Product Type: Sega Xbox 360 games
Newest Review: ... and works their way to the right all the way to the end of the level. This is how old games came about and it worked really well back in t... more
Golden Axe (Xbox 360)
Member Name: simon020187
Golden Axe (Xbox 360)
Advantages: A classic scrolling hack and slash game!
Disadvantages: A little dated now in terms of graphics!
Golden Axe probably needs no introduction because of its fame. Golden Axe is a side scrolling hack and slash which was most famous when released back in 1989. Golden Axe then came back to its loyal fans via Xbox Live Marketplace. Although there was an official Xbox 360 Golden Axe game which was released but it was pretty rubbish in my opinion and no way near as good as this old classic. I grew up playing Golden Axe, Streets Of Rage, Sonic, Zombies Ate My Neighbours and Splatterhouse. Those games are what got me into gaming and Golden Axe has to be one of the best classic games ever. Having heard it was going to come to the Xbox Live Marketplace I instantly knew I would end up buying it. The game is the same as the old version in every way but it doesn't disappoint.
=== STORY ===
There is a story to Golden Axe but that's not what made the game a classic or famous to all its fans. Golden Axe takes place in the land of Yuria which is like a medieval land. An evil existence that goes by the name of Death Adder has kidnapped the king and his daughter. Death Adder also has the Golden Axe which is the emblem of the land of Yuria. Death Adder threatens to destroy the Golden Axe and the king and his daughter unless the people of Yuria accept him as their new leader. Three noble warriors (you pick one to play as) set off on a quest through many places in the land of Yuria to help retrieve the Golden Axe and save the king and his daughter.
=== GAMEPLAY ===
Golden Axe is your typical arcade game in which you can play over and over again and for hours and hours. Its a brilliant old game for gameplay but probably cant compete with games that are out today but that's not taking anything away from the fun the game has to offer and the challenging levels. In Golden Axe you choose at the start of the game one of three characters. Which ever you choose is your character until you finish the game or until you die and have no remaining continues. The three characters are a dwarf that goes by the name of Gilius, a male barbarian known as Ax Battler and a female amazon who goes by the name of Tyris Flare. All of the characters have something in common which is Death Adder killed someone they loved.
Basically after you've choose your character out of the three then the game starts properly. All of the levels are produced as side scrolling in which your character comes from the left hand side of the screen and works their way to the right all the way to the end of the level. This is how old games came about and it worked really well back in the day and to be fair its still quite popular now and still works really well. As you go along working your way to the end you will come across many different types of enemies and to defeat them you have to use which ever weapon your character has. Each character has one weapon they start with but it cant be changed which is a bit of a shame. The only bad thing about the fighting in the game is that its quite repetitive and you can only basically do about four different attacks and that includes the one throw you can do. This doesn't disappoint too much though.
As you going through the different levels you encounter different kinds of enemies from barbarians, skeletons, orcs and other creatures. There are also enemies that ride cockatrices and dragons in which you can knock them off and jump on the creatures yourself and use them to fight and defeat your enemies. The fighting is repetitive but its still fun and its pretty much button bashing all the way through the game. There are bosses on almost every level and some of these bosses are fantastic. They are all about five times as big as your character and sometime you get two coming at you at once. I really like the bosses because there is a good mix of them and can be quite challenging.
Golden Axe has also been famous for the blue thieves that drop blue drops when you hit them. Collecting these blue magic drops gives your character magic spells which can be used. There are different levels of magic from collecting two for level one spells to collecting 6 or 7 for full power spells. The more blue drops you collect the more powerful the spell is. Also there are green thieves that drop chunks of meat such as a leg of chicken which increases your health if your low. Golden Axe is an arcade classic and will always be one of the best games ever. I still enjoy playing this on the odd occasion but what is even better is the Xbox Live arcade version can be played online as a co-op story. Play with friends or with someone from anywhere in the world. However its still as challenging as single player and how it was back in the day. There is one extra level available on the Xbox Live arcade version.
