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version: jp - year: 1988 - developer: irem - publisher: irem - format: msx2, 3 mbit cartridge - condition: near mint- rarity: hard to find






















Review - I pride myself of actually playing (and often finishing) the games in my collection but this time around, I must admit that the main drive to purchase R-Type on MSX was pure collecting.

I just couldn't resist to add another port of this mythical shooter to my gaming library.

Initially, I also wanted to play through it to see the differences between this version and the others I played but quiet frankly, I failed miserably to do so. I am still trying to figure out what part of this port is worse: the “scrolling” or the “music”.

When I review games on venerable systems, I always try to judge the game considering the context and the period in which it was produced, taking into account technological limitations of the hardware. But there is a limit to everything, and I won't hide to you the fact that I just couldn't handle playing this game for more than 45 minutes.

The scrolling is SO jerky that it redefines the concept of jerkyness. You can actually see the screen move (almost by fixed screens) every second. Do you realize how painful that is on you when you have to look at a game and actually play it?! I got overwhelmed by a sense of nausea after 10 minutes of play and it was only slightly alleviated when I decided to put the TV on mute. The screeching music (based on the original R-Type score) was so hard on my ears that I just had to shut it down.

A few minutes after that, frustration kicked in because on top of the expected difficulty of the game (the original R-Type is one of the hardest shooters ever), flickering and dubious collision detection made sure to render the playing experience unfair.

As I am typing, I still feel dizzy from the “playing” experience and I do not kid you! I don't want to sound overly critical because there actually is some good in here, although I have to think about it very hard.

1- The cover art is by far the best of any R-Type port I ever came across (same found in the X68000 version).

2- R-Type on MSX is on Cartridge, so this means that loading time is equal to zero.

3- The ship's handling is actually top-notch (it really is!)

4- Excluding the terrible scrolling, the graphics are actually fairly detailed and bosses do fill up the entire screen (which is nice).

Despite these positive points, I must say that this must be the worse R-Type port I came across so far. Even the C-64 version (with its atrocious loading time) is more playable and that should tell you everything you need to know…

Bottom line: R-Type on MSX is the farthest thing that exists from the idea of fun. Really, it is as fun playing as putting your head in the microwave and cook it. 3/10










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