I probably don't have to remind you how good Ghosts 'n Goblins is, or how it revolutionized side-scrolling platformers from 1985 onward. From Castlevaina all the way to Shovel Knight, the road of one of the most popular genres in history is spotted with Ghosts 'n Goblins-shaped bricks. That said, there are still many unique elements from Ghosts 'n Goblins that haven't been replicated in a more pure form in a long time. Enter Casual Bit Games and Battle Princess Madelyn, a new standard bearer for the genre.
When Creative Director Christopher Obritsch's daughter asked him to put her in Ghost' and Goblins, he told her that would be impossible, since it wasn't his game. Instead, he'd make a game specifically for Madelyn, and greatly influenced by the things she likes. The whimsical storybook visuals all contain a hint of her creativity, like your ghost dog companion, Fritzy. Together, Madelyn and Fritzy mush save their kingdom from an evil wizard by traversing through 10 levels of swamps, caves, and more.
You can choose one of two modes. The Story Mode offers the aforementioned talk of lady knights and wizards, written by a "professional children's author." The Arcade Mode just takes the level by level gameplay, turns the difficulty up, and gives the most hardcore and masochistic players a chance to live out the arcade brutality of yesteryear. Shoot, slash, and juggle your way vicious enemies, but don't forget that your weapons can also unlock hidden paths towards secret pick ups. Madelyn would want you to stop and explore.
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Battle Princess Madelyn is available now on Steam and Xbox One, and next week on Switch and PS4. For more information about saving your family and avenging your dog, come to our Battle Princess Madelyn Wiki.
Jarrett shares his love of video games and geek culture through feature articles on Gamepedia. He prides himself on his deep attraction to Japanese beat-em ups and his god-like Bushido Blade talents.