Friday, April 18, 2014

I don't get mad, I get Madou Monogatari

I have a feeling the headline above is among the worst--or at least the cheesiest--I've ever written. Sorry about that.

It's hard for me not to get a bit goofy when Compile's Madou Monogatari (Story of Sorcery in English, basically) series is involved, though. For me, these dungeon-crawling titles are like the "perfect storm" of gaming; on the one hand, they're cute as can be, yet on the other, they're tough as nails (or are from time to time, at least).

Given the above, along with the fact that I've been playing the game's fan translation via a patched ROM on and off for some time now, I recently decided to pick up an actual copy of the first Madou Monogatari title that was released for Sega's Game Gear back in 1993.

For whatever reason, I've long been a big fan of this game's flowery logo, which can be seen in the photo above (especially if you zoom in on it--just click on the image to do that).

Madou Monogatari I's cartridge label is pretty nice, too, although it's probably hard to tell that given the rather over-exposed nature of the photo above. (Sorry about that, too; I'm still coming to terms with using a new piece of software to clean up my snapshots.)

Thankfully, the photo above of the first page of this pint-sized dungeon-crawler's instruction manual is clear as day. By the way, the group of kids and other beings in this illustration constitute the bulk (if not the entirety) of the game's cast and crew--in case any of you were wondering. Oh, and if any of them look kind of familiar, well, that's because Compile later put them to use in its Puyo Puyo series of puzzlers.

Those same characters can be found on the back of Madou Monogatari I's box, which I suppose could be considered a bit underwhelming. You've got to love, though, that the box in question features such little text.

I mean, I'm guessing the Madou Monogatari series was pretty well known by Japanese gamers at the time and so most potential buyers didn't need to be told that this game was a dungeon-crawling RPG, but even then you'd think its packaging would include more than five lines of text.

See also: 'It was worth every penny (or, I heart my copy of Lunar: Samposuru Gakuen for the Game Gear)' and 'Manual Stimulation: Lunar Samposuru Gakuen (Game Gear)'


Justin Difazzio said...

Cute! I've never heard of this series before, but now my interest is kindled. said...

Really, Justin? I thought it was pretty well known, if only because of its Puyo Puyo connection. Anyway, you should check out the fan patch that's available for this one. Or you could check out the Super Famicom version, although it plays a bit differently. (Sadly, I don't think the Genesis version has been translated, although I may be wrong.)

Obscure Video Games said...

Justin, if you want to get an idea of what the fan-translated Super Famicom version is like, I did a bunch of GIFs for it here: said...

Yeah, the SF game's definitely cute. I prefer the first-person gameplay of the GG and other versions, though. Still, I say check out any and all MM games you're interested in :)

TheGameroomBlitz said...

Poor Compile... it deserved better. I don't think Compile Heart has done justice to the company's name... I mean, have you PLAYED Cross Edge? (I strongly recommend you don't.)

I've never played any of the Madou Monogatari games, but RPGs are a prickly genre for me. There's only a small handful I enjoyed, including the early Suikodens and Panzer Dragoon Saga. Still, this IS by Compile...