Summary: With a handful of levels and generic enemy types, Akai Katana is really for the score hounds. Fortunately for Cave and Rising Star, I’d say that covers the majority of shooter fans. What makes the game so successful is Cave’s toying with proximity and speed, forcing players to be aggressive in situations where it’s hard to make out just where enemies are amidst the sea of bullets and when they might be sluggish.
Excerpt: Some innovation comes from combination, “mashups” as they are fondly known in the Tech start-up world. In the gaming world, we see this with trends like Action/RPG games, where developers try to bring out the best in both genres. Other kinds of novelty arise when developers accentuate traits or characteristics of a game, such as the still legendary lineup of a game like Suikoden , if you’re old enough to remember that game.
Summary: There's nothing quite like a good old-fashioned shoot-'em-up to get your pulse racing and your thumbs twitching. And if there's one company that knows a thing or two about hurling a barrage of beautifully crafted bullets at you, it's Cave. Akai Katana Shin (known simply as Akai Katana in the UK) is the latest in the studio's line of psychedelic, 2D arcade shooters to make its way to the Xbox 360, bringing with it an impressive array of gloriously over-the-top visuals,...
Pros: Intricate and clever stage design, Multiple modes offer lots of depth, Over-the-top retro visuals, Plenty of challenge for seasoned players
Excerpt: Why are fighter pilots battling bombers and flying supervillains in the skies over Japan? Who knows: we don't speak Japanese, and only Akai Katana ’s ending videos offer subtitles. But that doesn't diminish the excitement of dodging bullets in this wild side-scrolling shooter. Odd as it may sound, you spend as much time gathering resources as blowing stuff up.
Pros: + Unusual resource-gathering mechanics add an absorbing layer of shape-changing strategy., + Completely insane local co-op sessions.
Cons: ? Why so few English subtitles to go with all the Japanese speech?
Excerpt: There are still plenty of fans out there who appreciate a good “shmup” — shoot ‘em up, for short — especially the “bullet hell” variety. These are shooters where ammunition comes flying at you from every single angle, and you need split-second timing or a hell of a lot of power-ups just to stay in one piece. Cave has been a mastermind developer of these sort of games, between such releases as DeathSmiles and its sequel, as well as Dodonpachi Resurrection .
Conclusion: There's no escaping the fact that Akai Katana is a Japanese shooter with wonderfully woven mechanics and an anime presentation. This drags the needle away from mass market and nestles it snugly against niche appeal, but if you've ever spent a few credits on Gradius, R-Type, Thunder Force, Ikaruga or anything by Cave or G.rev - and happily lost yourself in an hour or two of bullet heaven - then Akai Katana is a sturdy pair of wings that tries something a little bit...
Excerpt: I simply love companies like Rising Star Games . They do their utmost best to bring us niche titles that big publishers simply would never touch. We have to thank them for bringing games like The King of Fighters XIII , the Harvest Moon series, Half-Minute Hero , Muramasa and Little King’s Story . Rising Star Games also deals with distributing Cave’s hardcore bullet hell shoot-em-ups.
Summary: Ce n'est pas parce que l'on est entré dans le livre des records comme le développeur de danmaku le plus prolifique que l'on doit relâcher la pression. Cave nous remet donc une couche de boulettes bleues et roses avec Akai Katana Shin. Mais plus on est présent et plus il est difficile de surprendre son public, surtout lorsque celui-ci a pris pour habitude une chose : l'excellence. Chaussons le stick et avalons une bonne dose de café pour ne jamais cligner des yeux.
Pros: Réalisation de bonne facture, Rythmé, Ambiance soignée
Cons: Mode Shin extrêmement complexe, Pas toujours très lisible