is the Mothership boss that plagued you
Not my favourite of levels this..
it was damn hard,
The 'bio-organic boss' style would
Space Year 1985.. Konami unveils a
I have some pocket money Mum?'
An hour later, one skint fourteen-year old returns forlornly home, all his money having been shoved into his favourite arcade machine at the time. And that game was Nemesis..
Nemesis is one of the candidates
Along with R-Type, Nemesis (or Gradius as it was known elsewhere) was probably the most influential shoot-em-up of the '80's and on it's release in arcades in 1985 it blew pretty much every other coin-op shooter out of the water in terms both of game design and visual style.
Konami had released some very nice arcade shooters previously (including the original Scramble, Time Pilot and Gyruss) but there were so many unique and new features in this game.. the floating 'multiples', the pioneering progressive weapon selection system, the odd 'mirrored' nature of the stages and those weird star-shaped shields were all firsts - and the fabulous for their time background graphics, memorable in-game music and the sleek, uber-cool design of your ship - the 'Vic Viper' - all contributed to make Nemesis an instant videogame classic. It remains so to this day. Look closely at any modern evolved horizontal shooter (not to mention a number of vertical ones) and you'll more than likely see features which first saw the light of day in this very game.
Nemesis spawned many home versions on nearly every available format at the time, including a pretty good C64 one. It was followed by a semi-sequel 'Salamander' in 1987 as well as a true sequel 'Vulcan Venture' (one of my fave arcade games ever!) in 1988, and Gradius III was released on the SNES in 1990. The rather nifty Gradius Gaiden was recently released on PSX, and the all-new Gradius 4 is due to hit the arcades any time around now..
Links: There are plenty of excellent fan sites scattered across the
web which pay homage to the Gradius series. Here are a few:
The Gradius Online Manual