Lord of the Sword
- Manufacturer: Sega
- Machine: Sega MS
Trouble is brewing in Baljinya. The king and his family have been murdered, and, as was their plan, the evil creatures who committed the deed are now free to bring their demon lord, Ra Goan, back from the dead and place him on the throne. The Elders of Baljinya have refused to accept Ra Goan as their leader and have begun their search for a hero who can complete three dangerous tasks: find the Tree of Marill, defeat the Goblin of Balala Valley and destroy the Statue of Evil. The Elders promise that whosoever can pass these tests will be proclaimed the rightful king of Baljinya.
You, as Landau, decide to accept the challenge. Not only will you attempt to complete the Elders' three tasks, but you will also, during your travels, clear the countryside of Ra Goan's foul minions. After all, how else can you become king? Armed with blade and bow, you set off to face whatever fete lies in wait for you.
And so begins Sega's new adventure game The Lord of the Sword, a stripped-down version of Nintendo's Zelda II: The Adventure of Link. In The Lord of the Sword you will travel across the highways and through the forests and swamps of Baljinya, stopping in towns to gain information and strength, battling the creatures that stand in your path. The roads you'll travel connect the game's fifteen main locations, including Cram Bog, Namo Forest, Mt. Ozgul, Varlin Castle, Ulmo Forest, Falas, Mt. Morgos, Elder Castle and many towns.
The kingdom of Baljinya is small, and you would think this would make for a short game; but in order to complete the quest, you must discover the proper order in which to visit the various locations. Talkative people in the towns will give you clues as to what to do next, but much experimentation will be necessary to gain needed knowledge. Still, the greater portion of your playing time will be spent learning the best way to defeat the various enemies that attack you en route to your destinations.
The background graphics are not up to Sega's usual standards, but the creatures come in interesting and well-rendered forms. Huge flying eyeballs, animated skeletons, winged demons, giant lizards and other creatures that almost defy description populate Baljinya's landscape and are this game's main attraction. Most of the creatures are fairly easy to defeat, the challenge comes from the sheer numbers in which they attack. Although you can continue up to ten times, getting to the end of this contest is sure to be a challenge for even the most veteran joystick jockey.
Unfortunately, The Lord of the Sword provides no password save feature, which means that each time you play, you'll have to plod your way through battles already completed. It seems that video games these days come in two types: those set in a huge world with a password continue feature, and those set in small worlds, the levels of which must be constantly replayed. The Lord of the Sword fits in the latter category.
The game control in The Lord of the Sword is extremely clumsy. The controller's 1 and 2 buttons are used for the bow and sword, respectively, forcing the jump function to be assigned to the control pad's up arrow. Because most games assign jumping to one of the buttons, players will find it takes time to adjust.
Worse is the sluggishness with which the controls react, particularly when you're in battle. Signals sent from the controller are often ignored in favor of keeping the on-screen animation lively. Nothing is more frustrating than being unable to immediately turn and face an enemy. Jumping is equally as fussy. After some practice, however, you get used to the controls and learn to compensate for the sluggishness.
Clumsy controls aside, if you're looking for a simple but decent hack-and-slash game, you'll probably enjoy The Lord of the Sword. Due to its lack of depth, it's not a game that'll hook you for weeks at a time, but it does have a certain charm. However, if you want an epic like Phantasy Star, you better look elsewhere. There's little adventure here.
Download Lord of the Sword
Battle against the creatures of the underworld with your trusty fire sword. This scrolling action/adventure contains plenty of secrets and loads of hack and slash encounters with the nastiest characters you've ever seen in a Sega Master System game. High graphics detail and outstanding sound effects round out a game that's packed with extras.