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Monster World IV (モンスターワールドIV Monsutā Wārudo Fō) is an action-adventure platform game, developed by Westone and released exclusively in Japan by Sega for the Mega Drive in April 1994. It is the sixth and final game in the Wonder Boy/Monster World series. It was later released for the PlayStation 2 as part of the Sega Ages 2500 series under the name Sega Ages 2500 Series Vol. 29: Monster World Complete Collection. It was released on the Wii's Virtual Console service in Japan on January 15, 2008. It was released for the first time in North America and Europe with an English translation for Virtual Console on May 10, 2012, and later on the Sega Vintage Collection: Monster World for Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network on May 22, 2012.
Monster World IV is a mix of action-adventure, platforming and RPG genres, in which the player traverses a 2D landscape fighting a variety of monsters as well as interacting with non-playable characters.
Expanding upon previous games in the series, Asha has the ability to swing her sword upward, downward, and across while in air, depending on which direction is pressed. She can also use her shield in a standing position by holding down.
Asha can summon her pet Pepelogoo to reach areas that she cannot on her own. By holding onto him, she can slow the descent of her jump (via his flying ability) or even perform a double-jump. Pepelogoo can also protect Asha from falling rocks, be used as a platform over lava geysers, and blow out fires that obstruct Asha's progress.
Equipment upgrades are purchased in the hub town. Armor increases Asha's pink life heart meter. Shields increase her defense and give her stat defenses to certain elements, such as fire or ice. Swords increase Asha's attack stats with critical effects depending upon the sword.
Some items cannot be purchased and must be found in the temples and caverns that Asha must explore. Healing Medicine will restore Asha's health or bring her back to life if she has Pepelogoo. Gold Bars can be traded with the rich lady in town for in-game currency. And finally, there are 150 Life Drops hidden throughout the game. Collecting ten will add a blue life heart to the life meter.
Items can be permanently missed. Once an area's boss is defeated, that area is inaccessible for the rest of the game.
The story involves a young girl named Asha, who upon hearing spirits whisper on the wind pleading for help, embarks on a journey to find and aid them. Along the way she becomes master of a Lamp Spirit and adopts a small monster known as Pepelogoo.
- Asha is a young, green-haired girl dressed in Arabian-influenced nomadic gear. Sensitive to the presence of spirits, Asha is able to hear the pleas of the four spirits, and ultimately endeavors to become a warrior and free them.
- Pepelogoo is a race of small, spherical-shaped monsters, who flap their ears to fly. While most Pepelogoos in Monster World are yellow, Asha's is blue. He is seen as more than just a curiosity to several people in Monster World; as in ancient days, the blue ones had been all but wiped out by people fearful of their magical abilities.
- Praprill XIII, descendant of Purapril from the previous Monster World games, and ruler of the kingdom.
- The Sage of Save is an elderly man who travels across Monster World, popping up in unexpected places, and recording people's memories. Game mechanic-wise, by talking to him, the player can save their progress thus far.
- Lamp Spirit is a sarcastic spirit being who resides in an old oil lamp. He becomes Asha's companion and servant on her quest, which he treats as just another hum-drum activity he will do before he is (as with several classical genie stories) lost for another one thousand years. He is the one who transports Asha.
- The four spirits, which resemble the four companions from the previous game:
- Earth Spirit (The Elder-Dragon's grandson, a young fire-breathing dragon who provided much-needed assistance in-and-around Begonia, the Dragon Village)
- Moon Spirit (Shabo, a Grim Reaper-esque wraith who offered aid in the frozen wasteland of Childam, the Darkworld Village)
- Sun Spirit (Hotta, the dwarf child, whose background is rooted in the swampy area of Lilypad, the Dwarf Village)
- Wind Spirit (Priscilla, a Fairy Sprite originally hailing from Alsedo, the Fairy Village)
- Flame Wizard, Water Wizard, Ice Wizard, and Cloud Wizard, the four wizards that captured the four spirits and work for an unknown being.