Game: Cyber Core
Developer: Game Princess
Publisher: IGS (JPN Version)
Release Date: March 9th, 1990 (Japan)
System: PC Engine/TurboGrafx-16
My Score: 6.5/10
If Mushihimesama were to be released in the early 90s, this game would probably be the closest to what it would look like. I only say that because you are a beetle piloted by a human who is out to rid the world of giant insects that have invaded the earth. The year is 2269 and giant bugs are everywhere. Your mission is to get inside the giant bug “Chimera” and kill its innards to save all of mankind.
Wow, what a responsibility. Luckily for you the game is not difficult at all. The game is extremely generous with power-ups and shields that it is almost impossible to die in this game. Furthermore, the difficulty level cannot be adjusted…even after you beat the game.
The game feels like most vertical shooters. The “I” button fires unlimited ground bombs (à la Xevious) and the “II” buttons fires your regular shot. You can adjust your ship’s speed with the select button. From very slow up to very fast. I suggest you use the fastest settings on the final level to avoid those really fast blue flies. I hated those damn things.
There are 8 levels in this game. The first two levels are an ocean and a city respectively, and levels 3 thru 6 are pretty much the same backgrounds repeated with the only real difference being the type of enemies. The 7th and final level seems to be some sort of mechanized insect. Confirmation of where you really are is revealed in the end graphic. Speaking of graphics, the enemies are well-detailed bugs but the backgrounds are horrible. Just ugly colors and not very well drawn. It’s OK since most of your attention is put on your own ship which can grow pretty big.
The bosses are big bugs and are very easy to defeat. Some can only be damaged by ground bombs, some only by your regular shot and some by both weapon types. The 7th level boss is pretty bad ass. It reminds me of the waterfall boss in Contra 4 (DS). The 6th level boss is probably the most difficult of all the bosses, but that isn’t really saying much. The other bosses are pretty much sitting ducks.
The power-up systems come from different colored orbs. A giant housefly flies diagonally across the screen. The more you shoot it, the more orbs come out. There are 4 different colors: blue, red, yellow, and green. If you, for example, get a blue orb your ship will increase in size and its firepower will also increase. You can be powered-up 3 times ONLY if you collect the same-colored orb. The next time the power-up fly comes across the screen, shoot it until the desired color pops out but AVOID the other colors. If you accumulated two blue power-ups then accidentally get a red one, your power-ups will start over again. If you get 3 of the same color power-ups, your ship will be pretty unstoppable EXCEPT for the fact that it has tripled in size. This big size makes it harder to get in between enemy bullets. The huge size is either a curse or a blessing, depending on your skills.
The Verdict: 6.5/10
This game could have been a really great shmup if it were more challenging. The controls are great and the power-up system is cool…but again, the game is just too easy. The 7th level could have been the 1st level and you wouldn’t even notice the switch. It is only in the final level, the 8th, that the difficulty gets kicked up a notch. The enemies are faster, more enemy bullets on the screen, and power-ups are less frequently available.
Pick this game up if you can find it cheap, but if it is over $8 shipped; don’t bother UNLESS you want to collect all PCE shmups. Cyber Core is a great game, but there are better offerings on the PC Engine.
My Copy, no emulated reviews.