Gradius by the Japanese Konami Corporation is back with Gradius Rebirth!
Without WiiWare, the undeniable venue of many old school genres, we could have invested more on retailed releases. Now, coming back to it is a series of three games namely, Gradius Rebirth, Contra ReBirth and Castlevania: The Adventure Rebirth. The two other games shall follow suit.
The 1st of 3 Series – Gradius Rebirth
Gradius Rebirth went back to the franchise roots where it belonged, ignores technological advancements which are efficiently reflected in Gradius V by the Treasure Co. Ltd. team, for PlayStation 2, but rather offers an experience which is closer to the Arcade’s original titles. Gradius Rebirth is developed by the M2, the one who worked on Twinbee, Parodius and Salamander collections for PSP, hence, putting it into good hands.
Introduction: Setting the Game
The first Gradius episode emphasizes on a storyline. A long introduction is done in older MSX entries-style, that is already notable for this kind of things, and it makes the stage ready for the rest. Protectorate of the Gradian Empire – Planet Antichthon suddenly becomes silent. It is believed that the Bacterians – Gradius series main villains, had infected their main computer. The making of a decision is left to one small spaceship squadron to go and defeat the leader of the enemy so the hostilities shall end, before it is too late.
An instruction of the game is text-based and dedicated to set the story. It is a cliché pretext for the action that happens in the game while others of the same genre, the storyline is pointed out by a mere mention of the instruction booklet or game box art. It is a good thing for Gradius though because the storyline of its entire series is quite complicated by genre standards especially when all the episodes are put together.
Controlling the Vic Viper Spacecraft
The player takes control of the spacecraft Vic Viper, which is pre-armed with a cannon shooting forward in an unlimited flow of small bullets. James Burton, Special Colonel and Vic Viper pilot onscreen collects orange colored power capsules to increase arsenal power. The usual option bar is still present, with appearance copied from its cousins Life Force and Gradius Gaiden for NES and also MSX2’s Gradius 2.
Gradius Rebirth allows three sets of powers to choose, each of which collects the most famous abilities of the franchise. After the selection, the powers shall be accessible during the game. The action begins with the Vic Viper setting out for outer space and enemy base. The game is composed of five stages, which is quite short.
The sounds of the game are awesome, just like the other games of Konami “ReBirth”. It is made to sound like old games which made use of the notorious Yamaha series. Every single track is from older games of Gradius, and mostly from the ones less known. An enhanced music is something the fans shall be happy about.
Recording the game is possible; to watch it later, or show to friends.
Gradius ReBirth is not exactly a new game, in the truest sense of the word. It is a short game, but a worthy part of the series. It collects stuff from the entire series, and chooses a source material from the episodes that are less known, so they would not appear familiar, even to hardcore fans. Its all-out style will definitely be loved by lovers of retro or genre games. It has already been more than four years since the release of the original Japanese WiiWare. With this progress, we hope that Konami shall come with another ReBirth game, and even better – an entirely new HD Gradius experience in line with Gradius V.