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You are a hero raised from the dead by the god Zeus to rescue his daughter Athena. With scenery inspired by Ancient Greece, you have to fight hordes of undead and demons, with a boss at the end of each level until you meet the god Neff, who holds the girl captive.

The Altered Beast title refers to your shapeshifting abilities. In this platformer, you can collect spirit balls by defeating two-headed wolves, allowing you to mutate into different beasts such as a werewolf, a dragon, a tiger, a bear and others depending on the version. Each form, tied to a level, comes with special abilities such as flight and powerful attacks, easily superseding the basic set of punches and kicks in your human form.

The game can be played in single player mode, or in same-screen multiplayer co-op mode.


Altered Beast SEGA Master System Flying lizards
Altered Beast SEGA Master System Winged demons
Altered Beast SEGA Master System Kick - normal form
Altered Beast SEGA Master System Jump - Powered up form

Promo Images

Altered Beast Screenshot
Altered Beast Screenshot
Altered Beast Screenshot
Altered Beast Screenshot


Alternate Titles

  • "獣王記" -- Japanese spelling
  • "兽王记" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "Jūōki" -- Japanese title
  • "Altered Beast Classic" -- iOS and Android release title
  • "3D Altered Beast" -- Nintendo 3DS title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Sloooow down ETJB (450) 1.2 Stars1.2 Stars1.2 Stars1.2 Stars1.2 Stars

Critic Reviews

VideoGame May, 1991 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
GamesCollection Apr 12, 2008 9 out of 10 90
VideoGame Mar, 1991 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
ACE (Advanced Computer Entertainment) Jun, 1989 661 out of 1000 66
All Game Guide 1999 3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars 60
Computer and Video Games (CVG) May, 1989 60 out of 100 60
ASM (Aktueller Software Markt) Apr, 1989 5.4 out of 12 45
The Games Machine (UK) May, 1989 43 out of 100 43 Oct 21, 2016 2 out of 10 20
Game Freaks 365 Sep 05, 2005 1 out of 10 10


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A version of Altered Beast is included in Sega's Smash Pack compilation CD.

Genesis pack-in game

This game was the first pack-in game to come with the Genesis when it first came out in 1989.


The Brazilian Heavy metal band Megadriver, specialized in SEGA MegaDrive music, did a cover of the first level theme, complete with one of the band members saying "Rise from your grave".


The ride-able lizard-birds from Golden Axe make a cameo appearance in the second stage. Bizarrian, a hybrid between an amphibious and a parrot, is also present in Golden Axe.

Version differences

The NES version adds 3 new stages and 2 unique transformations: a shark, an a bird. On the other hand, the SMS version removes the tiger level. The Zodiac release is an emulation of the Genesis version, but for one player only.


  • Power Play
    • Issue 01/1990 - Biggest Failure of 1989
Information also contributed by Mad_Griffith, Matthew Melbourne, Robbb and Zovni

Related Web Sites

PCGamer77 (3233) added Altered Beast (SEGA Master System) on Jan 17, 2003
Other platforms contributed by Luiz Pacheco (1305), mars_rulez (44124), GTramp (61624), PCGamer77 (3233), Lain Crowley (6786), Guy Chapman (2001), Sciere (533929), Zovni (10646), Foxhack (24980), Martin Smith (66862), ZZip (830), Terok Nor (27232), The cranky hermit (606), Scaryfun (17832), Ben K (23926), koffiepad (10530), Katakis | カタキス (40065) and Syed GJ (1579)