Hydlide (1984)

by Ji-yeong
6 minutes read


Hydlide (1984): A Classic RPG with Innovative Combat and a Captivating Storyline

Released in 1984 for the NES, Hydlide is a classic action role-playing game that introduced several innovative features to the genre. Players control Sir Jim, a brave knight on a quest to rescue Princess Ann from the evil demon Varalys, who has cursed her and turned her into three fairies.


Hydlide’s gameplay is a mix of exploration, puzzle-solving, and combat. Players traverse a large overworld map, visiting towns, dungeons, and other locations. Within dungeons, players must battle monsters, solve puzzles, and find keys to progress.

The combat system is one of Hydlide’s most unique features. Unlike most RPGs of the time, which used a simple hack-and-slash system, Hydlide allows players to choose between three different fighting stances:

  • Defensive Stance: This stance reduces the damage Jim takes from enemy attacks, but also reduces his attack power.
  • Offensive Stance: This stance increases Jim’s attack power, but also makes him more vulnerable to enemy attacks.
  • Magic Stance: This stance allows Jim to cast magic spells, which can be used to attack enemies, heal himself, or buff his stats.

Players must carefully choose which stance to use in each situation, depending on the enemy they are facing and their own health and mana levels.


Hydlide’s story is simple but effective. Princess Ann has been cursed by the evil demon Varalys, and Sir Jim must travel across the land to find her three fairy forms and defeat Varalys in order to break the curse. Along the way, Jim meets a cast of colorful characters, including a wise old wizard, a beautiful princess, and a brave warrior.

The story is told through dialogue with NPCs and cutscenes, and it does a good job of keeping players engaged and motivated to continue playing.

Graphics and Sound

For an NES game, Hydlide’s graphics are quite impressive. The overworld map is large and detailed, and the dungeons are varied and atmospheric. The character sprites are also well-drawn and expressive.

The sound is also very good, with catchy music and sound effects that add to the game’s atmosphere.


Hydlide was a critical and commercial success upon its release, and it is still considered one of the best RPGs of its era. The game’s innovative combat system and captivating storyline have been praised by critics and players alike.

Hydlide has also had a significant impact on the RPG genre. The game’s stance-based combat system has been imitated by many other RPGs, and its use of cutscenes to tell the story has become a staple of the genre.


Hydlide is a classic RPG that is still worth playing today. The game’s innovative combat system, captivating storyline, and beautiful graphics make it a must-play for fans of the genre. If you’re looking for a challenging and rewarding RPG experience, then Hydlide is definitely worth checking out.

Tips for Playing Hydlide

  • Choose your fighting stance carefully. Each stance has its own advantages and disadvantages, so you need to choose the right stance for each situation.
  • Use magic spells wisely. Magic spells can be very powerful, but they also consume mana. Make sure to use them sparingly, and only when you really need them.
  • Explore every nook and cranny. There are many hidden items and secrets to be found in Hydlide. Be sure to explore every area thoroughly to find everything.
  • Don’t be afraid to grind. Hydlide is a challenging game, and you’ll need to grind for experience and levels in order to progress. Don’t be afraid to spend some time fighting monsters in order to level up.
  • Have fun! Hydlide is a great game, so make sure to have fun while you’re playing it. Don’t get too caught up in trying to beat the game as quickly as possible. Take your time and enjoy the experience.

Review Score



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