on Mars have declared their independence. Earth
sends a military expeditionary force in response.
Apparently the colonists have developed the
ultimate projectile screen system which would
make the bad guys in Dodonpachi
wet themselves with envy..
When I first played this game at the
arcades I was blowing $10 every Friday night and
making little headway. In fact I thought it was a
miracle when I breached level 3 for the first
time!!! When it came to the Dreamcast
I stopped blowing all my money at the arcades and
devoted myself to this game and it's rather
unique approach to twitch.
Silvergun (which is probablly my
favorite of the top down scroller variety)
focused on lots of bosses with
intermittent waves of destruction but it gave so
much room for personal expression via the art of
x-x-y-b that it became an instant classic for me.
It had a unique weapons system, lots of style to
the gameplay (in terms of how you defeated the
bosses) and looked great! I remember actually the
style of it totally blew my mind! Sci-fi
envions and a rather interesting storyline
follows a rather goofy opening.
But where Radiant Silvergun has
subtlety mixed into the fray we find
Mars Matrix aka Omaha Beach June 6, 1944.
Mars Matrix focuses on a never
ending rain of death coming downscreen at all
times. You must kill every living thing on Mars
to reclaim it. Everything.. Your weapons are
simple. Gatling-type Automatic (1) ,
a Pulse Laser (2) that
has shorter range but is far more powerful (has a
1 shot every 2 seconds rate of fire) and the Mosquito
The Mosquito works
by sucking in enemy bullets and
either a) powers up to the max
and unleashes the black hole bomb killing
everything on screen (or in the case of bosses
doing lots of damage) or b)
powers up partially and then spits the munitions
back at your enemies. The Mosquito auto recharges
when it's not in use.
Mars Matrix packs 6 gun
toting levels and 7 bosses
(the last boss has 2 forms). Mars Matrix
redefines the word "challenging" and
"hard"...in fact Mars Matrix may very
well be the definition of xenocide
in a shooter...you can kill just about everything
here. In fact the game uses all sprites to maximize
the on screen ammo count and number of bad guys
at all times.
Indeed when you wipe bad guys they turn into experience
cubes (of different sizes and
consequently different amounts of xp). Gather
enough of these in a given time and your ship
powers up to the next level making everything
onboard more powerful. This is also remarkably
hard to do at first but thankfully the developers
have graced us with the ability to unlock,
amongst other things, tutorials for the levels.
These tutorials are invaluable and allowed me to
turn completion of the game by my fingernails
into a rather respectable end game.The music is
decent techno fare but is
generally blotted out by the tremendous number of
bullets you will be firing. I've heard it said
that there are people who can beat this game with
1 credit or that there's little challenge once
you get the "secret" to the game down.
Well perhaps those people were born with the gift
of twitch because while I am not a god
of these games I think I fare pretty well and
even with the tutorials it still exhausts like
3-4 credits to finish a game (unless you turn the
difficulty setting way down that is....)
You can buy features like speeding up the game,
number of credits, number of lives per credit,
art gallery, etc. Basically as you earn points
you can trade them in for features one at a
I cannot recommend this game enough..
Especially if you live in the US...it's only
out of Five:
Mars Matrix Arcade Flyer. Click
for a bigger