Altered Beast

Altered Beast

“Welcome to your doom!”

So, you’ve just been raised from the dead to find yourself in ancient Greece, and you are called upon to rescue Athena, daughter of Zeus. To do so, you are going to have to wield some substantial shape-shifting powers to take on an army of the undead if you are to get your hands on the evil Demon God Neff. If all of this sounds familiar, you’ve likely tossed a few coins into a highly popular 1988 Sega game, Altered Beast.

Along the side-scrolling journey, there are plenty of mythological nasties to make life interesting, such as two-headed wolves and zombies who prefer to carry their heads rather than wear them on their shoulders. But those flashing white wolves hold the key to success, for by giving them a swift kick or punch, they release a blue ball of energy with magical transforming power.

Capture one orb and your muscles become much more defined. Another orb and your animalistic side starts to surface. And with a third orb, you are no longer a mere warrior, but an altered beast. And, there were a few levels of altered beast to shoot for as well. On the first level, the transformation left you as a werewolf, (a werelizard if you happened to be player #2); the second level, you achieved the lofty winged weredragon status. The third level, a fierce werebear; the fourth, a ferocious weretiger; and if you made it all the way to the elusive level five – a golden werewolf.

As players moved up in levels, they acquired nifty new powers, all of which were invaluable to the task of beating the evil bosses that emerged at each level’s end. One’s arsenal might include such powers as the ability to throw fireball punches, zap with electric dragon charges, bear rolls or a swift tiger quick attack. But it was best not to get too comfy with all of these newly acquired powers, for when the next level arrived, players were stripped of those magical power orbs and had to go through the transformation process all over again.

A tad frustrating, of course, but addictive enough to keep fans coming back for more. Altered Beast had everything a gamer could want – colorful characters, gruesome images, wonderful animations of the various transformations, and best of all, plenty of madcap mayhem to keep em’ coming back for more.

If you have a few memories of battling your way through Altered Beast in your local arcade, or perhaps on the Sega Genesis, we’d love to hear your memories in our comments section, as we tip our hats to this popular video game of the 80s.

3 Responses to “Altered Beast”

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  1. Wil says:

    Nintendo which was notorious for chaning the console game from the arcade version, did a pretty good job with the home version of this game, although they graphics were not as good the game was still enjoyable

  2. Drahken says:

    This was probably the single arcade game that I pumped the most quarters into back in the day, largely due to being able to continue uninterrupted as soon as you put in another quarter. (The further back a game pushed me after I continued, the more likely I was to just move on to some other one.) I managed to get to being a werebear in the arcades, but never managed to get beyond the 3rd level until I played it on the sega channel.

  3. Christy says:

    Oh I spent a small fortune on this game… but it was so worth it!

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