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Captain Wrong
09-18-2002, 01:52 PM
OK, this was on the main board for a while, but what the hey! Let's start a new one. It'd be best to mention an individual game rather than just saying "Gradius series" or something like that. I'll edit the list as we go along. You can mention systems or not.

Air Zonk (PCE, TG-16)
Axelay (SNES)
Battle Garegga (Saturn JPN, arcade)
Carrier Air Wing (Arcade)
Dodonpachi (Arcade, PSX JPN, Saturn JPN)
Einhander (PSX)
Gradius III (Arcade, PS2, SNES)
Ikaruga (DC JPN)
M.U.S.H.A. (Genesis)
Pulsar (Neo-Geo)
Radiant Silvergun (Saturn JPN)
Raystorm (PSX, Saturn as Layer Section II)
R-Type (Arcade)
Sonic Wings Special (Saturn, PSX)
Spriggan (PCE)
Strikers 1945 II (Saturn JPN)
Thunderforce IV (aka US Lighteningforce) (Genesis)
Truxton (Arcade, Genesis)
Twinkle Star Sprites (NeoGeo, DC, Saturn)
Xevious (Arcade, many home systems)

retrogmr
09-19-2002, 12:33 AM
Okay, some thoughts:

- Lose Gunbird 2 in favor of Spriggan for PC-Engine. Easily a WAY better shooter, and not so impossibly hard.
- Lose Raiden II, insert Xevious. A truly classic shooter that for all intents started the genre... or at least made it a bit more mainstream.

That is all :)

Captain Wrong
09-19-2002, 10:47 AM
I was actually having a tough time deciding between Raiden and Xevious, but you swayed me. :) The only reason I didn't have Xevious on in the first place is I hate the music! Still, you're right, it's every bit a classic.

I really need to check out Spriggan. But I have heard lots of good things about it, and Gunbird 2 is basically Strikers with wacky characters, so I won't argue with that one.

Keep 'em coming folks!

drumguy79
09-19-2002, 04:28 PM
I LOVE Gain Ground, but why is on the Shump List? There is some shooting involved, but it's more strategy than shump.
I say toss this one and insert Truxton for Genesis. This is the game that got me into the genre. We dug it out this summer and played for 2-3 hours everyday. This game has infinite replay value and is wicked fun.

Ascending Wordsmith
09-19-2002, 04:40 PM
Here's my list... in no order or course! :D

1. Carrier Air Wing (arcade)
2. Strike Gunner STG (arcade)
3. S.C.A.T (NES)
4. UN Squadron (arcade)
5. Task Force Harrier EX (Genesis)
6. 1943 Kai (arcade)
7. Gate of Thunder (Turbo Grafx)
8. Apache 3 (arcade)
9. Ginga Fukei Densetsu Sapphire (Turbo Grafx)
10. Raiden Fighters Jet (arcade)
11. Air Buster (arcade)
12. Silk Worm (arcade)
13. Airwolf (arcade)
14. In the Hunt (arcade)
15. Sexy Parodius (Saturn)
16. Aero Fighters (arcade)
17. Aero Fighters II (arcade)
18. Fire Sharks (arcade)
19. Time Pilot (arcade)
20. Axelay (SNES)

ubersaurus
09-19-2002, 05:12 PM
this is domestic only or something? Because I see no Radiant Silvergun! I say take out Life Force for it.

Captain Wrong
09-19-2002, 05:17 PM
@drumguy79, Gain Ground always struck me as more shmuppy than anything else, kind of like Gun.Smoke. How ever, I can switch it with Truxton, as that game rocks too, and is a bit more traditional.

@PC Kwajalein, good list. I knew I forgot some. how did I forget axelay??!? Sonic Wings Special is a remix of all three of the Areo Fighters so I kind of got that in there. Since your list and mine are pretty different, what should I change to add some more in.

@ubersarus, nope, all regions. RS isn't listed because I haven't played it and I started the list. :) What should we lose to work it in?

Ascending Wordsmith
09-19-2002, 10:44 PM
@ Captain Wrong

My list has only a few I would recommend to the top 20.

First, get rid of the Strikers 1945 II. It disappointed me that the cool boss vehicles turned into robots after taking considerable damage. The aircraft carrier is an example. Why can't it just stay as a carrier instead of transforming into a giant robot? The train, the airship, and the giant seaplane all take on robotic forms... and it annoys me.

