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Former Famicom game comes to the US almost 30 years after its release

The Mysterious Murasame Castle is available in North America for the first time
The Mysterious Murasame Castle is available in North America for the first time
Nintendo

The Mysterious Murasame Castle became available on the North American eShop today, despite originally being released in Japan in 1986.

Known in Japan as Nazo no Murasame Jō (meaning "The Riddle of Murasame Castle,") the game has received several Japanese re-releases since it came out. In 2004 a version of the game released for the Game Boy Advance while in 2009 it became available on the Wii.

Earlier this year the game found its way to European players for the first time as well, leaving North America as the only region without a chance to play the classic. Now however the game can be grabbed on the Nintendo 3DS for $4.99.

Playing as Takamaru, a sword swinging and shuriken throwing samurai, you must fight back against a dark force that has invested Feudal Japan. The goal of the game is to fight off enemies and eventually retake Murasame Castle.

The gameplay features a top down perspective in which you battle through hoards of enemies. Structurally it looks very similar to The Legend of Zelda, with even the HUD (the top display) looking almost identical to that of Link's first adventure.

Takamaru may be familiar to Americans despite the fact that his game never made it over to the states. In the popular Wii U game Nintendo Land, there is a featured section called Takamaru's Ninja Castle in which players use the Wii U Gamepad to throw ninja stars at their enemies. Takamaru has also recently been shown to be an Assist Trophy in the new Super Smash Bros. title.

Japan also recently received a Wii U release of the game, though there is no sign of that happening elsewhere. For now The Mysterious Murasame Castle is only available in the US and Europe on the 3DS.