I came into Radiant Silvergun not knowing what to expect but, since the game has been overshadowed by plenty of Triple-A October releases, I did some research.
Radiant Silvergun was actually originally released in arcades and the SEGA Saturn in 1998, but those versions never saw an official release outside of Japan.
Fast forward to the year 2011, and the game’s original developer Treasure has finally brought the title to a Western audience with enhanced graphics and added online features.
After firing up Radiant Silvergun, newcomers will notice two things.
The first being that this game is not a Western developed title – even the dialogue in the game’s story has subtitles. What makes the story even more complicated to understand is that the subtitles pop up on-screen while playing the game, so there’s rarely time to actually pay attention to what the characters are actually saying. Luckily, nobody will be playing RS for its immersive story lines – and jaw-dropping plot twists.
The second thing that becomes immediately apparent is that Radiant Silvergun is one of the hardest games in existence. I played the game extensively for this review, but even on the easiest difficulty, my lives maxed out as high as possible, I failed to ever beat the title.
Radiant Silvergun is very different compared to other games that play similarly. Anyone partaking in the title will come to realize rather quickly that there are a bountiful amount of weapons at the player’s disposal – and that alone helps establish a different tempo and feel when put up against other games in the genre. The way that players increase their score is also quite different — chaining together kills of the same colored enemy will up the overall score significantly.
There are several different modes to choose from but each offers the exact same experience. In each case, gamers will play through the exact same levels, in the exact same order, and the title doesn’t offer much variety, especially to warrant the inclusion of both modes. The gameplay is quite enjoyable initially, but Radiant Silvergun doesn’t seem to be able to hold onto that appeal for very long.
While all of the game modes appear nearly identical – they each have their own leaderboards. What is really unfortunate is that the arcade mode only has a local learderboard, so if players want their scores posted online then they’ll need to play using the game’s new Score Attack mode. While the online leaderboards give the Score Attack mode a purpose, it would have just made more sense to be able to post arcade scores online – instead of even bothering with local leaderboards.
Multiplayer is a fun option, and it can be played either locally or online. A gamer and one other friend will be able to play through the Radiant Silvergun, but other than the fact that the game seems easier with an ally, there is still nothing new or noteworthy that makes the multiplayer that special.
Radiant Silvergun feels like a different take on the shoot ’em up games of years past, but the updated graphics and limited online improvements fail to add much more to a title that was originally released over 13 years ago. Those who enjoy scrolling shooters will find this downloadable update to an arcade classic enjoyable, but when everything is said and done, the game mode are identical – so there’s little value, considering the price of admission. Despite giving players avatar items and gamer pictures, Radiant Silvergun, just doesn’t offer much for the $15.00 cost.
What do you think of Radiant Silvergun? Do you remember the title from the late 90’s?
Radiant Silvergun is available now on Xbox Live Arcade.
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