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Air Buster
エア・バスター

1990

 

Arcade Flyer [Back]
 
It is easy to become cynical towards shooting games. During the 80s and 90s they were at the peak of their popularity, and literally thousands of them were produced. In most instances they were as bland as they were formulaic, but Kaneko's Air Buster is a wonderful exception to the rule, turning out to be a well-crafted diamond of the genre.
Speedy gameplay, slick 2-player teamwork and clever level design make Air Buster one of the most timeless titles in its class. The layout has been intricately designed around the use of the ship’s special sub-weapon, the 'Buster Flash'. This smart bomb attack clears the screen of all enemy fire, and is activated by holding the fire button down for a moment.
But here's the trick: during the few seconds it takes for this weapon to charge you cannot shoot - this results in a lot of last-minute decisions and narrow escapes.
A bouncy and rhythmic soundtrack follows the action perfectly, and all six 'Phases' are colourful and full of good ideas: the second one hurtles you at high speed through narrow corridors, and during Phase 4, 'Out of Gravity', you cannot stop your ship from moving... In fact there's enough surprises here to keep the most critical of shooting game enthusiasts on the edge of their seats. No artifice, no pomp - just simple shooting action, honed to near perfection.
Over time, the game become a cult classic of sorts: it was granted a very limited arcade release, so it was the Mega Drive and PC Engine versions (renamed 'Aero Blasters') that got the biggest audiences. The MD delivers a near perfect rendition of the arcade original while the PC Engine makes up for its weaker graphics by including an original co-operative '2-Player Blaster' trick, a powerful but hard-to-use team weapon that adds even more depth to 2P game.
Ready? Scramble!

Rating:
 

 

Arcade
 

PC Engine
 

Mega Drive
 


 
Aero Blasters
エアロブラスターズ
PC ENGINE
DETAILS
Format PC Engine
Released 2 Nov 1990
Publisher Hudson
Product ID HC90038
Size (cm) 14.2 x 12.4 x 1
Weight (kg) 0.10
PRICE
STATUS
Superb version of Kaneko's brilliant arcade game.
One of the fastest, smoothest and most enjoyable 2P shooting games on the PC Engine.

Standard PCE case, 4Mbit HuCard, 12-page monochrome booklet.

Aero Blasters
エアロブラスターズ
MEGA DRIVE
DETAILS
Format Mega Drive
Released 31 Jan 1991
Publisher Kaneko
Product ID T-33013
Size (cm) 17.8 x 12.8 x 2.5
Weight (kg) 0.18
PRICE
STATUS
Kaneko deliver a stunning MD version, a near-perfect replica of the arcade original.
Essential in every way.

Standard MD case, 4Mbit cartridge, colour booklet.

 



'Air Buster', 'Aero Blasters' and 'Kaneko' are registered trademarks of Inter State Kaneko Co., Ltd.
'PC Engine' and 'NEC' are registered trademarks of NEC Corporation
'Mega Drive' and 'Sega' are registered trademarks of Sega Corporation
Air Buster / Aero Blasters TM & © 1990 Kaneko All Rights Reserved
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