I think that this might be due to the fact that I've suffered through "Ushio to tora" (which I have a bit of a liking for, to be perfectly honest) but I didn't find this game that difficult. Except for some parts.
|The Japanese here is also increased by having swastikas/manjis as an indication of how much of each spell you have|
The basic game mechanic is simple enough. You jump (and super jump by pressing up before) you poke your spear forwards and you do a spinning fan attack, which can hit alot of stuff comming in to hurt you from multiple directions all at once. It doesn't create a 100 % safe zone, as anything with more then one hit left can still get through and hurt you. You can also use spells, but you have to get them from bosses, and you have to pick up refills every time you run out.
Starting off, you will hate the first two levels. Mainly because 1 your spear isn't very powerfull even if you find one increase here, and 2 you can't poke upwards. At all. Which for some reason I think is totally wrong , if your weapon of choice is a spear. I kept trying to do it throughout the whole game on instict, but no such luck. So the first levels have several spots where carefully avoiding the enemies is your only course of action. Not the best design aproach.
The first boss is annoying, simply because he seemingly takes forever to kill, and before he dies he will most likely hit you a-lot, unless you discovered there's a button for crouching while crawling backwards. Which I guess would have been invaluable here but oh well.
Level two has a confusing first section and an annoying second section. Basicly you have these bombs that look like squirming gooey skulls that explode when you hit them (and they also like to fall right on top of you if you scroll far enough) , after which they spit out four projectiles. 50 % of the time in the main directions, 50 % in all diagonal directions, so if a piece is flying towards you you have to quickly jab at it.....except when you don't have to. I don't know, sometimes a piece flew by me and I was completely unhurt.
|The only underwater section in the whole game and surprisingly, you can't swim, only jump slightly slower. Which seeing how long it normaly takes you to land after a super jump.....|
The second level boss, called Daruma in the US (his original name Monkey Rock fits better.....and I know that there's a chance someone's gonna name their garage band after it now) is fairly simple, he jumps high enough for you to run under and his colour swaped clones/children/dopplegangers are easily blown to pieces.
The third level is confusing at first. There's a section in the first area where you have to land in spikes in order to get some powerups. Even though one of them is health, they spawn in front of respawning rotating enemy statues, so it's not really worth it. As a sidenote, spikes aren't instant death in Musya, surprisingly. The second area, you can either simply drop down to avoid the annoying flying enemies, or of if you really want to, get to the bottom, go right, grab the invincibility item, go all the way up and get the powerup and then fall down. As far as I know all the holes in the floor spawn you in the same spot. The third section......is annoying. As heck. You have to go through a level filled with camouflaged bouncing enemy statues, while avoiding a respawning tengu masked wearing thing that constantly attacks you, just so you can touch one of the four teleporting statues to move on. And three of them warp you back.
Basicly, go for the low route when possible, and find the one with the glowing eyes. The boss, Fierce Liquid, is annoying not because he himself is a challenge (dumbass can't even turn around) but because of the miny things he spawns that come to get you from both directions. With a fully powered spear, you can kill this guy before you run out of health, but without it you'll have to turn back and forth to kill the little bastards before they kill you.
And now we enter....level rehash territory. Yeah after three levels, they just repeat the past three levels, with almost no changes aside from a new end boss. And level 6 still has Fierce Liquid in it, albeit as a sub boss.
I'd like to point out this game came out in 1992, 2 years after the Super Famicom got launched.
The only noteworthy addition here is level 6's boss, Leech Child, a Dogu statue (those things with the humongous eyes, no nose and really fat arms) who'se second form is......a transparent blob creature with a visible brain. Also,you have to revisit flying Tengu's section again, but you have to jump up at the begining of the level into an area where he can't/doesn't want to go. The level before that will probably kill you off, given how many umbrellas you have to dodge, but that's a whole other story, so be sure not to touch the warp statue that warps you back to that because you might just commit genocide if it does.
|The Demon Monster King/The Evil One. His hobbies include ramming his head into the ceiling, throwing up electric balls of homing snot, and cursing his lack of hands to aply visine.|
Level 7 has you start out with a falling shaft of powerups, before facing a rather easy submerged level, and then an annoying level where you jump on skulls rammed on top of spikes, amongst other spikes, devoid of such ornamentation, and thus fully capable of piercing you.
The final boss is the Monster Demon King (a name like that sort of predestines you for a career as a world menacing final boss in a video game. Or a finnish rocker) , who'se hard to dodge snot of death is actually easily nullified by the orb spell you have. His second form is a swirling mass of ghosts that you can take out rather easily.
Overall, I'd say the game isn't the most balanced, and the first level really needed to be a little easier. Still, the spear is still about a hundred times more usefull here then in Tora, that's for sure, even when you can't swing it.