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Wonder Boy Collection

Bliss Brain, ININ Games
Jun 3, 2022 - Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4
Fair Man

OpenCritic Rating

66

Top Critic Average

41%

Critics Recommend

God is a Geek
8 / 10
Gaming Nexus
8.5 / 10
ZTGD
1 / 10
Push Square
6 / 10
Nintendo Life
7 / 10
Impulsegamer
3.5 / 5
Pure Nintendo
6.5 / 10
ThisGenGaming
7.5 / 10
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Wonder Boy Collection Media

Wonder Boy Collection - Official Trailer thumbnail

Wonder Boy Collection - Official Trailer

Wonder Boy Collection Screenshot 1
Wonder Boy Collection Screenshot 2


Critic Reviews for Wonder Boy Collection

All four of thee games in Wonder Boy Collection represent a fair few hours of retro gaming, even if three of them are a tad samey.

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Wonder Boy Collection may be a bit short on the extras, but the four games included still make for a very solid collection. Wonder Boy and Wonder Boy in Monster Land are great for arcade gamers and the options let you tweak things to make the games easier or harder to suit your skill level. Meanwhile, Wonder Boy in Monster World and Monster World IV are great for console gamers, offering very fluid controls and a more relaxing style of gameplay where you're not rushed by a timer wanting to devour your quarters. Whether you're a fan of the series or just stepping in for the first time, Wonder Boy Collection is bound to have at least one or two games that everyone can enjoy.

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Save big collector’s editions to Strictly Limited and let ININ handle the complete versions for release. Change the cover art or something between the two releases but maintain the same game on both carts. Even a full removal of the ININ physical release for a digital only release outside of Strictly Limited’s physical release would be welcomed if it meant I got to experience the full collection. Just be upfront too: explain that you’re the same company handling different release methods. If certain games come with a limited licensing deal be upfront with that information. Mistakes are going to happen, so why choose to make them.

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If you flash back to a concern exacerbated from our Turrican Flashback review, Wonder Boy Collection's paltry four titles puts pressure on retro gamers to question its value for money, because it omits series defining titles and key console ports when compared to the more expensive Wonder Boy Anniversary Collection from Strictly Limited Games — which has sold out of its 2,000 PS4 retail copies. It's also worse value than retro compilations that released within weeks of the Wonder Boy Collection, when set side-by-side against the cheaper and more complete Pac-Man Museum+ and the superior extras in Sonic Origins.

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Scoring the Wonder Boy Collection is only partly related to the quality of the games on offer. They're all excellent for what they are, and were they appraised independently, would do very well. But this is more about the package as a whole. Yes, there's plenty here to keep you occupied, but at the same time, what could have been is a sticking point. Wonder Boy is a great little series, with games spanning everything from the Master System to the PC Engine, in various guises. It's not difficult to offer a more extensive library for the broader gaming populace, rather than restrict certain titles to a group profiled for their magpie eyes.

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The Wonder Boy Collection is a solid retro collection that finally puts some respect on old Tom-Tom's name (and Asha's as well, for that matter). Despite some anachronistic design elements and difficulty spikes due to the earlier titles' arcade origins, all four titles included here are well worth diving into if you're a fan of classic gaming and, if nothing else, the theme song from the first title is a straight up banger.

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Wonder Boy Collection is stacked with four classic titles that are all worth your time to a degree. Fans of the franchise will likely be disappointed by the omission of other titles that hold much more value in terms of critic appeal. The two standout games for me, Wonder Boy and Monster World IV, have both been remade on the Nintendo Switch as their own standalone video games with updated graphics and some quality-of-life features. After playing through this collection, I'm now tempted to revisit these via their remastered counterparts. Wonder Boy Collection feels more like a collector's item rather than an item you'll purchase because you genuinely want to play these classics.

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Wonder Boy Collection is another nice collection of classic games from ININ Games but one that has some downsides. Not only is it missing important entries like Monster Boy III but the physical version releasing later has more to offer than the digital version. If you don’t care about that though you still are getting four pretty good entries here and with some nice quality of life additions like save states and rewind there has never been a better time to experience these titles.

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