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North American box art
Akiyoshi "Einosuke" Nagao
|Genre(s)||Vertically scrolling shooter|
Super Aleste (スーパーアレスタ?), known in North America as Space Megaforce, is a vertically scrolling shoot 'em up video game developed by Compile. It was published by Toho in 1992 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System as part of the Aleste series. In a traditional fashion, the player pilots a spaceship through a variety of locales crawling with enemy squadrons to shoot down, though the story in the Japanese version is different from American and European ones. However, Super Aleste also offers a "Short Game", where only a set of small levels are played, with the emphasis on scoring as many points as possible.
The story differs slightly depending on which version is played. Regardless of the version though, the opening premise to both Super Aleste and Space Megaforce is actually the same:
In the year 2048, a large mechanical sphere falls from space and starts attacking major cities around the world. After much destruction, the sphere hovers over the jungles of South America, drawing lines into the ground similar to the Nazca Line drawings as it expands itself and draws energy from the jungle foliage. Equipped with its own defense system, The Sphere destroys all attacks made on it by Earth's military. The original Aleste fighter ship's failure to stop the sphere's growth prompts the construction of a space fighter capable of wielding amazing weaponry, that fighter being the Super Aleste. Tasked with flying into and destroying the sphere, the Super Aleste must also destroy any reinforcements the sphere calls for which come from the deepest depths of space.
In the original Japanese game story, the Super Aleste was piloted by an ace named Raz and his co-pilot was a mysterious young alien woman named Thi, a prisoner aboard the sphere who harnesses strange powers freed by the constant attacks against the sphere. Thi's role in the game was to fly with Raz into the sphere, weaken its defenses and properly wrest the sphere's power source. The presence of both characters, and thus the game's original ending, were cut from Space Megaforce.
There are eight types of weapons to use, and each can be powered up by collecting chips (small spherical items). Picking up chips causes the player's current weapon to level-up, to a maximum of six. There are two types of chips to find; Orange chips contribute to a level-up, but at higher levels, more chips are required to reach the next level. Green chips make the weapon level up instantly. Each weapon has a function that can be manipulated with the Shot-Control button, changing around the weapon's abilities to suit different situations. Switching to another weapon is done by picking up a numbered item, with initials representing one of the eight weapons.
The player's health is tied to the level of their weapon. When the ship is hit, the weapon loses four levels of power (but it cannot go below 0). If the weapon is already at level 0 upon getting hit, the player dies. This means the weapon must be at level 5 or 6 for the ship to survive two hits. Also, there are two types of extra lives; Normally, if the player dies, they try the level again at the last checkpoint. However, it is possible to convert lives into Special Lives with a certain power-up; These allow the player to come back at the exact place they were killed, losing no progress. If the player has enough lives that a number is used to display them, then the icon becomes red if they have at least one Special Life left.
Like many other shooters, this game has its set of obstacles, but the ship won't be destroyed by touching them, unless the scroll pushes and crushes the ship against the obstacle.
The Japanese version has more content than the European and American versions, here are some of the differences.
- Has super deformed art on the options and game over screen.
- Has story intermissions between the stages.
- The ending is twice as long and reveals the mystery behind the enemy invasion. More information is revealed upon beating the game on the harder, very hard, and then the hardest difficulty levels.
- The names of the levels and their bosses are different
- Some voice samples are different in the US/EU than in the Japan version
It was released for manga on February 22, 1993 in Japan, was based for video game for Compile's same name was created for Okazaki Sami, written by Kubo Muneo, and Published by Monthly ASCII Comic.