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Monster World IV

From Sega Retro

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MonsterWorldIV Title.png
Monster World IV
System(s): Sega Mega Drive, Virtual Console, PlayStation 3
Publisher:
Developer:
Sound driver: Westone sound driver
Genre: Action































Number of players: 1
Release Date RRP Code
Sega Mega Drive
JP
¥8,800 G-5519



Wii Virtual Console
JP
600pts[2]
A
Wii Virtual Console
US
900pts[3]
Everyone
Wii Virtual Console
EU
900pts[4]
7+
Wii Virtual Console
DE
900pts[4]
0
Sony PlayStation 3
JP
¥571 (600)[7] NPJB-00092
A
Sony PlayStation 3
US
$4.99[8] NPUB-30324
Everyone
Sony PlayStation 3
EU
€4.49[10] NPEB-00416
7+
Sony PlayStation 3
DE
€4.49[11] NPEB-00416
0
Sony PlayStation 3
UK
£3.69[12] NPEB-00416
7+
Sony PlayStation 3
AU
$6.75[13] NPEB-00416
G
Sony PlayStation 3
KR
₩6,300[9] NPHB-00254
All
Sony PlayStation 3
TW
NT$159[14] NPHB-00254
0+

Monster World IV (モンスターワールドIV) is an action game in the Wonder Boy franchise, and was released for the Sega Mega Drive exclusively in Japan in 1994. Technically speaking, it's the sixth Wonder Boy title.

For many years, this was the last game in the franchise until a remake of Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap and a brand-new title, Monster Boy and the Cursed Kingdom, were eventually announced and released in 2017 and 2018 respectively. However, Monster World IV is definitely the last Westone game, and the last game released under Sega's helm.

Gameplay

Monster World IV is a somewhat of a departure from previous games, which isn't surprising considering the large gap of time from the previous game.

This game is likely not called "Wonder Boy" as the main character is a young girl named Asha, instead of "Wonder Boy" or Shion from Wonder Boy in Monster World. Asha is more acrobatic than previous protagonists in that she has extra sword moves, and has the ability to run by double-tapping Left or Right. Throughout the game, Asha will gain assistance from an amorphous blue creature known as a Pepelogoo, who she can call with the A button and use like a parachute when jumping, gain a second jump or to throw at distant switches or obstacles to solve puzzles.

Like in previous games, Asha can upgrade her equipment, but she can only hold one type of equipment at a time. Armor increases how many pink hearts Asha has. Shields increase the strength of Asha's shield, and can grant "Magical Defense" that can activate when hit by certain types of attacks such as fire or ice. Swords increase Asha's attack power, with some swords being capable of dealing "Magical Hits", a critical strike that has a 20% chance of occurring when attacking enemies. Life Drops can be collected throughout the game, increasing the player's life by one heart for every 10 collected.

Progression is similar to previous games, though the player doesn't have quite the freedom of Monster World II or III. The player advances through levels in a stage-by-stage type of progression with the Rapadagna City serving as a hub. A big change is the player cannot revisit any previous area once it has been cleared, so any items missed will become permanently inaccessible for the rest of the game. This almost puts Monster World IV in arcade game territory like the original Monster World.

In terms of plot and setting, the game is only tangentially related to previous games in the series, specifically Monster World III - the game takes place in Monster World several centuries after, the helper characters from the last game appear as spirits, and a book in a library references Shion's adventure. It features no references to the events of the other Monster World games.

Areas

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Estafan Village
Asha's home village and the starting point of her adventure. Be sure you talk to her family for supplies and the Courage Crystal before you leave.
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Tower of Silence
A tall tower summoned by the Courage Crystal, and the first major challenge of Asha's journey. Enter rooms and defeat enemies in order to open the way forward.

An oomukade guards the top of the tower, and she only has one attack. Stab her enough times to defeat her and claim the Magic Lamp to prove Asha's worth as a hero, then summon the Genie of the Lamp for a ride to the Kingdom of Rapadagna.

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Rapadagna City
The Kingdom of Rapadagna serves as the hub for all of the areas in the game, and is filled with all kinds of buildings that offer services such as equipment shops and a rich woman who will buy Gold Bars off Asha for prices that increase the further the player is into the game. A Pepelogoo pet craze appears to be taking the city by storm when Asha arrives, which begin to cause some unsavoury changes later on.

