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Sega Ages 2500 Series Vol.4: Space Harrier
  opened by paleface at 05:48:18 11/08/03  
  last modified by paleface at 12:25:50 03/05/24  
  paleface [sys=PS2; cat=Shooter_3D; reg=JPN]
Download added: bomb.jpg (19888 bytes)
  "A plasma bomb and a powerup."
Man, Space Harrier. Blew me away when I first saw it. It's... 3D, MAN! Back in the olden days I mean, this was impressive. Then you try going back to it through the joys of emulation or whatnot and find that it's hard to watch those stripes flicker by on the ground, and you wonder just what kind of freaks we were back then.
Well here it is again and thanks be to goodness, those ground stripes are gone, replaced by good honest dirt and grass textures. Still, at first I was underwhelmed. 'You mean I can play Space Harrier with real 3D GRAFIXX this time, from stage 1, over and over again! Wow... wait. Hm.' But then I actually started playing it, and darn me if I didn't sort of get back into the rhythm--fast, swirly, with big oval rainbow bullets. It was hard at first though, and I'll tell you why.
It seems like they weren't out to produce a completely faithful recreation of the original, 'cause they added stuff--at least, stuff I don't remember from the original. Like Rez-ish lock-on lasers, and big plasma bombs, and floating powerups, and an auto-fire. Now that I've tried 'em though I like 'em, except for the lock-on lasers which really aren't that much better than auto-fire with your main gun.
You one'a them prudes that refuses to use auto-fire? Well usually I like to pretend I am, but darn if I'm going to try that in an arcade game where I can't use my arcade stick. That's right, for some reason this game just refuses to have anything to do with my PS2 ASCII arcade stick. Can't even press Start. Never had that happen before, and it's a pretty lame thing. So I'm stuck with crushing my thumb into the gamepad over and over, you darn right I'm gonna auto-fire the hell outta this thing. And auto-fire is kind of fun here, too. Some of the bosses go down almost instantly if you can get a few auto-fire bursts right into their giant noggin. Hehe.
The 3D GRAFFIKZ aren't the greatest, but at least they're fast--except, that is, when there's slowdown, and there's two spots of vicious slowdown in stage three, or in many other stages if you happen to use a bomb when a lot of enemies are onscreen. Like the joystick thing, this is another lame thing that really shouldn't have been allowed to happen, though it isn't as bad as the joystick thing.
The only other lame things so far are that, while the game saves high scores, it doesn't auto-save so you have to do it manually, and it doesn't let you enter your initials. What's the point of saving a score if you can't see who got it? Criminey, what can these 3D AGES people be thinking of.
So yeah, good action, some silly oversights--eh, it's a budget title, I can be a little forgiving. Well except for the joystick thing... grr.
· Sega Classics Collection (PS2)

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