Author Topic: Psikyo Shmups  (Read 1056 times)

Psikyo Shmups
« on: March 30, 2018, 10:31:26 PM »
I've played more of these games in the past three months than virtually anything else. I absolutely love them. They're so repetitive and virtually interchangeable, they adhere to almost identical formulae time and again but I want to play every single one. I'd never even heard of Psikyo until late last year so this quite a revelation. My absolute favourites so far are:

Strikers 1945 II
Samurai Aces
Sengoku Blade
Zero Gunner 2
Sol Divide (yeah, even this, it's unique).

I fully expect that they'll be bringing out Gunbird 2 and Strikers 1999 in due course and I'll be there day one. Next week, Dragon Blaze is coming, too. No prizes for guessing that it's a vertical shmup from the year 2000, featuring generous power ups, a steep difficulty curve, multi-phase bosses and lots of graphical charm.

Anyone picked up any of these? They really are smashing value for money and lots of fun, and hard as fuck.


Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2018, 10:39:19 PM »
I've got Gunbird 2 on me Dreamcast. It's got lovely art and is nice to have, but a pretty limiited thrill to be honest. It's certainly no Bangai-O.


  • Evil green pig.
Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2018, 05:12:27 AM »
I think Dragon Blaze is largely regarded  as their best vert - it has a slightly different mechanic in terms of hopping off your mount and becoming more vulnerable instead of a long shot button special move.

Bullet patterns are similar and the randomised levels are business as usual.

Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2018, 07:53:57 AM »
Cheers, gash. That's very promising then. I assumed we were a little bit near the bottom of the barrel but it seems they're getting better with each release. Sengoku Blade this week is possibly my favourite so far, I've completed it three times already and going for the full house to unlock Marion now. It's impossibly difficult on normal but I can clear the first stage without dying now and getting a few sections and bosses down.

I like the sound of that Dragon Blaze mechanic, one of the Sengoku Blade characters has a short range melee attack as their charged special and you can pretty much one shot anything outside of bosses if you time it right and are powered up. Massive risk, massive reward. It feels great.

The, cheers. I definitely see that they're fairly simplistic games without loads going on mechanically or score-wise, they're not especially good looking (even if the later games are much more appealing) but I do find them to be a very pure experience and more twitchy and reliant on dodging than purely learning routes as with your bullet hell stuff.

Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2020, 06:33:08 AM »
They've started putting these out on steam. Strikers 1945 first.
Having great fun, but man, they're so hard!
When the bullets go really fast, it's dead exciting, almost sexy, but really scary!

Very oldschool and straight forward but the stage design is on point!
Man, when the rank gets too high though, it's just brutal, if you've one too many lives or a few too many bombs in stock, the game just wants you dead so bad.

Still at the stage of trying the different planes, not sure what my waifu is yet, but I've done the best so far with the second plane. That one where the special weapon is that spinny blue shield sort of thing. It's not very useful since it takes an awfully long time to charge up and set off, but if you get the timing right, it can come in handy for the later bosses, though I'm realising that it's in your best interest to learn the patterns and using that get out of jail free card, it might let you push a bit further on that run, but it's sort of a wasted run because you didn't learn anything new. Better to die to that pattern you're having trouble with and getting closer to finding your strategy to avoid it than to just skip it.
I usually don't bother with the special weapon, but the main weapon is very powerful so that makes up for it, it feels like that plane is designed for newbies since it really chews through the baddies.

I can get to stage 7 but it doesn't last long once I'm there.
I've read that gunbird is easier and samurai aces easier still, and they're next, so hopefully I'll have more luck with those ones. Feel like I'm hitting a wall at the minute and not making progress.

I tried lowering the difficulty a notch, but that didn't seem to help much at all. I don't want to crank it down any further because the lower difficulties are called stuff like "monkey" and "child", horrible emasculating slurs that I don't think my fragile ego could recover from.

They're those sort of games where memorisation plays a bigger part than normal, when the rank gets high, you really need to have the patterns memorised and know exactly what's coming and when and you have to teach yourself when you should be leading the aimed bullets and knowing when to hold your ground.

Is gunbird still your favourite, Shay? That ones coming 11th may, hopefully I'm a bit better at that one.

Sorry for bumping such an old thread, but it seemed daft starting a new one when this turned up in the search.

Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2020, 04:35:02 PM »
Yaaaay! Gunbird down.

I'm a big boy now! My first Psikyo 1cc!
That's given me a nice little confidence boost. Hopefully I'll be playing with more bravery on the other games now.

Yuan-Nang, the character I was using feels like cheat mode, her melee attack charges really quick and her main shot is dead powerful too and her bomb is instant and feels a lot more like a get out of jail free card than some of the others.
I can't see any downside to using here.

You can get up close and take the enemies down really quickly with her so there's a lot more dead air in the first loop and you can spend a lot of time just waiting for more eejits to show up. I wish the second loop was also a separate mode so you could just jump straight on that if you weren't in the mood to run through the first.

Love the stage design again, everything is very memorable. Good fun and I much prefer the sort of colourful, silly fantasy vibe than the more straight, drab military feel of strikers. Gonna see if I can beat the second loop next.
I like the old lad on the hover bike as well, I might try and beat it with him too.

Good game, looking forward to trying the sequel when that gets released.

Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2020, 02:26:43 PM »
Yay! Managed to beat gunbird with Valnus today, the flying robot guy that's like tick tock from return to oz.
Man, that took some doing, the end of the game is quite tricky with him. Glad to finally beat it. Didn't last long in the second loop. I think I'm not cut out for that. Maybe if I made a save state in shmupmame and practised over and over, but life's too short. I'll move on now, I think.
Just in time for samurai aces, that's getting released tonight.

Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2020, 04:18:51 PM »
Great work. I find these games hard as fuck.

Currently trying to 1CC Raiden Fighters Jet. Reached Phase 1 for the first time today with three lives. Got melted in about thirty seconds, honestly.

I just want to clear it, even if it's the bad ending. Got to the stage 50 boss a couple of times and tried to bomb spam my way to a cheap win but he's got a shitload of HP. Great game, though. Very Psikyo but, err, it's Raiden innit.

Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2020, 05:08:56 PM »
Thanks man!
Yeah, the raiden games make me cry.
I might try raiden 4 again soon, see if I'm any better now.
It took my dinner money and smashed my glasses the last time I tried.

Re: Psikyo Shmups
« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2020, 09:02:35 PM »
I had a another few runs on Gunbird and man, it is tough for me. Great work getting to the second loop with two of the buggers. I think I got a 2CC on Zero Gunner 2- on the Switch before I knew what I was really doing but that's the closest I've come with Psikyo. I tried the Chinese lass and I see what you mean about that melee attack. Absolutely bangs through those clumping robots and anything medium sized in fact. I much prefer Gunbird to Strikers because it has a real sense of the absurd to it, but without being total clown town.

Samurai Aces is older, I think, but I really like the look and feel of it. It's like Tengai, which is also brilliant, but a vert. Bullets seem fuckin fast from memory and input lag on the Switch is benzo tier. Like trying to swim away from ED-209. Will be interested to see what you think.