One of my favorite arcade games has to be Galaga. It
was just sheer fun to shoot at enemies that come by.
The toy company Bandai brought over Galaga to the
NES, with some good results.
There isn't much of a story (but who needs one in a
shooter like this? Many older games never had a story anyway). You're a
lone space pilot, sent
to defend your home planet from the vile forces of
the Galaga armada. That's just about it.
You control this space craft throughout the game. It can only
move left or right along the bottom of the screen, not up or down. In
each level, enemy spaceships and aliens come swooping down the screen,
then get in formation (some try a suicide run right
into your ship). Once all the ships are in formation,
they come down again, shooting lasers and trying to ram
into your craft. If they miss, they go back into formation and go back
to shooting for awhile. It's essentially a variaton on Space Invaders, but
what a variation it is. Luckily, you have some lasers of
your own, with which to counteract their rush. This
game uses the classic arcade trick: Wait for the
Galaga commander (one of the baddies) to capture your ship, then free it
for double the firepower. Once all the ships are
destroyed, you move on to the next level, where
faster ships come along. Every so often, you'll visit
the Challenging Stage, where you can test your
marksmanship for bonus points.
The graphics match the arcade game nicely, with the
scrolling star background. The sounds are okay, with
cute sound effects. There's no music, except of the
tune when you start, and the game over music. It's bare bones,
yes, but near arcade perfect. Your
craft controls quite nicely, and that's also a plus.
Basically, Galaga matches the classic arcade game
nearly to the letter. If you're unable (or unwilling)
to join the emulation gravy train, you can still
experience Galaga at home. It can bring back memories of the old
days, moving your fighter back and forth, pounding the fire button
AFAP (As Fast As Possible). This is a must play for
arcade freaks. Simple but fun.