Ever had one of those games where it feels like a Pac-Man game but eventually becomes too bizarre to even be put into that category of Pac-Man clones, for this game it’s nothing to do with the design, rather the gameplay…and probably the design, this is Devil World (デビルワールド Debiru Wārudo), developed and published by Nintendo, designed by Shigeru Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka and was released in October 5th 1984.
So a little green dragon named Tamagon decides to go to Hell and attack the Devil (I don’t know if it’s Hell but what the…hmm…might as well be), and why does Tamagon want to do this…it’s the 80’s you could make a potato fight a peeler and have no explanation whatsoever and people would just accept it.
So like Pac-Man you travel in a maze, there are two sets of mazes each stage, the first stage you have to eat dots, but only if you have the power of the Lord with you, that being a cross, you can also use it to smite various enemies, after collecting all the dots you go to the second maze where you must collect four bibles and put them into a seal. Oh and sometimes you can collect ice cream and its jingle when they appear is creepy as hell…get it…yeah it wasn’t funny either.
You might think this is dull, but there is a twist to the game, The Devil himself can command his minions to move the maze, this can be dangerous as you can get squashed by walls, this is where the game gets weird. After a bonus stage of collecting bonus boxes the game repeats but the levels have different colours. The graphics are very nice and simple; I think it holds up ok, there are jingles that are forgettable. Oh, and the Christian symbolism is very low and I don’t think Americans would find it offensive, it could have been edited but…I wonder of Nintendo of America are a bunch of atheists, wouldn’t surprise me if that was the case.
Can you see why Devil World is a bizarre game, it’s like Pac-Man, it plays like it, yet it still feels like anything I’ve ever played, or the fact that such a strange game like this could even come from Nintendo. Of course this was never released in America due to Nintendo of America’s strict polices of religious imagery at the time. However, it was released in Europe, and we were fine with it. The game was re-released years later on the Wii Virtual Console and then soon after the 3DS Virtual Console…in Japan and Europe, meaning that to this very day, it never saw an official release in the US.
Overall, I really want you to take a look at this, it might or even could be a Pac-Man clone, but doesn’t feel like a Pac-Man game, it has a bizarre nature and while it might put off some who might like maze games since most of them have flow and a sense of speed to them, this is not one of those games, but it’s a fun game, but it’s very awkward and again, you might feel indifferent because of how unique it is, but it’s worth a try if you can handle it.
You can get it on for the Famicom/NES, Wii Virtual Console and 3DS Virtual Console.