NES Godzilla Chapter 7: Zenith
Updated: Jan 3, 2019
DISCLAIMER: This story will have graphic imagery. If you are squeamish, I highly recommend not reading any further.
Here we are at the final world. I don't like to discuss this part and it still bothers me very much, but it's something that I have to do, so that I can put it behind me. People deserve to know.
At this point, I was well aware of the game's unnatural nature, but Zenith was different than the other worlds. While the others were certainly strange and sometimes frightening, the world of Zenith was like a nightmare. I didn't have to go any further than the board screen for an indication that something was wrong with Zenith. The first thing I noticed was the blood red color of the board and the music was an eerie whistling tune.
I noticed that I had Solomon and Anguirus back and I felt better for a second. Then, I scrolled over to the right to see who my enemies would be this time. This time, my enemies are Destroyah and Ghidorah. Judging from the icon, it was a different Ghidorah than the original, which is standing instead of flying. The grotesquely detailed pinkish red icon also caught my eye. I couldn't tell what it was supposed to be and I was afraid to find out.
Going back to my side of the board, I decided there wasn't much choice, but to do my usual "routine" by going to the quiz level before doing anything else. I was not ready for what happened.
I jumped back when this appeared accompanied by a terribly distorted version of the password menu music. It looked as though Face has fallen victim to some terrible glitch. Is this what he meant by "Will you miss me?" Did he know this would happen? My thoughts were stopped short as I noticed the screen was glitching and seemingly falling apart while I was inactive and so I quickly rushed out.
When I got back to the board, I had somehow gained a new monster. I hadn't even been asked if I wanted one. I tried to select it and this happened:
"WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON?!"
The game's behavior was scaring me and I had not even started the levels yet. I couldn't understand why I was randomly given a new character and then denied use of it. For the time being, there was little that could be done.
I viewed the last TV screen and this appeared:
No animation. No music. Dead.
Every instinct I had was telling me to stop playing. To just turn the game off. Something in the game itself might have been trying to warn me as to just how horrible this last world was.
But then, every stretch of the way I was compelled to give up. I couldn't do that now on the last world! Besides, after taunting me with memories of Melissa, I felt the game owed me some answers.
I noticed the first level was a red temple, so at least I would be familiar with the level graphics if nothing else. I went in with Godzilla, the monster I am most familiar with. Godzilla had been shrunk, the level and score meters are gone, and the blue temple faces were back. The music was similar to the blue temple also. It was strange and had haunting vocalizations. I tried to get my spirits up by thinking, "Well, if this level is like the blue temple level, then that might mean that there are no enemies to deal with." How wrong I was.
After a short walk, all of the statue's eyes starting to glow and a pack of the beasts from the shadow labyrinth came charging into me. Since they were coming from the right of the screen, I had to fight my way through.
The battle greatly tested my reflexes, but thanks to my speed I plowed through the beasts. They gave out health power-ups after dying, which helped recover the damage they had given me.
However, as I continued through the hallway, the statues eyes glowed again, summoning another wave. It seemed to be the same number of them, but I was less prepared this time and took damage. I had gone through four of these waves until I reached the end of the hall, where I heat beamed the last of the monsters over the edge into an abyss.
At first, it seemed as if I had reached a dead end, but after the eyes from the faces stopped glowing, a brick path slowly appeared before me.
I followed the path, which kept me moving towards the right until it stopped at a wall where I was going to jump up on the ledges. Along the way, I encountered new creatures and some sort of strange shrine, which had a statue of the hell beast and some other creature I don't recognize.
As I went through, the path took a downward direction. I had to aim my jumps carefully to avoid the enemies, which were plentiful in this part of the stage. They didn't have many attacks, but they could easily shove you over the edge off a platform.
At the end of this tunnel, there was a few small platforms floating above nothingness. I landed on the one towards the left of the screen and then something came down from above. It looked like the blue angel from the graveyard, except now it was red and had a skull face.
Any pleasant feelings I had from the blue angel were not present with this red one. As it hovered around, its eye sockets started glowing. Just like the statues, it summoned monsters to attack me. Surely, this was not the same benevolent being I encountered before. This was some kind of imposter.
The battle was nerve wracking as I started off with nearly half health and I had to deal with multiple opponents as well as threat of gravity. To make things even worse, as the red angel took damage some of the panels fell until only three remained. But my luck had not run out yet. Just when I thought it was over, I struck the red angel one more time and it turned out that one last hit was all it could take.
Just as the red angel completely disintegrated, the game instantly went back to the Zenith board. I moved Mothra over to the nearest stage from the red temple, which seemed to be a garbled mess of letters spelling KILL, and began playing.
As suspected, all of the level's graphics were made of jumbled letters. Just like Godzilla, Mothra was shrunk to half the size. I began to suspect that all of Zenith's levels would be like this.