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MS-06FZ Zaku II Kai

I´m trying to get into SHMUPS (japanese shoot ´em ups), do you have some reccomendations where to start?

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So over these past few weeks I´ve been having a blast playing a lot of cool Sega Genesis games and one of those games called Thunderforce 4 piqued my interest. For days I would play the game on and on until I was finaly able to beat it.

It was so much fun trying to keep with new strategies to beat each boss and getting gradualy better at each stage, where I was eventualy able to finnish the entire game with just a single credit! After that I jumped to Thunder force III and beaten that as well.

And since then I got hooked on shoot em ups and tried other series as well such as Darius, Raiden or Ranger X.

 

I want to ask you all if you have another reccomendations for other great SHUMPS, I´m looking for something more modern that plays smoothly but doesn´t go into the bullethell teritory.
I also preffer to play shooters where you play as a spaceship as opposed to some other characters like witches, wizards, soldiers etc. but I don´t mind as long as the game is fun :)

 

Edit: Oh I also forgot to mention that I almost play on PC exclusively with the exception of possibly borrowing my sister´s Switch.

 

Edit 2: Also do you guys know some Shmups where instead of a ship you pilot a Mecha?

Edited by MS-06FZ Zaku II Kai

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Two I've played recently for PS4 (although they exist on the other consoles plus PC) are both pretty good entry-level shmups IMO; Andro Dunos 2 and Rolling Gunner Overpower -- the former being a more-classic shmup and the latter being bullet hell (I know you said you didn't want bullet hell, but it's much easier than most of its peers, the difficulty of it being a few steps behind something like Death Smiles, itself regarded as one of the easiest of CAVE's library).

 

 

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I know you said modern, but the Parodius on Super Famicom is a game everyone has to play at least once. 

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anything developed by compile or toaplan are just outright bangers. same with raizing or cave.

zanac, musha aleste, fire shark, truxton, sorcer striker, and summer carnival '92: recca are my top tier picks for older shooting games.

for newer bullet-hellish shooting games i can never not reccomend mushihimesama. at least in normal mode, it is as if the folks at cave decided to mate the stuff they made at toaplan with the style they started to codify with donpachi (namely the bullet density/patterns). it's fairly accessible but still no slouch in the difficulty. lovely insect choreography

if you want to try something a little more quirked up, i would suggest radirgy. that one is fun and cute! still a good challenge

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Tyrian is one that I recently finished playing for the most part. It's quite chill compared to other SHMUPS, but it has unlockable difficulty settings (via cheat codes), plus a lot of secret game modes. It's made for DOS and it's currently freeware, but there is also an open-source port called OpenTyrian that works on modern systems. One thing to note - the complete 5 episode game (Tyrian 2000) only works on DOS, the OpenTyrian version only supports the first 4 episodes.

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1 hour ago, MS-06FZ Zaku II Kai said:

Also do you guys know some Shmups where instead of a ship you pilot a Mecha?

MUSHA for the Genesis. Also has a badass soundtrack.

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Eh dunno about PC shooters

 

But if you're into the Sega Saturn I can recommend you Radiant Silvergun and Gun Frontier. Both work great on emulators. The later one also has an arcade version that can be played in MAME.

Speaking of Arcade shooters; try Dragoon Breed, and the first two R-Type games (also out on Android). Forgotten Worlds is another one.

Finally I'll also mention a couple of PS1 shooters - Gekioh Shooting King and DonPachi (think both are Arcade games that can be emulated through MAME too).

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3 minutes ago, flamming_python said:

Finally I'll also mention a couple of PS1 shooters - Gekioh Shooting King


this one is also on the sega st-v/saturn as shienryu. the ps1 port is a bit... off in my experience but still good and playable

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20 minutes ago, Ar_e_en said:

Tyrian is one that I recently finished playing for the most part. It's quite chill compared to other SHMUPS, but it has unlockable difficulty settings (via cheat codes), plus a lot of secret game modes. It's made for DOS and it's currently freeware, but there is also an open-source port called OpenTyrian that works on modern systems. One thing to note - the complete 5 episode game (Tyrian 2000) only works on DOS, the OpenTyrian version only supports the first 4 episodes.

