Atlantis no Nazo (Sunsoft, 4/17/86)Posted on April 26th, 2011 1 comment
A full TAS run of the mid-’80s Famicom platform game, one that has a remarkably detailed English Wikipedia page. It’s so detailed, in fact, that I’d like to meet the guy who decided that translating all the info on the Japanese wiki-page would make for a fun afternoon. I have the impression that he (let’s just assume he’s a gentleman) and I would have a lot in common.
Atlantis no Nazo is a famous game in Japan for a number of reasons — it’s incredibly hard; your hero controls very wonkily and his weapon is extremely difficult to control; there are warps that’re found only by deliberately committing suicide; a couple of stages flash constantly; there’s a “Black Hole!” stage that is an immediate Game Over if you are unfortunate enough to visit it; and so on. Activision contemplated releasing the game for the NES (under the title Super Pitfall II) seriously enough to create a full-on preview version that even included a few upgrades, but the game was really just too old hat for the US audience by 1989.
A “full” or “warpless” run of Atlantis no Nazo, as defined by the creator of this TAS, follows two rules:
- Do not take any doors that are not in plain sight (except for the door between 99th Stage and 100th Stage)
- Do not take any doors that bring your intrepid hero five or more stages ahead of where he previously was
Beating the game this way is pretty much impossible for a human being. I tried it back in the day (i.e. 1998), and I couldn’t no matter how much I tried. It’s not a title for weak sisters, or really for anyone besides hyperactive Japanese children, assuming it was still 1986. But nonetheless there’s a certain charm to this title, perhaps because of the hero’s proud, exaggerated marching gait.
Note that pausing and unpausing the game right after finishing the stage cuts down the length of the little inter-level display, hence the odd sound after going through a doog.
There seems to be a growing (?) phenomenon of Wikipedia pages for obscure games managing to survive with little sourcing or strict objectivity, often leading to more useful/enjoyable articles. I don’t know if it’s because bureaucracy is tied up elsewhere or due to heavy contributors shifting to subject-focused wikias or what. It’s nice to stumble across them…one of my favorites is the entry for “Last Armageddon”, which has been cleaned up a bit recently but still reads like it was written by someone who cares more about the game than the clarity of the article.
In terms of pure information, you can sometimes find some pretty nice stuff with completed guides over at StrategyWiki, too.
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