Three Wonders

David Yun David Yun: (contact-deleteme[at]-deleteme-direman [dot] com) 2008-03-06 05:21:03

Three Wonders - Rank B


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ROM Filename: 3wonders
Developer: Capcom
Publisher: Capcom
Date: May 1991

Also available in Capcom Classics Collection Vol. 2 (Xbox, PlayStation 2) and Capcom Classics Collection Remixed (PlayStation Portable)

When you "drop a quarter" into Three Wonders, you have a selection of three distinctly different games, although the two that are worth playing share conceptual art design elements.

The first game in this collection is Midnight Wanderers. It's a side-scrolling shooter (in the Contra vein) with a fantasy theme. The controls are precise and responsive, and anytime your little elf archer or knife-chucker dies to a goblin minion or tree boss, it's your fault. The sprites are colorful and fluidly animated, the music is engaging, and the power ups are sufficiently pleasing. My only criticism is that you can only fire in the four primary directions, as opposed to being able to fire diagonally. Otherwise, it's a solid example of the run, jump, climb, and shoot game mechanics that I'm sure you've sampled a bajillion times over.

Chariot, the second game, is a side-scrolling shooter (in the Gradius vein) with a fantasy theme. The controls are precise and responsive, and any time your little elf hang-glider or charioteer dies to a flying turtle shell or cloud boss, it's your fault. The sprites are colorful and fluidly animated, the music is engaging, and the power ups are sufficiently pleasing. My only criticism is that it's not quite as fun as Midnight Wanderers. Otherwise, it's a solid example of the bullet dodging and gun button mashing that I'm sure you've sampled a bajillion times over.

The final selection is Don't Pull, a puzzle game (in the Bomberman vein) with a cutesy bunny rabbit murdering lizards and colorful balls of goo by smooshing them with giant blocks. The controls don't matter because this game isn't very good, and anytime you play this weird addition that doesn't belong in Three Wonders, it's your fault. The sprites are gratingly bright and cheerful, the music is annoying, and you have better options if you like puzzlers. My final criticism is that Capcom should've left this game out, and called the arcade machine "Two Wonders".

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