NEC PC Engine R Type
Available on back-order
NEC PC Engine R Type
NEC PC Engine R Type. Classic spaceship shoot’em up for the PC Engine. A 2D side-scrolling shooter, and an arcade classic! Travel across space, power-up your companion orb, and bring down some of the toughest alien bosses in gaming. The TurboGrafx-16 port is almost identical to the arcade version, with only some minor loss in graphic detail, and a slightly scrolling playfield to compensate for the difference in resolutions. In Japan, it was initially released in two separate releases.It had to be split in two parts as it wouldn’t all fit on one HuCard – so the PC Engine R-Type II isn’t actually a sequel as you might imagine, but the final levels of the game.The first, dubbed R-Type I, contained levels 1-4, and the second contained levels 5-8. There was also an additional boss (since level 6 technically didn’t have one in the arcade version) and a minor cutscene at the end of level 4 that was to be its “ending”. It hit America a year later, and was squeezed into one release. A CD-ROM release set things straight and put everything on one disc, but collectors will want to seek out the dual HuCard editions for their attractive packaging.
This commendable port remains a fantastic replica of the gloriously gory coin-op. It’s so close to the original that you really have to run them in tandem to spot the differences. Supremely playable to boot, the Japanese version continues to command respectable but not extortionate prices on the open market. The American TurboGrafx-16 edition, which was sadly censored upon release, is less desirable.
The mid 80s was a renaissance for shooters. One of the premiere side scrolling shooters, R-Type moved a bit slower than your typical twitch games, with a meticulous pace and almost leisurely scrolling. The idea wasn’t to simply blast everything on the screen, although you could certainly try. The idea was, quite simply, to stay alive. Naturally, given the claustrophobic nature of the levels, swarming with enemies from every angle, this was never an easy task. R-Type‘s real claim to fame is the Force pod. An invincible little orb that’s your best friend in the universe, the Force can be attached to the front of your ship to not only provide a small shield, but also add extra firepower. It can also be attached to the ship’s aft to defend yourself from the rear as well as shoot behind. But that’s not it – the Force can be detached to roam around the playing field. Although its weaponry it pretty slim, it can fire vertically, making it invaluable in clearing out ceilings and floors. And while you have limited control over the Force – you can only detach and recall it to your ship – with some masterful positioning, you can use it to destroy bad guys in hard to reach places. Expert use of the Force (insert requisite Star Wars joke) is what really sets R-Type apart from pretty much everything else. You’re also equipped with little orbs called Bits, which float at the top and bottom.of your ship. They mostly stay motionless, and like the Force orb, are invincible, so they can be used to absorb enemy fire or kill small enemies.
Pictures for illustrative purposes only
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