Ultimate Ghosts 'n Goblins

Take the visuals, which use a saturated, vibrant-to-the-point-of-searing-your-retinas color palette. Not only that, but everything from the giant undead snake to the levitating, goat-headed sorceror moves with a fluid grace that borders on art. This last bit actually affects the gameplay, making the controls feel tight and snappy.

You'll also have a ton of new gear and abilities to help you survive. You can grab onto ledges and hoist yourself up if a jump falls short, and your weapons include the trademark lance, bombs, a vine whip, a crossbow, a boomerang that can fetch out-of-reach items and more. You can also earn shields, some of which have bonus powers like the ability to hover over lava pits or that tidal wave of blood on level two. We love that gory, gruesome thing.

There's more magic in the mix too. Would you like to cast fireballs at those hulking, poison-spitting Venus flytraps, or maybe just turn them to stone? You'll also find cauldrons that can temporarily make you smaller, taller or into something different entirely, like a chubby old lady. Each of these shapes has slightly unique powers (gliding, jumping higher, etc) that may or may not help you get around the levels - which, by the way, have more hidden items and even multiple routes.

Eric Bratcher
I was the founding Executive Editor/Editor in Chief here at GR, charged with making sure we published great stories every day without burning down the building or getting sued. Which isn't nearly as easy as you might imagine. I don't work for GR any longer, but I still come here - why wouldn't I? It's awesome. I'm a fairly average person who has nursed an above average love of video games since I first played Pong just over 30 years ago. I entered the games journalism world as a freelancer and have since been on staff at the magazines Next Generation and PSM before coming over to GamesRadar. Outside of gaming, I also love music (especially classic metal and hard rock), my lovely wife, my pet pig Bacon, Japanese monster movies, and my dented, now dearly departed '89 Ranger pickup truck. I pray sincerely. I cheer for the Bears, Bulls, and White Sox. And behind Tyler Nagata, I am probably the GR staffer least likely to get arrested... again.