If you ask a retro gamer to list their all time favorite coin-op shooters, I’d hazard a guess that R-Type would probably make their list.
Irem’s classic shooter, R-Type is one of those games that I kinda grew up with and have been shooting the crap out of the Bydo Empire since the original arcade cabinet was released in 1987. It set the standards for many classic shooters and remains as addictive in it’s original incarnation and beyond with numerous conversions and sequels.
In 1998 (1999 for our European release), Irem released the fourth in the series on Sony PlayStation called R-Type Delta. At a time when full 3D graphics were becoming the norm, Irem thankfully retained the original 2D side scrolling aspect of the original and used 3D polygonal effects on the PlayStation to enhance the overall look without affecting the gameplay or nostalgic 80’s appearance.
R-Type Delta introduced for the first time in the series, three new ships to select, the enhanced R-9A, based on the original R9 fighter, the R-X Albatross and R-19 Ceberus. Each with it’s own unique weapons systems and Force Power that can be enhanced even further with power ups. In addition, new to R-Type Delta is the DOSE weapons system. By charging your ships Force pod either by contact from enemies or enemy fire, the DOSE systems increases the overall attack capabilities of your ship and once fully charged can release the almighty ‘Delta’ weapon.
Graphically, it’s stunning with the 3D rendering and lighting capabilities of the PlayStation put to good use over seven beautifully crafted stages. Starting on Earth as you repel the invading Bydo intruders until the final showdown at the Bydo core, it’s the great level design that really shines above all others.
Gameplay is on par with this predecessors, fast and furious without being frustrating thanks it’s steady learning curve and tactical approach to the weapons systems.
R-Type Delta definitely has that ‘just one more go’ factor and is a worthy edition to the series and well worth tracking down a copy to add to your PlayStation or indeed your shooter collection. Likewise, such is the popularity of the R-Type games that many have been re-released on the PS3 network, Apple iPhone/iPad and Wii Virtual Console.