Section Z (NES) Retro Review

Section Z is a 1987 side view shoot em up developed and published by Capcom. The player is an astronaut sent to destroy the secret base of an evil alien empire called the “Balangool”.

The logo doesn’t look that good but you do get a tiny animation and some demo play with what seems like a decent tune. There was no options at all so there was nothing else to talk about.

The graphics look ok and the tiny cutscene like bits are cool but the music (which is only just passable) gets drowned out by all the sound effects. Controls are a bit strange if you don’t have a manual because A shoots right and B shoots left once you work that out its quite easy. The way it handled hitpoints was absolutely bullshit though, while the game seemed to give you 20 energy which goes down by 1 every time you are shot merely touching an enemy is instant death. On top of this you seem to have less energy per life making the 1 continue you’re given seem absolutely pointless. And whats worse it that each stage seems almost too small as well.

I was determined that i wouldn’t need to go crazy with cheats to get anywhere so instead i made use of turbo buttons which were very helpful in stopping bullshit deaths from touching enemies. After all you could only shoot in 2 directions and they attacked you from literally every single one, it was like playing a bullet hell shooter where you couldn’t dodge. I absolutely hated it, nothing was satisfying about the game at all and i didn’t notice anything different about the stages.

Overall i do not like the game, its not the controls that are broken but the gameplay itself. I cannot recommend it at all.


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