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I'm always surprised by the regional differences in video games. It's not an uncommon occurrence or at least it never used to be. I'm not sure if they still make as many changes between Japanese and North American releases. Take for instance Demon Sword. The version released in Japan has several more stages along with several more bosses. There are also more items and magic spells in the Japanese version. Along with the added difficulty of more levels and more bosses, a Japanese player was rewarded with an ending featuring extra scenes and text that was cut out of the North American release.
It's not all bad. Here in North America we got a life meter while in Japan they only got a life count. The box art is also vastly different. Now that I can understand. See the Japanese box art below.
|image from www.gamefaqs.com|