humble little GameBoy, older than the current 32- and 64-bit consoles,
and quite possibly more popular than these inherently 3D systems,
hasn' t got a very good history of shootemups in its library. The
GameBoy is more well known for puzzle games (including the amazingly
addictive Tetris), RPGs (Final Fantasy Adventure, Zelda Links Awakening
and Pokemon among others) and platformers (Warioland heading the
elite), and thus it isn' t surprising that is doesn' t contain more
shooters. Not that it really matters, as there some very good conversions
of the old classics - Parodius, Gradius and R-Type, among others.
Gradius Interstellar Assault is a rare GameBoy exclusive and one
that is very enjoyable to play.
story - Routine scout check around Planet Gradius, until the scout
fleet comes under attack from enemy forces. Soon, you' ll get chased
into a cavern, where you will emerge and plan a counterattack on
the enemy forces. Or something like that...
first glance this GB shmup doesn' t look too hot. Suffering the
GameBoy' s faults - tiny graphics, some flicker, and a bit of slowdown
all hamper the initial appearances of this tiny blaster. But don'
t let initial appearances deceive you, because this Gradius is actually
quite a good game.
four (yes, four) large and packed levels, Gradius Interstellar comes
with the typical Gradius weapon system, with variable missile, double
and laser systems, although allowing for the system it' s on, you'
re restricted to only two multiples. The enemies come thick and
fast, and the game is very easy to get used to. The music coming
from the GeeBee' s sound chip is quite up-tempo and gets the action
going, with some fast choons blasting out of the system. Its actually
surprising that Gradius Interstellar kept me playing for hours,
when some shooters I get my hands on get very lax early on (I' m
reviewing one of these in a few days!).
wouldn' t think that the GameBoy could throw out a good shmup, but
the few that are on the GameBoy are rare and valuable gems, and
Gradius Interstellar doesn't fail to deliver the goods. Thoroughly
enjoyable, and something to pass long hours away.