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[ Writer ] = BAD
[ 10/24/03 ] = Shikigami No Shiro II Comments

[ Note ] = This article was originally a Message Board post.

Finally. I got it. After waiting, and waiting...and waiting. I played it very little upon its initial release (remember, EightOne?), and now I've played it in the comfort of my own home upon the consumer release. I played it all night, and it was everything I thought it would be. This game is awesome. Shikigami No Shiro II.

If you're a fan of other Naomi-based shooters (as I am) like Giga Wing 2, Zero Gunner 2, and Ikaruga, Shikigami No Shiro II will not disappoint. Goddamn, does this game look, play, and sound nice! The game has a wonderful selection of playable characters (each with two different attacking options), and a cast of equally killer bosses (each with lots of pretty bullet patterns and attacks). The playable characters have unique sets of bright, colorful shots and attacks that are over the top; swinging swords, giant flying shurikens, classic energy shots, a pissed-off shot-absorbing cat, hoop shots, and lots of other dangerous objects are at the player's disposal to cover the screen in chaos! Add the tactic of "scratching" to the list, along with precision control, and you've got yourself one hell of a fun shooter. The technique of "scratching" isn't just some after thought in SNSII; it is used not only to gain points, but also to power up your shots temporarily. This game is nuts!

The game's flashy effects are pulled-off beautifully with the hardware; there's lots of nice explosions, boss demises, shot illumination, and of course, the pretty bullet mazes we all love (so much). SNSII's beautiful resolution makes the glowing, vibrant bullet patterns of the enemies and bosses a site to see (don't look too long). Preparing for a day at the beach by wearing sun-screen is good for this game; the vibrant illumination of the shots will leave your face sun-burned after a session of play (that's a good thing)! During the game's boss fights (or after) are when most of its coolest effects and best presentation are seen; bosses face their demise(s) in ways that are so pretty that you almost forget that they're dying! Of the best scenes in the game is when a pair of swordsmen bosses, after failing to destroy you, take one last lunge at you, but instead plunge into each other...creating one hell of an end to the battle. A must-see scene. Absolutely fantastic.

Sure, you might ask, "who the hell is that rotten cat on the cover?" when you see the game, but go on and purchase it. It's worth it. It is amazing to see Alfa System, a small developer, make such an awesome fucking game. With this in mind, go out and support them by buying the game, so that they will make similar goodness in the future! Anyway, for those of you who like vertical manic shooters, you'll be just as pleased as me if you pick this one up - IT'S FUN.

Alright, I'm spent. Back to the war...