Oh yeah I played that one thanks to Ross Scot from Game Dungeon :D, amazing game!

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I'd recommend Mushihimesama. Now, it is 1000% a bullet hell game, but the Steam release does an excellent job with difficulty. You have three difficulties: original, maniac, and ultra, roughly corresponding to a hard standard shmup, a bullet hell, then a Cave game, but then there's Novice mode, which provides easier versions of each. This totals six difficulty levels ranging from "my first shmup" to, well, a Cave game. There's also several alternate modes that provide their own difficulty spreads.

 

Aside from all that, Mushihimesama is a fantastic game with a great setting, great music, great levels, memorable bosses, etc. One of my favorite games.

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Funny as I was one of the rare people who actually had a Sega Saturn when I was a kid, but didn't have a single shmup for it!

Discovered it's shmup library only later via emulators. But boy are there a bunch of good ones on it.

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Silpheed on the Sega CD is a fascinating creature that streams pre-rendered, flat-shaded 3D graphics off the CD to create far more elaborate scenarios than the hardware actually allows.

 

Lords of Thunder on the Turbografx CD has nice graphics and a hilariously over the top hair-metal soundtrack that I'm surprised no mods have ripped off yet.

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Difficult to organize my thoughts on this topic, so the following is gonna be a bit of a mess, sorry. I also can't promise that none of the following qualify as bullet hell...

 

Good games I think are accessible to beginners and noobs such as myself (although even "easy" arcade shmups tend to be around the difficulty level of Plutonia imo):

  • Batsugun Special
  • Raiden DX (specifically the "training" and "novice" courses, which are not actually as easy as their names imply)
  • Armed Police Batrider (the "normal" course)
  • Battle Bakraid (again, the "normal" course)
  • Dodonpachi Daifukkatsu (can't remember what the easiest setting is on this one. probably the one at the top of the menu)
  • Mushihimesama Futari
  • Espgaluda

 

Games I would just straight up recommend even though they're hard (cmon, just use a few judicious savestates):

  • Dodonpachi Dai-ou-jou (aka "doj". the best shmup.)
  • Battle Garegga (some people, such as @Shepardus allege this is the best shmup, but they are not correct; it is doj)
  • Armed Police Batrider (followup to garegga, has a ton of cool and weird features)
  • Dodonpachi (predecessor to doj. almost as good. graphics are kind of the pinnacle of cute sci fi pixel art imo)
  • Ketsui (like doj but with slightly different mechanics)
  • Raiden 1, 2 and DX (If you're not doing the shorter courses in DX, playing Raiden is fucking hard)

 

I also like the Darius games just for their theme of bosses being fish, although I've never completely gotten into the gameplay. I try and get into older Toaplan games every now and then, with mixed success (if I enjoy raiden why can't I enjoy ktiger? because it doesn't have cute enough forests, that's why). On the other end of the scale, Viewpoint is beautiful but the gameplay is like crawling through a desert.

 

More experienced players than me can probably recommend lots more.

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28 minutes ago, Redneckerz said:

Demonstar by Mountain King 

Some nerdy trivia for those who may not know: The music of this game was composed by Bobby Prince himself. It was one of the last games he did a soundtrack (not counting Wrack, which was not on adlib or general midi anymore).

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Other Demonstar trivia: it's "heavily inspired by" Raiden. By which I mean it has the same items and weapon system, to a suspicious extent. Except DS is a forgiving euro style shmup with multiple hit points and Raiden is classic arcade style (1 hp) and very unforgiving.

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16 minutes ago, Grain of Salt said:

Other Demonstar trivia: it's "heavily inspired by" Raiden. By which I mean it has the same items and weapon system, to a suspicious extent. Except DS is a forgiving euro style shmup with multiple hit points and Raiden is classic arcade style (1 hp) and very unforgiving.

Fun fact... everybody around me called that Raiden 3 back in the day...

