Awaken an ancient god for some SimCity and platforming!
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I'm Gaming Jay: Youtube gamer, let's player, fan of retro games, and determined optimist... Join me in this series while I try out EACH of the video games in the book 1001 VIDEO GAMES YOU MUST PLAY BEFORE YOU DIE, before I die. The game review for each game will focus on the question of whether you MUST play this game before you die. But to be honest, the game review parts are just for fun, and are not meant to be definitive, in depth reviews; this series is more about the YouTube gamer journey itself. From Mario games to the Halo series, from arcade games to Commodore 64, PC games to the NES and Sega Genesis, Playstation to the Xbox, let's play those classic retro games that we grew up with, have fond memories of, or heard of but never got a chance to try! And with that said, the game review for today is...
ActRaiser (アクトレイザー Akutoreizā) is a 1990 platform and city-building simulation game for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System developed by Quintet and published by Enix, combining traditional side-scrolling platforming with urban planning god game sections. A sequel, ActRaiser 2, was released for the Super NES in 1993. In 2007, ActRaiser became available on the Wii's Virtual Console download service in Europe, North America, and Japan. A version of the game was also released for European mobile phones in 2004.
The player plays as "The Master," the main protagonist of the game. Although the Master is never directly controlled, the player interacts with the world by controlling an angel and an animated statue. The player plays as an angel during the simulation sequences of the game, and as the statue during the action sequences.
The overhead-view simulation mode involves protecting and guiding the Master's new civilization towards prosperity, beginning with two humans. This portion of the game requires the player to take actions that encourage the growth of the population, including road planning and using lightning, rain, sunlight, wind, and earthquakes as miracles. The Angel can interact with the monsters in the area by shooting them with arrows as well as aid the Master by indicating where to build and use miracles.
One obstacle in the simulation mode is the presence of flying monsters which attempt to impede the progression of a civilization. The source of the monsters are four lairs around the region at the beginning of each level. They continuously spawn the creatures as the servant kills them. As the population expands, it can seal the lairs of monsters, which prevents them from spawning, and eventually eliminate all the flying monsters in the land. Doing so increases the civilization level of the region, allowing more advanced structures to be built and increasing the potential population. Once all four lairs have been sealed the population will begin to build the most advanced homes available to the people in that region. The Master levels up by increasing the total population of the world, granting an increase in hit points and SP, used in performing miracles.
Each area has two side-scrolling action sequences, one before the building simulation and near the end. In the action sequences, the player controls a human-shaped statue brought to life by the Master. The player must jump from platform to platform while defeating monsters to accrue a score. At the end of each action sequence, the player must defeat a boss.
The final level is an action-sequence boss marathon, culminating in the final fight against Tanzra.