Ratalaika Games has been on a tear lately releasing tons of classic retro games for consoles and their latest is a 90s iconic hit. Avenging Spirit is Jaleco’s acclaimed 2-player platform arcade “rough house” that was only originally released for the arcade and much later on mobile and handheld consoles. Now it’s available for all next-gen consoles with several new features and quality of life changes.
Avenging Spirit is about a man who was tragically killed by a crime syndicate, whilst out with his girlfriend who has been kidnapped by these agents of evil. Now in the guise of a ghost he joins forces with his girlfriend’s father, a paranormal researcher, to rescue his daughter Gennifer but revenge is top of his agenda. Ironically the crime syndicate is researching ghost energy and their aim is to force the father of the kidnapped girl, the expert in the field, to cooperate and give them the information they dearly want.
I mentioned that Avenging Spirit has several upgrades over its original arcade version and most of that has to do with the quality of life. For starters, you get infinite continues which is something that was limited by the number of quarters you had. You’re also now able to have save states that let you save at any point in the game and load it back up if you die or want to come back to it later. You’re also able to rewind the game if you mess up somewhere and can adjust the video settings, such as giving the game that old-school CRT look or stretching the game to fit on the Nintendo Switch display.
In terms of gameplay, Avenging Spirit has a slightly difficult learning curve but is helped by the use of infinite continues. Mainly, the difficulty level is quite high. You will be dying quite often here so be warned. Despite this, gameplay in Avenging Spirit is very interesting and very different. It does play like a platformer and also a beat’em up. What I find really interesting though is the fact that you’re a ghost and can possess the bodies of your enemies if your current body gets killed. And I mean almost every enemy in the game except for bosses. You’ll want to be on the lookout for powerful enemies to inhabit as those will help you stay alive for longer periods of time. You gain their abilities and weapons, but beware of the weak ones as they will get you killed almost right away.
Aside from that, Avenging Spirit is a fairly straightforward game. There are lots of platforming elements and plenty of combat.
Retro arcade lovers should pick up Avenging Spirit. It’s a faithful port of the original with several key upgrades that make playing it a bit easier for noobs, especially for those players who have never experienced the pain of inserting endless quarters into a machine. Gaming was a lot more difficult back then and Avenging Spirit is a great example of that. Overall, Avenging Spirit is a challenging platformer that you can finally beat without having to spend several weeks’ worth of lunch money to play through it.
Disclaimer: Received game from developer and/or publisher for coverage purposes.
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