The year is 2050. The Ragossians have invaded earth with a devastating bacteriological weapon. With the human race facing extinction, you and your NES Zapper must fight through the solar system to bring the antibacterial agent back home and save the planet.
One could describe To the Earth as "challenging." Most everything comes at you quite fast. (See for yourself below.) It's very tough to hit anything on an emulator; it's only a skosh easier on a real NES with a real Zapper.
This game piqued my interest back when we discovered those US copyright records. Cirque Verte is listed as the author, which I assume is a company. I also assume the game was Japanese-developed. A Google search reveals a maker of Japanese train key holders, but I have no idea if that's the same Cirque Verte that made To the Earth or if there's some relation to Locomotive (locomotives, trains...). My head hurts thinking about it.
Godzilla and his friends have run amok! It's up to you and the Allied Defense Forces to stop them across 12 different scenarios.
Godzilla 2 may seem like a perfectly average strategy game at first, but you're wrong. It's a perfectly average strategy game with a slot machine that affects the battles, e.g., blue hearts increase the player's offensive power, and red shields increase the monster's defensive power. Please consult the manual because you probably won't figure it out on your own.
This is one of the first games I can recall beating (rented it). Looking back, I guess I only beat one of the scenarios, if that. For years, I remembered seeing the image of Godzilla walking away with a hobo knapsack, but it turns out to have been a surrender flag. I just don't know how I had the patience to play this.
The developer is currently unknown.
Mega Drive shooters: Thunder Force has its...thunder force. Steel Empire has its steampunk visuals. Eliminate Down has its high prices on eBay.
Do I think it's worth the cost? No, but I say that about every game. It is pretty good, though, impressive even coming from an obscure outfit like Aprinet, which appears to have mostly been a contract developer. Look at them graphics fly...
Hot-B's Over Horizon is a horizontal shooting game with a difference: you can shoot backwards and forwards at will. That's almost enough to justify whatever they're charging on eBay. (It also never made it out Stateside.)
Moreover, everything about the game is solid, from the graphics to the music by Masaharu Iwata to the large bosses. And there are interesting features throughout the stages - for example, you must shoot switches to open doors in stage 2 and maneuver through ice blocks in stage 3.
There's even an edit mode where you can change the power of your weapons and the position of your options. But why is it here? It appears to be a holdover from the beginning of development.
According to former Hot-B employee Yoshinori Satake in an interview with the Japanese magazine Shooting Gameside (English translation here), "Hot-B was in talks with a company that had made an RPG with edit capabilities similar to RPG Maker, and they proposed using their engine to make a shooting game." He was likely referring to Pixel and Dungeon Kid, a Famicom game in which you can edit your own first-person dungeons.
At some point, the focus shifted to doing a normal shooter, and Hot-B eventually took over development. "The stages they had made were about half completed, and the graphics were very weak, and we decided at Hot-B that we needed to fix it up," said Satake. What you see is a vastly overhauled version of the game.
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