SEGA Master System
Wonder Boy In Monster Land

Wonder Boy in Monster Land is the second adventure for Tom-Tom on the Master System. Again from Westone, it begins the stark change in gameplay from the previous style this time incorporating RPG elements.

It was originally released in the arcades in 1987 but since that never came to the West, the port to the Master System which was released worldwide made the game well known especially in Europe where the system was very popular.

It was later ported to other consoles of the day including PC Engine and later to home computers including Amiga, ZX Spectrum and Commodore 64. More recently it has since been released on the Nintendo Wii Virtual Console service. Since this game the series went on to have a sequel which is regarded as one of the best of era, the best of the series and a showcase game for the Master System itself.

Other Versions
ZX Spectrum Atari ST

ZX Spectrum

Atari ST

The graphics are on par with some of the better games on the system and was an impressive port for the time remaining faithful to the arcade version with detailed backgrounds and vibrant colours. It might not have stood out at the time but offered more than the competition. Sounds were clear and music suitable and pleasant to listen too.

Oddly, reviews tend to be mixed. Some people regard this game as rather disappointing in comparison to other similar games in the genre, and yes it is no epic or even actual RPG but the balance of arcade and RPG is what seemingly makes the review scores very high as fans of either could enjoy it.

Personally this is one of my most favourite games of all time. I have many fond childhood memories after it being one of the first games I ever played and stuck with until the end enjoying it immensely. Oddly for me I played and loved the sequel but never bothered with the 16-Bit sequels.

Wonder Boy in Monster Land European Case
Wonder Boy in Monster Land European Case

Case Quote

"Wonder Boy is back! But this time he's playing for keeps. No more cute dolls, fruit or milk. Now it's swords, armour, shields, labyrinths and fire breathing dragons. Help Wonder Boy through 12 perilous, monster filled levels of challenging adventure."


A long, long time ago there was a very young boy by the name of Bock Lee Temijin. His friends just called him Tom-Tom.

One day he and his best friend Tanya were playing when the evil King came, grabbed Tanya, and took her away to his woodland kingdom.

Tom-Tom was very angry. He wanted Tanya back, so he set off to rescue her. He looked everywhere. He travelled through deep forests, dark caves and even across oceans. Eventually he found the woodland kingdom, fought with and defeated the evil King, and rescued his girlfriend Tanya.

Wonder Boy / Super Wonder Boy
Wonder Boy Wonder Boy

Word of Tom-Tom's daring and courageous adventure soon spread throughout Wonder Land. The people were very proud of him and gave Tom-Tom the highest honour of all the legendary name of Wonder Boy.

With the evil King defeated, Wonder Land returned to its original quiet and peaceful state.

But nothing lasts forever...

Eleven years have gone by. For over one decade the kingdom of Wonder Land was a paradise. Everyone and everything lived in harmony together.

The peace was broken when a ferocious fire-breathing dragon appeared out of nowhere and took over Wonder Land with an army of evil, monstrous henchmen. Wonder Land was immediately thrown into utter chaos.

Not knowing how to fight, the people were quickly taken over and the tranquil and serene kingdom was transformed into a land of demons and devils.

Wonder Land was now a Monster Land.

The terror-stricken people could do nothing. But they remembered a brave lad who, years before, had single-handedly come to the rescue.

Would he help the kingdom again?

"Wonder Boy, eleven years later"

Wonder Boy, now a teenager, was summoned. Realising that he was Wonder Land's last hope, Wonder Boy set out on an incredible journey to rid the country of the demons and monsters...and somehow find and destroy the invincible, evil MEKA dragon!

Taken from European Manual


If having played the first game, the first thing noticeable is that the pace of this game is very different. It is now much slower losing some of the arcade feel. Rather than simply running along avoiding obstacles and killing (though there is a fair amount of this) there is more depth to the gameplay with purchases of equipment and locating special items.

You begin the game without a pot to pee in and full health bar. When knocking upon the first door you will be given a sword. You can begin to kill enemies and collect gold.

The rounds generally scroll from left to right but there will be a few exceptions. Most of the time there will be arrows indicating which direction to go. You will kill enemies, collect gold and find treasures traversing dangerous landscapes filled with moving platforms, dangers such as spikes and lava along plenty of enemies. A great amount of secrets can be found in order to aid your quest. This can be eccentric contacts which ask you to collect or deliver certain special items or hidden items such as gold or hearts for extra health. In-fact, there is a copious amount of gold hidden inside each round.

