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Ghouls 'N Ghost's / Daimakaimura on 16-bit platforms

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I like playing Ghouls N Ghosts on the Genesis quite a bit, but of course it isn't going to look as good as the SuperGrafx version. We are comparing a very early Genesis game (launch title even) with a 5 Mbit ROM with an 8 Mbit game that relies on a heavily expanded PC Engine here.

 

Anyway, they are both good ports of the game, and if you actually want to buy something it is a heck of a lot cheaper to get a Genesis and a copy of Ghouls N Ghosts than it is to import a SuperGrafx and Daimakaimura.

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I like playing Ghouls N Ghosts on the Genesis quite a bit, but of course it isn't going to look as good as the SuperGrafx version. We are comparing a very early Genesis game (launch title even) with a 5 Mbit ROM with an 8 Mbit game that relies on a heavily expanded PC Engine here.

 

Anyway, they are both good ports of the game, and if you actually want to buy something it is a heck of a lot cheaper to get a Genesis and a copy of Ghouls N Ghosts than it is to import a SuperGrafx and Daimakaimura.

 

Heavily expanded? Lol.... It's just got a second video chip, AKA 2 BG layers. The genesis has what, 3?

 

The reason the SGX one looks better is the PCE can have more colors per sprite and more colors per tile.

 

Even the plain PC Engine can do that. It's always been the case.

 

The Genesis has a 68k CPU. It can push its hardware easier because of it.

 

Using a 65C02 to deal with the SuperGrafx hardware isn't exactly easy.

 

SuperGrafx Daimakaimura is a feat of programming prowess, and taking full advantage of the color depth of the video hardware. Comparing the ROM sizes as the reason for which is better is a bad comparison.

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Heavily expanded? Lol.... It's just got a second video chip, AKA 2 BG layers. The genesis has what, 3?

 

The reason the SGX one looks better is the PCE can have more colors per sprite and more colors per tile.

 

Even the plain PC Engine can do that. It's always been the case.

 

The Genesis has a 68k CPU. It can push its hardware easier because of it.

 

Using a 65C02 to deal with the SuperGrafx hardware isn't exactly easy.

 

SuperGrafx Daimakaimura is a feat of programming prowess, and taking full advantage of the color depth of the video hardware. Comparing the ROM sizes as the reason for which is better is a bad comparison.

 

It's got more memory too.

 

Yes, you are right that the color capabilities on the Genesis leave a lot to be desired. You would be wrong however to argue that it couldn't look a lot better on the Genesis than it does if it was released later rather than at launch.

 

The ROM size comparison is perfeclty valid as well. The ROM size of the PC Engine game is almost twice as big, this allows for a greater number of tiles, more frames of animation, more different sprites, etc.

 

Look at this set of screen comparisons in partcular:

COMP-Ghouls_n_Ghosts_02.gif

 

Just from a quick glance I can see the ground in the PC Engine version is made up of at least 5-6 different tiles. At least two for the dirt, and at least 3-4 for the roots. The ground in the Genesis version is only made up of one tile for dirt and the roots are gone completely.

 

This is exactly the kind of compromise that is made because of a smaller ROM size.

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The reason the SGX one looks better is the PCE can have more colors per sprite and more colors per tile.

 

 

This isn't quite true. Both systems are limited to 16 colors per sprite or tile. The PC Engine just allows for a for greater number of sub-palettes to be selected from for each sprite or tile. All tiles and sprites for the Genesis have to come from 4 different 16 color sub-palettes, the PC Engine allows for 16 sprite and 16 background palettes.

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I like playing Ghouls N Ghosts on the Genesis quite a bit, but of course it isn't going to look as good as the SuperGrafx version. We are comparing a very early Genesis game (launch title even) with a 5 Mbit ROM with an 8 Mbit game that relies on a heavily expanded PC Engine here.

 

Anyway, they are both good ports of the game, and if you actually want to buy something it is a heck of a lot cheaper to get a Genesis and a copy of Ghouls N Ghosts than it is to import a SuperGrafx and Daimakaimura.

 

Heavily expanded? Lol.... It's just got a second video chip, AKA 2 BG layers. The genesis has what, 3?

 

The reason the SGX one looks better is the PCE can have more colors per sprite and more colors per tile.

 

Even the plain PC Engine can do that. It's always been the case.

 

The Genesis has a 68k CPU. It can push its hardware easier because of it.

 

Using a 65C02 to deal with the SuperGrafx hardware isn't exactly easy.

 

SuperGrafx Daimakaimura is a feat of programming prowess, and taking full advantage of the color depth of the video hardware. Comparing the ROM sizes as the reason for which is better is a bad comparison.

The Genesis has 2 bg layers IIRC.

