There never was a shortage of shooting games on the PC Engine. In fact, the machine had so many that it was impossible to play them all without running the risk of, er, becoming a shooting game geek.
Looking back at the genre's heyday it's interesting to see how many of them slipped under the radar. In 1990 alone, blockbusters like Super Star Soldier (1990) and Aero Blasters (1990) got all the attention, while oddball original productions like Down Load (1990), Override (1990) and Paranoia went by mostly un-noticed.
Which is a shame, because Paranoia isn't a bad effort at all. As a matter of fact it's quite good - a clean, smooth and by-the-numbers shooting game whose bizarre and demented designs make it really stand out from the crowd. Its incomprehensible backgrounds, melting scenery and bizzarre bestiary are straight out of a Salvador Dali picture.
It plays well, too, offering a really solid challenge along with a very interesting weapon system: the ships's main defense consists of two pods (obtained by a pick-up icon) that can be rotated around the ship to protect it of oncoming fire.
It's R-Type on acid, without the lingering side-effects and overbearing bright lights. Hell - any game that features an alien who gives you the finger and says 'fuck you' when you clear a stage should score points in anyone's book.

Format PC Engine
Released 1 Mar 1990
Publisher Naxat
Product ID NX90001
Size (cm) 14.2 x 12.4 x 1
Weight (kg) 0.10
Oddball shooting game from Naxat, definitely worth a quick look if you enjoy the genre.
Who knows, you might get into it.

Standard PCE case, 2Mbit HuCard, instruction booklet.


'Paranoia' and 'Naxat' are registered trademarks of Naxat Soft
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