Most modern games were just improvements from the original games back in the day. Castlevania, one of the most prominent adventure RPG games today, has been taking notes from a particular game released in the late 80s.
The game I am referring to is Faxanadu. This game for the Nintendo Entertainment System is actually part 2 of the original Xanadu released by Hudson Soft. But, Faxanadu was the one who virtually popularized this genre and a lot of game developers took notes from Faxanadu in order to create their own take on the adventure RPG genre.
The story revolves around an unnamed traveler who goes home to his birthplace, a town called Eolis. In Eolis, there lies the World tree where miracles happen. It has been said that Elves live in the tree but what people do not know is that Dwarves lived in harmony with the Elves as well.
One day, a meteorite fell from the skies and in it was a dark force known as the “Evil One”. The Evil One, then, took control of the dwarves against their own will and started attacking the Elves until no one is left.
Before controlling the dwarven king, however, the King managed to eat the magical sword that has said to have powers that can defeat the Evil One. Should a brave warrior rise up to the occasion, this warrior should seek the Dwarven King, defeat him, and take the magical sword in order to defeat the Evil One.
You, as the protagonist, must go to the possessed Dwarven King and eliminate him. After getting the sword from the Dwarf king, you must then use the sword to defeat the Evil One for good.
What was so special about the World Tree? The World tree possesses the fountain of youth, which according to the old tales, grants the user immortality. Of course, this is a classic thing that evil beings want, that is why the Evil One invaded the World tree.
There are four areas or levels that the player must go to: the tree’s roots, the trunk, the tree’s branches, and the Dwarves stronghold which is located at the peak of the World Tree.
Your journey towards the top of the tree is not without monsters, however. You need to defeat possessed Dwarven warriors in order to progress the game. The player has the ability to attack, jump, and utilize certain map elements to his advantage.
By defeating enemies along the way, you will not only gain gold and recovery items, you will also be given experience points to gain ranks.
During the course of the game, an NPC called the “Guru” will give you a password to continue the game. They also have the power to increase your rank (and therefore, your stats) should you get to an experience break point.
The Faxanadu Game for the Nintendo Entertainment System is very fun and enjoyable despite its lack of great graphics (hey, 3D games weren’t popular in the late 80s, you know). Still, it provides players a chance to know the game that was the basis for most modern adventure RPGs.
This Nintendo Entertainment System game is an enjoyable one and if you happen to play NES games in the future, consider playing Faxanadu.