Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap is a Nintendo Switch remake of Wonder Boy 3, which originally launched on the Master System.
Rather than just jazz it up a bit for the re-release, developer Lizardcube has gone the whole hog and remade every single aspect.
The hand drawn visuals are absolutely gorgeous, the music wonderful, and it runs like an absolute dream on Nintendo Switch.
And that's terrific, because Wonder Boy is here to stave off Mario withdrawal until the moustachioed plumber makes an appearance on Nintendo's new platform.
Boy, this is wonderful
You play as Wonder Boy himself, who's on a mission to slay an evil robot dragon. Unfortunately, that doesn't go according to plan, and he gets turned into a baby dragon himself.
Thus begins a quest to return to your human form, and slay the dragon properly this time.
You start out in a village which acts as your central hub, and access each level by entering the doors dotted throughout.
Some of these will be locked, or inaccessible, so you'll have to return later when you have the correct item. It's very much a Metroidvania in that sense.
The levels themselves are varied. You've got beaches, deserts, castles - almost every area imaginable. New challenges crop up often as well, like enemies and obstacles.
Combat is handled by sword in Wonder Boy form, and fire in dragon. You tap Y to attack, but have to time it wisely to exploit your enemy's attack pattern.
I went in wildly at times and ended up getting my butt served right back at me on a plate.
You've also got a bunch of power ups to use that give you a helping hand, like lightning that hits all enemies on the screen, and a whirlwind that can hit enemies beneath you.
Overall, it's an adventure that holds up incredibly well today, and is an absolute joy to play for the six or so hours on offer here.
That's partially down to the extensive rework done to almost every aspect, but also thanks to the excellent level design and combat mechanics in the first place.
If you don't believe me, set the game to retro mode with the right shoulder. You'll be surprised by just how playable the experience is in that form today.
Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap is a Godsend to early adopters of the Nintendo Switch. We're all gagging for a Super Mario, and this fills the void absolutely perfectly, while offering a few of its own charms to boot.