Raiden Trad review - Sega Megadrive
What the Mean Machines staff thought
First impressions are none too good. The sprites are poorly defined and lack variety, although the movement and scrolling is very smooth. However, once you get into the game, it's not at all bad. Shoot 'em ups are a very tired genre, but this game has a couple of features which raise it a few notches above the average blaster. The random power-ups dished out after the loss of a life make progression through the more difficult stages much less frustrating, and the wealth of power-ups provide great satisfaction in their wide-spread destruction. There aren't many good up-screen shooters, and whilst this isn't an essential purchase, it's one which bored shoot 'em up fans should definitely consider.
On the surface, Raiden Trad doesn't look like it's got anything to save it from sinking without a trace into the sea of Megadrive shoot 'em ups. There are only two main weapons and two supplementary weapons, and the graphics and sound are hardly Earth-Shattering. However, it does have two things going for it: playability and challenge. It's a pretty tough game, and the way the weapons work is neat - whizzing around with a fully-tooled weapon gives much mindless blasting entertainment. The last mystery level is absolutely rock, and it takes a lot of practice to get all the way through the game. If you haven't already had your fill of up-the-screen blasters, this is well worth checking out.
Raiden has been converted to several different platforms over the years, and thankfully pretty much every port has retained the killer gameplay of the arcade original. The MD version is no exception. Although the visuals and sound take a hit, the core gameplay is as enjoyable as ever. You really do feel like you're in charge of some serious firepower when you play this game and the on-screen destruction is a joy to behold.
Godpikachu - 21 Feb 2009, 01:07 GMT
I had my first encounter with the raiden series when i found a homebrew flash game called "Raiden X" whilst messing about on the net at work one day (lol!), and since then i have become hooked on the raiden games.
The MD version of Raiden Trad is fairly rare now, but its well worth picking up if one comes your way, as few top down shooters are as entertaining as this.
Gameplay wise, its a simple case of shoot anything that moves (and even stuff that doesnt), with some huge ass bosses at the end of each level, but, making your job easier is the weapon and ship upgrades that some enemies drop when they get blown up.
You start with a basic machine gun, which can eventually be upgraded by collecting red orbs to be an awesome screen clearing spread shot, but, if oyu dont like the machine gun, try collecting blue orbs to get a ridiculously powerful forward firing laser.
In addition, you can pick up "H" or "M" blocks, which become homing missiles or powerful rockets, both these weapons work in tandem with your machine gun or laser to increase your planes offensive capabilities.
If (and more probably when) you are killed, some of your powerups hang around, so nimble fingered gamers can get some of their firepower back, meaning that in later levels when the screen gets ridiculously busy, you have a better chance of making it through without losing furthur lives.
you also have a nice set of smart bombs which as well as dealing horrendous amounts of damage to enemies, can also destroy incoming bullets, and if you are really lucky, youll find a "P" block, which instantly upgrades all your weapons to the maximum level.
As this game is on the MD, the visuals take a bit of a downgrade, but the enemies and your ship are nicely defined, and you can see your enemies incoming shots and hopefully avoid them without wondering "what the hell just hit me?".
The music is pretty cool too, for an MD game the BGM is better than average.
The only real downer on this game, aside from its rarity, is the aforementioned "screen busyness", later on in game the screen becomes chocka with fast moving, heavilly armoured enemies, their bullets and other assorted things, this, unless you have super reflexes, can become frustrating if you arent quick enough to dodge out of the way or if you dont have a sufficiently powered up main gun. Youll spend many an attempt screaming at the TV and/or throwing your controller about because you were too busy dodging bullets from enemy A to see enemy X sneaking up on you and firing off a few rounds.
All in all, this is a good game to have if you like shooters, and if you can find a copy.
Tim Chuma - 22 May 2013, 11:24 GMT
I remember playing this in the arcade and on the Megadrive, was a very accurate conversion. I never really got into shooters but did enjoy this one.