Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle

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Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle
Alex Kidd Tenkuu Maju.png
We like to remind you this was Sega's answer to Super Mario Bros. 3 and... let's just say they came a long way ever since Sonic stepped in.
Protagonist(s): Alex Kidd
Genre(s): Platformer
Platform(s): Sega Genesis/Mega Drive
Release: JP: February 10, 1989
NA: August 20, 1989
EU: November 30, 1990
Developer(s): Sega
Publisher(s): Sega
Series: Alex Kidd
Predecessor: Alex Kidd in Miracle World (chronologically)
Alex Kidd: High-Tech World (release date)
Successor: Alex Kidd in Shinobi World

Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle is a side-scrolling platformer originally released for the Sega Genesis on February 10, 1989 in Japan and in the U.S. on March 1990, and a year later in Europe and has been re-released on multiple platforms over the years. It is the only 16-bit platform game starring Alex Kidd, and the fifth Alex Kidd game in the series, developed and published by Sega.

Originally, Alex Kidd was the mascot of Sega, until Sonic the Hedgehog came out in 1991 and then faded into obscurity.


Alex Kidd hears a rumor that his lost father King Thor is on the planet Paperock. He heads to the planet to see if King Thor is still alive.

Bad Qualities

  1. In order to buy items, you have to challenge someone in a janken house to play rock, paper, scissors. That means you have a one in three chance of getting the item you paid money for. If you lose, then you have to spend more money and challenge them again until you win. The same applies to the four boss battles Alex encounters. In fact, two of the bosses have to be defeated twice in a row! (However one of the bosses, can be defeated once if you say no when she asks you if you wanna play again). Losing a match against a boss costs a life.
    • When you win a match in a janken house, your opponent calls you a thief even though you agreed to the match and won fair and square. This is likely a mistranslation, like most games localized to America at the time.
    • When you lose a match in a janken house, in the American release a weight smashes Alex Kidd and 2 pairs of boots and a face appears on the weight and your character walks away. But in the Japanese release Alex Kidd will lose all of his clothes and become nude. Thankfully the American release censored it.
  2. Alex dies in one hit, much like in Miracle World.
  3. Alex's punch is short, takes too long to use and has to be used very close in order for an enemy to be defeated.
  4. The controls are very slippery which can lead to accidental deaths. Jumping in the air also feels too loose which makes jumping on platforms a challenge.
  5. The pedicoptor is awful to control. You have to rapidly press the A or C button to ascend to the sky and if you don't press either button quickly enough, then Alex will slowly descend to the ground. You also have to listen to this awful music that plays whenever you ride the pedicoptor. There's even one level where you ride a pedicoptor for the entire time so even if you don't want to win a pedicoptor at a janken house, you'll still have to ride one during your playthrough!
  6. Instead of the game asking you if you would like to use a continue right after you lose all of your lives, you have to select options in the title screen and if you have at least 1000 gold, then you can continue from where Alex last died.
    • This would mean you have to do some platforming finding coins just to continue.
  7. Opening some treasure chests will release coins but they bounce away from you, often forcing you to rush to collect them before they disappear.
    • Sometimes, there are bombs that harm you hidden in some treasure chests.
  8. Some levels can be beaten without interacting with any enemies or platforms, making most of the game a cakewalk. You don't even need to go into the janken houses if you don't want to.
  9. The final boss Ashra is one of the aforementioned bosses you have to win rock, paper, scissors twice in a row. But after you beat him, he acts like a normal boss fight only it's a complete joke because he stays in one spot, and his projectiles are easy to avoid. If you have the power bracelet equipped, then the boss is even easier because it allows you to shoot a projectile when you punch, meaning all you have to do then is jump or crouch when Ashra launches projectiles and continue to attack him from a distance until you win.
  10. Terrible ending: It turns out that King Thor is fine and was using Ashra as his servant. Why couldn't he let Alex and his family know that he was staying at planet Paperock and that he's unharmed so everyone didn't have to worry about him back at planet Aires?
  11. The power-ups can get smashed by red blocks and you lose the power-up instantly, notably the bike where you can go super fast. However you can disable the power-up before it hits the red blocks to keep it, by opening the power-up menu in time.

Good Qualities

  1. Excellent graphics for its time.
  2. Decent soundtrack, with the ending theme being considered the best since it’s so relaxing.
  3. This game takes the series back to its roots after a series of half-handed follow-ups.
  4. The Japanese cover art is cute.

Reception and legacy

The game has a mixed reception. Players find the game inferior to the first game in the series Alex Kidd in Miracle World. Some reviewers were displeased that the boss battles rely on luck instead of skill. The game currently has 2.88 stars on GameFAQs.

Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle was not as commercially successful as Miracle World, and people started to see Alex Kidd as a Mario copycat. In 1990, after realizing that Alex Kidd was too similar to and was not as successful as Mario, Sega decided to give two of their employees, Yuji Naka and Naoto Ohshima the task of creating a new mascot for the company that would not only compete with Mario, but also boost the sales of the Genesis and make Sega a much more recognizable company. In 1991, Sega introduced Sonic the Hedgehog, and Alex Kidd was put on hiatus for 31 years until the release of Alex Kidd in Miracle World DX, a remake of the original game for modern platforms.


Enchanted Castle's title music was used in Sr. Pelo's Stocktales video during the Thief segment.



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