|Equinox is the often overlooked sequel Solstice, one of my favorite NES games.
In this game, the player assumes the role of Glendaal, the only son of Shadax (the hero of the original Solstice). His mission is simple, rescue his father from the clutches of the evil witch Sonia, and at the same time bring peace to the land of Galadonia. Admittedly, this isn't the most original of plots. However, as with it's prequel, it's the gameplay and clever puzzles that will keep you playing, not the plot.
Equinox utilizes a 3/4 isometric overhead perspective which works quite well for the game. Environments are varied, unique, and each has it's own specific
style to set it apart from the others. Enemies consist of simple looking sprites and aren't very innovative, but the bosses are huge, detailed, colorful, and are a blast to fight.
Equinox has some of the best sound effects and music ever to grace a SNES game. Sony Imagesoft really did a great job in this department. The boss tunes are excellent, and the music that graces the dungeon exploration areas give the player the feeling that they are alone and lost. Good stuff.
Like its predecessor Solstice, the gameplay in Equinox consists of the player navigating multiple dungeons while solving complex puzzles along the way. These puzzles consist of the traditional block pushing, key finding tasks that are so common in action/adventure games. In earlier dungeons, the puzzles are quite simple, but they get more difficult in later areas. Twelve tokens are also scattered throughout each dungeon, which must be found in order to summon that area's boss.
Control is excellent for the most part. Jumping can be a problem at times due to the isometric perspective of the game. Once the player grows accustomed to how the game plays, jumping, as well as all other actions, becomes second nature.
Overall, a fine SNES sequel to a fine NES game. Equinox is a good attempt at building onto the gameplay ideas found in Solstice. Combat, although a bit simplified, helps dull the monotony that some players might feel while exploring some of the rather large dungeons. The musical score is also great and very atmospheric.
A great title that should be played by anyone who is looking for a challenging adventure. While not as good as some other notible titles such as Zelda:A Link to the Past, Equinox holds it's own quite well.