RPG Legion


Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap



Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap is the third game in the Wonder Boy Series. (Game companies should really start using Arabic numerals instead of Roman Numerals so that I don't have to decipher the title for everybody) It takes place right after the end of Wonder Boy in Monster Land. You start the game as a human, but after defeating the Mecha Dragon, you get turned into a lizard man. As you progress through the game you get to play as a Lizard, a Mouse, a Piranha, a Tiger and a Bird, each with their own special abilities (and weaknesses.) This game is more of an RPG than the first two Wonder Boy games, and that's why I like it so much.

Gameplay: 9/10

This game is a standard side view 2-D game. You wander around the world searching for an item to make you human again. Along the way you discover many neat secrets, and cool items, plus you get to run around as numerous different types of animals.

The controls are a little complicated, but that's standard because of the Master System's 2-button controller. One button jumps, the other attacks. To use a special item you need to press down and the jump button. To bring up the status screen, where you can change your equipment, you need to press Pause on the power base console. (This is one of my biggest problems with SMS games, the pause button is used as a third button. This would be okay except that you need to get up, go over to the machine, press the button, and then go back.) But it's really nothing too bad, fairly easy to control.

As you travel around the world searching for the next dragon to fight, you'll find many neat items. There are fireballs, and tornadoes, etc. However, none of them are really all that essential. For the most part you can fight everything just fine with your sword.

This game has an interesting charm system. You character has a charm rating. Different armors give you bonuses, (and some give you minuses) each different monster also has its own inherent charm value that gets added. In addition you can find charm stones that permanently higher your charm. If your charm isn't high enough some shops won't sell you all their items, so you need to change equipment, or maybe come back as a different monster.

The high point of the game, however, is the different monsters you can turn into. Each time you defeat a dragon, it will curse you into a different kind of monster. Later on there are places where you can change into any monster you want. (that you have already been cursed with) Each monster has its own special abilities. These abilities make it so that there are some locations that you can only go as a certain monster. You'll need to search every party of the world as each different monster type. Even if you've already been somewhere, if you come back as a different monster, you may be able to do something new there.

This game has a large world with tons of stuff to do and find, plus lots of secrets. With the different monsters, you can spend plenty of time searching the world looking for the Vampire Dragon. That's why the game has a password save (What no battery save!?!) The password actually work too (not like some other games I've played)

Difficulty: 7/10

Nothing in the game is particularly hard, but some of the dragons can be a little tough. Finding where to go next can sometimes be a little tough. But overall it's a fairly easy game with a few hard parts.

Replayability: 9/10

Why wouldn't you want to play it again. It really is a fun game worth playing again. In addition, there are a number of secrets. You may want to play through again to find any little hidden treasures that you may have missed.

Story: 7/10

It doesn't have a very strong story, but for action/adventure games like this, they usually don't. Thus I give it a 7. Basically you get cursed and turned into a monster, and you must find the Vampire Dragon who holds the magic cross, so that you can turn back into a human. (So that you can continue your journeys in Wonder Boy in Monster World)

Graphics: 9/10

Really quite good graphics for an SMS game. Your character really looks good, I especially like the little mouse, and the bird. The monsters are all well done too, especially all the dragons. There's tons of varying terrain too, lots of neat graphics too look at.

Sound: 10/10

I really like the music to this game. It's extremely well done. Each different area has its own distinct music that helps to set the mood. Sound effects are you standard nothing special (what do you expect from an 8-bit game?) The music is a definite bonus to this game,

Overall Rating: 10/10

This is one of my favorite SMS games. (probably second only to Phantasy Star) It's strangely fun to run around as a mouse or swim through the ocean as a Piranha. With tons of places to go, and a huge world to explore, I really recommend getting this game.