Let bygars be bygars.
RELEASE DATE: July 1987
“Rygar” is a name that demands to be shouted at the heavens, much like “Khan” or “Mendoza.” Go ahead, take a few seconds, and do just that. Shout twice if need be, I’ll wait….
Feel the power of a thousand suns coursing through your body? Good.
The amount of testosterone you just received from yelling at the sky is greater than the amount of excitement you’ll have playing Rygar. Don’t misunderstand me. Rygar is a moderately enjoyable action-adventure title. But it doesn’t replicate the heart-pounding exhilaration that comes from making a fool of yourself.
Rygar arms you with a six-pack o’ abs, a courageous heart, and your main offensive, the Diskarmor, a shield attached to a long chain. As you search for the Indora gods and destroy the neverending mongrels that roam the land, the Diskarmor is your lone companion, steadfast and true. Much of Rygar is, indeed, guiding your Diskarmor against those who oppose you. And there are many who oppose you. Enemies are never-ceasing, but thankfully, their non-stop exploits serve a purpose: experience. The more enemies you slay, the more experience you get, the greater your attack and defense. You’ll also gain more hearts for your life bar, and the more hearts the better: this is a one-life game (continues are available, but unsure if they’re limited or not). Don’t forget to use the spells at your disposal. Recover completely heals you, Attack and Assail will mercilessly “disk”-capitate all enemies on screen, and Power Up will briefly increase your attack. Exploring and backtracking are another large portion of the game. As you progress, you’ll find items like the grappling hook and the cross bow that will open up previous sections.
Rygar sounds fun, no? And it can be, but it can also be incredibly tedious. Destroying tons (and I mean tons) of enemies is necessary to gain more hearts. Later areas will find you getting lost in mazes and questioning your every move. Also, this is more of an aesthetic preference, but I was really hoping Rygar’s Diskarmor would get malevolent-looking upgrades. It’s a unique weapon that deserved to become incredibly powerful throughout the course of the game. Without RPG/adventure elements, Rygar would be just another side-scrolling man-bro action title, sweaty and corpse-ridden and empty. Rygar has a bit more class than your typical sausage-fest, but not much.