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Page 1:
Intro
Characters
Parodius

Page 2:
Gokujou Parodius
Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius
Sexy Parodius

Page 3:
Paro Wars
Bosses Gallery

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Gokujou Parodius - Arcade, Super Famicom, PlayStation, Saturn, PSP (1994)

Super Famicom Cover

Saturn Deluxe Pack Cover

Gokujou Parodius: Kako no Eikou wo Motomete (translating roughly to "Ultimate Parodius: Seeking the Former Glory") is a pretty direct sequel, running one the more powerful Konami GX system for better graphics. All four main characters return, along with four completely new ones: Koitsu, Michael, Hikaru and Mambo, along with a two-player simultaneous mode. Some of these characters also forego options - in their stead, you can power up their weapon and strengthen it into massive amounts of destruction. Overall, it's a shorter game than the original - only seven stages, compared to ten - but the levels themselves are more interesting, featuring a jaunt through a crane game, an underwater battle against that cat battleship, an ode to the speed-up zones from Gradius (featuring falling rocks, deer, and exclamation points) and a trip through a disco. The music's even better this time too - the techno remix of Wagner's "Die Walkure" is hilarious, and the outer space zone level tune is a humongous mismash of "Yankee Doodle", "Ej Lucka, Lucka" (a Czech folk song), "Mary Had a Little Lamb", "Circus Song" (Chopsticks), "London Bridge", and "Picnic". And the game ends with a bomb blowing up and everyone dying. I'm not kidding.

This game was also translated into English for the arcades and released as "The Fantastic Journey". The Super Famicom version was an excellent translation from the arcade game, although it had to ditch the two-player simultanous mode and added a bit of extra slowdown. However, some the weaponry on the characters was changed for some reason. However, the Super Famicom version added three extra characters: Goemon the Mystical Ninja (last seen in the MSX game), Kid Dracula and Upa. The latter two show up in Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius.

One of the bell-power weapons used throughout the series is the bullhorn. For a limited amount of time, you'll get a speaker that shouts out words which do a tremendous amount of damage. Naturally, everything being spouted is pure silliness, although the original Japanese and translated English versions are entirely different. The more amusing ones: "Toaster Overheated!" from the first game, as well as "Shaving is Boring!" and "Got a Stinkfoot!". The crowning achievement: killing your enemy using the quadratic formula.

Near the beginning of the Playstation's life, Konami released a Deluxe Pack with both Parodius and Gokujou Parodius. Both were pretty much arcade perfect - which was mostly good, except they lacked some of the extras from the other version (no bathhouse level in Parodius 1, no extra characters in Parodius 2.) Parodius 1 makes up for this by having an exclusive hidden train level (in the navigation area before stage 2, kill all the enemies in the first formation of bad guys, then only hit the first enemy in second formation. Don't attack anything else, and soon everything will explode and take you to the alternate level.) Gokujou Parodius has a few vocal songs that you can listen to in the Option Menu. While the PSOne version of Gokujou has vertical bars on the left and right side of the screen, the Saturn version has an option to extend the screen to the full length. There's a bit of slowdown and load times involved in both, but overall are quite solid.

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Gokujou Parodius (Arcade)

Gokujou Parodius (Super Famicom)

Gokujou Parodius (Super Famicom)

Gokujou Parodius (Super Famicom)


Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius - Super Famicom, PlayStation, Saturn, PSP (1995)

Super Famicom Cover

PlayStation Cover

Saturn Cover

While Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius is commonly translated as "Chatting Parodius", a more fitting title would probably be "Parodius Talk Show Live!" The Super Famicom versions (the only home-exclusive version outside of the MSX game) contains a special chip that allows for running commentary throughout the game from an old Japanese guy. While technologically it was pretty cool at the time, it's nothing mindblowing - while I can't make out everything he says, it's stuff like "Watch out!", "That wasn't good", or "What the heck?"

The other Parodius games were mostly unfocused when it came to their mockery. Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius decides to poke fun at other Konami games. While you star off in a disco, you later fly through levels based on Tokimeki Memorial, Twinbee, XEXEX and Lethal Enforcers, complete with remixed music from each game. In other words, like a gift from God for Konami fans.

While the arcade Gokujou Parodius offered sixteen playable characters, half of them were simply duplicates for use by the second player. This time, all of the characters are unique, even if some of the differences between some of them are small. While Michael - my favorite characters - was excised (as well as Hikaru and Mambo), new additions to the cast include fairies Memim and Sue, and cute kitty cats Mike and Ran. Upa and Rupa also make an appearance.