Throughout the game you will need to purchase upgraded equipment; boots, armour and shields. Upgraded swords can not be purchased but instead they are obtained by defeating bosses most of them secret. There will be some thought/strategy about how to best progress through after a few plays especially if wanting to reach the end of the game with all the best equipment.

Wonder Boy In Monster Land

Across the top of the screen will be a status bar. This will display:

Score - Current score. As you defeat enemies you earn points. See below for list of enemies and their worth.

Life - Current level of health. You begin the game with a health bar of 5 hearts. This can be extended. Your energy bar will be extended by one heart to a maximum of 10 hearts when your score reaches 100,000, 200,000, 300,000 and 400,000 points.

Gold - Current amount of gold. The currency of Wonder Land.

Hourglass - As you play, an hourglass is running and will need to be replaced. These are hidden about the round but appear when you walk next to them. These will not be difficult to locate but without a full heart from your health will be dropped when it has run through.

Current sword - The sword in use. Different swords have a different coloured icon but the name can be found on the status screen. Stronger swords are necessary for killing the stronger enemies.

Magical weapon - which magical weapon is currently in use. These cannot be selected but instead used in the reverse order they were obtained. For example, when buying fireballs and tornado's, the tornado's will be selected until they are used, then fireballs will be selected. It is possible to have more than 9 of each weapon.

The controls in the game are fixed. They are:

The D-Pad LEFT and RIGHT are for walking. UP is used to knocking on doors and climbing ladders. DOWN is used for magical weapons such as fireballs and climbing down ladders.

Button 1 is ATTACK with a strike from the sword.

Button 2 is JUMP.

PAUSE will display the status screen and pause the game.

The Status Screen allows you to view details of all the items that you are carrying including any special quest items such as flute or scroll to Catherine to aid your quest. If carrying a key you are able to exit the round.

Status Screen

Most of the enemies will take the form of snakes, crabs, spirits and arrow throwing demons. They will vary in strength increasing as the game progresses and which sword you are wielding. When striking an enemy it will be briefly stunned before resuming their movement/action except for bosses. Timing is important for killing without taking damage particularly the quick moving ones. Enemies will also respawn after a short time.

When enemies are killed they will drop items and respawn a short time later. Upon killing for the first time generally a random amount of gold will be dropped (as a coin or sack) or some other useful item. Some enemies will give higher value items when vanquished such as hearts, large hearts, and magical weapons like fireballs, or equipment such as winged boots. Upon killing a second time some treasure will be dropped which will give some extra points. On rare occasions a heart will be dropped. Some lesser enemies will do this upon being killed the first time. Upon the third killing, there will be nothing.

Touching an enemy or being hit by one of their projectiles will injure and the amount of life lost will vary. Tom-Tom recoils slightly but is invincible for a second or so when flashing. When your life bar is low a very aggressive alarm will sound continuously. You can protect yourself more by purchasing better armour and a shield which will block some incoming fire.

Enemies and Treasures

Aside from gold, the following can be dropped. After a short period of time if the items are not collected they will disappear.




Gold Water Jug

500 points

Gold Necklace

1,000 points

Golden Scale

1,000 points

Golden Mirror

2,000 points

Golden Harp

5,000 points

Golden Crown

10,000 points


Restores one heart of life. Bats usually are a good source for these.

Large Heart

Restores full life and gives bonus points for remaining life.


Temporarily doubles strength.


Temporarily doubles protective capacity. It is lost after several attacks.

Wing Boots

Will allow Tom-Tom to glide or hover short distances for short amount of time. Useful for avoiding difficult obstacles.

Blue Boots

Very rare these will be dropped but are the Ceramic boots. These are the second best in the game. If you are already wearing the Legend boots avoid.


Gives three bombs


Gives three fireballs.


Gives five tornado's.

Lightening Flash

Gives one thunder flash.

Mysterious Mantle

Invincibility cloak that cannot be purchased in the shops. Lasts for a very short period of time.

Revival Potion

These act as extra lives but you can only carry one. When you are not in possession of one they can be purchased via a weapons dealer or some stronger enemies such as Snapper Crab will drop them.

Shops and Rooms

These are crucial to progressing through the game. Shops sell items and rooms are essentially good sources of information. Each will be labelled but there will be plenty that are hidden. Sometimes a "?" will appear on the wall as you walk past with no visible door indicating a secret shop or room. It is best to explore. Tom-Tom's appearance changes as he acquires different swords, shields and armour.

