Rygar

aka: Argos no juujiken, Rygar: Join Forces With The Legendary Warrior
Moby ID: 8609
Arcade Specs
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Description official descriptions

This version of Rygar is quite different from the arcade original and its ports, though it shares the same basic story: a legendary warrior rises from the grave in order to defeat the forces of evil in the land of Argool. Rather than being a linear arcade-style game, this version emphasizes exploration and allows the player to re-visit locations with special items that may open previously inaccessible locations.

The game contains a light RPG element in form of permanent power-ups which increase the main character's performance in combat. It also offers multiple viewpoints: the action-oriented stages are viewed from a side-scrolling perspective, but when travelling between zones the game takes on an overhead view that can also lead to combat situations.

Spellings

  • アルゴスの戦士 はちゃめちゃ大進撃 - Japanese spelling

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Credits (NES version)

Music Composer (uncredited)

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 76% (based on 14 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.5 out of 5 (based on 38 ratings with 2 reviews)

Some depth, but suffers from being an early adventure game....

The Good
For it's time it had pretty good graphics, sound and playability. Lots of brilliant colour, and lots of action. An early entry into adventure games, it set the stage for the genre. Lots of side scrolling action, with the occasional twist of having to scroll up. Good escalation of monster difficulty, with the monsters getting harder to kill and more of them.
Fun weapons, and action. Challenging and fun. The music is original and stays with you.

The Bad
There is no safe feature for this game! It is surprising that for such a somewhat deep game, with lots of levels to go through, that they never made an ability to save and continue. In order to beat the game you either had to play straight through, or pause and leave the game running.
This was an odd game visually! On a lot of stages, the side scrolling not only was linear, but at the SAME time you had to navigate in a 3rd dimension, which is very hard to do on a 2 dimensional game/screen. It was especially hard to jump in this mode!
Not much help in this game, other than some old man giving you a hint once in a blue moon, so you had to find things hit and miss style. Rygar's primary weapon is a kind of yo-yo shield thing, that can be upgraded as you progress into the game. The upgrades make it reach longer and hit harder. You also need to find a few other tools to progress, but without the help it gets hard to find and tedious. This is especially brutal considering there isn't a save function.

The Bottom Line
An adventure game that was OK for it's time. Today, a fun game to fool around with if your bored. Has it's moments, and can be challenging! A kind of rough around the edges old school classic.

NES · by Oblio (97) · 2006

Wield the ancient world’s most terrifying weapon: the Yo-Yo!

The Good
Rygar’s a bit hard to classify, but its nearest neighbours would be Castlevania 2 and Adventure of Link. It’s a sidescroller that features RPG like levelling and an exploration-heavy, interconnected world with new areas opening up as items are found. It also came out in the same timeframe as the previously mentioned games, which seems to demonstrate the sort of hive mind that Famicom developers were connected to at the time. While I may be pretty down on Simon’s Quest and Adventure of Link, Rygar is mostly all right by me.

The premise is pretty standard NES. You play as some dude in football gear named Rygar who is trying to save the holy land of Argool from a dark king named Ligar. To do this, he wields something that looks like a cross between a buckler and a spiked yo-yo. The game takes you through the standard fantasy forests and canyons in both side scrolling and top down perspectives. Side-scrolling is pretty slick, though at times clunky. Top down is just always clunky, giving you no ability to attack diagonally. On the whole, it’s not terrible.

Maybe it’s hard to hate because Rygar is a pretty forgiving game. There’s no limit on continues and dying sends you right back to the start of the area you’re on with the only real punishment being that your life is only refilled three hearts. This is even true of bosses, if you die, you’re popped right back to the doorway of the boss room with three hearts refilled. This means you can jump right back into combat, though on later bosses you’ll likely need to leave and grind for health. Still, the game isn’t without challenge, and in some places you’ll be fighting for survival, but it’s not going to make you suffer unreasonably for your mistakes.

On the topic of being reasonable, it caught me by surprise that the other characters in the game give hints that are actually useful. This may sound obvious, but after playing games like The Legend of Zelda, Castlevania 2, and the Goonies 2, I’m used to talking to obtuse character who provide absolutely useless or overly cryptic information. In Rygar, the old hermits will actually tell you what item you need to proceed, whether or not you’re going the wrong way, and even specific directions on certain occasions. You’d think this wouldn’t be surprising, but in the 8-bit generation, NPC’s were rarely helpful.

The Bad
Rygar is by no means a lengthy game, maybe clocking in at four hours on your first playthrough, but it’s still long enough that you’ll likely want to stop midway through. Unfortunately for you, there’s absolutely no save system. No level skip, no password, no warp zones. If you want to conquer the game, you’d better sit down and keep playing. It isn’t totally uncommon for a game of this generation to lack any save feature, but Rygar just feels like it should. It contains unlimited continues and will start you off on the same screen you left off, so the only real obstacle to completing the game is your patience.

There’s a general lack of polish in Rygar that’s hard to describe. It’s kind of glitchy in a lot of places. My favourite glitchy moment allowed my character to climb in thin air as if they were on a rope. Bosses are pretty lame, with few requiring any strategy beyond having enough health and waling on them. Enemies aren’t so much placed in the game world as they are dumped in as you walk around. I mean, these are all pretty small complaints that probably won’t do more than annoy, but they are there.

There’s no real variation in your attacks. You pick up items that allow you to proceed, but that’s basically all you do. There’s a grappling hook, a crossbow, and a pulley. All of them, even the crossbow, are just used to bypass certain obstacles, essentially acting like fancy keys. There’s no real magic system, only two small power-ups for your yo-yo, and no true projectile weapons. Not to mention that simply obtaining the grappling hook disables you from looking up or ducking while attacking in some places, and there’s no way to unequip it. It’s not a big deal, but a projectile weapon would have been nice, or at least something to replace the yo-yo.

The Bottom Line
Rygar may lack the tight controls of a game like Mega Man, the devious challenge of Castlevania, or the satisfying exploration of The Legend of Zelda, but it’s still an AVERAGE game. When you comb the NES library for the classics, this one will never rise to the top. It’s something you play in between the console’s more notable titles. Something to numb the mind. You’ll neither regret playing it, nor will you regret missing out on it. It’s just there, okay. Try it, or don’t. See if I care.

NES · by Adzuken (836) · 2013

Trivia

PAL version

The PAL version of the game featured less memory capacity compared to American counterpart. As a result, in PAL version at the end of the game Rygar could accumulate up to 1023 attack and defense points. In American version this value could go as high as 4000. The same was true with Rygar's hitpoints: 8 in PAL version and 12 in American one.

This made clearing the last area of the game, Ligar's Castle, unreasonably hard in PAL version, as Rygar would die in 2-3 hits. The hardest challenge, however, awaited the players who reached the final boss, Ligar.

Ligar would shoot multiple projectiles without a pattern, killing Rygar off in 3-7 hits (depending on Rygar's setup for the final battle), and himself requires 33 hits (or more, again depending on Rygar's setup) to be killed. This makes completing PAL version a very tough challenge. There are people, however, who have done it, and you can find their videos on the Internet, if you're interested.

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by MaiZure.

Arcade added by Michael Cassidy. Nintendo Switch added by Kam1Kaz3NL77.

Additional contributors: Guy Chapman, jean-louis, Freeman, Игги Друге, GTramp.

Game added March 11th, 2003. Last modified September 2nd, 2023.