A classic reborn.
It’s not uncommon to see releases of remakes and remasters in the recent years. While it’s nice to see some of the older titles getting their spot in the limelight once more, many are released with only the bare minimum of work done.
Upscaled graphics and a steadier framerate is the course on call, and while that might be good enough for some, others developers go the extra mile to truly reinvigorate the aged game for the new generation.
DARIUSBURST Chronicles Saviours is a clear example of the latter, with a plethora of new content specifically made for this enhanced release, providing some of the most satisfying shmup action on the market.
Platforms: PS4, PSV, PC.
Multiplayer: Online leader boards and offline co-op with up to four players.
Played: 8~ hours
Chronicles Saviours offers two distinct modes of play from the get-go. There’s a faithful reproduction of the arcade mode with branching paths that tell a story, or a challenge mode where missions are unlocked that have the player facing off in select levels under some unique conditions.
The arcade mode is played under a rather unique resolution, where there’s an emphasis on horizontal view, but this comes at a sacrifice of the top and bottom of the screen, which don’t serve any purpose at all.
This is faithful to the arcade experience, but playing from afar on a couch could make it difficult to see the player’s ship, so much to the point that I actually recommend sitting close to the TV while playing this mode.
That’s right, forget everything your mother ever told you about watching TV.
The arcade mode also offers up to four players on local co-op and its multiplayer aspect is the best reason to play this mode over the other.
The challenge mode is filled with missions that do an excellent job of teaching the player the strengths and limitations of the nine playable ships. It also provides some interesting takes on the formula by changing up the objectives. For example, there are even wave based missions where any enemy that makes it to the left side of the screen drains a life bar which, when empty, spells game over for the player.
As far as the gameplay goes, Chronicles Saviour is a very traditional shmup, with power-ups and a multi-hit barrier system, but differentiates itself by letting the player switch the direction that they’re shooting with the press of a button.
This is used in clever ways, especially during the many massive bosses that take up most of the screen with their size and barrage of bullets.
There’s also a mode called, “Darius Odyssey” which chronicles the history of Darius in a digital art book form and a ranking mode showing off the best of the best.
Unfortunately, there are no online multiplayer modes to speak of, which would’ve been a great addition to an already content rich package.
DARIUSBURST Chronicles Saviours not only provides an authentic arcade experience for a classic shmup, but also reinvigorates the series by adding a great deal of meaningful content that makes it one of the biggest releases for the genre in recent years.
Fun Tidbit – The music in this game is quite odd. I can swear I heard someone singing about sushi at one point.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.