On her first visit to Rapadagna, Asha must make an appointment with Queen Purapril XIII in the palace and earn her title as a knight, then check the treasury for the Sun Medallion to take to the cathedral, and the Pepelogoo Egg to hatch her own Pepelogoo. On repeat visits, she will need to check a building occupied by suspicious-looking men to find more Medallions to open new areas, and feed her Pepelogoo with Pepe Fruit from the tree near the palace.

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Handera Volcano
An active volcano in the southwestern region of the map that is occupied by flaming ghosts, rocky golems and a fire-breathing harpy. Asha can throw Pepelogoo at the lava spouts and geysers to serve as a platform to give her a boost, and she can also carry him above her head for protection against falling fireballs thanks to Pepelogoos having fireproof fur.

At the bottom of the volcano's tunnels is the Flame Wizard, who is holding the Earth Spirit hostage. Defeat him and set the Earth Spirit free.

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Stream Sanctuary
In the southeastern corner of the map is a temple submerged in water and crawling with electric jellyfish. As Asha ventures through the sanctuary and rides the flowing water currents, she will find a bucket that she can fill with water to extinguish bonfires with. Asha cannot swim in large pools of water, so she'll need to call Pepelogoo to fish her out if she falls in.

After solving an Honest Axe-type of riddle with the bucket, Asha will confront the Water Wizard. Defeat him to liberate the Moon Spirit.

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Ice Pyramid
This northeastern area used to be a hot desert, but after the Sun Spirit was captured by the Ice Wizard, the desert transformed into a freezing wasteland with slippery ground that's difficult to traverse. Asha will venture through a large pyramid that's split into three sections, each with their own set of riddles and a puzzle that involves collecting statues and placing them in specific orders to fight the boss of each section. In keeping with Wonder Boy series tradition, before she can enter the final section, the Sphinx will give her a pop quiz in which she must answer 10 true-or-false questions to proceed. Get a question wrong and she must wash her face in the nearby spring to try again.

At the end of the final section awaits the Ice Wizard. By defeating him will the sun be able to rise on the desert again.

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Sky Castle
In order to save her Pepelogoo after being attacked by the corrupted Queen, Asha must ride a magic carpet to this floating castle in the sky. Without Pepelogoo around to help, she'll be in for a dangerous time as the castle is filled with conveyor belts, strong fans and giant moving blocks that will crush her. The castle's civilians have been shrunk by a magical door that will also shrink Asha once she goes in, and by finding another door will they be able to return to normal.

After braving the dangers of the Sky Castle, Asha must defeat the Cloud Wizard to rescue the Wind Spirit and set the castle free from evil.

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Underground Fort
After Pepelogoo comes back to cleanse Monster World of corruption with a song, a deep hole opens up within Rapadagna Palace, leading to the final stronghold of evil. Here, Asha must fight every enemy and mini-boss she has fought in previous areas as she makes her way down to slay the final boss and save Monster World.

Achievements

Main article: Monster World IV/Achievements.

History

The large amount of text may suggest why the game was not released outside of Japan, however a fan translation by translation groups Demiforce and DeJap surfaced in 2002. Monster World IV was also playable via the GameTap service (which was available in the west), though the game was not translated.

Monster World IV has also been released as part of the Wii's Virtual Console service and as part of Sega Vintage Collection: Monster World for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 with an official English translation by M2, which marks the game's first English release. Its copyright notations in the game's Operations Manual and ROM header indicate that it was to be released a year prior to its 2012 release.

Production credits

  • Director: R.Nishizawa
  • Program: H.Tohyama
  • Art Director: M.Ohzora
  • Music: Jin W.
  • CG Design: K.Kohyama, M.Morioka, T.Sekiyama, K.Saitoh
  • Special Thanks: Mie, YUI
  • Manual Writer: Y.Hirata
  • Modeler: H.Nakajima
  • Photographer: N.Suzuki
  • Supervisor: M.Ishizuka
  • Produced by: Sega
Westone
Source: In-game credits (JP)


Magazine articles

Main article: Monster World IV/Magazine articles.

