Yes, some of the earliest examples of manuals made for this system's titles are more than a bit barebones in nature (see: Donkey Kong and Super Mario Bros.), but later ones can be quite fabulous.
Case in point: the manual produced for Konami's Yume Penguin Monogatari, which I previously discussed in this post.
All you need to do is check out the back page of Yume Penguin Monogatari's instruction manual to know it's top-shelf stuff. (By the way, I'd highly recommend clicking on each of the scans that can be found throughout this post, as that'll allow you to take a much better, and closer, look at their brilliance.)
The next few pages are pretty great, too--with the ones below providing readers with their first look at this game's main characters as well as their first taste of its rather head-scratching story.
Don't quote me on this, but I believe the illustration above is supposed to show Yume Penguin Monogatari's protagonist, Penta, struggling to balance his love of food with the love he feels for his ex-girlfriend.
The illustrations on the left-hand page above, on the other hand, show what happens to Penta if he's hit by one of the game's enemies or ingests any of the food said baddies toss at him. (Conversely, "diet drinks" found within each stage enable him to lose weight.)
Penta's moves actually differ depending on how big or small he is at any given time, by the way--with the projectile "po" attack (all the way to the left) being the most desirable, of course.
As nice as it is to be able to check out illustrated versions of Yume Penguin Monogatari's handful of items and power-ups (in the scan above), it's kind of hard to care about them when the next number of manual pages are stuffed to the gills with hand-drawn depictions of its colorful (and cute) cast of baddies.
The pig-snouted, Parodius-esque boss ship showcased in the left-hand page above may be my favorite enemy in the entire game, I have to say--although the grinning, big-eared, ghost-like boss on the right is pretty great, too.
Sadly, I've yet to encounter the in-game versions of Yume Penguin Monogatari's late-stage baddies, as I've never made it more than a few levels in before finding myself staring at a "Game Over" screen. I'm going to do my best to rectify that soon, though--in part so I can write a "Great Gaymathon" review of this platformer-slash-shmup hybrid.
In the meantime, are there any specific elements of this instruction manual that stick out at any of you? If so, feel free to share them in the comments section below.
See also: previous 'Manual Stimulation' posts