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Game Info:

Alex Kidd in Miracle World DX
Developed by: Jankenteam
Published by: Merge Games
Release date: June 22, 2021
Available on: PS4, PS5, Switch, Windows, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S
Genre: Platformer
Number of players: Single-player
ESRB Rating: Everyone
Price: $17.99

Thank you Merge Games for sending us a review code!

Alex Kidd in Miracle World made its debut on the Sega Master System. Gamers looking for a casual platformer like Mario will be disappointed by the difficulty level and cheap shots this game offers to make it comparable to Super Meat Boy according to the Steam store recommendation. Alex Kidd’s basic moves are jump and punch. He cannot touch or pounce on an enemy without dying so that takes getting used to after playing Mario for decades.

Alex Kidd in Miracle World DX is a repainted version of Alex Kidd in Miracle World and you can toggle the 8-bit mode by pressing the right trigger. I noticed that the 8-bit version of the game has tighter controls compared to the remake. With that said, the 8-bit version is not the same as the original. For example, when ghosts are spawned, you cannot destroy them by punching blocks; you have to advance to the next screen to escape from them. Another change is the removal of glitches that made some of the original levels easier when abused. New levels, NPCs, and alternate boss fights have also been added to this remake.

After completing the game a Boss Rush mode and Classic Mode will become available.  In Boss Rush, players must win the Rock-Paper-Scissors matches against the bosses as well as a follow-up battle without dying!  The Classic Mode is an up-scaled port of the Master System (original) game.

Highlights:

Strong Points: Adorable visuals and enhanced audio; the ability to play the 8-bit mode is nice too
Weak Points: Some gameplay mechanics and glitches have been removed in the retro and remade version of this game, fans of the original may be disappointed about the changes; floaty and sometimes unresponsive controls
Moral Warnings: Cartoon violence

The story remains the same with the townsfolk of Radaxian being turned to stone and Alex Kidd must save them while trying to find his martial arts master. Blocking his way are several henchmen of Janken who must be defeated in Rock-Paper-Scissor matches. There are other bosses as well who have to be dodged and attacked during short windows of opportunity.

The roughly twenty levels play out like other platformer games where you get to jump around, break bricks, and taking on enemies or avoiding them altogether. You start with three lives and that may increase with a lucky break from a mystery block. Other times the mystery box can spawn a power bracelet giving Alex Kidd projectile attacks after equipping it. A ghost may also appear and they are invincible so you’ll have to run away from them quickly! Boxes with a gray skull may stun you for a couple of seconds and boxes with pink skulls will summon a ghost guaranteed so you’ll want to avoid those at all costs.

Many blocks are withholding money, which can be spent at stores to purchase extra lives, modes of transportation, or power bracelets. If you lose all of your lives and retry, the money will be lost as well. Be careful not to start a new game on accident or you may lose your progress, as there is only one save slot.

Alex Kidd in Miracle World DX
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 78%
Gameplay: 15/20
Graphics: 8/10
Sound: 8/10
Stability: 5/5
Controls: 3/5

Morality Score - 96%
Violence: 8/10
Language: 10/10
Sexual Content: 10/10
Occult/Supernatural: 10/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical: 10/10

You can expect to do lots of jumping and dodging. There are spikes, balls of fire, incoming projectiles and low-flying animals to dodge. If you die, the game is generous and respawns you to a nearby location. The patterns are the same, so there is a lot of memorization and timing mastery required to succeed in this game. Having lots of patience helps too!

The enhanced visuals are very colorful and detailed. I spent most of my time in the remake. However, the controls felt a bit floaty at times and when you have only one block to land on to get across a wide trench, you want precise controls. For trickier situations, I had better luck switching to the classic mode to get through them. With either mode I did experience non-responsive buttons and I’m not sure why a jump didn’t register when I look down and see my finger still pressing the Joy-con button. Thankfully, those issues were few and far between, but still present nonetheless.

As long as you have the patience required to play this game, it’s suitable for gamers of all ages. There’s only cartoon violence to be concerned about. It’s much tamer than what’s on television these days.

If you’re looking for a faithful remake of the original Alex Kidd in Miracle World, you may not find what you’re looking for until you beat the enhanced version. Gamers who enjoy challenging platformers should definitely check this title out. As for me, I’ll stick with Mario.

About the Author

Cheryl Gress

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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