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 The Final Word game review

Darius Gaiden -- Acclaim/Taito

After the last great war, many of the inhabitants of Darius fled, now they are set to return home. One by one, an attacking enemy has mercilessly slaughtered nearly all of the Silverhawk soldiers, and now only two ships remain. In Taito's Darius Gaiden for the Sega Saturn, you pilot one of these ships to the planet Darius in an attempt to return your people to their world.

The death of shooters seems greatly exaggerated as they are seemingly making a comeback on the 32-bit platforms. Darius Gaiden adds to the growing catalog. Darius definitely has it's basics down. The graphics are great and flex the muscles of the Saturn's 2-D hardware. The effects are great but the music is kind of strange. Sort of light techno with an opera overlay -- think Daytona. The ship handles like a dream and the difficulty level is right on. The strangest thing about this game, like the music, is the enemies. They're fish. It doesn't detract from the game but sets it apart from the regular ships in other outer space shooters. It's just weird. This is the one to get after In The Hunt.

I've always liked the arcade game Darius, in fact it's still one of my all time favorite coin-op shooters. Darius Gaiden is the first sequel to really do the original full justice I think. Now I don't believe that this game pushes the Saturn to any new limit per-sey, in fact the way this game is scripted out, I'd believe it was a port of a Duo title -- The opening cinema is right out of any top Super CD game... Graphics in general are pretty good, and as you progress through the game they get even better. Backgrounds morph, the land scrolls below, enemies move smoothly in and out of the backgrounds. I really had a good bit of fun with this game, and considering the fact that just like the original it has multiple paths of completion, I don't see this game getting old too quick. The only thing I really hated, and I do mean hated, were the tinish explosions. I mean, here you've got this really cool soundtrack with these horrendous little piffs and pings going on all around as you blow stuff up! What's up with that?!?

 ------ 42.5/50 ------- 
--Jester-- --R.I.P.--
Graphics 4.5 4.0
Sound 3.5 3.5
Gameplay/Control 4.5 5.0
Longevity/Playability 4.0 5.0
Overall 4.0 4.5
Total 20.5 22.0