One of the NES' best platformers, Little Samson is a tour de force of excellent game design, attractive graphics and pure entertainment value. Ta-keed, the evil Prince of Darkness, is wreaking havoc on Kingdom of the Imperial Forgy. Emperor Hans summons the four heroes of the land to restore order and defeat him. As the game begins, you control each of the four characters as they make their way to the emperor. There's Little Samson, who throws magic bells and can climb walls; Kikira the Dragon Lord, with her fiery breath and the ability to fly; Gamm the Rock Lord, a strong stone warrior who can punch short distances and walk on spikes; and finally, the diminutive K.O. the Mouse, who drops bombs and can climb walls. Once the first four levels are complete, you are able to toggle between the four characters at any time. The stages are challenging and creatively designed, requiring you to utilize the distinct skills of each hero to overcome enemies and obstacles, and the characters themselves each look and feel unique, right down to their own theme music.
One of the most underrated platformers on the NES, Little Samson is an excellent platformer with top-notch gameplay and a lot of replay value. The plot: Emperor Hans has summoned the four owners of Majestic Bells of Power to embark on a quest to rid the land of the evil Ta-Keed. The four adventurers include Little Samson, Kikira the Dragon Lord, Gamm the Rock Lord, and K.O. the Enchanted Beast (who looks suspiciously like a tiny mouse). After completing a "prologue" level for each character, you can switch between all four of them at almost any point in the game.
With excellent gameplay and charming graphics, Little Samson would already be a good game had it contain only one protagonist. The availability of four characters and how the game utilizes this concept elevates it into the "must-play" status. Fans of The Lost Vikings or Gobliiins will recognize puzzle elements that require you to use the right character. For example, you have to use Gamm to walk on thorns, become KO to go through narrow cracks in the walls, and fly over long distances with Kikira. Each of the four characters has unique attacks and attributes. The game offers excellent replay value aside from having multiple characters: many times there are multiple paths you can take to finish the level, and there are multiple endings. Great level design and imaginative boss monsters round off this fun game.
Overall, Little Samson is one of the best platformers on the NES that is sadly ignored by many gamers. If you like platformers, especially starring anime characters, Little Samson is one game you shouldn't pass on. Highly recommended.
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