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This isn't quite true. Both systems are limited to 16 colors per sprite or tile. The PC Engine just allows for a for greater number of sub-palettes to be selected from for each sprite or tile. All tiles and sprites for the Genesis have to come from 4 different 16 color sub-palettes, the PC Engine allows for 16 sprite and 16 background palettes.

 

Wow, I worded that poorly!

 

I should have said "more color variety" or "more palette variety". It made sense in my head to say "colors per sprite/tile", though, you're right that doesn't quite make sense and doesn't have the same mathematical-proportion-nonsense meaning as it did when I thought of it in my head.

 

Anyway, 61 on screen colors for the Genesis VS. the 481 available on screen for the PC Engine is a bit of an obnoxious skew. I really don't remember seeing any really-really-colorful games until way later into the genesis' life with stuff like Ristar and Sonic 3.

 

It's the reason alot of Sega games have ditherfests (Super Hydlide is a big culprit there). I could have sworn the MD had some other limitation to coloring tiles, but I wouldn't be surprised if I've mixed that up with some other platform I've only read about in passing and never actually did any dev for.

 

Though I would still say comparing the ROM sizes is a bad comparison. Even if they had the same ROM size, I'd bet the SGX one would still look better.

 

As an example of this, compare Lords of Thunder for PCE and MegaCD. It's a PLAIN PCE game, not a SGX one. You'll quickly see that the PCE one looks better. You could do this for other games too that exist on both platforms. Typically, the PC Engine wins out because of colors.

 

There are plenty of PCE vs. Genesis (PLAIN PCE, not SGX.) comparisons showing the Genesis not doing as good simply due to the color limitations. More ROM size isn't going to increase the amount of on screen colors at all, so even if you have more space for tiles, you're still going to have a bunch of redundant colors and general "blehness" brought on by not being able to use alot of colors.

 

I like this one:

http://pcengine.co.u...tten_Worlds.htm

 

Yeah you get the advantage of a CD for the PCE one, but you also have the disadvantage of having to stop and load new crap. This isn't always great.

 

Also, the Genesis has twice the workram of the SGX (doesn't it?). The SGX has more VRAM, but with shades of gray here. It's got two VDCs to work with, so 64k per VDC.

 

@ Paranoia, I thought the Genesis had 3 planes, but two share the same space. I'm not 100% sure though, since I don't do any Genesis dev. Just PC Engine.

 

 

EDIT: Also, all of this aside, the Genesis one is still great. I grew up playing that one, and still think it's awesome. I like the Genesis a lot, even if the PCE is prettier. :)

Edited by Arkhan

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There are plenty of PCE vs. Genesis (PLAIN PCE, not SGX.) comparisons showing the Genesis not doing as good simply due to the color limitations. More ROM size isn't going to increase the amount of on screen colors at all, so even if you have more space for tiles, you're still going to have a bunch of redundant colors and general "blehness" brought on by not being able to use alot of colors.

 

 

Yes, that is true that the lack of color variety is always going to be very noticable no matter what you do. Still, the Genesis version is missing added graphic detail that it could easily have with a bigger cart.

 

Don't get me wrong here, I am not trying to put the PCE down in any way. I think it is a great system and I am a fan of it myself. I'm a big fan of all the "16-bit" systems, the Genesis is probably just my favorite by a hair.

 

I just want to make the point that if you are looking to compare the capabilites of both systems that Ghouls 'N Ghosts probably isn't the best game to do it with, and while it isn't the absolute prettiest version it is still a respectable port, easy to obtain, and fun.

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Super GnG on SNES was a superior game.

 

I love "Super GnG" but some are put off by the occasional slowdown.

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Super GnG on SNES was a superior game.

 

Arguably, heh. It plays slower, it axes the vertical shooting in favor of double-jumping, and it is a completely new game (with lots of slowdown, as mentioned) for better or for worse.

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Super GnG on SNES was a superior game.

 

Hi, this is 100% wrong. Please stop now.

There are plenty of PCE vs. Genesis (PLAIN PCE, not SGX.) comparisons showing the Genesis not doing as good simply due to the color limitations. More ROM size isn't going to increase the amount of on screen colors at all, so even if you have more space for tiles, you're still going to have a bunch of redundant colors and general "blehness" brought on by not being able to use alot of colors.

 

 

Yes, that is true that the lack of color variety is always going to be very noticable no matter what you do. Still, the Genesis version is missing added graphic detail that it could easily have with a bigger cart.

 

Don't get me wrong here, I am not trying to put the PCE down in any way. I think it is a great system and I am a fan of it myself. I'm a big fan of all the "16-bit" systems, the Genesis is probably just my favorite by a hair.

