Now Playing: Lagrange Point

I thought it’d make sense to start off talking about a game I’m currently playing and enjoying very much – Konami’s Lagrange Point for the Famicom. The game’s an odd beast, it came out in 1991 at the rather high price of 8,500 Yen due to the 4Mb cart size and the super-fancy VRC-VII chip inside that gives the game its fantastic soundtrack (so fancy that the only other game that uses it is the Japanese version of Tiny Toon Adventures 2, and according to the Japanese wiki page that only uses it as a bank controller). It was also designed with the input of Famimaga readers who contributed ideas for everything from the overall plot and general themes to the number of music tracks and enemy designs.

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What I’m really enjoying about this game, more than than the excellent battle music or the relatively underused “pure” sci-fi setting (as opposed to spaceship-crashing-on-fantasy-planet or ancient-lost-civilization-shows-up), is how lenient it is! The Famicom is a system I really don’t have very much to do with but I’ve been meaning to for a long time now… as an RPG lover I was more than a little concerned that I’d end up with some archaic grindathon – luckily that’s not the case at all. Don’t get me wrong; spending the time to level up definitely helps (as it does in just about any RPG) but battles tend to be pretty quick and the way it handles dying is just about perfect. Instead of a game over or stripping you of half your money it sends you back to the nearest terminal with all your XP and cash intact, although any you would have earned from the monsters killed since you last visited a terminal is lost. What I like about this is that it gives me the chance to do a bit of exploring or try to luck my way through the last few rooms of an area without it being totally do-or-die… brilliant!

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Has anyone played through this? There’s no English translation, but I have found an incredibly helpful walkthrough (with maps!) here that can be machine-translated into the language of your choice if anyone needs it.