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Gargoyle's Quest II: The Demon Darkness (Wii U VC) Review Mini

by Zachary Miller - November 18, 2014, 9:51 pm PST
Total comments: 3


Did you like the Game Boy game? Then you'll like its sequel.

The original Gargoyle’s Quest, a Game Boy offshoot of the Ghosts & Goblins series, is an interesting beast. Your character, Firebrand, wanders around a very RPG-like overworld map filled with towns, NPCs, and items. Random encounters, however, as well as individual “levels,” warp you into side-scrolling action/platformer areas where Firebrand uses his powers of flight, fire-breathing, and wall-clinging. Throughout the adventure, Firebrand upgrades his flight time, attack power, and HP. It’s a very strange little hybrid, but it’s solid and fun. Gargoyle’s Quest 2 is an NES sequel that’s basically the same game, but in color. If you liked the original, you’ll like this sequel just as much (if not more).

This time, Firebrand is off to defend the Ghoul Realm from yet another magical overlord. He does this in the exact same way: traveling around a large RPG-like overworld map, visiting towns, talking to NPCs, and upgrading his armor and abilities for side-scrolling action/platformer stages. There are no random encounters this time, however.

The game isn’t overly-difficult. It’s pretty much on-par with its Game Boy predecessor, largely because of the same issue: the screen doesn’t show enough of the level, so you’re constantly dropping down blind paths and falling on spikes or getting hit by respawning enemies. Firebrand’s powers are also largely lifted from the original, and the late-game stages make use of all of them in satisfying ways. Some of the bosses are cheap in that “random NES attack pattern” way, but none of them are downright frustrating—Restore Points will alleviate some anxiety here.

It all looks good, with big sprites and colorful, surprisingly intricate levels. The overworld stuff could’ve used more work (don't be afraid to talk to people more than once). The music is usually pretty forgettable, but there are some catchy tracks here and there.

I like the Gargoyle’s Quest games, possibly more than Demon’s Crest, crazy as that might be. They’re charming and experimental, with rock-solid platforming and really interesting level design. If you've never played the Game Boy game, you may as well just pick up this NES game—it’s largely the same, but in color.


  • Always moving forward; very directed
  • Great level design
  • Interesting powers that you constantly use
  • Framerate hiccups here and there
  • Over very quickly
  • Some cheap-ish bosses


ClexYoshiNovember 19, 2014

I actually REALLY disliked Gargoyle's QUest 2, particularly because moreso then in Gargoyle's Quest or Demon's Crest, Firebrand feels SUPER duper floaty. that, and the numerous instances they throw at the player where a moving platform travels faster than firebrand can. I've died more thn a few times in this game because of a moving platform getting away from me because of how slowly Firebrand jumps into the air and floats on down. I also felt that the overworld became even more bloat then it was in Gargoyle's Quest thanks to the elimination of Random encounters. there's times I had to backtrack and it felt very empty and hollow because there was no danger or assumed risk of attempting to deliver the goblin stick.

I also feel like the use of breath attacks to aid platforming is a wonky affair, and I much more appreciated it when those elements were in a game with better physics and where they are entirely vestigial and thus harmless.

MagicCow64November 19, 2014

I'm playing through this right now, and finding it okay, but I would probably not be putting any time into it if it wasn't for restore points. Particularly in the first 1/3 of the game before you get any enhancements it feels like ass to play because Firebrand is so slow and has horrible vertical jumping distance and limited hover. Gets better as it goes along, though, and the stages can be quite satisfying to traverse once the design opens up. Still, I agree with Clex about those moving platforms. I also find the enemy respawning to be pretty irritating at times, NES Mega Man level but more chaotic given the verticality of levels.

Luigi DudeNovember 19, 2014

One of my favorite NES games as a kid.  Yeah the beginning can be kind of annoying because of how Firebrand plays at the start but once you get the first few upgrades, it becomes great.  To me, once I get past the balloon fish boss, the rest of the game is golden.

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Genre Action
Developer Capcom

Worldwide Releases

na: Gargoyle's Quest II: The Demon Darkness
Release Oct 30, 2014
jpn: Red Arremer II
Release Mar 05, 2014
RatingAll Ages
eu: Gargoyle's Quest II: The Demon Darkness
Release Oct 30, 2014
aus: Gargoyle's Quest II: The Demon Darkness
Release Oct 30, 2014
RatingParental Guidance
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