More frenetic space shooting action is coming your way, courtesy of Shin'en.
Last year, the team behind the awesome Game Boy Advance shooter Iridion II really got into the thick of things by releasing a sharp-looking, highly difficult shooting game called Nanostray. Despite some distribution screw-ups by Majesco (the game could barely be found during its initial week of release), it gathered quite the fan base, most notably shooter fans who couldn't get enough of the various challenges that the game still offers today. Now, Shin'en, the development team behind this fine piece of work, has even more tricks up their sleeve with the forthcoming sequel, Nanostray 2 -- which should be making quite a mark sometime this summer.
In the sequel, the universe has once again fallen into chaos, and the Nanostray flight team is called into action to defend it at all costs. This time, the invading forces are more alien than mechanical, resulting in some rather odd bosses to go up against. One boss featured in an early video features two sets of deformed jaws, all leading up to an eye where the mouth should be -- an apparent weak spot to concentrate your bravado firepower. The game seems to lean more towards the old-school design of Irem's R-Type series, but has some creative ideas all its own. That's good news.
Instead of just focusing on the intense top-down scrolling sequences like in the first game, Nanostray 2 will mix things up by also throwing in side-scrolling sequences. This should be welcomed with open arms by shooter fans, as the game will clearly bring back memories of favorite 16-bit shooters, R-Type III included. A lot of the enemies are looking very good at this point, complete with detailed animation and attacks that will require some serious bobbing and weaving in order to guarantee survival. The music sounds pretty rocking at this point as well, working in the same guitar rhythm as the first game.
Nanostray 2 might have two-player capability, where a couple of players can team up to take down the opposition. The game should also have a World Ranking system up and in effect upon its release this summer, meaning that pilots can work against each other and see where they sit in a Wi-Fi-supported rankings board, or through the Nanostray 2 website (at www.nanostray2.com). The game should also come with various challenge stages and modes to choose from, as well as a variety of stages scattered across a troubled universe. And, yes, a giant crab shows up -- so you can deliver massive damage.
That just leaves one question then -- who is going to publish the game. At the time of this preview, the official Nanostray 2 website still hasn't indicated who will be handling publishing duties for the game. Some might suggest that Majesco Games will be stepping back in, seeing as how the first game was a moderate success for them. But word has it that it's also seeing some potential in a new publisher. When we get final word as to who will be handling the duties, we'll let you know.
In the meantime, prepare your mouth-frothing for Nanostray 2, especially if the hard-pumping shooter blood runs within your veins. The sequel looks to be on par with the original, and could even become better with vast levels and boss battles. We'll be back with a full review upon the game's release this summer. Don't Nano-stray too far. Yuk yuk! I kill me!