Power Strike II (GG) / GG Aleste 2

Power Strike II / GG Aleste 2 (GGアレスタ2) - Game Gear, PlayStation 4, Switch (1993)

This entry is part 6 of 11 in the series Aleste / Power Strike

The second GG Aleste game was released in both Japan and Europe, the latter where it was known as Power Strike II (no relation to the Master System title of the same name). It stars Alice Pfeiffer Wizn, cousin of Ellinor, piloting a starship called the Lance Bird. (The little bits of story, including the heroine’s name, were omitted from the English release.) It’s very similar to the first game, though the number of weapons has been cut back to four (you can select your default weapon at the beginning). However, you now have a limited supply of bombs, which wreak havoc across the screen with a really cool wavy effect.

While GG Aleste had some neat parallax scrolling effects, ultimately its visuals were a little on the bland side. Its sequel has more impressively detailed visuals, with more memorable boss fights, like a gigantic mecha that attacks from off-screen with extendable limbs. The bonus stages are also 3D, resembling After Burner, as you lock on and fire missiles at waves of enemies.

As with the first game, there’s not as much that stands apart as unique or innovative on this title, other than it being one of the very few quality shoot-em-ups for a portable platform. From that perspective, it is a bit weaker than its predecessor – it’s faster and fancier, but also a little too busy – but again, playing on an emulator or console via a flash cart alleviates this problem. It’s still a great shooter with excellent visuals and a decent soundtrack.

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