Crusader of Centy
Crusader of Centy is an action adventure game developed by NexTech and published by Atlus for the Genesis on 1994-06-17. It was marketed in Japan as part of the Mega RPG Project, and attempt to publish more RPGs on the Mega Drive to compete with the growing library on the Super Famicom. The game play borrows heavily from The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
In the game, you play the 14-year-old boy Corona who tries to uncover the mystery of why monsters have recently become more dangerous. Along the way, he learns combat techniques and attracts animal followers which give him special abilities.
I saw this game being reviewed on a video of lesser-known Genesis RPGs, and the video footage made the game look really interesting. I started playing it and found that it looked and sounded great, but didn't really play all that well. Still, it was enjoyable enough to keep playing and I beat it on 2020-05-17, but I noted several flaws. Coincidentally, I saved the game world with a hero named Corona while staying at home in the real world to avoid the coronavirus.
I don't own this game, but have beaten it.
Best Version: Genesis
— This section contains spoilers! —
- The art is bright and colorful with very cheerful characters. I especially love the angry squirrel.
- The developers used a lot of programming tricks to create great visual effects. As well a nice pixel art additions, like diagonal character movement sprites and the footprints in the sand.
- The game's music, composed by Motokazu Shinoda, is very good. It has several hummable melodies as well some moody ambiance and driving bass tracks. Doubly-impressive considering this was the first video game soundtrack he composed. Unfortunately, it was also the last.
- The cheetah race and river-crossing logic puzzle are nice mini-games.
- There are a fair amount of optional hidden objects to find which helps replay.
- The player control could be better. It never really felt fluid and it took me a lot of bumping into things before I become acclimated.
- Many times throughout the game I was at a loss for where to go next. Part of this is from the large winding maps full of dead-ends and useless areas, but the other part is a lack of cues pointing your way. Sometimes you have to talk to the same person multiple times before they will give you the information necessary to progress. There is even one case where to have to read a sign after a specific event to go further, even though you probably already read it.
- Although you swing your sword in a large arc, it only hits things directly in front of you which is very apparent when trying to cut down grass. It takes awhile to get used to it.
- The map design leaves a lot to be desired. Nearly all of the grass and crates aren't worth cutting open, and the maps are large and empty. I would prefer the maps to either be smaller or more populated.
- I don't get why your animal helpers hover behind you where ever you go, it's rather distracting.
- You amass a lot of gold, but there are very few things to spend it on. Other than a couple small purchases, you're just saving up for one expensive thing, and, after that, gold is meaningless.
- Some of the hidden objects are a bit too hidden, like the fence post that requires you to jump on it over 30 times before the secret is revealed. Few of these things are necessary, but they're not the kind of thing a person would ever stumble upon without a hint book.
- I like the idea of being able to speak to plants and animals, but, taking away the player's ability to speak to humans so early in the game, and for such a long time, causes problems. The player is forced to revisit a lot of areas to see what the humans were actually saying.
- Dippy takes a lot of the skill out of the game by allowing you to be immune to spikes and conveyors. It wouldn't be as bad if he were optional, but he's a mandatory companion.
- In the American release, there are a fair amount of typos in the dialogue including improper word-wrapping, incorrect scrolling, spelling errors, and inconsistent spacing after punctuation.
- By allowing the player to save pretty much anywhere in the game, save scumming becomes a problem. Although, you have to reset your Genesis to take advantage of it.
- All of the spike jumping in Camillia Desert is pretty annoying.
- Many bosses have large areas of invincibility, and don't flash or knock-back when you injure them, so you have to watch their apple counter to tell when you're actually hurting them.
- When you're in the past, in order to keep players limited to just specific areas of the game so they don't have to create a past version of every map, the developers lazily prevent the player from moving into neighboring areas. It would have been nicer if they made a barrier on the map so it didn't look so silly.
- For some reason, the penguin has a duck's bill.
- The story is a complete mess. It begins very underwhelming with a threat of more aggressive monsters. You're a 14-year-old boy who begins training to help find out why, but your mission training is interrupted when a fortuneteller replaces your ability to understand human language with that of animal and plant language. You're constantly side-tracked with other missions involving mythology like the Tower of Babel as well as fairy-tales like Little Red Riding Hood and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. You don't even finish your training until well past the halfway mark of the game! Near the end of the game, you discover that monsters were the victims of a massive natural disaster which brought them to the human world, but they aren't evil, in fact, they want to peacefully coexist with humans despite the fact that you've been slaughtering them throughout the whole game. But, rather than learn to live in harmony, you destroy the energy force that brought them here, and they're all sucked back to their dark underground home world. The story "solves" the problem of xenophobia by segregating everyone forever.
- The game is a pretty shameless ripoff of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, but, even with that fantastic template, they weren't able to capture the magic and finesse, and instead created a rather hollow simulacrum.
This art was used on the original Japanese box and the Korean release. It has Corona and his animal pals running from the dragon Maldra. The quality of the art is good, but Corona's character design is awful with his ridiculously huge hands and feet. The clay tablet lettering is kind of nice though.
The Japanese release came with a metal Mega RPG Project pin.
|Executive Producer||Katsuji Aoyama|
|Producer, Scenario||Yayoi Onda|
|Game Design||Yayoi Onda, Toshio Toyota|
|Main Programmer||Yukihiko Tani|
|Sub Program||Toshio Toyota, Satoshi Otake|
|Character Designer, Graphic Designer||Toshio Yamamoto|
|Graphic Designers||Kazuhiro Nagata, Masayuki Matsushima|
|Object Designers||Yoshihisa Shimizu, Kiyoka Tajima|
|Boss Character Designer||Yoshitaka Maki|
|Music Composer||Motokazu Shinoda|
|Sound Operator||Noriyuki Iwadare|
|Special Thanks||Mucky, Isao Mizoguchi|
|English (US)||Crusader of Centy|
|Japanese||新創世記ラグナセンティ||Shin Soseiki Ragunasenti||New Genesis Ragnacënty|
|Korean||라그나센티 신창세기||Sinchangsegi Lageunasenti||Ragnacent New Genesis|