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.