Originally released in arcades in 1991 – and, in slightly different form, on Game Boy in 1992 – Jaleco’s Avenging Spirit has now been released for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Microsoft Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and Nintendo Switch, priced at 5.99 USD/EUR.

Ratalaika Games haven’t simply grabbed the arcade ROM; there’s a variety of difficulty levels, a rewind feature and incredibly useful save states too. All of these extra features make this pretty much the definitive version of the game for modern players – who aren’t likely to be used to the brutal, coin-draining difficulty of classic arcade titles.

Though relatively short with only six levels, Avenging Spirit’s unique possession mechanic – which sees your oddly cute ghost possessing a variety of different, deadly enemies in a quest to, um, possess your kidnapped (and still very much alive) girlfriend – really does give it a feel quite unlike other arcade games. At its heart, it’s a run and gun action platformer – but that possession mechanic really does set it apart.

In my review, I noted that ‘…Avenging Spirit didn’t really seem to have the success it deserved back in the early 90s, but hopefully this new incarnation will possess the hearts of a new generation of gamers.’

It’s a genuinely excellent game, which is clearly having a belated moment – coincidentally, it’s also included on one of the Evercade cartridges that’s been launched this week: Jaleco Arcade 1. Note, however, that the Evercade version is, save states aside, Avenging Spirit’s unaltered arcade version. Which means that Ratalaika’s console edition is definitely the best way to play Avenging Spirit – and it’s well worth checking out if you have any interest in 90s arcade games, especially at such a low, very reasonable, price point.

Avenging Spirit released on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Microsoft Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and Nintendo Switch, priced at 5.99 USD/EUR, on the 29th July 2022. You can purchase the Jaleco Arcade 1 cartridge for Evercade from Amazon here.

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