The Secret Garden
This week’s Arcade Archives entry from Hamster is in keeping with the week’s ongoing theme of farming/gardening titles, though this one provides a little added spookiness — Namco’s maze chaser Rompers is now available to download on PS4 and Nintendo Switch.
Released to arcades in 1989 and designed by Splatterhouse creator Akira Usukura, Rompers is a maze-chasing title that sees a young farmer on a quest to rescue his girlfriend from the clutches of an army of monsters and ghoulies. Our hero, “Chap,” must negotiate a series of garden mazes, gathering a total of 61 keys to unlock what must be the biggest door in human history and free his gal from her floral prison.
You can check out the action in the trailer below, courtesy of YouTuber crazyclimber80.
Being chased by dinosaurs, wolves, jellied blobs, a cigarette-smoking… thing, and even a cute, unkillable lady vampire named Tsukaima, Chap’s only defense is the ability to push walls to block or crush his opponents (though defeated enemies will return after a short period of downtime). After battling his way through each maze, Chap will come face to face with his lady’s captor, the mad scientist Gurerin. Like a lot of maze-chaser titles, short intermission sequences features cute cartoon cutscenes starring the game’s characters.
Rompers would not receive a home port, but did feature in several Namco compilations and was made available on the Wii’s Virtual Console in Japan. This new release represents one of the very few occasions in which the title has been made officially available outside of Japan.
Rompers is available to download now on PS4 and Nintendo Switch, priced at around $8.