Galaxian (Famicom) Retro Review

Galaxian is  1983 fixed shooter for the Famicom developed and published by Namco. The player controls a space ship at the bottom of the screen and shoots descending enemies just like Taito’s Space Invaders that the game was designed to compete with. Note there seems to be no NES version despite a US arcade version existing (imported by midway).

Just like Nuts & Milk the title/menu screen was completely in english despite being a japanese version of the game. The logo was a bit odd and there was no music (also is that a spelling error…). The game let you choose between 1 and 2 player although it was just the take turns variety which is sort of useless these days.

Getting into the game the graphics seemed alright but there as no music at all and the sound effects were very repetitive. Contrls were very easy with only left and right being used to move along the bottom of the screen with B to shoot, the fact you saw the bulet before you shot it was useful for knowing when you can or cannot but made it seem more like a bee stinger than a laser. Gameplay was quite interesting, instead of Space Invaders (accidental) speed up gimmick enemy ships have the ability to break from formation to try and shoot you or even crash into yu which  kils both you and them. Sadly the limit of shots per second and lack of music made it feel repetitive extremely fast.

It seemed so annoying in fact that i couldn’t get a second screenshot before i gave up. To remedy this i may turn this into a dual review with Galaga, the games almost immediate sequel although for now thats it.

Overall its a nice idea but the lack of music and repetitive ruined it for me and therefore i cannot recommend it.


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