Boot shops

Boots Shop

Upgraded footwear can be purchased which allow for faster walking and better/higher jumping. The more expensive the better.

Cloth Boots 50G
Leather Boots 80G
Ceramic Boots 180G
Legend Boots 350G

Armour shops

Armour Shop

The more expensive the item the more protection and less damage Tom-Tom will take when hit.

Light Armour 40G
Heavy Armour 100G
Knight Armour 150G
Hard Armour 360G
Legend Armour 540G

Shield Shop

Shield Shop

Shields protect from some incoming projectiles such as arrows. Shield strength needs to be increased as enemy weapons strength increases.

Light Shield 40G
Knight Shield 120G
Hard Shield 250G
Legend Shield 350G

Magical Shop

Special weapons and magical spells can be purchased.

Magic Shop

Bomb - rolls across the ground and hits the enemies. Weakest of all. 10G for 8 bombs.
Fireball - Flies through the air to attack enemies. Medium strength. 20G for 5.
Tornado - runs across the ground and hits enemies. Upon impact it will reverse direction. Only useful for ground-based enemies but very useful if surrounded. Only two can be deployed. Medium strength. 30G for 5.
Thunder Flash - will damage everything on screen in an instant. Strongest. 50G for 3.

For rooms, there are three types that Tom-Tom can enter.

Fortune-Teller - These are places to learn important information about where to go to aid your quest. For example, how to locate the Hero's Emblem and other special quest items.

Tavern/Pub - These are places to obtain useful information. When having a drink health is increased slightly. Having more than one drink can give better info.

Hospital - Very useful if running low on health. For a small amount of gold your health will be restored (with some points) and the hourglass reset.

Special Quest Items

These are not essential for progression, however, will be great aids for completing the game to the fullest. You will be directed by individuals who will send you to certain places and give you these items.

Special Quest Items

Scroll to Catherine


Note to Betty

Note to Betty



Charm of Star

Charm of Star

Heroes Emblem

Heroes Emblem





There will always be a guardian/boss at the end of a round that must be killed. When defeated they will release a wad of cash but also a key for exiting the round. The exit is signified by a golden gate. Your life will also go up by one full heart. Their strength is shown by a spot somewhere on their body. As it approaches red they are close to death. There are a total of 20 bosses in the game. 12 of these are round bosses and the remaining 8 are secret.

There are a total of 12 rounds in the game. At the end of each round your remaining life is drained for points and then restored along with an extra full heart of health. If completing the round with a full life 10,000 bonus points will be awarded.

The game can be played through fully in roughly an hour though the final round can take a very long time! There are no options to speak of.

The locations in Monster Land

A gallery showing the entire game including all money stashes is on the Wonder Boy II Guide page.

Wonder Boy In Monster Land Screenshots

Round 1 - City of Wonder Land

Round 1 Round 1
Round 1 Round 1

Round 2 - Valley of Peace

Round 2 Round 3
Round 2 Round 2

Round 3 - Wizard's Castle

Round 3 Round 3
Round 3 Round 3

Round 4 - City of Baraboro

Round 4 Round 4
Round 4 Round 4

Round 5 - Mam Desert

Round 5 Round 5
Round 5 Round 5

Round 6 - Pyramid of Sphinx

Round 6 Round 6
Round 6 Round 6

Round 7 - Pororo Islands

Round 7 Round 7
Round 7 Round 7

Round 8 - Village of Cacti

Round 8 Round 8
Round 8 Round 8

Round 9 - Floating city of Tonnovia

Round 9 Round 9
Round 9 Round 9

Round 10 - Ice Castle

Round 10 Round 10
Round 10 Round 10

Round 11 - Floating city of Tonnovia

Round 11 Round 11
Round 11 Round 11

Round 12 - Labyrinth of No End

Round 12 Round 12
Round 12 Round 12















Fang Bat


Vampire Bat


Eel Whips




Jelly Fish


Snapper Crab


Allee Rat


Master Rat






Rohpah (bags)





Death Masters


King Vampire


Master Myconid


Mini-Death Masters




Mini Red-Knight


Kuracken (mushroom)




Giant Khong


Blue Knight


Mini-Blue Knight






King Demon


Mega Goblin


Snow Khong




Coin Collector

40,000 - When these touch you some gold will be lost.

Mini-Coin Collector




Cheats and Tips

General Tips

If you are told by the fortune-teller "There is nothing to say" it is because you missed getting or doing something in an earlier round.

