Sega Master System

Review by Matt Paprocki



Graphics: 10 (7)

Sound: 10 (7)

Gameplay: 10 (7)

Overall: 10 (7)

Before we embark on this review, I need to come clean. I'm biased towards this game....really biased. See, back when I was just old enough to see over the control panel of an arcade game, a local Little Caesars pizza parlor had this game in their lobby. Every time we ate there I would skip most of the meal (settling for cold pizza at home) simply to play Rastan. I loved it then and I still do so my final score may be slightly affected....just slightly.

Rastan brings us the story of a muscle-bound Fabio look alike who has been summoned by a King to rescue a princess. To do so, Mr. Fabio must traverse through the land batting down a bunch of green lizard-like enemies. Each of the 7 stages features a castle at the end that must be completed in order to meet up with the boss. These range from wizards, medusas, and the usual array of mythical monsters. Along the way, players have the ability to power themselves up with armor, rings, and new weapons. The weapons are particularly cool and feature a personal favorite: the fire sword.

Graphically, the Master System mimics the arcade game the best it can. The small sprites are adequately detailed, but the abundant flicker brings this category down a notch. The backgrounds are sparse, but there is enough detail to bring the fantasy world alive. The music has been faithfully reproduced on the consoles tinny sound chip, a great job on the programmers part.

Most of the gameplay faults have been lifted from the arcade version. If an attack is needed in the air, your character stops and falls straight downward resulting in many deaths. Numerous platforms will need to be crossed in order to reach your goals, but missing a jump is easier than making it. Some of the bosses have an unfair speed and power advantage, resulting in more lost lives.

Anyway you look at it, Rastan is an undeniable classic, setting a standard for the medieval action/hack-and-slash that were to come later. The story is generic, the characters aren't interesting, and the gameplay is filled with annoying quirks that only frustrate players, but there's something special here. If you can't afford the arcade game and MAME isn't your thing, the will surely satisfy your need to hack and slash.


Go to Digital Press HQ
Return to Digital Press Home

Last updated: Wednesday, December 10, 2003 02:30 PM