Overlooked and underrated.

User Rating: 9.1 | Dynamite Headdy GEN
Definitely one of the most overlooked and underrated Genesis games ever, this was Treasure's third release for the Genesis. Gameplay: Where to start? This game is like one long head trip from start to finish. Here's the scenario: You are a puppet that can throw your head around in 8 different directions. If you fling your head at certain parts of the scenery, you can grab on with your mouth and hoist yourself up to platforms that are otherwise inaccessible. You can swap your heads for ones that shoot projectiles, ones that transport you to special stages, ones that make you fall asleep and regain your energy, ones that make you invisible, faster, ones that turn your head into a vacuum cleaner that sucks up items and ... hang on a minute... I have to lie down for a moment because this game does weird things to my sanity. There's a back story about some evil dude who throws away all the broken puppets and keeps the decent ones for his evil deeds. Or something like that. There's a fantastic intro to the game's story that plays very much like the overture to an opera and is entertaining to watch (unlike most game intros these days). The game is however extremely long and difficult. There are around 30 levels and,like many Treasure games, many of the levels are boss or sub-boss encounters. There's no game save option either so playing all the way through in one sitting would take a very long time. Graphics: This game uses every trick in the Genesis's library. Starting with apparently straightforward platforming levels, you are soon encountering 3D tilting platforms, switches that changed the entire scenery, climbing up the inside of a cylindrical tower and much more. The game's real twist is that everything is supposed to look like a stage set in a forgotten theatre. Consequently, the backgrounds have rips and tears, places where you can see the bolts holding them together and sometimes workmen bringing on essential parts of the scenery. Music: Like the graphics, the music in this game pushed the Genesis's capabilities to its limits. The score at times is almost orchestral (especially the intro - see above) and the sounds used are crystal clear. The use of stereo was also welcome, even though at the time there were few televisions to make use of this feature. After playing this game with headphones, it convinced me to wire my Megadrive up to my Hi-Fi system ever after. Overall: A truly engaging and rewarding game - what a shame it was so unforgivingly hard. I'm ashamed to admit that I never got to the very end on my MegaDrive and only recently completed it in an emulator by using the game state save option :-$ Still, it was worth it...

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