There is nothing to say (Fortune Teller)

If the hour glass is about to run out and you have not/will not locate one soon go into the tavern or hospital as it resets.

Clouds and trees generally hide gold. By jumping around the centre the money usually appears out of the air.

When underwater it is possible to glide or hover the same way as if wearing winged boots.

Free Gold

Plug a controller into Port 2. Pressing Button 1 on controller 2 triggers the status screen. Pressing this some 70 odd times give you 45 pieces of gold. You can repeat this as often as you like.

Note to Betty and The Sphinx Questions on Round 6

In order to obtain these answers you must first have collected the Note to Betty from Jack the barman in the Mam Desert Inn (Round 5) done by ordering his two of his more expensive drinks.

Note to Betty Note to Betty

Enter the Inn in the pyramid, and again order two of the more expensive drinks. Betty will provide a clue to answer the Sphinx's question to defeat him.

Sphinx Questions Sphinx Questions
The Sphinx Questions on Round 6


Betty's Clue



Sphinx was seasick



Sphinx has strange glasses

Missile Defence


In the morning, the Earth will erupt



The Sphinx's specialty



Yesterday our Chicken was stolen

Fried Chicken


Recently our Sphinx has been on a diet

No Dinner


Recently, I have heard sounds of breaking glass



So noisy at night


Bonus Money and Large Heart #1 - Round 4

At the end of Round 4, do not head down into the sea just before the boss house. Instead kill the boss first collecting the money and the key then head down into the sea. When you exit the boss house will be open again. Upon defeating it a second time along with money a large heart will also be awarded.

Bonus Money and Large Heart#2 - Round 7

For this you will require the flute. On Round 7, after dropping down from the clouds, defeat the knight before climbing the tower and then proceeding into the mysterious mansion. After exiting the boss can be defeated again for extra gold and a large heart.

Wizard Boss

At the start of Round 8 instead of going down the shaft after the first tarman, head across and into the desert. Some of the boarded rooms and be re-entered.

The wizard, is on the upper section where it appears to be just a window. When defeated you will be rewarded with 10 thunder flashes.

Wizard Boss Wizard Boss

Shortcuts on Round 9 and 11

A bug in the game creates a shortcut on these rounds. Where you are in the caves and proceeding downwards, if you get to the top of the screen, should you walk right you will skip remainder of the section. Sounds good, however, there is allot of cash that can be found on these sections and note that on Round 9 you will miss out on the opportunity to collect the last sword.

Locations of Sword Bosses

Round 2 - Vampire will give Broad Sword. This room is not hidden.

Location of Broad Sword Boss of Broad Sword

Round 5 - Bear will give Great Sword. This door is hidden.

Location of Great Sword Boss of Great Sword

Round 7 - The death coin collector will give Ex-Callibur located in the last but one door.

Location of Ex-Callibur Sword Boss of Ex-Callibur Sword

Round 9 - Sword of Legend - As you descend, a blue flame will be guarding a secret door. Slap him out of the way and knock.

Location of Sword of Legend Sword of Legend

Final Labyrinth Route

Start and continue heading right until the path splits. Head across the bottom.

The next screen should be blue arrow throwers. Head right until you can drop down a shaft and then select the first right floor.

The next section should start from the right with red flames. Head left until you come to another drop. Drop and select the floor to the right. Drop again and again select the right floor.

Head right to find a red mini-knight and arrow throwers. Continue right until reaching a moving platform. Jump up the shaft. Now this will possibly be the trickiest section of the game. You will need to jump from one block to another to move upwards. There will be four sections (screens) until reaching the top.

If you fall you can head all the way left to repeat the last section otherwise if you head right it will be back to the start! If you have collected wing boots wait for them to wear off.

At the top, tarman shots will be coming from both directions. There is a lone tarman which maybe worth killing for a heart to the right, but you want to head left over the drop until the path splits. Take the bottom left exit.

The next section should be tarmen and rats. Continue heading left until the next screen.

There should be Ropahs next to the shaft. You will need to drop down but if you head left there will be a series of crabs and rats that can be killed that may drop some very useful items such as a Revival Potion and you can then head back.

When dropping down take the second right floor. The next screen will contain nothing. Walk right.

The next section will be full of crabs. Head right and drop down the shaft. Fall until you reach the bottom where the path splits both ways. Head left.

There should be red flames and arrow throwers. Continue left. The final mini-knight will need more punishment than the other so beware. Continue left. This is the final stretch that leads into the Dragon's lair. Knock on the Dragon's door...