With that game gone, add Carrier Air Wing in its place. At least the bosses stay in one form. ;)

http://www2.webmagic.com/klov.com/screens/C/yCarrier_Air_Wing.png
Carrier Air Wing

I must also ask you to make room for S.C.A.T.. This is the first shooter using actual humans (space marines) as the combatants. In addition to their primary weapon, the marines had orbital cannons revolving around them. They could be locked in any position, or allowed to go freelance. Yep... ditch Life Force! As long as we've got Gradius III up there, Life Force can be sacrificed for S.C.A.T.

Captain Wrong
09-20-2002, 03:44 AM
Ooh! Man, I REALLY like Strikers 1945 II. Care to make a second choice.

And I'll take out Life Force for either Radiant Silvergun (as per ubersarus) or Carrier Air Wing (as per PC Kwajalein) depending on who has the most compelling argument. (PS I like the screen shots! )

Ascending Wordsmith
09-20-2002, 07:46 AM
Well, I haven't played Radiant Silvergun (partly because I'm not shelling out $175 for it) for the Saturn, but I'll try to make a case for Carrier Air Wing.

I like Carrier Air Wing because of the layout. I pick from either an F-14 Tomcat, F-18 Hornet, or an A-6 Intruder to use during the game. Each aircraft comes with its own highs and lows depending in the attack. The F-14 is the superior air-to-air fighter, while the A-6 makes mincemeat out of all the ground huggers that oppose you. The F-18 has a better mix of the two.

Then I get briefed by a whitebearded commander that could pass for Sean Connery's brother. After which, I get to pick from some kickass ordnance, and then I'm catapulted off the carrier deck.

The highly detailed stages that the battles take place on are extremely varied. Not only do you fight high above the clouds, but you go through snow covered forests, sweltering deserts, Greek islands, rocky shorelines, polar icecaps, and even downtown Tokyo.


http://www.classicgaming.com/shmups/reviews/cawing/4stage.jpg

Just about every piece of military hardware has been brought against you. Some of the Russian planes like the MiG-29's, Su-35's, and Su-25's are on the game. American aircraft like the B-2 (stealth bomber), F-117 (stealth fighter), E-767 (AWACS), and the super elusive YF-23 (next generation stealth fighter) are also on the game along with other real life aircraft. (please note the realism as your homing missiles do NOT lock onto stealth aircraft!) There's even some very cool fictional planes and bosses too.

http://digilander.libero.it/calimerosegg/gallery/callus/cawing.gif

Of course there are excellent powerups too. Some optimized for ground assault, others made for aerial confrontations. Fuel replenishment items are given to you when you shoot down certain enemies colored orange.

I realize that most gamers would side with Radiant Silvergun and it's not a surprise as it's a great shooter. But give me my Carrier Air Wing... I've got a knack for the classics.

*sits down and waits for the closing argument from the other party*

Arcade Antics
09-20-2002, 10:15 AM
Two quick comments:

1) Great list!!

2) I've been curious about Twinkle Star Sprites for a while. It's that good? What have I been missing out on? Guessing I need to pick this one up the next time I spot it :wink:

Captain Wrong
09-20-2002, 11:27 AM
@PC, wait a sec, is that the same game as UN Squadron on SNES? If it is then, whoo-hoo! I agree, it's spiff!

@AA, the best way to describe TSS, it's like Bust a Move/Puzzle Bobble plus Puzzle Fighter plus a vertical shooter. a Puz 'em up if you will. You play against another player and try to shoot colored chains and when you do you send various attacks to your opponent. (Or opponentos as the game says, the English version has the best SNKglish/Engrish of all time!)

Based on the games you like, I think you'd love it!

Here's a page about it giving a good description and screen shots.

http://www.classicgaming.com/shmups/reviews/twinklestar/twinklestar.htm

BTW, you can get it for NeoGeo ($$$), Dreamcast, or an enhanced Saturn version. The Saturn version only runs in Japanese and is a bit more expensive than the DC. (I'm gonna get you importing yet!)

Arcade Antics
09-20-2002, 11:35 AM
A "Puzz-em-up" ?? Whoo-hoo! I'm SO there! Thanks for the heads-up!!