=== GRAPHICS ===
Now the graphics are as you would expect really dated but don't let this ever put you off because it still has excellent qualities throughout. The levels are nicely designed in 2D and most things in the levels really stand out nicely but as expected a few parts do look really dated. The enemies still look okay and the bosses still look quite ferocious and not to bad graphic wise. The characters also looks fairly decent for an old game. Overall the graphics to Golden Axe are as expected but the game doesn't at all disappoint.
=== SOUND EFFECTS ===
Golden Axe still sounds like it did back from the arcades and to be honest it still impresses me with the thumping sounds of the fights and the fantastic music that's involved in the game. The game does sound a little hollow at times but that's expected. The best sound effects to the game come out when your fighting a boss battle at the end of a level because the music gets more up tempo and all of the sound effects from the magic, scrapping and clanging come to life. Overall I would say the sound effects to the game are way off to what games are nowadays but it still does bring the game to life.
=== DIFFICULTY ===
Back when I first played this game I would of said its almost impossible to beat on normal setting with just the three continues allowed but did find it to be quite easy with seven continues. However being a more experienced gamer I can finally do it with just the three so yay! It can still be tricky in places though especially the bosses or the annoying enemies on the dragons. They are a right pest and wont leave you alone even after you've knocked them off it. If you get surrounded on the game then its always best to run where there is space or you could end up butchered within seconds. The controls are absolutely simple to the game because you only use a few buttons. Overall the difficulty depends on how good you are at the game and if you can stick it out because it can get increasingly frustrating and very annoying at times.
=== LONGEVITY ===
The game isn't the biggest game ever but that's not forgetting its an arcade style game and can be completed in about an hour but depends on if you know what your doing. There are 8 stages on the game but they're not massive stages. Some will take little as 5-10 minutes to finish and you could spend more time trying to kill a boss than do a level. The good thing is that yes the game is small but the game has lasted over 20+ years now and its still playable. So you cant go wrong right? Fantastic game worthy of what you pay.
=== ACHIEVEMENTS ===
Yes the Xbox Live Arcade version does have achievements available which is fantastic. Nearly every Xbox Live arcade game has 12 achievements to get and most of them are usually a challenge. Golden Axe also has 12 achievements and also all of the achievements accumulate a total of 200 gamerscore which isn't too bad in my eyes. The achievements on Golden Axe can also be challenging because some acquire you to get so far without losing a life or completing the game in co-op and I don't think many people play the game online now. Other than that the achievements are fairly simple and can be acquired within one playthrough.
=== PROS ===
*Choose from three different characters and go through the game with each of them.
*A lot of action with different enemy types.
*Cast different types of magic with each character by collecting as many magic drops as you can.
*Ride cockatrices and dragons to defeat your enemies or to get to places quicker.
*8 different stages with a decent amount of variety in them and the bosses!
*Can be played in co-op and over Xbox Live.
=== CONS ===
*The game is very repetitive and can become increasingly frustrating.
*The graphics look a little dated now considering what games are like today.
*Doesn't take long to complete the game overall but it can be played again and again.
*Its a little old now and might put some people off.
=== FINAL THOUGHT ===
Golden Axe is a great game and many will enjoy it. I love it for many reason. The story sounds interesting but to be honest for an arcade game it doesn't really interest most gamers because its a hack and slash game full with action. The game has its flaws like most games and the most probable one would be the age of the game and possibly the length to some gamers.
I would recommend the game to anyone mainly because it can be quite addictive until you've finished the game but better yet its great online if you can find people to play with. Its also great to play with a friend in co-op. If your a fan of the old hack and slash games you will love this but the chances are you all know what the game is.
The game can be found on Xbox Live Arcade via the Xbox 360. You need your Xbox connected to Xbox Live to purchase the game but you don't need it to play it. The game costs around 400 Microsoft points to download which is about £4. I would say its worth it and still has a lot to offer.
I would give Golden Axe a solid 8/10! Classic oldie for everyone!
Review also on Ciao under the username: MrBrightside1987!
Summary: A side scrolling hack and slash game which is starting to look dated!