Omega Boost

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Omega Boost
Omega Boost Coverart.png
Developer(s) Polyphony Digital
Publisher(s) Sony Computer Entertainment
Director(s) Yasushi Taki
Zaika Tei
Producer(s) Kazunori Yamauchi
Designer(s) Yuji Yasuhara
Engine Gran Turismo
Platform(s) PlayStation
Release date(s)
  • JP April 22, 1999
  • NA August 31, 1999
  • PAL September 14, 1999
Genre(s) Rail shooter
Mode(s) Single player
Distribution CD-ROM

Omega Boost is a three dimensional shoot 'em up developed by Polyphony Digital for the Sony PlayStation. It was released in 1999 throughout Japan, North America, and Europe by Sony Computer Entertainment.

The game features mecha designs by Shoji Kawamori of Macross fame.

Being released late in the PlayStation's life, Omega Boost is said to have some of the best graphics on the console with parts of the game running at 60 frame/s. The game was criticized by some reviewers for being too short (Nine levels with nine unlockable special missions) and simplistic. However, it is still considered one of the best Macross-style mecha simulation games produced and is thought of by many as a sleeper hit due to its poor marketing.

Story[edit]

In the past, an artificial intelligence named AlphaCore peacefully and silently co-existed with the human race. One day, the humans became aware of AlphaCore and its capabilities, and were shocked by what it is capable of. Humanity tried to destroy AlphaCore but it rebelled against humanity and a war between humans and the machines erupted and went on into the distant future.

In this future, scientists devise a way to travel through time in order stop AlphaCore. However, AlphaCore discovers this plan and steals the time travel technology. It then plans to travel into the past and alter ENIAC, the first artificial intelligence, thus making itself more powerful in the future.

The scientists create the Omega Boost, a giant robot capable of traveling through time using the Direct Drive System (DDS). Lester J. Hemming, an experienced pilot and one of very few who can pilot the Omega Boost, is charged with traveling back in time to stop AlphaCore by destroying it before it can begin to exist.

Gameplay[edit]

The gameplay takes place in waves, meaning that enemies will appear in the same groups and formations in the same order every playthrough. The player doesn't get to choose what order to engage an entire stage's enemies, just the ones in the current wave. This rail-shooter element does not hamper the player's freedom to fly where they choose in most stages. On some stages, the player has complete control of Omega Boost, specifically areas where they are in Planet ETA's atmosphere. Other stages limit the player in terms of speed (falling through the timeshaft).

The "Boost" part of the mech's name comes from Omega Boost's booster pack, allowing the player to move in any direction and circle strafe enemies with a scanning and lock-on feature. Omega Boost also learns the Viper Boost maneuver once it is levelled up. Viper Boost, when engaged, will cause Omega Boost to glow blue as it tears through enemies on screen. Destroying enemies will cause the gauge to refill incrementally. However, the game can be completed without ever using Viper Boost. If Viper Boost is used, the final ranking will have "Pixy" added onto the title, showing the attack during play.

Development[edit]

Similarities between Omega Boost and Sega's Panzer Dragoon series led to a rumor that former members of Team Andromeda, dissolved in 1998, had joined Polyphony Digital. This rumor turned out to be true as the lead designer and programmer on Omega Boost was Yuji Yasuhara,[1] who had worked on Panzer Dragoon Zwei.

Among the games created by Polyphony Digital, Omega Boost was the only shoot 'em up, while the others are vehicle racing simulators.

Audio[edit]

Omega Boost Original Soundtrack
Soundtrack album by CMJK, Shingo Okumura, Daiki Kasho, Takafumi Fujisawa
Released June 19, 1999
Genre Video game soundtrack
Length 63:21
Label SPE Visual Works

The Omega Boost Original Soundtrack was released on June 19, 1999.[2]

The album had a limited print and is considered very rare. As such, many fans of the game have found it easier to rip the soundtrack from the game disc itself, however, this leads to confusion over the official titles of the tracks, mainly because they are labeled as "areas" in-game instead of the official names given by the creators.

The opening movie and ending credits in each version features different music. The Japanese version uses "Shade" by Feeder as its opening theme and "Ismeel" by Dip in the Pool as its ending theme. The North American version licenses songs by Loudmouth, opening with "Fly" and closing with "The Road"; also "Otsegolation" by Static-X is featured, playing during the title screen and the final boss. Finally, the European version uses "Dreamer" by Cast as both the opening and ending themes.

Merchandise[edit]

A series of action figures was created by Blue Box Toys, featuring mecha from the game, including: Omega Boost[3] and Beta Boost.[4] A third figure, Herbarcher, was shown on the back of the boxes, however it was never released.

References[edit]

External links[edit]