Originally released in Japan by Tecmo under the name Argos no Senshi, Rygar made it to arcades in the States a few months later in 1986. Rygar put the player in the shoes of the Legendary Warrior, Rygar who is called back from the grave to save the land of Argool from the evil Ligar. Interestingly, in the original Japanese version, "Rygar" was actually referring to the main villain while the main character was just known as "Legendary Warrior."
Rygar contained twenty seven different levels for your hero to travel through, laying waste to enemies with, among other weapons, his Diskarmor. The Diskarmor was a sort of big shield/circular saw blade looking thing with a chain attached for good long distance fighting. A myriad of different monsters were available to slay and extra points could be earned by collecting various insignias and stars. Level thirteen of the game contained a special hidden bonus star that would grant the player a whopping 1000000 points.The original arcade version was your standard side scrolling action game but it turned into more of an action adventure game when it was released on the NES in 1987. The game was also ported to the Lynx and C64 here in the States. A PS2 game was eventually released and the original appeared on a Tecmo collection for the Xbox. At Tecmo's recent "Nite Out '07" a new Rygar title was announced to be in the works for the Wii.
While the American version of this poster was ok, the Japanese one really caught my eye. As I have been doing this column for quite a few months now, I've started to pick up on a lot of similar styles. I really wish I could find out if some of these were done by the same person. This one for example shows a style seen in a lot of the Japanese flyers of the time. It's a sort of over the top attention to detail. The clothes have too may wrinkles, the giant hand sports huge talons and more lines on the palm than are really necessary. This is especially evident in the drawing of the hero, I mean this guy has muscles on top of his muscles. And what the hell is exactly going on on the sides of his abdomen? It looks like some kind of bad growth, not to mention his frighteningly enormous veins. It makes one question the availability of steroids in olden times. Governor Schwarzenegger, eat your heart out.
As always, this lovely flyer was made available to us by the good folks TAFA.