Reviewed by Billbowsky
I bought a Game Boy Color and made the unfortunate accident of
buying Pokemon with it. It was fun for the first, say, two weeks
I owned it. Than it just plain got boring. Then I got Zelda DX,
and was blown away. The size, music, colors, EVERYTHING was
great. So then I thought, now what? I was reading WWF Magazine
when I saw an add in it. It was for R-Type DX, and my mind just
exploded. How much money I put into that arcade machine at the
ice skating rink can only be figured out if I send the info to NASA.
So I was pumped, and I bought the game. And let me tell you, it
was worth it. R-Type DX has 5 games in it: R-Type I and II in Color,
R-Type I and II in black and white, and R-Type DX, a color game
which combines I and II into one huge mission. There is also
supposed to be a paint and draw mode in it which I saw advertised
in Nintendo Power, where it is I don't know. The color games can
only be saved, while the black and white versions can't. Too bad.
This game is one of those games where a plot really isn't needed,
but they have one anyway: In R-Type I, your mission is to save Earth
from the advancing forces of the Bydo Empire in a lone R-Type fighter.
In R-Type II, you must fly this ship against the Bydo Empire again,
which is regaining its power and has even captured some of your
ships. The plot's weak, but the game is a lot of fun.
Graphics 8.5 out of 10
The graphics in this game are beautiful. Everything has its own color,
and all the enemies look like something, rather than just having three
types of ships. Enemies vary, from regular old fighter jets to crazy
aliens to jellyfish to walking robots which look like R2-D2. All look
great, and their are more than one color for the enemies that need it
(the R2-D2 robots have a white body with a blue face and shoot red
bullets. On the other hand, the aliens are just brown, but it wouldn't
be that scary to be attacked by a technicolor alien, now would it?)
The Levels and backgrounds all look excellent. Even the levels set in
space have a certain Star Wars feel to them. But you can really see
the great backgrounds in the stages actually set somewhere. One
stage is set in a luch, tropical rain forest, while another is set inside
a cave which is litters by the bones of aliens that look like the aliens
in Aliens the movie. All this is great, but the best thing are some
of the bosses. For example, the boss in Level 1 of R-Type DX and R-Type
I looks GREAT. It looks like something out of a SNES game. Other
bosses look just as good, while some suck because they are a
machine. What I really admire about this games graphics though
is that it managed to cram a game that really doesn't belong on a
small screen on to a tiny, portable screen, with surprisingly little
slowdown. The only thing that kept it from getting a 10 was that
sometimes the game does slow down, and when it does, enemy
bullets disappear, leaving you to die.
Music and Sound 8 out of 10
The music in this game is good, but it really isn't all that impressive.
It does have a certain ring to it that let's you get into the game, but
it won't keep you humming its tunes for days. What gave this game
such a high score was its sound. Everything has a sound effect.
Whether its you bullets or their bullets or the roar of some boss or
the explosions that you hear when enemies die, all the sounds are great
and sound the way they should. These sounds are much louder then
the music, but the music can still be heard. What you get is a sound
card that really works well. The music blends with the sound very
well, and it helps to draw you into the game. But even though its this
good, you'll still turn it down after a while so as to conserve the
battery on the Game Boy.
Game Challenge 10 out of 10
There's just too much to do in this game to NOT be challenged. Not
only do all 5 games have different difficulty modes, but the game
records high scores, so you will often find yourself trying to kill
everything you see and shoot as little as possible to higher your score.
But the game itself is hard, especially R-Type I. R-Type II is an
easier game, but its still challenging when you play it on hard.
And because the black and white versions are, obviously, black and white,
you must pay extra attention to the surrounding around you in order to
keep from dying. Be prepared to spend some time with this game.
Game Play-Fun 9 out of 10
This game is just a blast to play, and you'll find yourself itching to
play it at times when you really shouldn't have the Game Boy to
begin with (like in Church). You'll find yourself constantly pushing
yourself to beat the levels. But the game really heats up once you
get the most famous add-on in video game history- The Power Pod.
I describe the Pod later, but once you get it, you'll find yourself
laughing your ass of as you kill everything in sight, only to have yourself
die when you crash or get hit from whatever side the Pod's not on.
You'll have trouble putting this one down.
The game isn't perfect, though. The small screen does give you less
time to react to oncoming enemies and enemy fire. Plus, many time
bosses will take up half the screen, giving you VERY little room to fly
in. And because the screen is so much smaller, the programmers were
forced to make your ship go slow so as to make sure you wouldn't zip
right into some wall you couldn't see coming. You can pick up speed
icons, but they are far and few between, and it takes maybe three of
them to really make you move fast. The game really doesn't have
frustrating elements to it. It's just that this is one of those games
that can't make the jump from a TV screen to a 2-inch screen without
encountering a lot of problems.
Replayability 7 out of 10
The game is difficult, which means you'll be playing for a while. But,
unless you are a person who likes to get the top scores and beat it on
every difficulty level in all the games, then you'll probably put this
down once you finish with it. It would had been cool to be able to play
with a friend via cable link in either a cooperative mode or battle mode,
but they didn't do it. It could had been done, too had they not included
black and white versions and just left it as a color only game.
Game Value 6 out of 10
I ave it this rating because I hate knowing that I'm giving them 30
bucks for a game that fits in my palm. I feel that they should be
released at $20, while older black and white games be released at $15,
but this is my opinion. If you have a friend who owns R-Type DX, borrow
it rather than buy it, and save your money for an RPG or adventure game.
Control 8 out of 10
This rating is for the color games only. The black and white versions
make you stick with B shoots one bullet when tapped, charges when
pushed. A shoots out and retracts the power pod. This button combo
stinks, but the ones available for the color versions are much better,
allowing you to use a button no longer used in video games-the Select
button. B is rapid fire, A is used to charge your guns, and Select
shoots out the pod and brings it back in. Very ingenious and very easy to use.
The Power Pod and Weapon Pickups- Items 10 out of 10
For those of you who think you remember R-Type but aren't sure, then
this should jog your memory- The Power Pod is a small, separate unit
that attaches to either the front or back of you ship, whichever you
choose, and can take enemy fire and shoots out its own weapon. It
can be shot out so as to clear out opposing enemies and shoot, while
you fire whatever high-power weapon upgrades you have. This game
has only a few weapon pickups, but they are perfect. One is a cannon
which shoots out to lasers, one from the top, one from the bottom.
They fly out at a 45 degree angle and bounce of the walls, killing
whatever they hit. Another one is the fire chain. It is a chain of fire
that is shot out from the top and bottom of the ship. It hits the floor
and ceiling and crawls along it to destroy everything on the ground and
ceiling. The last and strongest weapon is the Bubble Chain, which is a
large beam of energy which is in the shape of interlinked Bubble. It
shoots our from the front of the ship and kills anything it touches.
Plus, there are speed tabs that you can get to go faster, and Probe
Balls, which hover above and below your ship, killing whatever
they touch. So the weapons in this game are really great.
Overall 9 out of 10
Overall, I'd say that if you own a Game Boy, ESPECIALLY a Game Boy
Color, Go get this game. It delivers all the excitement from the
good ol' days when everything was sidescrolling and the idea that
Mario would be 3D was just ludicrous. This is one great game,
especially when played during school or Church. Helps to take
your mind away, you know?