juli 18, 2014

Youkai Club, famicom

Hmm, youkai, that sounds familiar from other games, such as Youkai Yashiki, FDS or Youkai Douchuuki (pc engine, famicom, arcade). Yokai means something like "mythical japanese creatures".

Famicom console with Youkai Club

Youkai Club is a standard action/platforming game. I could compare it to a Castlevania type of game if I wanted to be nice, but there are many other similar games, such as some ninja games I wrote about recently.


At first the game seems pretty standard, but you'll notice there is an Experience bar as well as a health meter. You think it is an action/RPG game? No, not really. If you lose your health, you will lose a part of the experience points and be restored. If you lose all Exp points, you are game over. Also, if you don't have enough experience points at the end, you won't be able to complete the game.

Thankfully gamefaqs has this walkthrough: http://www.gamefaqs.com/nes/578411-youkai-club/faqs/62167. The walkthrough also explains the different items you collect and which items are essential for being able to beat the game. It says:
Sunglasses: This item should be used in stage 6 when you require 
more EXP to move blocks out of
your way.

So keep that in mind.

Activate items by selecting it with Start, and then press B+Up (a bit tricky to figure out on your own).

At times it can be difficult to find the way around but I think it isn't too challenging. Figuring out I had to go down the well (08:30) was something I found by accident when I ducked for the fox.

There is nothing in the game that is amazing but it is still a nice little game to play around with. Nothing really bad to say. The controls are alright, the graphics is typical from this "middle era" famicom games, and while the music isn't memorable it is still alright.

As the gamefaqs article says:
I have enjoyed writing this guide and playing the game, and wish that anyone
using this guide finds the game just as fun and this guide helpful.  Good luck
with the game.
I found this facebook post too: https://www.facebook.com/opcfg/posts/10202714089234735?stream_ref=10 
Youkai Club, released by Jaleco in 1987. It's a horror-themed side-scrolling platformer, but has a few minor RPG elements that help it stand out from other, similar games released at the time. It's pretty fun, and worth checking out if you can.
 And this http://strategywiki.org/wiki/Youkai_Club
While fun to play, it is otherwise a rather unnoteworthy release for the system. The player controls a character who must make it through six stages filled with apparitions and other afterlife creatures in an attempt to save the world. He attacks by throwing a weapon known as the Psycho Stinger. It was never release outside of Japan.

I think what is lacking is that there isn't any real story to it; no real intro and no great ending. You won't feel any intense atmosphere. And the level design is not too inspired either, albeit okay.

It is still a fun game to play around with. A nice touch is the way you die: you lose Exp points but can still play on. At the last stage you have to have full Exp so you might have to grind there for a while. But as you improve your skill, you probably can play through the earlier stages without losing Exp. This method of playing is more pleasant than having one-death and need to restart the level.

However, the game has no continues, so don't die too much. Also, if you fall into a hole, you are game over. I read there is a cheat that allows you to start on stage 2 or 3 though.

I only played the first two stages so I can't say how hard the game becomes later on. The first two stages felt relaxed with many powerups and nothing really demanding.

The game was only released in Japan but is relatively unknown to most, so it is inexpensive. Around 10$ loose or 25$ boxed. I recommend that you give it a try if you enjoy Castlevania style games. Let's call it Castlevania light.

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