3D Fantasy Zone II Review
I'm sure most gamers out there have never heard of Fantasy Zone II. Fantasy Zone was released in Japanese arcades in 1986. A year later, a sequel was released for the Sega Master System. M2 remade the game in on PS2 in 2007 as part of the SEGA Ages line called Fantasy Zone II DX. This version is what M2 has used to remake this classic on the 3DS.
Fantasy Zone II is a side-scrolling shooter in which you can pilot your Opa-Opa in all four directions at will, like with most shmups. In this game, you fly along shooting various enemies, as well as a set number of enemy bases that will sometimes unlock light or dark zones that are like parallel universes. After you destroy the set number of bases, you will encounter a level boss each with their own sweet spots for destroying them. Unlike most shmups, you do not get upgrades while in flight. You can bump into shops where you can buy upgrades with the coins you collect throughout the game. Just like in most old school games, when you die you lose all your upgrades. One thing that I do find cool is that you bank coins you didn't spend, so when you restart your game you can pull coins from your back to spend on upgrades early.
Don't let this fool you though, this game is very tough like any shump and it takes skill and practice to sometimes figure out boss patterns. M2 was nice enough to include a number of assets to make it a little easier like downscaling the difficulty, save states and level select. The graphics are colorful, bright, shiny and look great in 3D. The sound is top notch too, with great sound effects and music. Overall, the story is short, but with multiple endings and just overall fun you will find yourself playing this one over and over again.
Overall, the game is one of the best in the collection. M2 continues to raise the bar with each release. I can not wait to see next month's game, 3D Super Thunder Blade. You will not find a better $6 game on the Nintendo E-Shop right now. If you are a Sega fan, shump fan or you just love a fun game, do not pass this up.
Score 4 out of 5
Thanks to Sega for supplying a code for review.