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ItsACerealWow
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Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by ItsACerealWow Sat Oct 01, 2016 10:46 am

Hello RB community,

It seems like the Wonder Boy/Monster World series is seeing a lot of love these days with two remakes and a spiritual successor on the horizon:

The Dragon's Trap: Wonder Boy http://www.thedragonstrap.com

Monster Boy http://www.monsterboy.com

Wonder Boy Returns https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Hv0LYQ90-0

I never owned a Sega Master System or Genesis as a kid, so I never played the games when I was younger, but I've always wanted to get into the series. I've heard Monster World IV is generally considered the best game in the series, although Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap gets a lot of love as well. What's a good starting point for the series? Should I pick up the SEGA Vintage Collection for PSN or get the Virtual Console releases for Wii? I prefer gaming on a CRT and the Wii VC is great for this, especially with forced 240p output (and I can use my raphnet adapter to play using the original Genesis pad), but the SEGA Vintage Collection seems like a better value (although I don't know if any emulation issues exist, or any changes from the original games.)

Looking forward to hearing your suggestions, thanks! :D
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by ExedExes Sat Oct 01, 2016 11:23 am

The series is convoluted enough as it is!

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But out of all of them the original was good and I really liked the direction it went with Wonder Boy III, platforming and shmup!
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Sload Soap
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by Sload Soap Sat Oct 01, 2016 11:55 am

Get the Vintage collection. It has a few options to add scanlines and change the aspect ratio to make things more authentic. It's also, as far as I'm aware, the only legit way the play MWIV in english. Since that game is one of the Mega Drive's best it's worth it for that alone (unless you can read japanese and enjoy paying over the odds for a MD copy). This is also the best starting point in my opinion, although it's worth mentioning it is more linear than Dragon's Trap or Monster World so if you're interested in the series for its more exploration themed gameplay I'd say start with Monster World, also on the vintage collection.

That said, Dragon's Trap is probably the Master System's best game, so get that as well in any way you can. I hear good things about the Turbo version as well but I've never played it myself. It's also on the VC as Dragon's Curse.

I personally think the original Wonder Boy is only okay, not bad but a bit simple so shouldn't be priortised. And Monster Land is fun but is an unabashed credit munching arcade game. I like it but it's also kind of frustrating at the same time.

Obviously it's a very storied series and the seemingly endless ports,offshoots and reskins from various developers make Wonder Boy an uniquely complicated franchise. However I think the four games in the Monster Land/World bracket are what most people agree is the real good stuff. Have fun with them.
Last edited by Sload Soap on Sat Oct 01, 2016 12:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PresidentLeever
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by PresidentLeever Sat Oct 01, 2016 11:59 am

This hg101 thread should be helpful: http://hg101.proboards.com/thread/13191 ... t-versions

Getting the original version of WB3: Dragon's Trap isn't very expensive and it's one of the best games, I'd start with that one. You could also get the PCE version on VC, which scrolls smoother and sounds a bit better overall, though there are a few odd graphical and story differences.

Wonder Boy 1 and Monster Lair aren't part of the Monster World series and play more like typical arcade action/platformer games. They are pretty good if that's what you're into though.
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by Tanooki Sat Oct 01, 2016 7:51 pm

Wonderboy is a hit and miss, well more of a miss on the earliest stuff as it's more annoying than fun to me. Wonderboy is Adventure Island as you can see in the pic graph above. I never much enjoyed the 1-2 hit deaths combined with a rapidly decreasing death clock if you don't pig out on food you have to jump all over to expose in mid air. But once it got more into adventuring and not food hunting with Wonderboy 2 and really Wonderboy3 (Dragon's Trap/Curse) then it came into its own as a truly fantastic series. I've had the SMS WB3 game, but now I have the english UK Game Gear release and it's every much as awesome on there too and shouldn't be overlooked. I also currently have that Genesis release too and it's pretty fun and not expensive to grab either.

Since the remaster popping up eventually here is based upon Wonderboy 3 it's surely not going to be a let down as it grows it further.

That said one of these days being more into handheld stuff I really should probably snap up those 2 on the GB. Not so certain I'd bother with the SNES games, but I will say I never much cared for the NES ones other than 3 (as we never got 4 which was even better and more refined.)

I do intend to get that Gamecube one, I have the Bonk and Star Soldier releases of those special edition titles.
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by retrosportsgamer Sat Oct 01, 2016 8:44 pm

How's the WiiWare game?

I want to pick up that Vintage Collection on XBLA - good reminder.
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PresidentLeever
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by PresidentLeever Sun Oct 02, 2016 6:54 am

retrosportsgamer wrote:How's the WiiWare game?

I want to pick up that Vintage Collection on XBLA - good reminder.


If you meant Monster World 3/Wonder Boy in Monster World, It's one of the better ones and plays sort of like a reboot of Monster Land/Monster World 1 with metroid-like gameplay and more intricate dungeons than in MW2/Dragon's Trap. Monster World 2 and 4 are a bit faster paced though, especially in the beginning.
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alienjesus
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by alienjesus Sun Oct 02, 2016 8:03 am

I personally think all the Monster Land games are pretty great, but I'd recommend starting with either Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap or Wonder Boy in Monster World for a more accurate depiction of what to expect of the series. Monster World 4 is fantastic mind, but feels a little different to the earlier games.

Wonder Boy in Monster Land (the first Monster Land game) is a game I have a lot of love for, but it is very different to it's sequels and also brutally difficult, both down to the fact that it's originally an Arcade game. I feel the Master System port is better than the arcade original though.

The other two Wonder Boy games are fun in their own way, but they're not connected to the Monster Land games.

Here's my recommended port to play for each:

Wonder Boy: Arcade or SMS (I like the SMS more, but the arcade is more impressive)
Wonder Boy in Monster Land - SMS
Wonder Boy 3: Monster Lair - Turbografx CD or Arcade (don't bother with the awful Mega Drive version)
Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap - SMS
Wonder Boy in Monster World - Mega Drive
Monster World 4 - XBLA/Wii VC/ PSN (this version has been translated into English)
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marurun
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by marurun Sun Oct 02, 2016 5:53 pm

If you like the forced scrolling games, the TG-16/PCE New Adventure Island is probably the best one released. For the more metroidvania style titles, Dragon's Trap/Dragon's Curse is great. I prefer the TG-16 version, but either one is fun. Wonder Boy in Monster World on the Genesis is generally considered better than Dynastic Hero on TG/PCE, but they're both lots of fun. And of course Monster World IV on the MD is probably the pinnacle of that approach, though it was never released translated. There are patches out there, though.
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alienjesus
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Re: Wonder Boy/Monster World series- where to start?

by alienjesus Sun Oct 02, 2016 5:56 pm

marurun wrote:And of course Monster World IV on the MD is probably the pinnacle of that approach, though it was never released translated. There are patches out there, though.


Never given a physical translated release, sure, but it's been released in English on all 3 major console download services. Probably Steam too, but I'm less sure on that.
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