CGRundertow SEGA VINTAGE COLLECTION: MONSTER WORLD for Xbox 360 Video Game Review

I can’t think of the last time I saw a Sega
Master System in the wild. And that’s strange, given how much time I spend around vintage
video game shops, secondhand stores, and… well, Mark. You can find the games on rare
occasion, sporting those weird grid-ruled boxes. And, for all my crazy import shenanigans,
I’ve rather left the Genesis in the dust. So when a package comes down the pike for
the XBLA that offers not only classic arcade-style action-adventure-erm-action… with swords…
but also an installment in the series that wasn’t available in the States until now…
well, it’s an easy way to fleece ten bucks from a certain guy named TJ. Let’s leave
it at that. This Sega Vintage Collection packs together
Wonder Boy in Monster Land (the second in the series, originally released for arcades
and Sega Master System), Wonder Boy in Monster World (the fifth, which saw a Western release
on the Genesis), and the alarmingly Shantae-esque Monster World IV (which is actually the sixth,
and never came over to the states). Regardless of which iteration you’re playing, similar
concepts come into play: You’ve got a sword, upgradable armor, and usually some sort of
magic or something, and you scamper around platformer playgrounds stabbing enemies, collecting
gold, and occasionally going up against a big ol’ whompin’ boss monster thing. Each
game includes the original challenge in its entirety, as well as special “Trial” challenges
that task you with completing a stage or boss-rush in the fastest time. There’s even leaderboards,
so you can brag about your absolute domination of a 25-year-old arcade game. But anyone can slam together three old games
and fling them piecemeal at a new generation. (Like they did on the Wii Virtual Console.)
What sets the PS3 and XBox 360 versions apart is this frontend, acting as your own weird
anime-art-covered shrine to 8- and 16-bit gaming. My favorite feature, though, is this
sound test mode that, in addition to playing every piece of music from each of the three
games, shows you a channel-by-channel breakdown of how those tracks utilize the SMS or Genesis
hardware. Yes, it’s completely superfluous unless you’re a hardcore retro gaming music
nerd. That said, I’m a hardcore retro gaming music nerd, who loves that twangy, bassy Genesis
sound. If you want to relieve that golden age of 2D action platformers, you can pick
up the Sega Vintage Collection: Monster World on PSN or XBLA for the equivalent of ten bucks,
or just stay tuned to the Undertow for more in-depth coverage of these classics.

41 Replies to “CGRundertow SEGA VINTAGE COLLECTION: MONSTER WORLD for Xbox 360 Video Game Review”

  1. for those who don't even HAVE a 360, i have played a fan translation that beat this game to the punch (in terms of english-ifying the game)

  2. and good sirs down at the comments this is a useless argument that is a completely unrelated topic to the review

  3. You have accomplished your main goal in life, now you should shoot yourself in the head as you have nothing to look forward to.

  4. I would never say "first!" even if I were first, but is the verbal abuse really needed? At least AQreviews used sarcasm.

  5. I enjoy those little touches that SEGA used to make this collection special. SEGA is more in touch with their fanbase than most any company. I look at Sonic 4 Ep 2 (which is a phenomenal game) and Sonic Generaions, and I see them constantly bending over backwards to please fans, and their Genesis collection is without equal. They had this "Play with SEGA" event today, and you can see that their employees are fans themselves. Their emulation of GG titles set a new standard for 3DS.

  6. that's weird. we live in the same city and i see the master system at used game stores fairly often. its the game's that seem to be elusive. at least the good ones. the wonder boy/monster world games are so great. one void that in collecting retro games will never be filled is the smell of those games when they were new. sms games smelled the best. much better than nintendo. call me crazy but i know some people know exactly what im talking about. mark maybe?

  7. …now if they can only reboot Wonderboy III: The Dragons Trap with modern graphics but don't mess so much with sound… I'll be stoked!

  8. Really love the front this for both this & the Alex Kidd & Co. game. I seriously hope SEGA comes out w/more of these SEGA Vintage Collection games w/this same level of quality. It's the closest we'll ever get to a SEGA-themed GameRoom style app. The games are a tad steep at $10 a pop, considering these games are old as dirt. If they were, say $6 worth, I'd more than likely have picked up both the Wonder Boy collection as well as Alex Kidd & Co. already.

  9. umm…. on the PSN you have the option to pick only one of these monster world's games one game might cost you only $5.

  10. It's too bad they didn't include Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap in this pack. That one is arguably the best in the Monster World series.

  11. These Vintage Collections drives me crazy! You can get the Ultimate Genesis Collection for $15 new yet Sega charges $10 for all 3 SoR games and all 3 GA games. Also, I spent $5 on SOR2 for XBLA, so shouldn't I have a discount? And what about Mortal Kombat? I spent $10 on UMK3 so shouldn't I get 1 & II for free now?

  12. I would have bought this pack had it included Wonder Boy 3: The Dragon's Trap… it is by far the best in the series. I know Wonderboy in Monster Land as well as the Dragon's Trap backwards and forwards. 800 points is extremely steep for a simple repackaging of these games though. They should be 400 points maximum.

  13. hey everyone check out my ranked number 2 in the world replay on boss parade on wonderboy in monster world

  14. monster world IV actually the sixth game? oh great, it's like final fantasy II and III on the snes all over again!

  15. No, not really because it's not a translation change like with Final Fantasy.

    Monster World was kind of a spin-off of Wonder Boy but they continued numbering them as Wonder Boy titles as well as Monster World titles.

    So for example, Wonder Boy in Monster World's full title is "Wonder Boy 5: Monster World 3."

    They dropped the "Wonder Boy" part of the title for Monster World 4 (since you play a female character) but it was the sixth and last title in the Wonder Boy meta-series.

  16. Bruh Sega Vintage Collection Sonic The Hedgehog 2 they took off the Sound Test, is there another way to use cheats? Or is there a code to activate Sound Test?

  17. I remember this arcade machine as a kid in Australia….. but I could have sworn it was Alex Kidd and not Wonder Boy. Maybe just another case of "nobody will understand what a philosopher's stone is, let's call it a sorcerer's stone".

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