 

I just want to make the point that if you are looking to compare the capabilites of both systems that Ghouls 'N Ghosts probably isn't the best game to do it with, and while it isn't the absolute prettiest version it is still a respectable port, easy to obtain, and fun.

 

I love the Genesis just a hair under the PCE, lol. I basically like everything though and happily point out the pros and cons of all the systems.

 

1 background layer SUCKS on the PC Engine..

 

so bad.

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Super GnG on SNES was a superior game.

 

Hi, this is 100% wrong. Please stop now.

There are plenty of PCE vs. Genesis (PLAIN PCE, not SGX.) comparisons showing the Genesis not doing as good simply due to the color limitations. More ROM size isn't going to increase the amount of on screen colors at all, so even if you have more space for tiles, you're still going to have a bunch of redundant colors and general "blehness" brought on by not being able to use alot of colors.

 

 

Yes, that is true that the lack of color variety is always going to be very noticable no matter what you do. Still, the Genesis version is missing added graphic detail that it could easily have with a bigger cart.

 

Don't get me wrong here, I am not trying to put the PCE down in any way. I think it is a great system and I am a fan of it myself. I'm a big fan of all the "16-bit" systems, the Genesis is probably just my favorite by a hair.

 

I just want to make the point that if you are looking to compare the capabilites of both systems that Ghouls 'N Ghosts probably isn't the best game to do it with, and while it isn't the absolute prettiest version it is still a respectable port, easy to obtain, and fun.

 

I love the Genesis just a hair under the PCE, lol. I basically like everything though and happily point out the pros and cons of all the systems.

 

1 background layer SUCKS on the PC Engine..

 

so bad.

 

True, it does, it would've been nice to have just 1 more layer, though, there is the wow factor when a Turbo game fakes paralax anyways. I do love finding ways around limits(not that I can do this, I have to rely on guys like you & Nod).

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Super GnG on SNES was a superior game.
Arguably, heh. It plays slower, it axes the vertical shooting in favor of double-jumping, and it is a completely new game (with lots of slowdown, as mentioned) for better or for worse.

 

Still, I'd agree that Super is the best game in the series. I'd recommend the version in CCC, since there's no more slowdown :)

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Super GnG on SNES was a superior game.
Arguably, heh. It plays slower, it axes the vertical shooting in favor of double-jumping, and it is a completely new game (with lots of slowdown, as mentioned) for better or for worse.

 

Still, I'd agree that Super is the best game in the series. I'd recommend the version in CCC, since there's no more slowdown :)

 

Yeah, it's my personal favorite in the series as well. I love the visual and sound style here, but I also have more nostalgic ties to it than Ghouls 'n Ghosts (that I didn't play until after the SNES game). Still, it was more about how he came off about it and recognizing the fact that both have a different feel and some may prefer the arcade game over the SNES original.

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Just wanted to write that I've been playing my newly-acquired SuperGrafx Ghouls 'n Ghosts the last couple of days and wanted to give my thoughts on it. Looking at screens and a couple of videos prior to receiving it, I was naturally expecting a lot from it, and was pretty excited to get it. Overall it's a great port with the best looking visuals of the console conversions from this period in time (late '80s/early '90s), but the game does have some noteworthy differences, and some problems I wasn't expecting at all.

 

So, first off, here are some differences I've caught. For one, you get a whopping three credits to finish the game (you use one to start the game, giving you two to continue). I don't mind this for the challenge, but this is pretty bad for people that aren't very good at this game (which I'm guessing is a lot of people). Maybe there is a cheat to circumvent this, but I haven't checked. Second, if you power off the system and turn it back on quickly, it will display a "ROM check" screen that somewhat mimics what the arcade game does when it boots. Kind of cool, I suppose. Third, the difficulty on certain segments feels ramped up a little bit--primarily on the vertical segment at stage 3-1. The little flying goblin enemies (or whatever) seem to be much more abundant here than in the Genesis or Arcade versions. To sort of go along with this, the difficulty seems somewhat random as well. Sometimes enemies will be few and far between, but other times it will feel like there's an all-out war happening on screen. It makes predicting and practicing segments more challenging than in other versions.

 

Next, the problems I've caught. First, there is a good bit of flicker when things get cluttered on screen. It's the most noticeable at the last stage, but there are specific instances throughout the rest of the game where it typically happens (the mouth statues on stage 3-2 tend to be a culprit). Second, there is noticeable slowdown at points. It's nowhere near Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts levels, but it's definitely there and caught me off guard. I don't recall the Genesis version having any slowdown. Third, the game is kind of buggy. On one occasion, my lives didn't appear in the bottom-right corner of the screen like they are supposed to. They didn't reappear until I lost all three lives and continued. On another occasion, I fell through one of the bridges on the sand pit area on stage 2-1. Normally the bridges will snap apart on certain segments, but I literally fell through the bridge and it didn't rip apart. I don't even think it was a segment that was supposed to snap. The last bug that was noticeable to me is several enemies failed to appear on the vertical flowing water portion of stage 4-2. The first time I got there, several of the big hand enemies didn't appear. This led me to believe that the enemy layout was modified for this version. Nope--it turned out it was a glitch of some sort, as they reappeared when I got to the stage for my second time (just for reference, there is no difficulty select screen in this version, ruling out that explanation).

