Dogs and mutant man-eating moss! However shall you overcome these beasts?! With your handy "throwing sword" and Flaming Throwing Stars, of course. Conquer the Enchanted Worlds in Stormlord.