Saturday, December 5, 2009
It is no secret that I am fond of strange & obscure games (and studios). That's why titles like Gomola Speed by UPL (1990 for PC-Engine, the Japanese TurboGrafx-16) were made for me.
There are plenty of people who argue against video game emulation for many reasons, but let's face it, without dipping in now and again I would have never discovered little gems like this! Gomola speed puts you in command of a strange worm creature, with an expandable body of sorts.
The goal is to reach the exit of each top-down mazelike level, avoiding enemies and capturing food (by encircling it with your body, similar to how Sega's NiGHTS attack mechanic works). Enemies can be stunned with bombs, then destroyed by similarly encircling them.
At the base your worm is just a head (vulnerable to death if an enemy touches it) but otherwise you can pick up "balls" to extend your body and therefore increase your food/enemy encircling ability. However, the longer your body, the lower your multiplier for points - although you will need all your body parts attached to gain passage through a level exit.
Hmm, the more I read what I am writing, the more this game sounds like some kind of trippy nightmare! In all seriousness, Gomola Speed is a very fun and unique spin on a proven game style - and typical of some of the weirder obscure titles available on this wonderful system. I'd love to see more titles of this genre be made available through re-release/virtual console.