The fact that classic Sega Genesis shoot 'em ups are being ported to modern consoles is great so here's Gynoug (AKA Wings of Wor).
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When I started playing Gynoug, I thought to myself "This seems familiar..." and I was right because I actually own it for Sega Genesis. Well, I have Wings of Wor which was the western name for Gynoug back in the 16-bit days. Anyway, it's quite a cool shoot 'em up and I even included it as #9 on my Top 10 Sega Genesis Shoot 'em Ups list so you know that it's good because there are a lot of shmups for the console. Well, it's now back for modern gamers to enjoy and it has held up fairly well so let's get down to the nitty gritty. v1d30chumz 3-238-199-4
Gynoug has you play as a handsome angel named Wor who's on a quest to rid the heavens of a relentless evil invader known as The Destroyer. But, none of that really matters because you just shoot things while the things shoot at you; you know the drill. The graphics are bursting with 16-bit awesomeness and are impressively detailed with lovely backgrounds and sprites that really pop. Meanwhile, the soundtrack isn't particularly memorable but it does an excellent job of emphasizing the epic atmosphere and onscreen action.
The core gameplay of Gynoug basically has you move around while shooting enemies with certain parts requiring you to navigate through tight hallways and tricky scenarios where enemies may be behind you. Meanwhile, there are some complexities such as power-ups that alter your array of projectiles and magic spells that you can utilize which range from secondary weapons to shields and even helper angels. All of this is mostly enjoyable although you'll have to experiment to figure everything out considering there are no tutorials or instructions whatsoever. I would have liked to see a detailed breakdown of every single spell and power-up so that's rather disappointing.
One of the coolest aspects about Gynoug is its collection of gruesome bosses. Whether you're taking down a giant organic train with human features or shooting at a beating heart that rotates around the boss; you're bound to have a great time defeating these evil entities. Another nifty addition is cheats which allow you to toggle the options to retain weapons upon defeat as well as have unlimited credits, infinite lives, infinite magic, or become completely invincible. Now, I'm not sure who these cheats will appeal to considering Gynoug is an easy game in the first place but I guess they'd be cool for modern gamers who are new to shoot 'em ups.
That leads me to a disappointing issue which is that Gynoug isn't a substantial step-up from the original. Whereas the recently released Gley Lancer featured an option to turn the gameplay into a twin-stick shooter; there is nothing nearly as cool as that here. The only other significant downside is that stages are exceptionally long to the point where they actually get a bit boring. Some mid-bosses help alleviate part of the tedium but besides those moments, I found myself getting impatient as I waited for the boss to show up.
Wings of Wor; oops, I mean Gynoug... is a solid shoot 'em up from the golden age of the genre with a clever magic system, stand-out bosses, and there are now interesting cheats to help modernize it all. So, if you enjoy shmups then give it a go, why not?
- + Tight shoot 'em up gameplay with a very cool magic-based power-up system
- + Gruesome bosses are fun to take down
- + Nifty cheats for modern casual gamers
- - Most levels eventually overstay their welcome and aren't all that challenging
- - Not a huge step up from the original
- - Could use a comprehensive manual