Promotional material

BeepMD JP 1994-04.pdf

PDF
Print advert in Beep! MegaDrive (JP) #1994-04: "April 1994" (1994-03-08)

Artwork

Physical scans

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
73 №1994-04, p19[15]
88 №, p82[16]
80 №1994-05, p51
86 №34, p36
Sega Mega Drive
82
Based on
4 reviews

Mega Drive, JP
MonsterWorldIV MD JP Box.jpg
Cover
MonsterWorldIV MD JP CartTop.jpg
Monster World IV MD JP cart.jpg
Cart
MonsterWorldIV MD JP Manual.pdf
Manual

Technical information

ROM dump status

System Hash Size Build Date Source Comments
Sega Mega Drive
CRC32 36a3aaa4
MD5 4bbdae4e4c1e0ae2de3c49dc34f61d5c
SHA-1 46ba5e8775a2223fe5056f54555d9caa7d04f4e1
2MB 1994-04 Cartridge (JP)
Sega Mega Drive
CRC32 af050c46
MD5 2640c0b879dd52db3e328c14c36095f0
SHA-1 6c90e14b6dd1ce6fc33f74dc624edc2e00fc5038
2MB 2011-07-25 Virtual Console WAD file

External links

  • Sega of Japan Virtual Console pages: Mega Drive
  • Nintendo catalogue pages: US, UK
  • Monster World IV on PlayStation.com: JP, US, KR
  • Monster World IV on PlayStation Store: JP, US, UK, AU, KR, TW

References

  1. https://www.nintendo.co.jp/wii/vc/software/06.html (archived: 2018-03-05 22:42)
  2. http://vc.sega.jp:80/vc_mw4/ (archived: 2008-01-16 16:03)
  3. 3.0 3.1 http://www.nintendo.com:80/games/detail/gsmvneZxvTfVVnbyPsOMhGTMKoWxdkAF (archived: 2012-05-13 10:49)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 http://www.nintendolife.com/games/megadrive/monster_world_iv (archived: 2017-07-05 02:07)
  5. https://archive.is/w52g6
  6. https://archive.is/GtZnl
  7. 7.0 7.1 http://www.jp.playstation.com:80/software/title/jp0177npjb00092_00mnstrwrld4psnjp1.html (archived: 2012-09-15 02:33)
  8. 8.0 8.1 http://blogs.sega.com/2012/05/18/vintage-collection-3-on-the-way-to-xbla-and-psn/ (archived: 2017-06-29 13:39)
  9. 9.0 9.1 https://store.playstation.com/ko-kr/product/HP0177-NPHB00254_00-MNSTRWRLD4PSNAS1 (archived: 2018-03-31 16:28)
  10. 10.0 10.1 https://store.playstation.com/fr-fr/product/EP0177-NPEB00416_00-MNSTRWRLD4PSNEU1 (archived: 2018-03-31 16:33)
  11. 11.0 11.1 https://store.playstation.com/de-de/product/EP0177-NPEB00416_00-MNSTRWRLD4PSNEU1 (archived: 2018-12-04 01:04)
  12. 12.0 12.1 https://store.playstation.com/en-gb/product/EP0177-NPEB00416_00-MNSTRWRLD4PSNEU1 (archived: 2018-03-31 16:29)
  13. 13.0 13.1 https://store.playstation.com/en-au/product/EP0177-NPEB00416_00-MNSTRWRLD4PSNEU1 (archived: 2018-03-31 16:30)
  14. 14.0 14.1 https://store.playstation.com/en-tw/product/HP0177-NPHB00254_00-MNSTRWRLD4PSNAS1 (archived: 2018-03-31 16:29)
  15. File:BeepMD_JP_1994-04.pdf, page 21
  16. File:SSM_JP_19950901_1995-09.pdf, page 84


Monster World IV
MonsterWorldIV Title.png

Main page | Comparisons | Maps | Achievements | Hidden content | Magazine articles | Region coding


Games in the Wonder Boy Series
Wonder Boy (1986) | Wonder Boy in Monster Land (1987) | Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair (1988) | Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap (1989) | Wonder Boy in Monster World (1991) | Monster World IV (1994) | Monster World Complete Collection (2007) | Sega Vintage Collection: Monster World (2012)
Book
Wonder Boy V Monster World III Koushiki Guide Book (1991)
Music
Monster World Complete Collection Original Sound Track (2007)