Review: Darius Gaiden

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Daniel W. Rouse Jr.

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Jul 17, 2013, 3:25:35 AM7/17/13
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Probably the hardest Darius game I have played so far. It uses the standard
Proco and Tait silver hawk ships in horizontal scrolling manner. Two player
simultaneous play is available.

Ships power up slowly but lose power levels quickly upon the loss of a turn.

Instant respawns, but boss patterns that increase as the boss gets more
damage, boss patterns that involve both sides of the screen, and the black
hole bomb.

Seriously, just the Queen Fossil boss fight must take about five minutes,
with the boss going from one side of the screen, to the other side of the
screen, and then in some cases, hiding on the top of the screen before
lowering back for more fighting action. Other boss fights take even longer,
and the shorter boss fights use much denser firing patterns.

What I really don't like; however, are the areas where it must be memorized
or it's an instant trap that results in loss of a turn even with a full
shield.

The final bosses, though they use patterns, have very, very hard patterns.

So about that black hole bomb. Deploy it and a blackhole appears over the
boss as a screaming sound is heard. The ship has complete invincibility
during this time, so attacks right on top of the boss are possible. Once the
black hole bomb is about to expire, there is an intense burst of lightning
that does additional damage to the boss.

And, why I think this is one of the hardest Darius games I have ever played,
is that I think this game depends on the black hole bombs and the shields to
avoid imminent loss of turns.

Despite the difficulty of the game, I think it has great music, apparently
from Taito's own musical group Zuntata. Sort of classical meets opera for
some of the tracks and others are straightahead synth rock.

The version of Darius Gaiden I have played is on Taito Legends 2 for the
PS2. Note: this version does not offer extra fast rapid fire without
actually using a rapid fire controller, so alternating between two fire
buttons is needed for rapid fire. In my opinion, while holding down a fire
button does offer continuous fire, the continuous fire speed is way too slow
for midboss or boss attacks.

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