Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair, sometimes shortened to simply Monster Lair, is the third game in the Wonder Boy series. An auto-scrolling platform game/shoot em up hybrid, it is the only game in the series to offer 2-players co-op play. Players control either the Leo or Purapril, as they set off to follow in the footsteps of Bocke Lee Temjin and free their land from a monster invasion.
Tropes in Monster Lair:
- And Your Reward Is Clothes: Once you beat the game, you get to play through again wearing the Legendary Armor, with a higher difficulty level.
- Big Fancy Castle: The sixth stage. The prior stage has you ascending a mountain to reach the castle.
- "Blind Idiot" Translation: The arcade version's ending text. "The invaders from the space were destroyed by your courageous fight..." The Mega Drive's ending screen isn't much better.
- Dub-Induced Plot Hole: The manual for the TurboGrafx-16 version calls the protagonist Adam, but the high scores still show his name as Leo. Worse, the manual lists the Legendary Armor as the "Legendary Weapon of Complete Destruction".
- Evil Doppelgänger: At first, the final boss appears to be Book the Hero or the original Wonder Boy (hence his name in the title), but it turns out to be aliens.
- Gameplay Roulette: The first half of each round is Auto Scrolling platforming, the second half, where you fight the boss, is Shoot 'em Up.
- Gaiden Game: This picks up from the ending of the arcade version of Monster Land, where aliens steal the Legendary equipment. This is inconsistent with the SMS sequel, where Book the Hero leaves it behind in the collapsing castle after being cursed, but regains it near the end of the game.
- Hard Mode Filler: Stages 11, 12, and 13 are mainly rehashes of Stages 1, 5 (with a touch of 7's Slippy-Slidey Ice World) and 9 (also iced over) respectively.
- King Mook: About half the bosses, including a giant snake, a giant bat, the Queen Wasp, a cactus jack-o-lantern, a Giant Enemy Crab, etc. The King Demon from Monster Land also returns.
- Long Song, Short Scene: Most of the stages, as well as the boss battles, end before you get to hear the entirety of the music, at least in the TurboGrafx-CD version.
- Market-Based Title: The TurboGrafx-CD version drops the Wonder Boy III part of the title and is simply called Monster Lair. This does not apply to the PC Engine version, which still used the arcade game's full title.
- Monster Town: Round 10 is a village inhabited by the Myconid mushroom mooks from Monster Land, and the boss is a giant version.
- One-Winged Angel: The Big Bad and Final Boss reveals his grotesque true form after you slay his dragon.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Purapril is also called "Pappilo" and "Papillo" in the European arcade flyer, and "Pricilla" in the Mega Drive version (Purapril is an accurate official translation of her name that comes her apparent descendants in Wonder Boy in Monster World and Monster World IV). In the TurboGrafx-CD version, the playable characters were instead called "Adam" and "Laura".