Are you a big Poy Poy fan? Sad that such a game never came out on Saturn? Well, ease up, because Keriotosse! is here
In Keriotosse! 4 characters are dropped in 1-story arenas where the goal is to be the last person remaining. You eliminate your foes by kicking them out of the playing field, or you can use your designated special move to help knock them out
The intro is nice, almost akin to a high-end PS1 title
There are a total of 21 characters (many needing to be unlocked) and 8 stages to select. You start out with 5 characters to pick from; to unlock the others you gotta beat the 1P mode. Some characters are anime-esque and range from humans (i.e. girl wearing bunny costume, nurse, businessman, sword carrying Guardian Hero wannabe) to robots, a ghost and even a baby panda!
A does a special move according to your character (everyone has a different one, and can only be used once per round) Each character's special move is unique and fits the character's personality
For example, "BirdBoy" flies in the air and here you can move around for a bit flapping your wings trying to shove the opponent off the field
The little girl who wants to be a nurse can grab people and inject them to make their characters all goofy. It all adds to the quirky fun. It also makes sure that each character is different and that you want to try each one at least once. One guy enlarges to be 20 times his size! It's impressive to watch his huge ass run across the screen without any slowdown!
3 wins and you, er, win. Like Saturn Bomberman you can do any combination of Human-CPU players, but the win is set at 3
In some stages, beach balls drop down on the playing field... they work like the green shells from Mario Kart fame. i.e. kick them and they go in a straight line in the direction they were kicked
In the story mode you play through the 8 stages as status quo and in stage 9 you battle this huge dragon. There are no known codes whether he's unlockable or not, but I doubt it
1. Welcome to Keriotosse
Playground complete with swings you can interact with and see-saws. Beachballs at your disposal here. Not one of my faves as it's a relatively dull stage
When everyone's spread over the field, the camera pans back like such...
... And in close combat quarters, zooms in like this
2. Singing in a Rain
The water on the ground looks convincing. The water makes your character slide. Big green leaves scatter the stage, one on top kinda obscures the playing view if your character decides to try and hide there
I like this stage
Knock 'er out!
3. What a Wonderful World
This is probably the best looking stage of the lot. Nice waterfall up top and it just has a really pleasant atmosphere. Yes, it is a wonderful world...
This is where the bomb debuts. Once kicked, they flash red. After a while BOOM! It's similar to Bomberman Fight's big blasts, but looks more "oomphful." If the blast connects you fly a good distance
Bombs and beachballs. You battle it out on top of some demonic totem looking creature's head. He'll flip the field to and 'fro every once in a while. Fitting name!
Good idea, but not as great in execution. The flipping is very tamed compared to what I was expecting
5. Into the Storm
Nice looking mist. The misty wind pushes everyone. It changes direction too, so use that to your advantage...
Pillars are scattered at the edges of the screen and might save ya!
6. Winter Wonderland
I like this stage a lot. There's crack marks in the ice for ace detail and graphic variety, rather than looking at a boring plain blue playing field. The ice looks thick and convincing. Very colorful! The background is wonderful with picture-esque ice caps in the distance
Things are slippery as you would expect
Impressive looking stage. Lava pulsates. Volcano in the middle periodically chucks out molten rocks in four directions
Watch out for them molten rocks they can push you off the edge. No bombs or beachballs are available here, since things are already quite hairy with them damn blastin' rocks
8. The Meteor
The battle in outer space. Fighting on a clear see-thru circle, in the background meteors are busy descending. It's dope in a basic, semi-plain-ish way. For the Saturn, it has some ace visual effects
Quite atmospheric stuff
Baby Panda and Mr. Green String Hair are two of the more, ahem, unconventional characters
And now... the boss of Keriotosse!....
A huge polygonal dragon!
For this stage, and only this stage, you actually get a bunch of pink hearts (your health meter) and you can't actually kick him off. Beachballs drop down occasionally and these must be fired directly at him. He's tough initially, but isn't much hard after a few goes
Nice ring of fire he can blow though. Deadly, too
I think you got him...
As stated earlier, every character has a distinct special move
The girl sporting the bunny ears can grab her victim, make them drink some sort of beverage, leaving them temporary stunned
The ghost becomes invisible except for his shadow
If you go all the way to the edge of an arena, your character does the whole "whooooa!" thing for about 2 seconds. When jumping, it's possible to accidentally jump off the stage and die. You can change direction in mid-air but it's not much. Other than that, it's up to the others to eliminate you. So that makes the Ghost's special even better since you don't have to worry about wandering off the scene
One girl throws out Hadokens. One guy chucks out a red airplane model that chases after you, etc.
The graphics are great regarding the stages (most of them anyway). But the characters themselves aren't so hot. The sound is catchy in places, other times it's annoying and some characters' squeals will get on your nerves
I used to really love this game back in 2004 when I first played it. Very recently, I finally played it with 3 buddies of mine. It was then that the flaws crept up to the surface. The gameplay is lightweight. When 2 players remain, it takes forever for one to polish off the other, as they just jump and jump about. Therefore, if you're out, you're sitting there for 2 to 4 minutes just watching that mindless crap. I've been on the other end too, and it ends up being more of a chore to play than anything else when it becomes a strictly 1-on-1 affair. There's no time limit! So the battles literally can go on forever. Also, the control is rather stiff -- lacking crispness and fluidity
After playing Saturn Bomberman, this just wasn't as great a "party game" as I expected for all those years. Oddly, it's a lot more fun to play this against the CPU than with 3 buds. Maybe that's just me, but at least the CPU puts up a fight without fights dragging on FOREVER
I still like this game, but I've knocked down my original score of 9 back in 2004. It's still a unique game, being the only of its kind on the Saturn, and is a nice little obscure import in its own right. However, these days I no longer refer to it as "a gem"
Special thanks to Kent Rittenhouse for supplying these shots