NES – #37 – Rygar

I knew of Rygar the arcade game, and I remember watching the review for Rygar on the PS2 on Extended Play… or Gamespot TV… Some point before G4 was a thing and Sessler was paid to act like a monkey. Anyway, I only recently learned there was an NES game. Basically, I have no idea what’s going on with this one!

As I understand it this game is more like Zelda II, so I guess I’m hoping for Faxanadu with an overworld map. That would actually be pretty rad…

Night 1:


So it turns out the game is less Faxanadu, more Castlevania, which is totally fine. The overworld map kind of threw me off the first time seeing it as the game continues to play like normal.

The controls aren’t quite perfect, and the game is pretty confusing in it’s “leveling” system, but after some trial and error (and a trip to GameFAQs) I was able to make sense of it. After spending about an hour with the game I really can’t say I’m in love with it, but I “get” it. I was able to make it all the way to before the first boss before getting distracted after about an hour, but now that I understand what the game wants from me I plan on sitting down with the strategy guide and beating the game tomorrow.

Night 2:

Woke up early, got the kids settled, made some coffee, and started up some Rygar.


I didn’t realize how close I was to the first boss last time I played. I raced through the beginning of the game, not really taking any time to farm this time, and made it to what looks like the result of a sabertooth tiger mating with a koopa troopa. This boss took several tries for me. I figured out quickly that his blasts came out at set intervals and that if I was fast enough I could just over them and continue attacking. The real trick, I found, was switching to 8th notes, jumping on the last note of the measure. With enough piano lessons, you too can beat the first boss in Rygar!

After that, the game continued on pretty quickly. Every boss was easier than the last until I eventually made it to Ligar himself.


Frustrating… Losing to this boss meant backtracking all the way to the beginning of the game to farm Mind and get another Full Health Potion. I lost to him three times… Finally, after getting the timing of my magic attack right, the lion was slain!


So… I didn’t really care for this one. It was playable enough, albeit pretty glitchy, even by NES standards, but it just didn’t really “do it” for me. I feel like everything Rygar does, even the things it does well, other NES games just do so much better. Even in beating the game, I didn’t get that sense of satisfaction like I did with StarTropics or Faxanadu. I don’t love this game, but I don’t hate it either.

Play it Again?
No, not even to speed run. Not when I could be playing Castlevania or Metroid instead.


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