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R-Type Delta (PSX) by Brian


Overrall Score - 7

It's great, but it's still a shooter. At least they kept it old school.

            The evil Bydo empire isn't really back this time, but they've caused war machines previously used to defend the earth to turn on their makers.  Once the threat on the earth is neutralized, it's off to the Bydo core once again.

            While the plot and gameplay are still mostly recycled from the old games, the graphics are most definately not.  In the first original R-Type game for the Playstation, you pick from one of three different ships to pilot through entirely 3D levels.          

            Getting right down to it,  The ships are great.  There's the original R9, with its great blue reflective laser beams and it's somewhat improved yellow air-to-ground laser.  There's my personal favorite, the RX, with its interesting tentacle force, which changes depending on which way you move.  Then there's the difficult-to-use R13, which really can't be summarized.

            First, I want to talk about the individual ships, because they really are something. 

            R9 is the classic R-Type ship from the original.  Its force pod, when separated from the ship, has a multi-directional shot.  The blue weapon is a reflective laser, which is really the only weapon for this ship.  The red weapon just shoots rings straight ahead, which don't do much damage and are quite easily stopped.  The yellow weapon now fires at an angle, which really improves it, and then does the normal snake-along-the-ground thing it always has.  It would've been better if it could skip over small holes.  The beam weapon goes through stuff, and is very powerful.  The missiles are more like dumb-fire missiles now than seeking missiles.  While they still do seek enemies, they don't do it much.

            The RX, which is quite popular, is the most diverse of all the ships.  Its force pod, when separated from the ship, fires up to three parallel shots at a time.  What's great about it is it's self-guiding, and auto-aiming.  It rotates automatically to shoot at whatever enemies it sees.  The blue weapon is a spread-and-seek dual-beam.  When you move away, it closes and fires two constant blue beams in parallel, which can lock on to more powerful enemies and keep hitting them until they die.  When you move toward the force pod, it opens up and fires two diagonal lasers that are otherwise the same as when it's closed.  The red weapon goes directly forward.  When open, it's a very large constant beam, but when closed, it's small and very powerful.  The yellow weapon is probably where it gets its tentacle force name, and I can't think of any other way to describe it.  The beam weapon is the least powerful, stopping when it hits something.  The missile drops down at an angle, explodes when it hits something, and has a napalm effect going forward.

            R13 is the most difficult to adjust to, but is still very good.  The force pod doesn't fire when separated from the ship, but instead has a persistent beam of energy connected to the ship that bends around and loops depending on your movements.  Also, if you launch the force pod onto something that can take a lot of damage, it grapples onto the target and stays there until its target dies.  The best thing about it is that you can charge your beam weapon without losing the connecting beam.  The beam weapon is the best of the three, firing seeking lightning bolts that can split and do severe damage.  The blue weapon is rather weak, with very limited seeking properties.  The red weapon fires a beam directly forward, and leaves trails that do damage when you move up or down.  The yellow weapon fires a laser rotating from down to up, damaging anything on the force pod's side of the screen.

            All the delta weapons damage everything on the screen, so there's no reason to go into those.

            I have always been an R-Type fan.  The game is, at times, frustratingly difficult, but that makes it all the better when you finally win.  It also gives it much replay value.  I hate easy games anyway.  This game remains true to the play style of the original, while adding some enhancements (i.e. Delta Weapon).

            The 3D graphics aren't the best I've ever seen, but they are good enough.  Most of the time you aren't really paying them any mind anyway because you're too busy dodging enemies and positioning your force pod.  The sound is pretty much what you'd expect from a side-scrolling shooter.  As with any R-Type game, what it really all comes down to is the game play, which is great.

            The ships really made this game.  They're so different it's almost like playing three different side-scrolling shooters.  However, they've all maintained the R-Type quality we've come to expect.

            The only thing I've ever missed from an R-Type game is the lack of multi-player support.  Aside from that, there aren't many improvements that could be made.



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