Hailed as one of the most difficult video games ever, the franchise of Ghosts n’ Goblins/Ghouls ‘n Ghosts, staring our good friend King Arthur, has been the bane of gamer existence ever since its inception. However, the latest in Capcom’s series, Ghosts n’ Goblins: Golden Knights for the iPhone and iPod Touch, places the Japanese console developer onto the ever growing list of mainstream game makers adopting virtual goods.
For those unfamiliar with the series, Ghosts n’ Goblins and Ghouls ‘n Ghosts are games in which the player may only be hit twice before it’s game over, as they attempt to rescue fair maidens. Hit one takes off all of Arthur’s armor, down to his skivvies, and hit two takes him out. With the side-scrolling world wrought with baddies, however, trying to survive is, suffice to say, quite difficult. In the 80s alone, its arcade rendition ran kids’ and parents’ wallets dry.
Well, in light of that difficulty, Capcom decided to do the only logical thing it could with this classic franchise. Make it easier! Okay, maybe that’s not exactly what they did, but rather, they introduced some minor virtual goods that can. For $0.99 players can purchase a super-item called the “Golden Armor.” The item grants some pretty hefty magical attacks that make the game significantly simpler. Of course, the item can be earned in game, but here’s the catch: If you take too much damage it goes away. The purchased version, on the other hand, does not. As it would seem, the power of money is much greater than any medieval demon spawn. In addition to the armor, players may also purchase other power-ups such as unlimited lives (for the same dollar price).
According to Virtual Goods News, while Capcom may be new to virtual goods, this is not its first dance and are moving more and more into this business model. It had already dealt with the sale of extra levels, difficulties and characters, and even closed a deal with virtual goods company Virtual Greats regarding the title Street Fighter IV. Furthermore, its branded virtual goods within PlayStation Home consisted of items from the aforementioned fighting game as well as Resident Evil, which have sold more than 200,000 units in roughly two months, according to Sony Computer Entertainment of America chief executive Jack Tretton. While it is unlikely that the new iPhone virtual goods for Ghosts ’n Goblins will do as well, you can bet that we will be seeing more virtual goods come out of the developer in the coming future.