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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Guardian Legend

Guardian Legend fan art is awesome.

The game was unique, really unique, and it never got that sequel it deserved. How many games in the NES era (or any console generation) sported shooter stages, a free-roam on-foot world, shops, level-ups, secrets and tons of bosses?

I think this energy morph is much cooler than the freaky contortionist animation on the NES

Guardian Legend also had some odd game mechanics that, as far as I can tell, are entirely unique. For instance, when you run into an enemy both you and your opponent take damage (except for bosses). It's an odd design because shooters, especially shooters today, don't rely on life bars. They're all about bullet hell and one-shot-one-kill and single-pixel hit detection for the player.

Guardian Legend is less about finesse and more about desperately scrambling away from danger.

Wasn't too wild about the hitbox though. It literally was a box, and since you were flying a triangular ship there was a lot of airspace that counted as vulnerable.

I also was never too wild about the random health power-ups that would pop up in the shooter stages. You could be at next-to-nil health and then a power pack would show up and you're back to 100%, just like that. It was like some kind of gambling mini-game.

If I could remake one game, just one game, then it would have to be Guardian Legend.

And maybe I should, at least in the spirit of the game mechanics. Missile Master already follows a number of design philosophies found in Guardian Legend (like a health bar and collision damage) and the code could certainly be transfered over to a larger project.

I'm not the only one thinking remake, either. Check out this guy's idea. It's the perfect blueprint from an annoyingly talented artist.

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