Wacky Space Adventures With Flying Pigs And Kitten Battleships
Some of you might be familiar with the Gradius series, a particularly famous sidescrolling space shooter created by Konami. Others might be familiar with a similar series called Twinbee. Now, just think about this: what if you crossed the two together? Well in that case, I'd like to introduce you to the Parodius series, with the entry that introduced me to the series. Gokujou Parodius is the third entry in the Parodius series, a videogame series that is a parody of Gradius (hence the name Parody-Us! Parodius!) and manages to put the powerup bar from Gradius and the Bell Power Up system from Twinbee together into perfect harmony to forge one of the most amazing and wacky space shooters that I've ever had the pleasure of experiencing. Providing a traditional arcade experience you'll fly through plenty of levels with sights that make you question the sanity of Japan and the people at Konami.
Graphics: 7/10. Now bear in mind, this looked MUCH better on an arcade machine, but it still manages to be one of the most colorful games on the SNES. This port is nearly 1:1 with the arcade version while allowing you to play it at your leisure as opposed to going to an arcade. Unfortunately this wasn't released in the US, so you'll be emulating it most likely. However, if you buy Parodius Portable for PSP, you can get the game alongside the rest of the series due to the PSP not having region lock on games! I've played the particular portable in question and the port is just as competent if not more competent than the SNES port. I'm getting a bit off topic though so I'll conclude with the mention that the graphics aren't downtoned for the SNES port much and that it still looks quite appealing even on a 16 bit platform. If you like cute-em-ups, then you'll enjoy this!
Sound: 8/10. I'll be honest. This section is biased. Mostly because of the fact that a good number of the tunes are happy remixes of a lot of classical pieces such as the William Tell Overture, the Can Can, and many more. The ones that aren't remixes of classical songs are remixes of various Gradius songs including Vic Viper's theme! They are all done quite well and surprisingly aren't ruined by the SNES soundfont. A few other songs exist that, to my understanding, were created for the game itself. A couple include the character themes that play in between levels depending on which character you have, and the title screen comes to mind as well. It has a lot of variety as well, so you'll probably at least find 1 song that you can definitely enjoy. Not many games can accomplish this.
Addictiveness: 9/10. Have you ever played an arcade style game, died near the end, and didn't lose your nerve? Instead, you were happy because you could play the whole game all over again? Ever wanted to play the whole game again after beating it, but this time with a different character with different abilities? If you've said yes, then chances are the same will happen with this game. Even though it's just a simple space shooter, there's something about it that just reels you in and keeps you there for a while. That's exactly what happened to me with this game. The charge ran out at least 2 or 3 times when I was playing on my PSP too, so that just made it worse. In a good way, of course. Regardless of exactly how much you play it, it's still an enjoyable experience even if you only play one or two rounds.
Story: ..Blank. I don't know if there's a story honestly, and if there is... it's in japanese. Good luck figuring out if there is or not.
Depth: 3/10. It's a sidescrolling arcade shooter, so, there's not much. It's a very linear experience with no offbranching routes or anything like that. Naturally though, if you're someone who plays a lot of arcade games you'll understand and give it a pass since you're not expecting too much of it. The most I can really say about it is that there's a lot of characters to choose from. Gameplay ranging around half an hour per playthrough.
Difficulty: 9/10. Hooray for unfair Konami games, am I right guys?! No?! Well still, it's an unfair Konami game. As such, the game is probably the most difficult in the Parodius series aside from the clunky MSX game. The final battle in particular is more unfair than the rest of the game, and I've died so many times on the last stage I can't even begin to explain my frustration.
Overall: 6/10. There's not much to say about this game other than the fact it's a unique experience in itself, so I'll just say this... You won't find another game where you can play as a half girl half bunny person riding a missle through a claw machine in space to shoot a dancing panda bear wearing a tutu with a duck coming out of its head. Trust me.
(I know this is short, feel free to discount it if need be. I just wanted to make the review)