Ascending Wordsmith
09-20-2002, 12:51 PM
Carrier Air Wing came after UN Squadron. The former is a pumped up version of the latter. If you play Carrier Air Wing, then play UN Squadron right after, you'll see how much better the first one is ;)

The Brown Eye
09-20-2002, 01:57 PM
I'd put either Raystorm or Gate of Thunder in Viewpoint's place. For me, Viewpoint isn't as good now as it was back then. Maybe stick Bangai-O in there somewhere too. Otherwise, great list!

Kid Ice
09-21-2002, 03:45 PM
How come Ikaruga and no Radiant Silvergun?

the kid

MankeyMan
09-24-2002, 03:34 PM
Can you put the console up next to the game. I've never heard of Battle Garegga before, and if it's that good, I want to know what to get it for.

Captain Wrong
09-24-2002, 04:44 PM
done and done! Help me out folks, if I messed something up.

BTW, Mankey, Battle Garegga is on Saturn and is really good. It's one of the higher priced shmups (not quite a RS or Steam Hearts though) but it's worth it IMHO. :)

Ascending Wordsmith
09-24-2002, 10:18 PM
Hey, Cap'n... replace the Parodius with Air Zonk. I still think that Parodius, Gradius, and Lifeforce are all basically the same game. Parodius is just Gradius with pole dancers, octopi, and penguins.

Air Zonk is the first shooter I played on my Turbo Graphx-16. Zonk (a futuristic Bonk) goes through stages, blasting enemies with some of the craziest weapons I've ever seen. Zonk can also merge with his friends (such as a cow or gumball machine) to create even more outrageous weapon combinations!

Go ahead Cap'n, place Air Zonk in place of Parodius. As long as Gradius is up there, Parodius is represented... along with Life Force, Nemesis, Vulcan Venture, and Salamander 2.

http://pcenginebible.roarvgm.com/assets/images/ART-CD_Denjin_2.jpg
Air Zonk belongs in the top 20

Captain Wrong
09-25-2002, 02:11 PM
Fair enough.

(Man, I gotta invest a little more in my pathetic TG-16 collection. So many great games, and I've never played them.)

Kid Fenris
10-22-2002, 07:38 PM
Sorry to dredge up a month-old topic like this, but that Survivor thing barred me from these forums for the last eight weeks. Anyway, here are my suggestions.

M.U.S.H.A. belongs on this list somewhere, as it's easily one of the best 16-bit shooters, and probably the finest Genesis blaster.

The original R-Type deserves a spot as well. It was profoundly influential for the genre, and it has aged far better than Gradius, Xevious, and other groundbreaking shooters of the '80s. Heck, even the flicker-laden TurboGrafx version is still fun.

I'd also suggest Pulstar, the Neo-Geo's version of R-Type, and one of the few shooters that manages to be both ridiculously hard and incredibly rewarding. The gameplay is very well-balanced, and its visuals impress even today. It's the best of the masochistic shooters, I think, and a rather underrated title.

To make room for these three, I'd ditch Mars Matrix (it has a nice power-up system, but mediocre level design), RayStorm (decent, but not great) and either Gradius III (I never liked Gradius) or Truxton (it was great in 1989, but the years have taken it down a peg).

Captain Wrong
10-22-2002, 08:02 PM
Heh, glad to have your input.

I put your suggestions in there (can't believe I forgot M.U.S.H.A.!?!) but I took out a few different ones in their place.

nesman85
10-23-2002, 11:03 PM
hey, you forgot star force(nes). ok, so it sucks. but it still kicks ass!(you wouldn't think that would be possible, but it is)

Dire 51
11-05-2002, 10:58 PM
As the main list is in great shape (although something should be dropped in favor of Gradius Gaiden, imo), I figure I'll just go ahead and list my favorite shmups, in no particular order... :)

01. Gradius
02. Gradius II
03. Gradius III
04. Gradius IV
05. Gradius Gaiden
06. Salamander
07. Salamander 2
08. Life Force
09. Axelay
10. Sexy Parodius
11. Radiant Silvergun
12. Ikaruga
13. Mars Matrix
14. Strikers 1945 II
15. MUSHA
16. Truxton
17. Phelios
18. Gaiares
19. U.N. Squadron
20. R-Type
21. R-Type II
23. R-Type III: The Third Lightning
24. R-Type Delta
25. ThunderForce III
26. ThunderForce IV
27. ThunderForce V Perfect System
28. Darius
29. Darius Gaiden
30. In The Hunt
31. Blazing Lazers
32. Forgotten Worlds
33. Giga Wing 2
34. Gunbird 2
35. Time Pilot

ROBOTRON
11-08-2002, 07:38 PM
Shmups are my favorite type of video game...

