Legend has it there is a civilization of which all other civilizations come from. The secrets of this civilization still lay untouched, heavily guarded, somewhere in the world. At one day, you get a letter from your old friend and rival, which contains just these words: "I found it!" and comes with a single coin. This tells you enough. You know he's bested you on finding this first civilization, and set out to verify it yourself. You set out for La-Mulana!
The game starts with you, an Indiana Jones-esque explorer, outside of the guardian village, a village of locals that protect and take care of the ruins of La-Mulana. Your first task will be to explore the surroundings, gain some strength, weights and coins, so you can buy the much-needed hand scanner and glyph reader ROM for your MSX, and start exploring the ruins.
The ruins are full of traps, treasure and monsters. The game might seem too tough at first, but with a bit of practice, you'll get the hang of it. You'll soon be able to properly dodge enemies, spot which pedestals trigger traps and which are used for good and what kind of items you should and what you shouldn't hit. At this point, you'll get hooked to the game, realizing how vast the world is, how deep the story goes and how challenging each area is. You will see La-Mulana for what it's word: a legendary game.
La-Mulana has been designed as a game resembling the old MSX games (a Japanese console much like the Commodore 64), and about MSX games. The first part of the design is visible in the graphics, which might be simple and a tad bit crude, but give the game so much more appeal. The second part shows in all the ROMs you can get for your MSX, including ROMs that allow you to play MSX games within this game.
The music of La-Mulana is simple but catchy, and there have been a lot of people who've been just hanging around in areas, simply to listen to the music. If the superb music wasn't enough for you yet, the game offers two music styles as well: one heroic MP3 style and one upbeat MIDI style. Both styles play the same songs, but different versions.
Any self-respecting gamer simply can't pass on a game that really is a full-fledged videogame with an immersive, vast world up without dying a little inside, so if you've got some dignity as a gamer, you better grab La-Mulana right now!
Review by: Raf