Other Versions

Alternate Version

Set your emulator to Japanese and the title of the game will be changed to "Super Wonder Boy Monster World". Also with the FM chip enabled the music of the game will change.

Super Wonder Boy Monster World

The text in the game becomes Japanese and the game is tougher by means of the bosses being stronger.

This can apparently be done with a real machine and cartridge by powering on the machine holding down buttons 1 and 2 and keeping the D-Pad dead centre. I have never got this to work personally.

In 2009 a prototype version of the Master System ROM was released to the internet. There are no immediate differences other than the title screen displays "Super Wonder Boy Super Monster Land" regardless of region setting.


The original arcade version was released on the System 2 arcade board like its predecessor. Gameplay is quicker and enemies respawn much quicker. The timing to kill the enemies is very different and there are one or two not in the console version. Thankfully the main sprite was changed for the Master System version as he tends to look a little silly.

Wonder Boy 2 Arcade
Wonder Boy 2 Arcade Wonder Boy 2 Arcade

The layout of the rounds is altered very slightly but many of the secret locations for gold and hearts are the same.

There is more detail on screen. For example, how much an enemy is worth when it has been slain and the boss name just before the confrontation. A little more about your inventory is on screen all the time.

It has a 2-Player mode which is simply each player attempts a round once one has either completed a round or died.

For those interested, it can be played perfectly with the latest version of MAME if you can obtain the ROM.

It was re-released in 2012 on Xbox Live Arcade and PSN as part of the SEGA Vintage releases. It is included in the Monster World package which also contains Wonder Boy in Monster World and for the first time outside Japan officially, Monster World IV.

Monster World Collection (SEGA Vintage)

The package features the usual upgrades to HD graphics, achievements and new game trial modes.

Updates and Sequels

From this point in the franchise sequels split between games on the Master System and the (then) new Mega Drive/Genesis.

The direct/true sequel to this game was Wonder Boy III: The Dragons Trap / Monster World 2: Dragon's Trap on the Master System. It begins where this game finishes; in the final dragons castle. It is regarded as one of the systems best titles. For more information check out the Wonder Boy III page.

Wonder Boy III: The Dragons Trap (Monster World 2: Dragon's Trap) (Master System)
Wonder Boy III: The Dragons Trap (Monster World 2: Dragon's Trap) (Master System) Wonder Boy III: The Dragons Trap (Monster World 2: Dragon's Trap) (Master System)

Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair on the Mega Drive/Genesis was an auto side scrolling platform shooter ported from the arcades similar to the original Wonder Boy in gameplay. It is the only game in the series to offer 2-Player simultaneous gameplay.

Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair (Mega Drive)
Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair

Wonder Boy in Monster World / Wonder Boy 5: Monster World 3 was released on the Mega Drive/Genesis in 1991. This game follows very closely to the adventure style and has plenty of similarities to the previous games. Some bosses and locations are taken from Wonder Boy in Monster Land but upgraded.

It was ported to the Master System in 1993 and was one of the last games for the system.

Subsequent games turned the main character into a girl! If the chronology sounds confusing checkout the links below.

Sega Ages 2500 Vol 29: Monster World Complete Collection released as part of the SEGA AGES label in 2007 for the PS2. It has every version of every game and support to play them in 480p on your nice HD TV.

Much of the collections options are detailed at


Perfect! This game can be played with the Dega or KEGA Fusion Emulators which can be downloaded from the Master System Emulators page.

Misc Info


Wonder Boy Feature

Wonder Boy III: The Dragons Trap Feature


Westone Site

Official site of Wonder Boys creators. They are still making games. Their website is in Japanese so translation might be necessary.

History of Wonder Boy Games at Hardcore 101

The definitive listing and description of all the games.

History of Wonder Boy Games at IGN

Very Indepth article. Recommended

History of Wonder Boy Games at SEGA-16

An overview to all the games. Very concise and recommended.

Wonder Boy at MEKA

The authors of the superb MEKA emulator are fans of the series and their website is themed accordingly.

Review of the SEGA Vintage Monster World Collection.

An in-depth review.

Wonder Boy In Monster Land (ZX Spectrum)
The Castle
Master System SEGA!

Back to SEGA Master System Feature

Back to SEGA Main Index

Top of Page Sitemap Homepage

Return to Homepage

Return to Sitemap

Return to Top of Page

Valid XHTML 1.1