Source: Review Copy
Price: £34.99 (£58.90 All the stuff, £3.99 OST, £2.49 Artbook)
Where To Get It: Steam
Yissssss… Suffice to say, I’ve been waiting on this one since it was trailered. And it feels good to suck at R-Type again. Especially now that I get to suck with a whole bunch of ships. On PC. I’ve already found ships that I dislike (Hi R-9E family!) and ones that I love (R-9C Warhead, you and me, we’re going to burninate a lot of people), and more… I get to see just how boned everyone is in the R-Type Final timeline.
Because oh yes, bad things happened.
Anyway, R-Type is a scrolling shoot ’em up, in which you pilot your R-Type ships, each with three potential special weapons (Coming from a nice orb you get that happens to be Bydo technology, Bydo being… Well, we’ll get to that), shoot things, go fast, go slow (each having their benefits and downsides), and preferably don’t get shot at all. I mean, you have 3 lives, and anything up to infinite continues on Practice Mode (I don’t believe you get points to unlock ships and customisations there, though), with Easy (Kids? Nah, just folks who had enough coins to put in) being 10, Bydo being 1, and R-Typer being that bastard hard mode that will murder people a whole bunch, with no continues. 3 lives and that’s it, chummer.
It looks good. The ships look good, the enemies are cool, the music is excellent… Aesthetically, it’s clear, it’s on point, and most of the things are telegraphed well. Not everything, but what wasn’t telegraphed, I learned pretty quickly.
As to how it plays? It’s definitely a coin muncher where you learn by repetition, but you also get some reward for your repetition. Here, have customisation points to buy emotes and stuff (500 for clearing the first level on “Kids” difficulty.) Earn materials to add more ships to your library (and sometimes hilarity, when the R9-C gets upgraded to… A budget model. Which actually has a really good weapon… But is also, y’know… The Low Cost Option, ehehehe) Earn more info about enemies by shooting the hell out of them. And earn gallery entries by… ???
No, really, I have no idea. As to the shooting, it’s very pleasant indeed. Even with stages you’ve memorised, the different special weapon types, collecting or not collecting powerups, changes the state of play, and… Well, I’m sure somebody is making the R9-E’s godawful force weapon work… Somewhere…
Some bosses are variations on old ones, like the frozen Dobkeratops, or the return of BATTLESHIP STAGE (Stage 3, also known as “Your exam in whether you understand a) The bally thing can stop normal shots, and b) You can put it on the back or front, or shoot it out so it murders people from a distance”) And there are, at points, secret enemies.
So, basically, the game is enjoyable as hell… But what are the Bydo anyway?
Well, as a friend puts it, they’re an assimilative cognitohazard bioweapon (they take things other, both mechanical and biological) from the future, which we’re fighting with, uhhh… Basically Bydo tissue. Which, well… That’s potentially a bad idea, and, as we see in the first stage (if you look closely enough), this has finally gotten to the point where the only ships useful against the Bydo… Are finally being co-opted by them.
R-Type Final 2 is a fun addition to the series, and yes, shmup fans and R-Type fans alike will have a great time. I’d even say, despite the difficulty, that the “Kids” and “Practice” difficulty means that it’s a pretty good start for players wanting to dabble their toes in the genre. Very nice.
It has just sunk in for The Mad Welshman how many fucking ships he has to develop. Which involves beating the game, among many other things.