Sega Ages Ichidant-R
Top Critic Average
With Ichidant-R, M2 has rescued another Sega classic from international obscurity. As either a proto-WarioWare microgame collection or an academic dive into Japan's transitional arcade scene, Ichidant-R's ecstatic presence succeeds in delighting and illuminating its audience. It's another affirmation that M2's work on the Switch's SEGA AGES' line continues to be one of the most valuable projects in gaming.
Ichidant-R comes as a gigantic bummer despite being a super neat and novel game that I never knew about before this release. The mini-games are enjoyable and the aesthetics are neat, but the fact that the Mega Drive options, including an RPG-lite mode and a multiplayer board game, are completely in Japanese renders those enticing options as non-starters. Unless you're looking for a reason to try to learn some Japanese, this is hard to recommend, even if the basic arcade mode (that's actually in English) is enjoyable.
Ichidant-R was, in many ways, a precursor to the party and mini-game collection titles of today, but tailored for the arcades. To finally be able to play it in English is a treat for any SEGA fan, especially in multiplayer.
When it comes to chaotic mini-game fun, Ichidant-R provides such great times that I hope to see the other Puzzle & Action arcade games (Tant-R and Sand-R) get Sega Ages releases sometime soon.
Sega Ages: Ichidant-R is a pretty cool study in what was, even if what it currently is might not be for everyone. Ideally, this is the kind of game you want to sit down with some friends to play - or better yet just spectate as two newcomers play it with one another for the first time. Having done that with my kids, I can say that this was a particularly entertaining experience. The mix of action and puzzle elements, as well as the variety of games actually makes for a pretty charming and interesting title, even if it is one that does not have a particularly long shelf life after your initial few hours.
Ichidant-R is a challenging taste of retro gameplay. If you have good reflexes and a sharp brain, it’s the game for you. Otherwise, grab a buddy and conquer it together.
In conclusion, Ichidant-R is easily the most obscure Sega AGES title in the first wave of games. While the Arcade version’s English translation helps significantly in making this widely accessible to the west, the core game is unfortunately not that fun, though the helper mode is an appreciated addition to cut some of the repetitive nature for players who want to see the ending of the game.