Monday, February 16, 2015


Honestly speaking, I've never been great at video games; I realized a long time ago that "shooter" games especially were kind of beyond me, by virtue of, well, having the hand-eye coordination of a wet fish.

For instance, the old Atari game Vanguard, which was in my childhood the closest thing to the popular shooter Gradius I'd been at all familiar with.

Judging oneself by Atari games probably isn't fair, because they're hard as hell, but I'm pretty sure I'd never have made it out of the first stage if it weren't for the fact that the first playthrough gives you infinite continues. I persistently played the game anyway, because for whatever reason I liked the colorful graphics and the game's booklet painted a vivid picture that suggested a rich, bizarre world.

Imagine my reaction years later seeing a shooter game with half-decent graphics that actually had the things one had to imagine for Vanguard, such as the Gradius games, of which Life Force is a member.

So why am I bringing up Life Force? Because I was skimming the Gradius wiki and discovered that it was an altered version of a game with a different theme*, and one of its characteristics was that it replaced many technological enemies with organic ones.

This led to me finding the following sentence, which is on the Gradius wiki's Life Force page (the emphasis is added).

Konami later released an enhanced version of Salamander in Japan bearing the American title of Life Force, which further fleshes out the organic motif.

Sorry for the pun.

To make up for it, here's another playthrough video, this one of Abadox, which really "fleshes out" organic themes.

And surprisingly gross things for an 8-bit game.

*I'm trying to figure out how the heck I missed that this was written "them" instead of "theme" for so long.

-Signing off.

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