Literature / Worlds of Power

Worlds of Power was a series of novelizations of Nintendo Entertainment System games published in the early 1990s by Scholastic Books. They were written by several authors using the pen name "F.X. Nine". The books averaged about 120 pages long, and featured strategies for the featured game as an added incentive, either in a trading card on the inside cover or at the end of each chapter. At the end of each book was a list of recommendations for other books the author "thought you might like". The quality of the books varies, as does the faithfulness to the game's plot.

There were eight books in the series, each named after the game on which it was based:

There was also a Junior Worlds of Power series, aimed at an even younger demographic. They were physically bigger, but only about 70 pages long. There were only two books in the series: Mega Man 2 and Bases Loaded II.

This series contains examples of:

  • Adaptation Expansion:
    • Considering how simple the games' plots were, a lot had to be added, and many of the stories added a great deal of backstory, or even additional characters. The most notable here is Blaster Master, which adds Eve, a human from another planet, as the original owner of the Sophia III vehicle. These details would later become canon in Blaster Master: Blasting Again.
    • One of the stranger examples is the Simon's Quest book, which adds elements such as the heroes needing to rescue some woman named Linda Entwhistle who is apparently Simon's girlfriend, or Dracula actually being some low-level lackey for a much more evil monster named Thanatos, or an encounter with a friendly troll named Freddie. Strange because the kid who accompanies Simon is a fan of the Castlevania games and that he specifically enters the world of the games, not just a fantasy world based on a video game in the reader's world.
  • Bowdlerize: To placate the parents, rarely did the villains actually die. Enemy soldiers would be taken out with tranq bullets, animals and boss enemies turned out to really be robots, and there's a separate world for monsters that they're sent back to when they're defeated by meddling heroes, to name a couple.
  • Humanity Ensues: While running Mega Man through a duplicating machine to better his odds against Dr. Wily's more powerful batch of robots, Dr. Light accidentally turns him into a human instead (rather than just building another Mega Man).
  • Improbable Age: Ryu Hayabusa of Ninja Gaiden has his age lowered from adulthood to 13, making his travel to America and his whole journey rather improbable.
  • In-Name-Only: Before Shadowgate has nothing to do with Shadowgate. It's ostensibly a prequel.
  • Lighter and Softer: Yes, they've been bowdlerized from E and E10-equivalent games. Wildlife is non-fatally diverted away in Ninja Gaiden, or turn out to be robots for no real reason. Bionic Commando does get fairly brutal with deaths on both sides once it hits its home stretch.
  • Revised Ending: In Ninja Gaiden, Ryu's dad doesn't die in the book like he did in the game.
  • Tagalong Kid: Many of the books, though not all, have the main character actually be some middle school student who goes on an adventure with the hero.
  • Totally Radical: Used in a number of these books. For example, this is actually used as a weapon against Dracula, of all people.
  • Trapped in Video Game Land: Happens in the Castlevania II book, in which the kid hero gets transported to the world of the video game itself (which is treated as specifically the world of a video game, unlike, say, the Warriors & Wizards book, which treats Kuros's homeland as a fantasy world or other time period).