Galaga ’90 on PC Engine / TurboGrafx by Namco

Space invaders led to Galaxians, and Galaxians spawned this sequel known as Galaga ’90. Where Space Invaders had you firing on waves of aliens with only a left to right and back again, dropping down closer at each end attack wave, Galaxians upped the ante with aliens who also dive bombed you as they shot at you too. Galaga then added some extras to the mix and varied the attacks even more.

So now we know the lineage, how does the TurboGrafx conversion of this arcade classic shape up?
Well to start with, the gameplay is as fast and furious as it should be with the TG console throwing around the pixels as quickly as you’d want it to. All of the detailed sprites move fast, always keeping you on your toes and keeping your trigger finger (or thumb) active at all times to keep them at bay as they dive and fire on you. Some of the aliens also give a rather satisfying firework display as they die which makes them all the more fun to shoot.

The sound lacks the warlike Space Invaders military style marching beat, and the sound effects are a little twee for a shootemup except for the occasional explosion on some of the larger aliens. It doesn’t really detract from the game though, and it’s not a failing of the console as the original also has similar sound effects.

So we have a full colour, fast paced and sonically perfect space themed shoot em up conversion on the TurboGrafx (or PC Engine to some people around the world) which is really fun and challenging to play, what more could we ask for in an arcade conversion to console? 9/10

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