It's brutally difficult, but vastly rewarding as players carve a path through the Bydo empire. Enemy design were varied for the time, including space ships, cruisers, organic monsters, giant worms and even some truly H.R. Giger-esque designs. It may seem commonplace now, but back in the late 80s, interesting monster designs would give you a definite advantage over other SHMUPS.
R-type's strong points don't end there, it features an iterative power up-system. Each weapon power-up can upgraded twice and is aimed at different situations, smart players are advised to balance these accordingly. What really set R-type apart however, was the series' trademark orb. It can be used as a shield, thrown against enemies and detached from players to provide secondary firepower. This added an element of strategy and planning that was really never seen in games of the genre up to this point.
Stages are designed to take advantage of both the orb and power-up combinations, they key often being discovering the appropriate time for each combination, including the boss fights. Speaking of them, the bosses are awesome! The first one looks like a super sized version of Ridley Scott's "Alien" while the third level is basically just one big boss fight, making it my favorite stage in the game.
- The orb power-up gives makes the game stand out from anything else in the genre
- The bosses are fun and original (and Level 3 is basically one big boss fight)
- One of the best SHMUPS on the master system
- Between flickering graphics and relatively poor music the Master System can just barely run the game