Parodius review - Super Nintendo

Read Original Review PDF for Parodius

Penguin alert! Penguin alert! Yes, those penguins might look cute and harmless swimming about the big pool at the zoo, but give them half a chance and they're off conquering far-flung galaxies with the aid of their strange mutant pals. Sadly for the inhabitants of the Parodius Zone, those pesky water fowl were given more than half a chance, and now their society is awash with marauding flightless birds and their cronies.

However, one renegade penguin exists who along with his pals, a flying octopus, a human space fighter pilot and a living space craft, wishes to bring an end to the reign of terror. But, this is no ordinary penguin - for starters he can fly, as well as being decked out with the latest lethal weaponary.

In Parodius, the celebrated cartoon “tribute” to Gradius, it falls to you to take control of Pengy or one of his merry band to free the planet evil penguin influence.

What the Mean Machines staff thought


" There have been veritable palpitations of excitement throughout the office ever since this conversion was announced. Parodius is surely one of the greatest shoot 'em ups of all time, even beating Gradius, the game it was based on! Imagine our joy when SNES Parodius arrived and was in fact the best version of the game ever. Alright, so the gameplay itself is nothing new, but it is presented in such an original way, full of pirate penguins and sumo-wrestling pigs, that it doesn't really matter. The superb graphics are colourful and detailed and move very smoothly. There is a huge attention to even the tiniest details with ever background having as much care put into it as the end-of-level guardians. The sound is likewise superb. The tunes on Parodius have always been celebrated, but the quality of sound here brings a whole new depth to the proceedings. What really makes Parodius the game it is, however, is the superlative playability. The game moves very quickly, and a hight body count isn't sacrificed just because of the cute enemies! On the highest difficulty setting there just so many things to shoot it's difficult to believe, although this inevitably leads to some problems with slow-down. If you're looking for a SNES shoot 'em up to while away the hours, look no further than this. If only everyone puts this much work into their games. "

" Wow! I really enjoyed this game on the NES, Gameboy and PC Engine and like everyone else was awaiting this game with bated breath. Once again, Konami have done Super NES owners proud with one of the slickest shoot 'em ups devised for a console. The action is truly arcade quality, with super-smooth scrolling and awesome graphics and sound. However, the icing on the cake is the superb style of the game. The cartoon graphics this game possesses are unmatched on the Super NES with vibrant colour schemes and superb sprite and background definitions. The sound is awesome too. Instantly familiar scores are remixed into cutesy, cartoonesque tunes that back the action perfectly. As you would expect from Konami, the game plays brilliantly as well with excellent gameplay and loads to keep you coming back for more. If you're a shoot 'em up fan anxious for a highly cool example of the genre, go for this one! "


Overall Score93%

Retrospective comments


This game is just absolutely nuts! If you haven't played it you owe it to yourself to hunt down a copy RIGHT NOW! As a big fan of the Gradius series I was instantly attracted to this title when it became available in my local games store in 1992 (aw I was just 16!) Having the Japanese version wasn't a barrier to this wonderful title other than the loudspeaker weapon my little octopus ship would get which barked out Japanese words of different lengths to wipe out the baddies! (Translations wanted - email please!!)

I guarantee if you pick up this game you will not put it down for ages. It is so addictive and the bosses have such imagination from the weird Japanese minds at Konami! Stand out moments have to be fighting a sumo pig, lasering a yankee doodle birdie, bombing a floating pirate ship with the head of a cat and my favourite bit guiding the ship between the legs of a giant can can dancer to avoid certain doom. NUTS NUTS NUTS!

Dan - 15 Apr 2009, 13:05 GMT

Probably one of the best shooters of it's time, and deffinately the best "Alternate" shooter out there. Extremely playable and extremely wacky, it was as bizare as it was fun and, again, benifited from Konami's wand of magic being wave-ed over it. I also played the sequel and, whilst it was still ace, it lacked a bit of something that this original did. Mint game.

man - 07 Feb 2011, 22:30 GMT

Something's got to be said for a game series which sets out to parody a genre that not only turns out to be some of the best games of that genre but some of the greatest games of all time. Well, that's what I think anyway.

Tens - 17 Apr 2013, 13:39 GMT

Insane game this, Excellent shooter though.
a choice of 4 crafts and decent power ups/ Weapons, And a good difficulty setting.
Hardly any slowdown on this one and good bosses.
8/10 I give this.

Mean Machines Issue 23 - August 1992
Shoot 'Em Up Super Nintendo
Buy today!

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