Buddhagillie (GWS Workshop) Review | 8 Bit Annual - Everygamegoing

Eight Bit Magazine

By GWS Workshop

Published in 8 Bit Annual 2019


One look at this game and in my head I can hear one of those 50's B-grade sci-fi film presenters yelling "Samurai in Spaaaaace!" Maybe that's just me though?

Plot And Gameplay

In Buddhagillie you take on the role of Prince Siddhartha, who has (according to the manual) vowed, to make all sentient beings his equal without any difference. So does this mean the prince is superior, or the other sentient beings are? Who is he trying to elevate to the higher plane of existence? I don't have the answer to these questions, but I do know that whatever that answer is, it involves hurtling through space slashing at enemies. Buddhagillie is an interesting take on the shoot em up genre in that you aren't actually shooting at the enemies. As the four sufferings (the enemies) fly towards you it is your sword that is going to be doing all the talking. You can earn karma which will give you the ability to shoot a single shot at the enemy in front of you. The problem is that the action is so hectic that you can occasionally not realise you have a shot available, then it's gone before you know it.

Each level provides you with a few enemies to take out before being confronted with the boss. You are unable to move close enough to hit them, so you need to rely on the shots you can earn and aim them carefully. Each enemy has their own abilities with which they will attempt to take you down. The controls are basic, with the Prince being able to move in four directions with either button on the controller performing your sword slash. You can hit fireballs back to the enemy or hold the fire button down to stay in defensive mode. The deflected fireballs will only pass through enemies without causing any damage. Prince Siddhartha will swing the sword in a pattern, with a brief pause taking place at the end. You need to be careful and time your strikes, as I found most of my deaths taking place during this brief pause as it gave the enemy a chance to strike.

What I Like


The graphics are decent for an MSX1 title, though there is a significant amount of sprite flicker. The main sprite is well animated, swinging his sword in a variety of ways. When you hit one of the four sufferings they split apart, which actually feels rather satisfying. This split is accompanied by a slashing sound. The sound effects are more than sufficient, with dings sounding as you deflect fireballs with your blade. The music is a spiritual affair which sets the tone for the game and doesn't feel out of place.

What I Didn't Like

That brief pause got me killed so many times! Very frustrating! Perhaps this can be corrected in the future?


That satisfying slash of the sword as you slice an enemy in two. There's nothing like it! Overall I quite enjoyed Buddhagille. Good, not great, but definitely worth your time.

Paul Monopoli

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