Review by Pilgrim Shadow
Mega Man's Cousin is a Wiccan???
The Krion Conquest is a pretty obscure game. Chances are, if you're reading this, you're one of the 3 people on earth who've played it. If that's the case, then you probably can imagine all of what I'm about to say.
It's impossible to review this game without mentioning Mega Man. It is a blatant - and I mean BLATANT - clone. The main character, a cute little witch named Francesca, even looks and moves like a female Rock (in a witch hat and skirt, of course). Of course, Mega Man is a great game, so the Krion Conquest can't be all that bad.
GRAPHICS - 7
If you've played Mega Man II, then you've seen the graphics here. It's cute and cartoony, with colorful sprites and neat-o environments. The best single sprite is probably Fransesca herself; she's downright adorable. However, the Mega Man games definately have a bit more spit and polish; Krion's sprites are subtley simpler, less detailed. You'd have to be a Mega Maniac (that's clever, right?) to really notice, but it does show its knock-off status.
SOUND - 7
The sound here is fun and catchy, but again, it shows its colors in being just a step behind Mega Man. You might find yourself humming along as you play, but you'll forget the tune as soon as the game goes off; it's not quite like the great Mega Man music that you remember even years later. Again, it's not bad - quite good, really - but it still seems like a pale shadow of its predecessor.
GAMEPLAY - 6
The game is, at the same time, both better and worse than Mega Man.
Fransesca can do two things that make Mega Man look like a dunce. First, she can shoot UP. Yeah, Mr. Blue Bomber, you might want to look into that. Also, she can DUCK. Even in Mega Man 8, Rock could only slide. Oddly enough, these two moves are easily forgetable, due to the fact that Mega Man's gameplay is so entrenched in the player's psyche.
Another slick twist on the basic format is that you don't have to collect weapons from each boss. You begin the game with a full arsenal - Normal, Fire, Ball, Freeze, Shield, and Broom. The latter functions much like Rush Jet. These weapons have unlimited power; use them all you like and swap them out as the situation warrents.
Unfortunately, there are some problems. For one, even though you can charge your shots (for most weapons), this function doesn't work very well. If you enter the pause menu while charging, you'll interupt the charge and have to start over. Ditto if you move into a new room. Furthermore, if you release a charged shot, then immediately hold the shoot button again, you won't start charging. You have to fire AGAIN before you can charge. These odd glitches make the charge function awkward and hard to use effectively.
The biggest problem, by far, is the difficulty. Mega Man I was brutal, but The Krion Conquest is far harder. This is mostly because A) Fransesca has less health, and B) health power-ups are far more rare. Even though it's a shorter game overall, it will take a master gamer to get through it.
All in all, Krion Conquest is a fun diversion, but it's more of an amusing anecdote about the popularity of Mega Man than anything else. It's a clone, but a fairly good one. Had Mega Man never existed, The Krion Conquest might be the game we all remember. As it is, it's entirely forgetable.
Rating: 3.0 - Fair
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