Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts (known as Chou Makaimura in Japan) is the third mainline game in the Ghosts 'n Goblins series. It is a run and gun platform game that was initially released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System console in 1991. It was later ported to the PlayStation, Sega Saturn, Game Boy Advance, PlayStation 2, Xbox, PlayStation Portable, and the Wii Virtual Console. It is also included in Capcom Classics Collection and has been released on the SNES Mini and Super Famicom Mini.
It is the sequel to the arcade games Ghosts 'n Goblins and Ghouls 'n Ghosts. Although it is still a very difficult game, it is comparatively much easier than its predecessors. The player can regain lost armour usually from the first chest after getting hit and the time limit is greatly increased to five minutes to reach the checkpoint, a stark contrast to the original's two minutes and Ghouls 'n Ghosts' three and a half. Also, the default number of lives can be raised up to nine in the options menu.
The game is largely similar to its predecessors, though it is based more on Ghouls 'n Ghosts. In the game, Arthur can upgrade to the Bronze armor which allows him to unleash a special magic attack by charging the attack button. A new ability of Arthur's is the double jump. While he still can't change directions in mid-air, he can while doing the second jump.
Also, this time around is the addition of new weapons. The Bow and Arrow which allows Arthur to shoot two arrows at once and at slightly different angles, and the Scythe, which flies along the ground.
There is a jester similar to the wizard that hides in treasure chests from Ghosts 'n Goblins, and he'll transform Arthur into something different depending on what he is wearing: an infant (no armor), a seal (Steel armor), a bee (Bronze armor), or a little girl (Gold armor).
Sticking with tradition, players have to beat Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts twice in a row with a special item before being treated to the true ending.
- Astaroth - in his original form, and as Nebiroth.
- Satan - Appears briefly at the game's beginning.
- Zombies - In this version of the game, the zombies rise out of the ground inside of their coffins and then attack.
- Wolves - This creature of the night usually roams around in packs looking for dinner. They either jump around or run right after the player.
- Skull Flower- Flaming pillars topped with skulls that shoot fireballs in the Haunted Graveyard stage.
- Eyeball Clams - These minor enemies are similar to the Green Monster plants from the first two games. One hit may kill them, but they can send out tidal waves that try to sweep Arthur away and can even spit out their eyes.
- Spores - Puffy orange organisms that explode when Arthur is directly under them. They can be destroyed with a projectile weapon.
- Skull Carts - Mobile flaming annoyances that come rolling at Arthur as the land elevation continuously shifts.
- Ghosts - These apparitions first appear in the Graveyard of Ships, materializing out of wispy winds that seem to eerily float throughout the landscape. They move pretty quick, and can change directions often. Ghosts sometimes carry pots, which they drop if destroyed.
- Killer Fish - Sea creature that usually pops up directly behind or in front of the player. These pests returned in Ultimate Ghosts 'n Goblins.
- Mimics - Just when Arthur thinks he's got his hands on some treasure, the chest begins shaking and out comes a pink demon. They can only be killed when they leave the safety of their chests.
- Spiked Fish - While trying to jump from raft to raft and avoiding columns of coral, Arthur must avoid these deadly inhabitants of the Sea of Despair.
- Red Devils - In the Crucible of Flame, these tiny pests rise from the lava, hover for an instant and then zip toward the player like missiles. They must be destroyed on sight.
- Gririans - These bear-like monsters blow out up to five fireballs in one breath.
- Red Bats - Enemies that come from either side of the screen. They sometimes carry pots.
- Cyclops Goblins - In the Towers of Molten Steel area, these nuisances will come out of the wall of the tower and drop down on Arthur. They carry spears.
- Genie Ghouls - Arthur encounters these apparitions in the Ghoul's Stomach area. They carry axes.
- Jesters - These nasty guys will sometimes pop out of treasure chests and transform Arthur into a different form that leaves him nearly helpless.
- Woos - The Gririans' cold-blooded cousins have a chilling breath. They possess the power to create a blizzard, and appear in snowy conditions.