My List:

Radiant Silvergun-saturn
Blazing Lazers-tg16
Viewpoint-neogeo
Last Resort-neogeo
Alpha Mission 2-neogeo
Soukyugurentai-saturn
Phelios
Thunderforce 2, 3, 4, 5-Genesis/Saturn
M.U.S.H.A.-Genesis
Incoming-DC
Ikaruga-DC
Mars Matrix-DC
Einhander-PS1
Zanac-NES
Zanac X Zanac-PS1
Lifeforce-NES
Axelay-SNES
Space Megaforce-SNES
Power Strike-SMS
R-Type Delta-PS1
Silpheed-Sega CD/PS2
Psyvariar-PS2
Hellfire-Genesis
Giares-Genesis
Layer Section-Saturn
Turmoil-2600
Pulstar-NeoGeo
Blazing Star-neogeo
Darius Gaiden

Psychosis for TG-16...OUTSTANDING!
Fantasy Zone 1,2 for SMS...Strange but sweet!

whew!

Daniel Thomas
11-28-2002, 01:23 AM
Hmm. Pretty good choices here. Are these only "modern" shooters that are being considered? If not, where exactly are the original classics? Where's Space Invaders? Where's Asteroids? Where's Defender? Omitting these is like omitting Elvis Presley from a list of the best rock-and-roll recordings.

Other than that, I've gotta make a pitch for my favorite Genesis shooters: Thunder Force 3, Gaiares, and Fire Shark. These really were the cream of the crop back in 1990, and they're still immensely entertaining now. If I'm looking for a quick fix, it's probably one of these games I'll turn to. As for the best shooter, I'll have to go with Defender. It practically invented the whole side-scrolling shooter genre, and its lack of patterns makes it far more challenging than, well, anything. This game is still intimidating as hell.

NE146
11-28-2002, 01:51 AM
As for the best shooter, I'll have to go with Defender. It practically invented the whole side-scrolling shooter genre, and its lack of patterns makes it far more challenging than, well, anything. This game is still intimidating as hell.

Agreed. Defender can still bring the best players of any era to their knees. But the thing that makes it great is, it's MASTERABLE. You can get good at those intimidating controls where it's second nature and you can survive free space like a champion. However, the same can't be said of a game like say... Sinistar. Which is pretty much unmasterable in my opinion. Cool graphics and concept. But overall? bleh.

ROBOTRON
11-28-2002, 05:59 PM
Defender/Stargate does rule...how is the new 3-D version?

I remember when I was in high school....I would skip classes to go play it at the local party store.....least untill truant officer caught me! :D

digitalpress
12-26-2002, 12:24 PM
That list looks good.

No room for two of my favorites (though I'm really glad to see Truxton on there): Keio Flying Squadron and Blazing Lazers? These three games represent 50% of my SHMUP "repeat business".

The Clonus Horror
12-27-2002, 01:23 PM
I'm glad somebody finally mentioned Zanac for NES. I didn't know about Zanac for PS1? I'm going to have to find that.

jaydubnb
12-27-2002, 06:03 PM
No shmup list can be made without Star Parodier for the PC Engine CD. Best damn "cute em up" ever...even if its too easy.

bargora
03-17-2003, 02:21 PM
Remove Raystorm, replace with Rayforce/LayerSection/GalacticAttack/TheShipThatShootsAndStuff.

Eternal Champion
03-20-2003, 02:03 PM
ZANAC for NES!! That game kicked my ass back in the day. I got it again recently and wasn't too impressed, I have to get back into the groove. Compile can really do shooters--speed, low flicker and little slowdown--how do they manage that, especially on the NES?!?! :?
I think the Genesis was a haven for shooters (moreso in Japan than in the US, dammit!! >:( ), with MUSHA, the Thunderforce Series, etc. It seems the Genesis hardware was better suited to fast-paced shooters than the SNES...

MY additions to THE SHMUPS LIST, although several have been mentioned:

ZANAC!!!
Space Megaforce--16-bit Zanac from Compile--but of course!! Too bad no AI... :(
R-Type III \^_^/
GRANADA!!! Love that little tank, but I guess a different sort of shooter...
Raiden II DX (arcade)--love the full-power purple toothpaste weapon!!

AND, the grand-daddy of over-head 2-D shooters that gave birth to the genre:
RIVER-RAID!!
That baby made me sweat...

