“ Genre: Action & Adventure / ESRB Rating: E - (Everyone) / Published by XS Games LLC „
A joint nomination, along with Mobile Light Force 2 - which shares the same Charlie's Angels-like cover art - for worst cover. Okay, so it's not that bad, but Mobile Light Force and Mobile Light Force 2 are XS Games' releases of Gunbird and Shikigami No Shiro respectively, outside of Japan. The two titles are not related, rather, they are the start of seperate series, with their similarities being that both are shmups and are of the vertically scrolling variety. And the cover has nothing to do with them either.
XS Games saw fit to see to their removal of what could be deemed the excesses of the game. So that's the fan art galleries - considering the choice of cover I guess these were not to their tastes. Even the story sequences including the ending see to the snip, however, they've not been able to smooth over the cracks where they've butchered the work so there is a pause before a boss battle. And where they've made changes, namely the non-female character's names, the robot Valnus sees the switch to MILF 2000, but in naming certain characters after their employees I only assume they didn't know that Ash is supposedly a pedophile.
It is said that this is the first Psikyo shmup whereby bullets bring about a loss of life and physical contact a loss of power-level. For variety in the game, the firepower, bomb, and charged attack is unique for each character.
So there's customisable controls, rapid-fire and no noticeable slowdown, but the problem with these Psikyo shmup ports is that, the score system - whereby the points resumes on continue - is pointless when coupled with infinite credits. Depending on the difficulty setting, on the latter levels the single player has to start a stage again on loss of continue, so there is a challenge. Hence why I prefer single-player to two players. Also, if the hardness of the game is high enough, then there is a second loop, which is really tough, though not because of suicide attacks.
Forgive me if I have perhaps paraphrased a previous review. Gunbird is another solid and decently designed shmup by Psikyo. I have finished the game on the hardest difficult settings with all characters, but even if you were not too fussed about some of the extras, as Mobile Light Force is without the endings (and there were multiple) then the replay value is not as good. So the drop in rating from that of Gunbird is deserved - as if the cover didn't already warrant it.
Gunbird for PlayStation - 3/5
Mobile Light Force for PlayStation 2/5