To kick off my journey to review every TurboGrafx 16 and PC Engine game, I decided to go with a cute little game called Magical Chase! When I first discovered the TG16/PCE through emulation, I took to Twitter for some requests. Oddly enough no one requested this one. I discovered it on my own and it’s one I return to frequently. Because of that I decided to go with Magical Chase as it’s fun and to kick this off on a happy note.
You play as a cute little witch named Ripple on a journey to fix what she had wronged. She wasn’t supposed to open her teacher’s book: “The Forbidden Book of hidden Demons.” If she did her teacher would turn Ripple into a frog. Of course she does because the game needs some sort of setup, so you must go out and catch the six demons that escaped when she opened the book.
Magical Chase is a shmup and also could be described as a cute em up. The bright crisp graphics are what caught my attention and the fantastic game play helped make this game a favorite of mine. At least so far. I am fairly early into this! The controls are basic and responsive, hold down button 1 to shoot while button 2 orbits the little star helpers known as Topsy and Turvy around Ripple. Each press of the button moves them in a different area which is great for back attacks. You can also press in any direction and press button 2 and Topsy and Turvy will lock in place. Every stage requires a different tactic and discovering that is part of the fun!
This isn’t the hardest shmup out there but it can be irritating at times! Dodging stuff wasn’t that bad in this game! How you succeed in the game depends on your weapons. Enemies leave behind gems that count as currency. The bigger gems of course are worth more and there are various colors as well. Occasionally you’ll come across a floating shop that has a Pumpkin Head hot air balloon. Here you can buy better weapons, more hearts that represent your health, and even a must have potion that refills all your hearts when all your hearts are depleted. I can’t stress that this potion is a must have! Buy it as soon as you see it! As the levels go on the shop’s weapons get better and of course more expensive. Be sure to upgrade your weapons and experiment with different kinds often! Some levels can be completed a lot easier by having the correct weapon equipped! Oh did I mention the shop owner is Pumpkin Head?
The music is pretty good. When I first discovered TG16 and PCE games via emulation, I was amazed at the graphics and sound quality of these games. So much more impressive than the NES that was out during the same time. The NES dominated here in the USA back then and sadly I never experienced these consoles back then. I do intend to start collecting but I’m getting off topic here. After “Seal 3” the game begins to pick up in difficulty so you’ll soon find yourself humming tunes from the level you have to play over and over. Thankfully this is one of the more forgiving shmups out there! You have infinite continues and the only penalty is that your highscore gets reset. You still get to keep the current weapon set up you had when you died!
If you keep at it you’ll eventually get through the levels. Those unlimited continues sure are a blessing! I discovered that Magical Chase is a pretty short game. It only has six levels or “Seals” as the game calls them. The last seal is basically a mini bosh rush level until you confront the end boss. (No spoilers!) I really liked Magical Chase. I highly recommend it to anyone who hasn’t played it and likes shmups. It’s one game on the Turbografx 16 I can see myself returning to quite often!
- Cute, bright graphics that are pleasant on the eyes
- Easy to learn controls and very responsive
- Infinite continues and you keep weapons after death
- Great pick up and play game with high re playability
- A good shmup for beginners of the genre