- Cockatrice - The Stage 1 Boss, the Cockatrice is a monstrous bird-creature who births hatchlings called Miniwings. The Miniwings will attack anything that comes near its parent. Players must beware its long neck.
- Giant Barnacle - The Sea of Despair's boss (Stage 2), the Giant Barnacle rides on a whirlpool created with its own tentacles, giving chase to the player while attacking with many hard-shielded calamari that act like torpedoes. Once it is defeated, the waterfall behind it opens, allowing Arthur to proceed.
- Death Worm - The Stage 3 Boss, the Death Worm is a huge centipede that can levitate and disintegrate itself due to its strange matter. It ensnares its prey, cutting its escape routes, then shoots an array of poisonous, sticky shots that fly back and forth like a boomerang.
- Hydra - The Stage 4 Boss, the Hydra is the three-headed monstrosity of the Ghouls' Stomach.
- Freon - The Stage 5 Boss, Freon, the King of the Arctic Mountains, is a giant ice sculpture that comes to life. It was made by Sardius presumably to guard his castle. He has four arms, but his legs will shatter at the start of the battle.
- Sardius (Samael in Japan) - Responsible for Satan's kidnapping of the Princess, Sardius is highly resistant to attacks and will shoot multi-directional laser beams and floating platforms from his body. Only Guinevere's ring, a secret weapon left dormant through the ages, has the power to defeat Sardius and return peace to the land.
A Knight's Quest - (From the UK SNES manual)
"All hail, dauntless knight Arthur! Years ago, you quelled the terrifying phantoms of the Ghoul Realm who hexed the earth, and rescued Princess Guinevere. Since that time, you've journeyed far over the world seeking the powerful weapons of White Magic.
But now the kingdom is shrouded under an eerie spell. Sardius, the Emperor of Evil, has snatched Princess Guinevere away to the slimy crypts of the Phantom Zone. The Ghoul Realm has revived, and the Creatures of the Undead haunt the land.
Once again, you must survive the dangerous journey into the depths of the Ghoul Realm. You'll swat at horrible ectoplasms and ghouls whose touch is deadly. Vampires will swirl around your head. Voracious plants will snap at you, hungry for bones to gnaw. The earth will crack, the seas will swell, and the fiends of darkness will engulf you.
Your courage and skill will keep you moving through overwhelming terrors. And on the path, a mighty weapon---Magic, awaits! Buckle on your sword, Arthur. It's time to begin the quest!"
The game is set four years after Arthur rescued Princess Guinevere from the demon Lucifer. They are engaged, and are about to get married. While spending a quiet moment, Guinevere is suddenly kidnapped by a demon.
Players once again control the knight Arthur in his effort to save his bride from the Ghoul Realm. This time, the ruler of the Ghoul Realm is the Demon Emperor Sardius. Sardius, along with Lucifer, was one of Satan's co-conspirators against God himself. He and Lucifer were banished from Heaven for supporting Satan during those unstable times. During the Satan-Arthur and Lucifer-Arthur wars, he was commander of Hell's internal security detachment. He never saw combat, as both previous wars occured in the occupied territories of Camelot.
Hell was left intact. Both his predecessors were weakened from their defeats, and he finally saw a chance to rule. He was able to capture Lucifer's remaining power before he imploded, and stripped Satan of his immortality to strengthen his own power. As a token of goodwill, he appointed Satan General Supreme of his armies. Sardius is unaware of Satan's conspiring, but he holds a firm grip on power.
- To avoid religious criticism, the crosses in the Japanese game were modified into the Ankh symbol in the North American and European versions. However the crosses in the middle and furthest background remains unaltered.
SNES Version [Staff]
Planner: Hyper Mickey, Patriot Yamazou
Actor Designer: Patriot Yamazou, Tall Nob, Hyper Bengie
Background Designer: Junchan, Natsuchan, Chiechan, Ryutaro's Mama, Katsukun
Programmer: M30, Machan, Yamadacchi
Music Composer: Mari
Sound Composer: Bull, Ike-Bomb
Special Thanks: Cho‑Suke, Take‑Pon, and Capcom All Staff
Producer: Professor F
Presented by: Capcom