Ruruli Ra Rura Review

One fine day, a wandering young swordsman named Axid goes to a lake and sees a beautiful tiny girl in a bubble. In an attempt to save her he falls into the water and ends up in an underground cave. Axid saves a fairy magician called Reinas who was imprisoned in a crystal, and together they try to figure out how to help other unfortunate creatures who were trapped in this place...

By MissaFX

Ruruli Ra Rura is one of those games released later into the life of the FX and is a title I suspect was rushed into production before the system died to re-coup losses from money spent during the development of Ruruli Ra Rura. For one, nowhere on the manual or on the disc will you find a copyright year. The manual uses screenshots from a much earlier edition of the game, probably some Beta with different rules than the release game, making most of the shown screenshots impossible to reproduce in-game. This is especially annoying in the case of the part about the manual which talks about how to access the in-game menu and save. According to the manual pressing select anywhere will bring up the menu, however between the time the manual was made and the game was made, little tents were added to the game. Thus restricting where you can access the menu.

Also, unlike any other PC-FX game, if your save ram does not have the half kilobyte to save the game, no screen comes up to warn you of this, the game just boots. When you save in-game if you do not have enough save ram, it does not tell or warn you it didn’t save! It just moves on with the game as though you did save…

Oh and you only get one save file, so back that freller up. If someone chooses the new game option instead of continue (or you do it yourself on accident) your save file is toast. I’ve done this to myself more than once in the first 8 hours of game play.

Ok, well now that we are done discussing the least desirable aspects of the game. Lets get into all the great stuff about it.

Gameplay: Play wise, it is a lot like Popful Mail. You start out with one character who is a sword fighter and you quickly rescue a mage. You can then switch between the characters at any tent in the game. Each character has attacks/magic which help destroy specific obstacles in-game. They each also have their own jumping characteristics and like Popful Mail, you must switch between characters to get past certain things. Also like Popful Mail, you power up the characters as they all start out pretty weak, while it does not use a standard RPG system, one like in Final Fantasy Legend I is present. This consists of quaffing potions you find to boost your HP, MP, Stats and to add new attacks/magic. Most of these potions are located in chests left all over the game, and it is up to you to choose who you upgrade most of the time. Sometimes, you will get a potion off a lesser enemy kill though, so there is not a finite number of potions in the game if you upgrade the wrong character the wrong way. There are 8 different characters in this game giving you a well rounded party, but for whatever reason, the characters you acquire later in the game seem to have more limited special moves. Some, namely the frog get none, not even a normal attack, ever. It's hard to say the exact reason the development team decided to do this, again time was probably the main factor. For the most part the game is just hard enough to be fun, but it does at times require you to do some INSANE platforming. The bosses really need to be harder, but I am guessing they simply lacked the time to balance them correctly before the game had to be pushed out.

Graphics: The graphics resolution wise are something that could have been easily done on the PC-Engine with the exception of the number of colors used. The characters are small and squat, but have enough detail in their small space. The bosses on the other hand for the most part are rather large and move quickly around the screen. I have so far seen up to 10 enemies on the screen at once, with no slowdown (the game never slows down). They probably could have added some scrolling background layers to this game given proper time to finish it, but the graphics that are there are colorful and always well done. The FMV encoding isn’t the best to be honest, but the animation is a riot. The clips are a joy to watch more than once, not tedium like in so many modern games.

Music: The game uses streaming music which sounds lovely, most songs seem more than 2 minutes long, so they do not repeat too much. The music quality sounds less midi like than a lot of FX games and is even memorable at times. The music does not suffer from high end distortion,

Sound: The sound effects are middle of the road to good for a FX game. The voice samples are short and clear which is a joy in a game this old.

Considering the limitations no doubt imposed on the crew who cranked this Ruruli Ra Rura out, I think it is one of the better top 10 games on the FX. If you like Popful Mail or Wonderboy in Monsterland you will probably love this game. I am addicted to it as we speak and am working night and day to finish it. It’s a hard title to put down. It’s a little on the rare side though, so expect to have to wait a while to find it for a good price.


  1. I have been playing through it without any ability to read the menu's
    i have gotten to a point where i have the cat girl, but cant find the next area.

  2. Is there a walkthrough for this?
    Or is the game simple enough to figure out without one?

  3. I just got this game, and I am stuck!!! I got past the honeycomb boss, and rescued the wax man, but now I am stuck in an area with a twister and an orange flame (?) blocking my path. I only have 3 more characters to rescue, and I am stumped :(
    Can anyone tell me what to do at this point? many thanks

  4. finally managed to complete this game
    couldn't get any help online, had to figure it out for myself
    In actuality if you know what to do, you can sail through this game in like less than 3 hours....

  5. Did you get the sword and free the sorceress??