No. 9: Galaga
Galaga. Midway (1981). An important milestone
in shoot-em-up history. Moon Cresta and Galaxians had shown us that Space Invaders
with a little more vroom could result in true shoot-em-up thrills. Both its name and the game play are derived from the seminal
Galaxians, but the whole thing is so much
more flowing. Aliens
arrive in streams to build up a formation at the top
of the screen, giving you time to reduce their numbers before the enemy
onslaught. Only one power-up in this game, but a very interesting concept
never used outside of the Galaga series - if you allowed an alien mother ship to steal your
fighter , you would lose that life, but could regain it with a well-placed shot
to the captor. In fact allowing your ship to be captured was a genuine tactic,
because when you rescued your rightful property,
it would sit beside your current ship, and give you double firepower!
A capture in progress.
|Galaga stands the test of time
very well, being very playable and immediately accessible today. To me and my little teenage gang, this game
was known for a while as Moon Alien. Why? Well, because this game adorned a
particularly greasy corner of our local chip-shop in South London and was very
probably a clone, because it was housed in a grotty cabinet emblazoned with the
legend "Moon Alien". So, that's what we called it, until we learned
Features: Early use of 2 shots on screen at the same time, first power-ups?