P.S. Yep, there was indeed Zanac X Zanac for PS--I think only released in Japan...
Check out SHMUPS:
http://www.classicgaming.com/shmups/index2.htm

ManekiNeko
03-20-2003, 04:02 PM
"However, the same can't be said of a game like say... Sinistar. Which is pretty much unmasterable in my opinion. Cool graphics and concept. But overall? bleh."

Oh, posh. Who needs a game you can master, anyway? I liked Sinistar well enough... I didn't care for it at first because that creepy silver head scared the hell out of me as a child, but now that I know how to satisfy his hunger with a steady diet of Sinibombs, he doesn't frighten me anymore. These days, those frustrating little space tanks claim more of my lives than Sinistar himself could ever hope to.

JR

POST 12!

swlovinist
05-15-2003, 12:53 AM
I have observed some great lists, and I dont think I could come up with one myself, but here are the ones I think are my favorite....Zanac for NES Gunnac for NES....Blazing Lazers for TG16....Lightning Force for Genesis...1943 for NES....R-Type III for SNES.....Aero Fighters for TG-16.....Axelay for SNES....Elemental Master for Genesis.....these are just a few that I didnt see mentioned A TON. Do Megamania and Galaga count? If they do then those would definately be on my top 10! I think it is funny to see so many 16bit shooters on the list.......there were so many 8 bit shooters that were so great that not alot of people seem to remember......

ubersaurus
05-15-2003, 01:09 AM
Remove Raystorm, replace with Rayforce/LayerSection/GalacticAttack/TheShipThatShootsAndStuff.

Agreed. Heavily.

digitalpress
05-15-2003, 12:38 PM
Remove Raystorm, replace with Rayforce/LayerSection/GalacticAttack/TheShipThatShootsAndStuff.

Agreed. Heavily.

I'd love to comply but I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about. I assume it's some kind of "in" joke but please remember that I'm typically "out" with regards to those.

So if either of you would like to clarify... ?

Captain Wrong
05-15-2003, 01:11 PM
I was trying to post this lastnight, but it wouldn't let me post for some reason:

Crap, I can't edit the list anymore since it's in the classics section!

Well, here's what I'd propose the new version to look like, DP if you wanna cut and paste, I'd be much obliged.





Air Zonk (PCE, TG-16)
Axelay (SNES)
Battle Garegga (Saturn JPN, arcade)
Carrier Air Wing (Arcade)
Dodonpachi (Arcade, PSX JPN, Saturn JPN)
Einhander (PSX)
Gradius III (Arcade, PS2, SNES)
M.U.S.H.A. (Genesis)
Pulstar (Neo-Geo)
Radiant Silvergun (Saturn JPN)
Rayforce (Saturn as Galactic Attack, Arcade)
R-Type III (SNES)
Sonic Wings Special (Saturn, PSX)
Spriggan (PCE)
Soukyugurentai (Saturn JPN, Arcade aka Terra Diver)
Thunderforce IV (aka US Lighteningforce) (Genesis)
Truxton (Arcade, Genesis)
Twinkle Star Sprites (NeoGeo, DC, Saturn)
Xevious (Arcade, many home systems)
Zanac (arcade, NES)

As for Space Invaders, Asteroids, etc. those really don't fit the definition of shmups as I see it. River Raid, defintely. Defender, yeah probably. Those others just aren't quite the same.

ubersaurus
05-15-2003, 01:27 PM
I'd love to comply but I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about. I assume it's some kind of "in" joke but please remember that I'm typically "out" with regards to those.

So if either of you would like to clarify... ?

Basically, The first game in that game series was called Rayforce in japanese arcades. Then they ported that to the japanese saturn as Layer Section. Then, Acclaim got the rights to publish it stateside, and released it as Galactic Attack. So its basically a running joke for that game to have a billion name changes.

bargora
05-15-2003, 01:52 PM
Right. The series is sometimes referred to as the "Ray" series, because it consists of Rayforce, Raystorm, and Raycrisis. As Uber clarified, Rayforce underwent a number of name changes (apparently there was some sort of trademark problem with using Rayforce on the Saturn port, according to shmups.com), but it ended up as the insipid-sounding "Galactic Attack" when published by Acclaim in the U.S. and U.K. I mean, maybe "Layer Section" is kind of cryptic, but Galactic Attack is just so f'n' generic. It's a good thing Working Designs brought over the other two games instead of Acclaim, or we might well have ended up playing "Space Force" and "Laser Ship" instead. Or "Mobile Light Force".

