Seto Taisho Vs. Yokai (Alessandro Grussu) Review | - Everygamegoing


Seto Taisho Vs. Yokai
By Alessandro Grussu
Spectrum 128K

Seto Taisho Vs. Yokai

Alessandro Grussu has done it again! Largely known for bringing us the Spectrum games Funky Fungus and Cousin Horace, he's now released Seto Taisho Vs Yokai. And what a unique, barking madcap piece it is! You're tasked with beating, amongst others, the Bura-Bura lanterns, the Kara-Kasa all-seeing triangles and what look like huge pairs of breasts on legs. Thank goodness for the Vs in that title, eh? Otherwise, this would all be nonsense.

I've seen few new Spectrum games released in so many versions as this. Quite apart from its premise - which I'll get to in a second - and the amount of research that has gone into its creation, it seems the entire ZX community has got behind this project. It's available with English, Italian, Portuguese, German and Spanish instructions and, if a certain key combination is hit, you'll find the opening screen later rendered in Japanese too.

Like all the greats, the game itself is amazingly simple and is a little like Pang. Pang is (in case you don't know) an oft-forgotten classic whereby a number of spheres bounce around the screen and must be blasted. Seto Taisho effortlessly moves this concept to a platform environment, and replaces the spheres with Japanese monsters and goblins, aka the Yokai. A Spectrum 128K only game, Grussu utilises all of that extra memory to pack in fourteen Yokais and three background symphonies; all of which perfectly complement the action. Indeed, the jangling Eastern tunes have a charm all of their own.

Seto Taisho Vs. Yokai (Italian Version)

So, what do you actually do? Well, as if it needed saying, you keep well out of range of the bouncing Yokai and run left and right, jutting out the spear you carry at right angles. A prick of the spear on any Yokai will give a satisfying puncture sound, and may cause it to reverse direction. You then run or jump after it, and prick it until it explodes in a cloud of smoke. When you've cleared the screen of Yokais, "GANBARE!" (Go On! in Japanese) appears in the centre of the screen and you proceed to the next room. Different Yokais require different strategies but none are so obscure that they can't be worked out with reference to the inlay card and a bit of applied common sense.

I don't have anything negative to say about Seto Taisho Vs Yokai; it's very responsive, gorgeous to look at and has easily taken a team the best part of two years to produce. It would be easily worth the average £4.99 price tag of a new Spectrum game. The icing on the cake has to be, therefore, that it's being given away completely for free.

The tragedy of this is simply that it doesn't have a lot of exposure; I literally just stumbled across it on a World Of Spectrum forum post. Hopefully this review will remedy that situation somewhat, because this is one that, once you've played it once, you'll definitely be coming back to.

Dave E

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