the black sheep of CAVE’s DoDonPachi series, Bee Storm is developed by IGS as a test of the hardware for the possibility of future licensing of it from CAVE. reusing assets from DoDonPachi and having super simplified gameplay mechanics, this title gets the cold shoulder a lot. it’s actually a ton of fun! while it’s far from perfect, it’s got a strange modern-meets-classic shmup appeal to it and is very enjoyable.
this game isn’t emulated in MAME yet due to the protection used on the ROMs.
Bound High / Unreleased / Japan System Supply / Virtual Boy
one of the best titles on the Virtual Boy was unfortunately one that was set to be released the second year of the console’s life, after Nintendo had pulled the plug - and the rug out from many developers on a whim. fortunately, the prototype was pretty much complete and was eventually released to the wild: http://www.planetvb.com/modules/games/?u001d
Sol Divide / 1996 / Psikyo / Arcade (and much more)
Sol Divide is Psikyo’s “odd man out” of their shmups. adventure and RPG elements along with melee combat all stuffed together in a fairly ugly shmup. it’s far from perfect, but also perfectly charming. give it a go, as the PlayStation ports are pretty much dirt cheap. somehow, i remain a fan of this little gem.
Olmang Jomang Paradise / 1995 / Family Pro / MS-DOS
another Korean gem from prolific developer Family Pro. a very Space Harrier offering in which the folks at Family Pro really rock that adLib music. gameplay starts at 3:19 in the video, but check out that title screen music starting around 1:50. the game itself is a bit sloppy in the hit detection department, but is a blast nonetheless just because of the amount of cool effects and aces the devs have up their sleeves.
this game is kind of an “all-stars” of all their trademark characters and franchises up to this point.
Korea loved the MS-DOS platform, and there’s a treasure trove of games to discover for it. shmups, beat-em-ups, and platformers were Korea’s big things on the platform, as they seemingly had a shot at getting in on the post-arcade market of the mid-to-late nineties.