There's also several hidden fairies throughout the game - collect them and you'll unlock various cheats. It adds tons of replay value to what's already one of the best Parodius games out there - only to be outdone by it's sequel, Sexy Parodius.

Since Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius was released right as the 16-bit era was fading in the wake of ther 32-bit games, Konami decided to port the game to the Playstation and Saturn. For the most part, not a lot was changed. The graphics are barely improved, with some graphical changes here and there (the Santa Claus juggling in the first stage was changed to Colonel Sanders, for example.) The music was entirely redone at a higher quality though.

Other gameplay changes include a two-player simultaneous mode (including a second, female announcing for the other player), less slowdown, the addition of Justifier light guns shooting at you in the Lethal Enforces stage (complete with "Reload!" sound effects) and the battle against the Goemon battle is less irritating (and also features Ebisumaru.) The biggest change is the addition/alteration of some bosses. You now face a cat train at the end of the Lethal Enforcers level (there was none before) and instead of the boss rush from the original (where you fought the Mystical Ninja goddess and various Gradius boss parodies), you face off against a bunch of characters from Konami's Puzzle-dama game.

You also get two Omake modes. One is an additional level made of lego blocks (like the Omake/Lollipop levels from the first Parodius). The other takes place on a race track, where you try to get as many speed-ups as you can while still managing not to crash, and destroying bosses as quickly as you can - very cool concept. The Playstation version also has an extra mode termed "Accident", where you'll randomly be brought to stages made completely of polygonal enemies (like the eggplant shooting volcano and Moai ship.) Since the Saturn probably couldn't handle this, that version has an "Extra" mode which alters the enemy formations. Both versions have even more fairies to find, as well as an additional hidden character - Kid Dracula.

While the 32-bit versions are definitely more complete, you're not really missing out on a whole lot if you stick with the SFC version. The PSP version changes the music to the first level, as apparently they feared being sued by the original copyright holders.

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Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius (Super Famicom)

Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius (Super Famicom)

Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius (Super Famicom)



Sexy Parodius - Arcade, Saturn, PlayStation, PSP (1996)

Flyer

Saturn Cover

Sexy Parodius, the culmination of the wackiness in the entire series, holds a place so close to my heart that it's almost a little bit dirty. Initially released in the arcade and ported precisely to the Saturn and Playstation, Sexy Paro picks up with Takosuke running some sort of merc-for-hire agency, where the crew helps out people in need. While there are less characters overall than Jikkyou Oshaberi (only ten total here), the most notable additions include Ace from Twinbee Yahho! and the Options from Gradius.

Sexy Parodius bucks the usual shooter trend by giving you mission objectives - say, collect a certain number of coins in a level, or destroy a certain number of machines. If you reach that goal, you'll go to one stage. Lose, and you'll go to an alternate stage. So while the game is only six levels long, there are eight stages altogther - and a special epilogue if you manage to win on all of the levels. It really adds to the playability quite a bit, especially with the heavily amusing cutscene pictures you get when winning or losing. The basic gameplay hasn't changed much, although you now can obtain a little Pac-Man familiar named Alex, whom you can feed to make stronger and help you out a bit.

The graphics are the best of the series, adding in even more goofy sight-gags (check out the Yie Air Kung Fu guy or the UFOs that explode leaving behind a point value with an old school font) and more penguins doing all sorts of ridiculous things (like the S&M penguin work at the computer or the ones gaping at the showering ladies.) The sound keeps up to high excellent standards, and now each character has their own voice, adding even more to their personalities. And the music is the usual silliness - the sugarized version of "Battle Hymn of the Republic" being the standout. As you can see, there's quite a bit of T&A present, although it's certainly not a porn title - it never steps over the boundaries of a PG-13 rating.

With its replayability, excellent graphics and two-player action, Sexy Parodius not only the best Parodius game, but probably better than practically ever Gradius title as well.

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Sexy Parodius (Arcade)

Sexy Parodius (Arcade)

Sexy Parodius (Arcade)

Sexy Parodius (Arcade)



<<< Prior Page

Next Page >>>

Page 1:
Intro
Characters
Parodius

Page 2:
Gokujou Parodius
Jikkyou Oshaberi Parodius
Sexy Parodius

Page 3:
Paro Wars
Bosses Gallery

Back to the Index