Monday 22 May 2023

Space Harrier II (Sega Mega Drive / Genesis review)

Developer: Sega R&D 2
Publisher: Sega
Released: 1989

Space Harrier II is a third-person rail-shooter and the follow-up to the 1985 Arcade original.

+ Includes difficulty options for all ability levels, and the first 12 stages are available from the get-go to hone your skills.

+ Retains the exhilarating, twitch-based action from the original, and the character design of the bosses is spectacular.

+ Frame-rate is steady and the faux-scaling is decent, which allows you to expertly weave in-and-out of harms way.

- Doesn't do anything to distinguish itself from the original game, and would have benefited from a weapon upgrade system.

- Backgrounds are surprisingly lacking in any interesting flourishes and the overall stage design is rather bland.

- Rapid fire option seems appealing until you realise it only blasts a quick round of ammunition before temporarily stopping.

- Music is largely ill-fitting and sounds like a leisurely stroll in the park instead of an intense battle to save the world.

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