Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves is based on the movie with the same name. To be honest though, I've never seen the movie. Although it was released around 1991, this game looks more modern than some of the later games for the system. This game may be very little known, but that doesn't mean it's not good! In fact, it's a very fun and enjoyable game.
The game starts in some Arab dungeons. You, as Robin Hood, find a sword nearby and rescue a fellow named Peter from an Arabic soldier. Then he joins you and you have to find a key to get out of your cell. In the next cell is
an Arab named Azeem. You can rescue him or not (it's your choice). If you don't rescue him though, you won't get very far. So continues Robin's journey meeting people, finding items and doing the right thing.
All this sounds very RPG-ish but the game is a bit different than the typical console RPG. Instead of turn-based bouts, when you meet up with a horde of soldiers, a cursor appears over the character you control. The others fight automatically. However, you can change your character and fight as another. (I usually choose the fellow with the biggest sword or bow and arrows equipped). This is not the only fight scene though. There is another when Robin Hood fights alone with a boss. These fights are side-scrolling and you can roll, flip, jump etc. Also, you can just use your weapons while walking to attack nearby guards. So there are three fight scenes in all.
Other areas of the game are very much like the console RPG you're used to. However, there is no save feature in the game. Due to that the game is somewhat short as well.
This game has some of the best graphics I've seen on the NES. The characters are fairly large and realistic. The backgrounds are very colorful and detailed etc. They are even better than some 16-bit RPGs! The character animations are very fluid as well.
The control can get on your nerves a bit. Although they are responsive, you will sometimes get trapped by trees and other things, leaving you no choice but to start again from the beginning. This is very bad if you've gotten far
in the game. Also, switching between menus is a little troublesome.
The music is very fitting and medieval-ish. It creates a nice mood. The dungeon, castle, forest and all the rest sound just fine. The sounds too are OK. They're nothing to make a song about, but suit their purpose.
There is nothing remarkable about the storyline, but I expect it follows the movie's. It's your usual save-the-damsell with a few twists here and there. Like, for instance, you have to kill a huge wild boar who destroys crops,
stop a wedding etc. Just what you expect from Robin Hood.
The gameplay is what you'd expect in and RPG with a few added features. The ending's a bit disappointing but playing through the game is fun. There are different gameplay sections like riding horses, drinking potions that make
you walk very fast etc. Although the game is a bit short (for an RPG) it's very engaging and challenging. Sometimes though, the challenge arises due to the control.
All things considered, it's a pretty fun little game, short and sweet. Once you start it keeps you captivated throughout. The battles require good skill unlike those boring turn-based bouts of most RPGs. Also you have to treasure your items and use them carefully. Finding an item by just selecting the search option is fun, because you never know what you might find. Every aspect of the game is well above average, so anyone who tries it has a good chance of liking it...a lot.