Gremlin Interactive has a storied history, dating back to the early days of console gaming. Developing titles for Commodore 64, marshalling the Premiere Manager series through several generations, and later heading to PlayStation (anybody remember cult isometric shooter Loaded and its sequel?) — it's safe to say it has a varied legacy.
Arguably its most recognisable title is 1992's Zool, a platformer starring the titular ninja from the Nth Dimension. After crash landing on Earth — or at least an approximation of Earth made up of abstract themes like music and vegetables — he must hone his ninja skills on the local fauna.
Lovingly updated by Sumo Digital’s Academy initiative, Zool Redimensioned is built from the SEGA Mega Drive code (rather than the original Amiga source), and remains a delight all these years later. It plays like a cross between Sonic the Hedgehog and Mega Man; Zool can jump, shoot, climb, and slide. Levels are littered with point-based collectibles and designed to be run through at speed.
Aesthetically it's still charming, especially the iconic main character, who looks like Looney Tunes' Marvin the Martian in ninjutsu threads. The only real gripe here is that, despite a crisp audio update, the jarring music doesn't really stand the test of time. However, even that is a matter of taste and not execution.
This remaster has a variety of game modes and features. Assists like infinite lives and turbo fire are here for those that want to breeze through. There's two versions of the main game, one with a more modern aspect ratio and a double jump, the other closer to Gremlin's original. Party modes for local multiplayer round out a generous package.
Zool was a classic back in the day, but it didn't endure as much as other genre luminaries. This remaster enhances what was great about the original title while adding some modern elements to sweeten the deal.
Didn't think I'd see Zool again? Didn't he collaborate with Chuppa Chups?
Loved this as a kid, tempting just for the nostalgia
I must admit, I always thought zool was over rated and never manged to enjoy it, so I'm unlikely to be tempted by new one.
However, the nostalgia these screens bring is palpable...
@Sequel Yeah. Unfortunately that’s all been removed.
Has it still got that mini game where you jump on buttons to control a character on a screen? Think it was in Zool. Played it on SNES I think as a kid.
I may have to grab this, have very fond memories on the Amiga
Presume the PS4/5 can't do quarter-pixel scrolling so that's why they went with the Mega Drive source.
The game that made me realise, at 17, that I had epilepsy!
Think I'll steer clear of this!
Never liked Zool that much, compared to what we were playing on Snes & Megadrive. This was mediocre at best.
Loaded was one of the earliest PS1 demo discs I got hold of as a teenager. Loved how bloody and violent it was haha.
@Axelay71 I agree. A great deal of the platformers of this era were terrible licensed tie ins or games trying and failing to be Sonic the Hedgehog or Mario. The original Bubsy in particular or was atrocious and borderline unplayable.
@Arnna totally agree my friend, I had an Amiga back in the day. Most games looked good but played atrociously. When the Megadrive & Snes were released, playing the likes of Thunder force 3, Golden axe, Super Mario world, Pilot wings. It was like night & day, never looked back. Those systems actually felt like playing in the arcades at last!!
Tap here to load 12 comments
Leave A Comment
Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...