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Maui Mallard in Cold Shadow

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Maui Mallard in Cold Shadow

Maui Mallard in Cold Shadow – originally released as Donald in Maui Mallard – is a platforming video game developed and published by Disney Interactive Studios. The game was released in Europe on December 8, 1995, and in Brazil in spring 1997 for the Sega Mega Drive. It was also ported by Eurocom Entertainment Software to the SNES and released in North America in January 1997, in Europe mostly in autumn 1996 (although the SNES version was released in Germany at the end of 1995[3]), and in Japan on December 20, 1996. A Microsoft Windows port was released in North America in November 1996.[4] It was ported one last time to the Game Boy by Bonsai Entertainment Corp., released in North America in August 1998.

The Mega Drive version was released in Brazil and Europe, while the Genesis version was only available on the Sega Channel in North America.[5] The original game was not released on Genesis in North America, because Disney Interactive was not a publisher in the console games market at that time and it did not have a North American publishing partner to release the game there.[6] The European and Brazilian versions for Mega Drive have dozens of gameplay differences, both graphical (some sprites were added or changed, for example, dust appeared under Maui’s feet) and software (bugs fixed, all passwords changed, etc.). In fact, an NTSC version of the Genesis game was released in Brazil, which the developers refined after the PAL version was released and were still going to be released in North America in early 1996.[6] It was this late version (not the European ROM) that served as the basis for the port on the PC. The game was one of the first games to be released under the Disney Interactive Studios label.

The game premiered for the North American market at Walt Disney World in September 1996. Three Maui Mallard kiosks were prepared in the Disney Interactive exhibit at the Innoventions plaza of EPCOT. Visitors could play the full game for an unlimited period of time and interact with Attractions Hosts and Hostesses who were available to play against them and share tips and tricks.

The game stars Donald Duck in a metafictional role as duck detective Maui Mallard (a spoof of 1980s Hawaii-based TV detective, “Magnum PI” in name and appearance), who adopts the name “Cold Shadow” when he dresses up in ninja garb. For the North American versions of the game, all Donald Duck references are omitted for unknown reasons and the main character is only known as Maui Mallard. Though the end of the game informed the player to look forward to Maui’s next adventure, there have been no other appearances of Maui Mallard or Cold Shadow in any medium.

The game was rereleased on the Steam and GOG digital storefronts in May 2019.[7][8]

Gameplay

Besides typical platform game gameplay (running around, jumping from platform to platform), one of the game’s most distinctive gameplay features is allowing to switch the player character’s form to suit one’s needs. The player begins the game as Maui, whose only means of self-defence is an insect-launching pistol that can launch several forms of bugs, some of them combined for greater effect. However, once the player reaches the second level, Maui transforms into Cold Shadow, his ninja alter ego, who defends himself with short-range attacks using a bo staff. Cold Shadow’s staff is also primarily used to explore the level further, such as climbing a narrow tunnel. After the second level, the player can switch back and forth between Maui and Cold Shadow at will, provided he has enough ninja tokens for the transformation. The amount of ninja tokens Maui or Cold Shadow holds determines Cold Shadow’s strength – who can then chain more and more attacks as his skill improves – when played as him in the SNES version. On Genesis, however, Maui needs to collect red ninja tokens instead, the amount of white tokens being useful for metamorphosis alone. Some levels of the game, however, prevent Maui from transforming at all, as Cold Shadow cannot bungee jump on vines, for example, which forces the player to use Maui throughout the level.

This work © 2023 by Wikipedia is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

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