ガールズガーデン ● Genre: Action ● Release Date: 1984 ● Developer: SEGA ● Publisher: SEGA ● Media: 32KB ROM Cartridge ● System Specific: SG-1000 series
■FLOWER POWER ACTION GAME !
There's nothing quite like a girl's first love and little PAPRI knows this well! That's why she must win the love of his cherished MINTO over the charms of her rival COCCO who is also trying to steal MINTO's heart.
In order to gain the affection of his cherished MINTO, PAPRI first must collect 10 flowers from her garden in order to create a beautiful flower bouquet that will help her declare her own feelings towards him.
Collecting flowers from your garden sounds like an easy-enough task right? Well, the only problem here is that PAPRI's garden is overrun by deadly bears and deep water ponds that are real deathtraps!So an otherwise simple and enjoyable task like picking flowers, is now a daring feat of courage! (^^;;
▲Don't let MINTO reach the arms of COCCO-chan!
The gameplay in GIRL'S GARDEN is just what one would expect from an early 8-bit game - simple and fun. The top of the screen shows MINTO walking towards COCCO, and which basically represents the round time limit. To clear the round PAPRI must complete the flower bouquet and meet MINTO before he reaches the arms of her rival. And of course she must do this while avoiding the pack of hungry bears that for some reason roam her garden...
■SURVIVAL TECHNIQUE !
If the bears spot PAPRI around they will turn blue and start to chase her. Bears aren't fast runners though, so it will be easy for PAPRI to leave them behind (at least for the first 10 rounds anyway). After Round 10 however, they will become faster and more numerous, and from that point on the game will start getting more and more difficult.
Fortunately PAPRI came well prepared to deal with these annoying hibernating creatures and brought along a bunch of honey pots that she can use to keep them occupied for a while. Honey will be your only weapon against the bears so it's better to save as much as possible for the later rounds where it will become indispensable for your survival. Honey pots can't be placed on bridges.
You will also spot a harmless bee flying back and forth throughout the area. The bee will often drop various items that can help PAPRI in her task, so be on the look out for them. From time to time the bee will stop for just a couple of seconds to pollinate a flower. If you can manage to catch it at this precise moment you will be rewarded with some valuable extra honey!
These are the items that can be dropped by the friendly bee. Items don't remain on screen for too long so make sure to pick them up quickly.
・Grape :500PTS ・Apple :1500PTS ・Cherry :2500PTS ・Flower Bouquet : Adds 5 Flowers to your current flower bouquet. ・Clock : Extra Time (brings MINTO closer to PAPRI). ・Heart : Adds an extra heart to your love meter. ・Skull : Removes one heart from your love meter (avoid picking it up!).
Collecting a regular flower is worth 10PTS while collecting a full bloom flower is worth 100PTS. To make a premium flower bouquet you can only use flowers that have fully bloomed. You must also avoid picking up any whithered flowers along the way since they can spoil your flower bouquet forcing you to throw away some of your hard-earned flowers.
Once the flower bouquet is complete PAPRI must reach MINTO's house where their true feelings will finally be revealed! Unfortunately Cupid is a very capricious being and so the young couple's love moment will not be lasting long... (T^T)
After every two rounds you will get to play a bonus「CHALLENGING STAGE」where PAPRI can jump over bears for bonus points. Jumping over 20 bears will further reward you with additional bonus points for successfully clearing the bonus round.
GIRL'S GARDEN only has one type of field screen, however the layout pattern will be changing from round to round thus preventing the game from becoming monotonous. It is also worth mentioning that alongside other remarkable SEGA releases from 1984 like「FLICKY」and「SANRIN SAN CHAN」. GIRL'S GARDEN is all about getting the highest score and reaching the farthest round possible.
Players who are used to retro games probably won't have a problem with this, but others (mainly modern players) may not enjoy this basic gameplay premise as much.
■SEGA FAN FACT !
GIRL'S GARDEN was the first game that the now legendary game programmer and former SONIC TEAM studio director「YUJI NAKA」(中 裕司) developed for SEGA as a junior game programmer. But more importantly, GIRL'S GARDEN earned NAKA-san the positive critical acclaim and fan appreciation that undoubtedly helped him to start his well-documented and successful programming career.
In the interview NAKA-san provides some very interesting facts about the game like how he doubts it was actually released in 1984 as its been officially labeled. He states that he only started working for SEGA in April of that year and the developing and manufacturing times just don't match for a 1984 release.
The interview is in Japanese, but you can use an online translation service like Yahoo! Babel Fish or Google to translate the page from Japanese to your language of choice.
Never heard of the game, but you should really consider writing game guides. Not like text-only, but at strategywiki.com. Okay, now I sound like a spammer. -_- So what does the lightning bolt icon mean, anyway? The one with the person getting electrocuted next to the one-player thing. I've never seen anything like it on other Mega Drive boxes. =/
LOL that's a funny way to express action. There are some icons like that on the box of Yu Yu Hakusho Gaiden and Shura no Mon boxes, never knew what they meant except for the 1-player icon, that one was kind of obvious. :) Very cool how you know what they mean.
I just read a news article about this game being the first game EVER to have a female playable character.
An editor from the dutch FOK!-forum contacted the people from the Guinness book of world records and pointed out that this game is actually the first game to have a playable female character.
@ this URL you can read a twitter chat between an editor of the GWR and the editor of FOK!-games (he was doing a thesis on this matter and found out that the GWR had published incorrect data).
He actually contacted the people of the GWR and got them to change the entry in the book.