Taito (Ving) 1996
Originally a Taito F2 system arcade game, Metal Black is
touted as the sequel to Taito's obscure vertical shooter Gun Frontier, but is
a very different style of shooter to that game. A
horizontal scrolling beast, it at first appears to hold
many similarities to Taito's classic Darius series,
although the weapon power-up system is quite unique-
there are no specific power-up icons, but a multitude of
floating isotopes called 'Newalone' throughout each level
which can be nabbed in order to increase your guns'
destructive capabilities, and at higher level release a
devastating 'beam' weapon which can counter the enemy
alien weaponry in a spectacular fashion (this idea was
recently seen in the 'Alpha-beam' weapon system of
G-Darius..) Also of note are the unusual 'Galaxy Force'
style pseudo-3D bonus stages. The bosses, as in the
Darius series, are a particularly nasty lot. And boy.. is
this game tough.. ;)
left) : First stage sub-boss, a giant alien crab-thing with an
aircraft carrier on its head..
(Right) Setting about dealing with the rather ugly end of stage
boss with my beam weapon
(Below left) Bonus
stage bit.. blast aliens in 3D for big points (Right) Organic
Spectacular poster artwork for the original
arcade game. Click on a pic to enlarge.