Raiden, Atari Jaguar

Possibly the only good vertically-scrolling shooter on the Atari Jaguar, Raiden is a conversion of the 1990 Tecmo arcade game, but with a horizontal screen instead of a vertical one. The game was ported to the Jaguar by British company Imagitech Design and published by Atari Corporation in 1994.

Raiden features progressive weapon power-ups, simultaneous two-player cooperative play, impressive boss battles, and challenging ‘bullet hell’ mayhem.

The graphics throughout are excellent, with large, smooth sprites and tons of on-screen objects flying around with zero flicker. Enemies attack from the ground and the air and different heights are depicted as parallax scrolling layers, which works really well.

Sound effects and music are good and they marry together well without being overwhelming. Gameplay-wise, there is little to fault, although it’s fair to say that the game is pretty hard, and losing a life – and therefore your built-up weapons – can often lead to a succession of lost lives, which is a hazard in this type of shooter. Thankfully you can continue if you lose all your lives, and you can even choose how many continues you want at the beginning of the game (up to eight maximum).

Overall, though, Raiden is a great conversion and a decent blaster on the Jaguar. In fact, I’ve yet to play anything similar that’s better (or even comparable) on the system. And no – Trevor McFur in the Crescent Galaxy doesn’t count, because it’s absolute dogsh*t.

More: Raiden on Wikipedia

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