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Cave Noire

Game Boy

Game Description:

This neat little take on roguelikes is focused on bite-sized romps through missions. You can choose between four types: kill a certain amount of monsters, collect gold pickups, find mystical orbs, or rescue fairies that are prisoner. You chose one, are given a round of items, and are pushed out into a random dungeon. Each time you complete one, the level goes up and that task gets bigger/harder.

One important thing of note is that items are extremely important, and you need to decide very carefully when to use each one. For example: because there’s not much time in the dungeon for you to get strong enough, you want to save your flames for extremely powerful roadblocks as opposed to a wimpy spider.

Cave Noire’s a really neat idea for “on the go” dungeon crawling, especially if you want to actually finish your run on your lunch break as opposed to quicksaving.

Translation Description:

Cave Noire is a bit difficult to pidgeonhole into any particular genre classification. It’s most similar to roguelikes; dungeons are somewhat randomized, there’s a heavy emphasis on player improvement and strategy instead of just grinding experience, and it’s very easy to die. It’s also sort of a puzzle game, as you don’t gain levels in the traditional sense at all and it’s to your great advantage most times to learn how to avoid enemies instead of trying to plow your way through them. There’s also no guessing game to play with items; everything you pick up is immediately “identified” and comes from a very small list of tools.

There are several types of objectives with ten levels of increasing difficulty each, for a total of 40 variations to explore. And some of those later ones get very, very difficult!

ROM / ISO Information:

  • Cave Noire (Japan).gb - NOINTRO
  • CRC32: 44256A2F
  • MD5: 10D92861E262069CE31559E12B927AA0
  • SHA-1: 6ACDF05AAC8E3792A98A199CB6E90180E95230CD
  • SHA-256: B435D8D25FCBC6EADA25A2FF2735043597AE709F07B239DD63263B12A984B73C


Screenshots: Patch Patch Patch Patch Images


ContributorType of contributionListed credit
Gideon ZhiHackingProject leader, romhacker, menu translation
LianaTranslationNon-menu translation
EsperKnightHackingCompression utilities

User Review Information

Nifty little game, great work from Aeon Genesis

Reviewed By: goldenband on 24 Feb 2019

I’ve been hearing about Cave Noire for several years, and as a fan of roguelikes I’d been meaning to check it out. A couple of weeks ago, I finally fired up the ol’ EverDrive GB, booted it up…

…and, two weeks and 20 hours of gameplay later, I’ve cleared the game 100%. And that’s coming from someone who’s struggled to finish RPGs lately, and certainly isn’t in the habit of getting 100% in every single one.

So that gives you an idea of how addictive this “travel-size roguelike” can be. It’s not perfect – the dungeon layouts and enemy/item placements get a little repetitive after a while, and the game’s simplicity permits only a few options for clever solutions in difficult situations. But Cave Noire has that “just one more time!” quality that few games manage to pull off, does a terrific job of adapting roguelikes to the handheld format – and it has that famous Konami polish in the graphics, music, and user interface.

And speaking of polished, it’s a crime that this patch has been out for over seven years and hasn’t been reviewed yet, because this is one slick fan translation from Aeon Genesis. It may have been a “pain in the butt” to hack (to quote the README file), but in 20 hours of play, there wasn’t a single moment where I felt as though I was playing anything less than an officially localized game. The fonts and menus look great, the text is idiomatic and clear, and the whole thing just hums along beautifully without being in any way intrusive, just as a good localization should. And it’s 100% compatible with real hardware, as all translation hacks should be.

If you have any fondness for roguelikes, check this one out. If you’re afraid of being lost without a manual, there’s a great scanlation of the instructions floating around, but most of the game is pretty intuitive. And many thanks to Aeon Genesis – not just for making it possible to play this one in English, but for going the extra mile to make it a seamless and immersive experience.

Version 1.0 Recommended - Yes

User Reviews
Nifty little game, great work from Aeon Genesisgoldenband24 Feb 20191.0Yes