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Half-game, half-manual: Mega Drive strategy game Bahamut Senki translated
03 June 2020 1:53PM EST - Update by Supper
An English translation for Sega’s 1991 Mega Drive/Genesis strategy game Bahamut Senki – and its accompanying 112-page instruction manuals – has been released!
For 2,000 years did the peace brought to Bahamut by the royal line of Pholia last; but no more. The skies darken, the evil powers once banished return, calamities tear the land itself asunder – and the “Age of Darkness” is at hand. As the world crumbles, eight rulers raise armies and war amongst themselves to decide the fate of the continent. None can say when or how the Age of Darkness will end, but amidst the chaos, there is one certainty: that the conflict can be done only when one Master stands alone above them all…
Bahamut Senki (Record of the Bahamut War) is a 1991 turn-based strategy game by Sega for the Mega Drive. In it, up to four players take control of one of eight rulers in the fantasy realm of Bahamut, raise armies, and battle AI opponents and each other until one faction emerges victorious. It’s a very complex and advanced game for its time, featuring three rulesets of varying depth, adjustable difficulty, and three different levels of simulation: high-level political management, tactical battles (in both hex-based and simplified variants), and real-time action-based combat between individual units.
While the game itself contains only a moderate amount of text, it’s a complex simulation game from an era where in-game help and tutorials were rare. Instead, most information on how the game actually works is found only in its 64-page instruction manual and accompanying 48-page supplement. Since the game is nearly impossible to understand without them, the translation team has additionally translated both manuals and formatted them as web pages, including translated reproductions of all charts and graphs, for convenience. They are included in the patch download, and can also be read online on the patch’s support site: http://stargood.org/trans/bahamut.php
The game also has a few unusual secrets for a strategy game of this type. Since some of them are extremely well hidden, and in some cases had never been documented in English, the patch download also includes instructions on how to find them.
This release was the work of TheMajinZenki (translation), Supper (hacking and manual digitization), cccmar (editing and testing), Xanathis (testing), and Oddoai-sama (testing). Special thanks to filler, who initially worked on the translation, and to Sega wiki Sega Retro for providing the user manual scans.