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You all might have seen this already, but since the SuperGrafx and its version of Ghouls N Ghosts is getting so much attention I thought it was worth adding.

 

Yeah, that was the instigating video that got me to try to finally spring for the SuperGrafx version.

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You forgot two 16-bit platforms: Atari ST and Amiga

 

They were really badly coded on both, arcade conversions with motherboards past the mid eighties really needed two completely independent and highly talented groups comprising of coders, engine designers (using hardware design limitations to your advantage somehow) and of course totally independent musician and artist.

 

I can't really comment on the ST release, except to say games like Enchanted seem to show a stock STFM is far more powerful than Ghouls and Ghosts would have you believe. What I do know is there are game engines written in BLITZ BASIC 2.1 for the Amiga that are more impressive than the Amiga release.

 

Releases like these fuelled the idea of getting a Megadrive in the UK, we'd all rather pay 50 quid and get something a lot more useful than a pair of fancy packages future blank floppies for 25 quid! UK Probe Software developed Turbo OutRun for the Megadrive clearly shows how bad such shoddy game development can make people think the host hardware is.

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They were really badly coded on both, arcade conversions with motherboards past the mid eighties really needed two completely independent and highly talented groups comprising of coders, engine designers (using hardware design limitations to your advantage somehow) and of course totally independent musician and artist.

 

I can't really comment on the ST release, except to say games like Enchanted seem to show a stock STFM is far more powerful than Ghouls and Ghosts would have you believe. What I do know is there are game engines written in BLITZ BASIC 2.1 for the Amiga that are more impressive than the Amiga release.

 

Releases like these fuelled the idea of getting a Megadrive in the UK, we'd all rather pay 50 quid and get something a lot more useful than a pair of fancy packages future blank floppies for 25 quid! UK Probe Software developed Turbo OutRun for the Megadrive clearly shows how bad such shoddy game development can make people think the host hardware is.

Just so you know this post costed me over three hundred dollars. I read through the whole thread and it gave me the itch to get the Super Grafx again (for the first time). What pushed me over the edge was that you can use the Turbo Everdrive (I already have) with the system.

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It's my opinion that the Genesis version of Ghouls 'n Ghosts would have been better if it had been double the size. I was impressed with it back in 1992 but over twenty five years later, I look at it and cringe a little. So much tiling... so much tiling! You can see they cut corners all over the place.

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It's my opinion that the Genesis version of Ghouls 'n Ghosts would have been better if it had been double the size. I was impressed with it back in 1992 but over twenty five years later, I look at it and cringe a little. So much tiling... so much tiling! You can see they cut corners all over the place.

This was the case with a ton of early arcade conversions on the Genesis, unfortunately. The system could absolutely handle better, but they skimped out on cart sizes in the early days. Strider is another good example (honestly, I think it fares much worse as it's lacking animation frames at the most significant moments, ugh). At least most of these still play pretty well though. Ghouls 'n Ghosts in particular plays great on the Genesis.

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This was the case with a ton of early arcade conversions on the Genesis, unfortunately. The system could absolutely handle better, but they skimped out on cart sizes in the early days. Strider is another good example (honestly, I think it fares much worse as it's lacking animation frames at the most significant moments, ugh). At least most of these still play pretty well though. Ghouls 'n Ghosts in particular plays great on the Genesis.

 

 

I think it comes down to price when these were newly released.

 

Honestly, I loved the Ghouls' Genesis translation. I played that game (and Strider) to death at my Aladdin's Castle. Is it arcade perfect??? No, it did cover the basic elements to the Genesis hardware capabilities at the time which was definitely early in the Genesis lifespan. Probably say that w/ a lot of arcade Genesis ports: Altered Beast, Forgotten Worlds, Golden Axe to name a few...

 

Strider on the other hand, is sort of a different beast. Think I paid $80 for that sucker new in '90. I can't imagine the cost if the meg limit was upped.

 

I think it's easy look in hindsight and sort of hem haw at some of these games wishing they would be more arcade-perfect. But at the time when a lot of these arcade are still in the infancy of the Genesis library (maybe the programmers could have pushed it more later on), and trying to release these games when they were still hot in the arcades, I can forgive some of the Genesis port's liabilities.

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