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I know you mentioned PC, but Einhander on the PS1 is a criminally underrated shoot-em-up by Squaresoft, of all devs! Proper 3D (but movement is done in fixed 2D planes) and a killer soundtrack to boot. All with almost no loading screens, save for the initial one - a rarity on that platform, obviously!

 

 

This was their late-90s phase where they were still making RPGs, but experimenting a bit in other genres as well.

 

I mean, these guys figured out how to make a racing RPG. It's not the first game to do that (that honor would probably go to Final Lap Twin on the TG-16/PCEngine), but damn was the presentation slick. The 3D rendered sprites during dialogue and stuff don't really hold up all that well, but the gameplay and especially the music still does.

 

There's a translation patch for the game, IIRC, if you're piqued by what you see.

 

 

 

Edited by Dark Pulse

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Parodius on the Super Nintendo is the best Shoot em up ever.

 

Best "Ships" .

Best Enemies.

Best Music.

Best Levels.

 

The later ones are to filled with Stuff.

 

Flying Lips, Kitten Pirate Ships, half naked Women, a Moai Space Battle Ship called Captain Kebap (at least here in Europe).

 

280914-parodius-snes-front-cover.jpg

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37 minutes ago, Azuris said:

 

I would recommend Gradius if you want something played a little more straight, but not without its own whimsical elements. Definitely play the console versions if you're new to the genre, the arcade games are unapologetically brutal. 
I'll also echo what other posters have said and suggest Mushihimesama, because while it is undeniably a bullet hell game, it is highly polished in every field and has difficulty settings to mitigate the craziness. It's a very accessible game.

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Second shout out to zeroranger. I do believe this game might have exactly everything you're looking for that you mentioned in your post.

 

 

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3 hours ago, Grain of Salt said:
  • Battle Garegga (some people, such as @Shepardus allege this is the best shmup, but they are not correct; it is doj)

There are some shmups I like more than Battle Garegga, such as Armed Police Batrider and the Parodius series, but I will still assert that Garegga is a better game than DOJ. =P

 

I'll drop some non-bullet hell recommendations here:

  • Parodius series - My profile pic is no accident, Parodius is peak fun. You can't go wrong with any entry in the series. Whimsical aesthetics and countless references aside, the Parodius games are some of the most mechanically solid Gradius-like games out there.
  • Armed Police Batrider - tons of variety, near-unlimited avenues of mastery, but as GoS said Normal Course is pretty accessible.
  • TwinBee series - The bell powerup mechanic is an acquired taste, but it's fun once you get the hang of it, I promise!
  • RayForce - This game was well ahead of its time when it released in 1994, and it still holds up well as a seamless adventure and an easy to learn, difficult to master challenge.
  • Cho Ren Sha 68K - Freeware PC classic. About as straightforward fun as it gets, great soundtrack too.
  • Out Zone - One of the more accessible Toaplan games, and with a totally kickass soundtrack too.
  • Cambria Sword - Because if I don't shill for this game, who will? This is admittedly not for those looking for a tightly refined and mechanically deep game, but I can't help but love it. It's a ridiculous hodgepodge of too many weapons, half of which are nigh-unusable, set in stages that are entirely too long for a sane person to play in a single sitting (about 3 hours for a full playthrough, which each individual stage taking around 15-20 minutes), and without any meaningful scoring system, but it's got so much character and is obviously a labor of love from its sole creator.

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4 hours ago, Shepardus said:

but I will still assert that Garegga is a better game than DOJ. =P

 

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Quote

There are some shmups I like more than Battle Garegga

 

I think what I'm remembering is your garegga 1cc (now sadly lacking notations) where you said something like "this is Battle Garegga, aka 'the best shmup'".

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42 minutes ago, Grain of Salt said:

I think what I'm remembering is your garegga 1cc (now sadly lacking notations) where you said something like "this is Battle Garegga, aka 'the best shmup'".

Now that you mention it, I remember I did say something like that. That was seven(!) years ago though, I hadn't been enlightened to the ways of bell juggling back then.

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