If you couldn’t tell from the name, I’m going to be playing a few games, likely not to completion, that play similarly, sometimes almost way too much so, to Mega Man. Now before you go running off and decide “NOPE!”, I’m adding one new thing to this that should be a good place to experiment with it for me – video! That’s right, I’ve decided I can’t ignore the fact that I ramble way too much and probably bore a lot of you to tears, so I decided to add the ability for you to watch me play some of the things I’m talking about! There’s also the side bonus in this – you get to see how largely NOT GOOD I am at playing video games. Anyway…
The first entry in I Wish I Was Mega Man is the one that inspired the title of the feature. Magical Doropie, known as The Krion Conquest outside of Japan, is a game that was released in 1991 for the NES and Famicom and was developed by Vic Tokai. Looking at the game’s art in Japan (the manual cover is pictured above) and the cover used where ever it was known as The Krion Conquest, you could easily be forgiven for not thinking this game was trying to be a Mega Man game from the level and enemy design, right down to the character sprites and menus.
Then again, when you get right down to it, it might have even been going for an even more direct rip-off of the Blue Bomber when you think about how, to put it nicely, abstract the NES box art for Mega Man was.
The character sprite of the titular Doropie is way too similar in appearance to Mega Man’s sprite to be a mere coincidence. Even her move set is remarkably similar aside from being able to crouch, shoot while crouching, and shoot straight up in the air. Like the ability to charge up your shots like the Mega Man’s Mega Buster? Doropie has that. Huge fan of the Rush Jet? Well, you can summon a broom to do basically the same thing. Your character sprite’s color change based on whatever weapon you’re currently using? Magical Doropie does that too!
At least they had the decency to change the spirtes for the enemy ideas they borrowed, even if they concept of them is the same. The first enemy you encounter in Magical Doropie shares the idea of the large, tough to take down enemy on a spring that Mega Man has to take down, it’s just a considerably scaled down version and only takes one shot to take down. Even Met (who you might know better as the little hard-hat guys) isn’t safe. The enemy in Magical Doropie is stationary and only fires a diagonal spread, two-shot shot at you rather than the two diagonal and one forward shot that Met does, but it does still become invincible when it ducks back down. Considering Doropie can fire while crouching, that’s a much more forgivable thing since it would otherwise totally eliminate the purpose of its existence.
Mechanically, Magical Doropie certainly takes inspiration from Mega Man, but there’s certainly some level of quality that went missing in this “homage”. Even with Doropie’s ability to shoot up, questionable flying-enemy hit boxes make it tough to hit them. They also move almost entirely too fast to react to without previous knowledge of where they’re coming from. While she also has a shield to deploy, you have to charge it up like you would the Mega Buster and it takes enough fractions of a second to deploy that you’ll have to know what’s coming to rely on it, more or less defeating the purpose of it as well.
If you want to play Magical Doropie, which has more of a story (as long as you can read Japanese) than its North American counterpart, you’re looking upwards of $50. If you have a functioning NES or Retron5, The Krion Conquest can be had for about $35-40. Keep in mind, Nintendo of America did have it censored (watch the video and take a guess towards the end as to what was cut) a fair amount, so if you want the “authentic” experience, you’ll need to either fork over the big bucks for the Famicom version and learn Japanese or just get a translated ROM like I did. I don’t know if it’s really worth doing more than watching me play it for a few minutes, let alone spending that kind of money on it. Not when the next entry in I Wish I Was Mega Man is a so much more competent game (that’s what we call a teaser people!). Until then, watch me play Magical Doropie a bit below!