SHANGHAI
game Cover
game HuCard
ORIGINAL COPYRIGHT (c)1987 ACTIVISION, INC.
PUBLISHED BY HUDSON SOFT CO.,LTD.
(c)1987 HUDSON SOFT
UNDER LICENSE FROM ACTIVISION, INC.
ORIGINAL GAME DESIGN BY BRODIE LOCKARD
vol.4
Release : 1987-10-30 (4500)
HuCard (2 Mbits) HC62004
Puzzle game

Shanghai is based on the ancient and traditional Mahjong game and also on a video game released by Activision in 1987 and created by Brodie Lockard. Shanghain was probably the first game to be ever released for the PC Engine system. 144 tiles are stacked in a sort of pyramid layout. Those tiles consist of 36 in the Bamboo series, 36 in the Circle series, 36 in the character series, 16 in the Wind series, 12 Dragon tiles and 8 bonus tiles ( 4 Seasons and 4 flowers ). The player can only remove free pairs of identical tiles, or tiles from the same family, like seasons or flowers. Tiles are considered free when there is no tiles either to the right or to the left. Because pieces are stack on top of each other, the removed tiles will unlock new hidden ones and allow the player to finish the game, and clean up all of them.
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The story of Shanghai is somehow unusual and not very clear. The game was originaly created by Brodie Lockard in 1981 and named Mah-Jongg. Some people say it was inspired from an old chinese game but it looks like nobody can really confim this. Activision released Shanghai for the Macintosh in 1986 (It is interesting to notice that the artwork of the Macintosh version is very similar to the one used for the PC Engine HuCard) and this is probably the license Hudson Soft acquired to port the PC Engine title. This version was also followed by two sequels, Shanghai II released in 1990 for the Super CDRom and Shanghai III: Dragon's Eye in 1992. There would be too many Mahjong Solitaire games to list. Shanghai II is a very popular game in Japan and probably even more in the west. The game has spread to virtually every video game system, without forgetting numerous arcade game versions.

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Shanghai is the kind of game that doesn't really age. There are now numerous PC versions with better and more detailed graphics. However, all the ingredients are here and this version is very addictive. Do not look for any technical breakthrough here. The game is simple in every aspects. Simple but effective graphics and only one soundtrack is played during the whole game. If you liked this version I really advise to look for Shanghai II which has much better graphics and also different musics. I gave Shanghai a poor score only because much better versions can now be found.




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