Reviewed by Lo-Fat

I played this one time in the arcade. I was impressed with the old school gfx and the cool music. The game was hard to say the least and I couldn't beat the first level, something that means that a shooter IS too hard.

Then I saw Batsugun at Visco in Japan for $8 and picked it up. I had no regrets in picking up a cool shooter at the time. But then I got home and played it for a little while. The graphics were perfectly replicated, and maybe I am getting a LITTLE tired of the old school look of shooters and I would like to move on to more impressive 2D gfx like in SG, but it's nothing horrid. Besides, Tiger 2 Plus looks like Batsugun and I like the look. The bullets are heavily colored, unlike the ones in Aero Fighters, and they are easy to see. The sprites are great and somewhat detailed and take up a lot of room, making the screen a real madhouse.

The soundtrack is worth a million bucks. God I still love the old tunes from the late 80s to early 90s. They sound so cool on Batsugun. I especially like the music on the second level boss. And the sounds are great too, but you have to admit that in shooters you'll notice everything else before the sound itself. Batsugun added a new kind of element to shooters with the level up meter. There's a little meter at the bottom of the screen that starts to fill up and when it fills you get your wepon leveled up and it becomes more powerful and a hell of a lot bigger. Although you can only get 2 level ups and the top level is 3, it's still cool since you get to choose between 3 ships and see what the weapons look like. And then there's the loser's version of the game where you are allowed to get hit one time before you die. This may sound kinda dumb, but when you look at how many bullets get on the screen at one time and you're out of bombs, you need this thing. It's still not gonna let you beat the game, but you'll get to see more levels.

Now, I'm gonna thrash this game for all it's worth. The difficulty of Batsugun is more than you could ever imagine. Let's say you play arcade mode and set the diff. on easy. First level you will die maybe 2 times. Next level will have you down maybe 4 times. On the 4th level I bet you will use 3 continues or so. In other words, you can't beat this game very easily unlike games like Raystorm. Arrange mode is even worse. In the beginning I had no problems, actually until level 6 it was pretty easy (It goes 1-5 for round 1, 2-5 for round 2, 3-5 r3, and 4-5 r4 and each round is harder than the last). When I got to round 4 I realized that the makers didn't want you to beat Batsugun. When you destroy an enemy it explodes into about 30 bullets and they go right for you. That's for EVERY guy you kill. Yeah real fair. You won't play this much afterwords after you beat it either, since you'll wanna press start and then ABABXAB to get some more credits.

Review eh?

Graphics 8 They're not superb, but they pass the cool looking test. The BGs are really nothing at all to smile about cause they are about as bland as a piece of wood.

Sound 9 Too bad not all the tracks are good. Some are actually really bad. But the good ones are really great!

Playability 6
OK this is where the difficulty problem kicks in. Even though Batsugun introduces some new stuff, it can't save it. This game is just too hard to be cool. It becomes a bullet dodger then. It has to have something more than this like the web in SG or SOMETHING. The game is not impossible it's just frustrating.

Difficulty HARD Yeah I told you already.

Replay 4 Heh, what kind of a shooter has 5 levels? God I mean you could have at least put in more ships!! Maybe THREE modes of play instead of just Arcade and Arrange??

Overall 6 It's only for hard core shooter fans. Don't get it if you don't like shooters all that much.
(Eh, who'd be here if they didn't?? - malc)

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During 2 player mode, you'll find things look like someone has been having a joke at your expense - you can't see a damn thing! Is the firepower really supposed be so over the top?? Yup, I think it is. Sometimes I feel sorry for the bosses. Mind you, at times your own ship gets peltered with similar amounts of flying lead.

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Sticking your telly on the side gives you the true vertical orientation of the arcade. Believe it or not, your ship is nowhere near tooled up yet... A very serene moment in the game, with only a handful of bullets onscreen. You just know things are going to get hairy really soon! And yes, we do occasionally get highland cows wandering about in Scotland, for him that asked:)

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Another gratuitous 2 player shot because I felt like it.


shmups!   © 1997 - 2007  Malcolm Laurie