Anyway, despite the silly name, we love it.

Captain Wrong
05-15-2003, 07:02 PM
You forgot that for the rest of the world this game was known as Gunlock. Whew! Anyone else's head hurt?


And if you like the Ray series, you really need to check out Soukyugurentai. It plays much more like a Ray game than a Raizing game. In fact, I like it more than the Ray series. Not so reliant on the lock on, but that's still a crucial part of the game play.

Tetsu
05-15-2003, 07:58 PM
What? No Silpheed? It's the closest thing to Axelay, with cheesy outer space music to boot.

Doc Recca
08-18-2009, 10:04 PM
Do you guys like that I, just now, bumped a thread from 2002?

I feel so bloody evil. But... it's not my fault; this topic is so awesome that it forced me to do it. <3 Shmups.

Game Freak
08-21-2009, 02:56 PM
Other than that, I've gotta make a pitch for my favorite Genesis shooters: Thunder Force 3, Gaiares, and Fire Shark. These really were the cream of the crop back in 1990, and they're still immensely entertaining now. If I'm looking for a quick fix, it's probably one of these games I'll turn to. As for the best shooter, I'll have to go with Defender. It practically invented the whole side-scrolling shooter genre, and its lack of patterns makes it far more challenging than, well, anything. This game is still intimidating as hell.

Don't forget Life Force and thatother one...Stinger!!!!

Ed Oscuro
08-23-2009, 09:34 PM
Shmups Forum does a Top 25 every year, not exactly to my taste always, but it gives an idea about the games that have proven enduring gameplay value: link (http://shmups.system11.org/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=26325)

First, before I take issue with the list in the OP, here's mine from this year (top 25 actually), the numbers represent a weight (i.e. "how good"), but just ignore them:


[5] [Raiden Fighters Jet]
[5] [Mahou Daisakusen]
[5] [Armed Police Batrider]
[5] [Kyuukyoku Tiger / Twin Cobra]
[5] [Soldier Blade]
[5] [OutZone]
[5] [Kiki Kaikai: Tsukiyo Soushi / Pocky & Rocky 2 (Super Famicom / SNES)]
[5] [Flying Shark / Hishou Zame / Sky Shark]
[5] [Battle Garegga]
[5] [R-Type]
[5] [Air Gallet]
[5] [Vasara]
[4] [Ninja Emaki / Youma Ninpou Cho]
[4] [Dragon Breed]
[4] [Jackal / Top Gunner]
[4] [Sengoku Ace]
[4] [Kiki Kaikai: Nazo no Kuro Mantle / Pocky and Rocky (Super Famicom / SNES)]
[4] [Space Manbow (MSX2+)]
[4] [Raiden Fighters]
[4] [Raiden Fighters 2]
[4] [Fire Shark (Mega Drive / Genesis)]
[4] [Battle Mania 2]
[4] [Cho Ren Sha 68K (Windows)]
[4] [Aleste II (MSX2+)]
[4] [Assault - if allowed otherwise delete & add next entry

[4] [Mars Matrix]
Looking at that list, I probably have some stuff too high; also, I discovered that I like the original Raiden more than a lot of that other stuff. I may also end up putting Namco's Blast Off on my own list sometime. Keep in mind this list was partly to impress, but also partly stuff that I find engaging to play. The mid-90s and newer stuff tends to get too difficult for me to enjoy pretty quick, though.


OK, this was on the main board for a while [snip]
"He's Captain Wrong. That's why this list is ALL WRONG!" - Steve Martin in Parenthood (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098067/quotes)

I don't agree with any of these aside from R-Type, Sonics Wing Special, Strikers (have the PCB of the first one), and possibly Truxton (Truxton is lolz when you realize you only should pick up two speed-ups, also lol @ games that promote repetitive stress injuries; still, a great game).

Axelay sure is pretty, that's pretty much the only reason I like that game though. It gets its due in this video. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_D5qAwerOk)


Don't forget Life Force and thatother one...Stinger!!!!
Life Force has the Gradius-style powerups, right? I like Salamander (JPN arcade version) much better. Great game all the same, aside from the collision issues. Stinger aka Twinbee is a favorite of many too - Twinbee games aren't well liked at Shmups but I like 'em well enough.