Taito released Parasol Stars for the PC Engine in 1991.
It is the third game in the Bubble Bobble series and features Bubby and Bobby – the two human characters from Rainbow Islands – both armed with a multi-purpose parasol and the ability to chuck water around with them.
Each stage takes place on a single screen of platforms (sometimes slightly bigger than the play area, so the screen scrolls) and the aim is: to kill off all the monsters by throwing things at them. You can collect water drops on your parasol and throw those, or collect them into one large droplet and throw that – resulting in a water torrent cascading down the screen (as in Bubble Bobble). Later on you can also pick up special electricity or fire droplets to zap or burn your opponents. Oh, and you can stun your enemies by hitting them with your parasol, which then allows you to pick them up and throw them. Parasol Stars features a lot of throwing, but it is great fun chucking your opponents around.
There are eight themed worlds to play in Parasol Stars – each with seven stages and a boss fight – plus two secret hidden worlds that must be unlocked by collecting Star Items and opening a door in the final world.
Parasol Stars was a PC Engine exclusive – it never appeared in arcades – and is arguably one of the best games released for the system. Ocean Software released a series of conversions in 1992 although none are as good as this original PC Engine version.