Terra Diver

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Sōkyū Gurentai
Soukyugurentai.jpg
Sega Saturn cover art
Developer(s) Raizing
Outback Pty
Publisher(s)
  • JP: Hamster (PlayStation)
Composer(s) Hitoshi Sakimoto
Platform(s) Arcade, Sega Saturn, PlayStation, EZweb, i-mode, Yahoo Mobile
Release Arcade
  • JP: 1996
Sega Saturn
  • JP: February 7, 1997
PlayStation
  • JP: December 25, 1997
  • JP: May 22, 2003 (re-release)
Mobile
EzWeb
  • JP: 2005
I-mode
  • JP: 2005
Yahoo!
  • JP: 2005
Genre(s) Manic shooter
Mode(s) Single-player, two-player co-op
Cabinet Upright
Arcade system Sega Titan Video
Display 704 × 513, 6144 palette colors

Sōkyū Gurentai (蒼穹紅蓮隊 lit. "Blue Sky Crimson Lotus Squad"?) is a scrolling shooter arcade game released by Raizing in 1996. There is an English version of the game titled Terra Diver, but it was never officially released. The game was ported to the Sega Saturn, PlayStation, and mobile phones.

Gameplay[edit]

Terra Diver is a vertical-scrolling shooter. The player picks one of three different ships - red, green or blue - each with their own pilot, fire pattern and laser web. Each ship has a standard gun and a bomb, but the most distinctive of these aspects is the laser-web: holding down the button for the standard gun will release a lock-on laser-web traditionally shaped as a cone or semicircle, which will destroy the enemies it locks onto after releasing the buttons. Each ship has two different lock-on weapons that function as web-designed laser targets. Once an enemy enters the web's range, the player can destroy the enemy or multiple enemies can be destroyed via homing lasers or multiple fire-balls. The game is unusual in that, rather than using a 3:4 aspect ratio to better suit the vertically-oriented gameplay, it uses a horizontal monitor (4:3) in the style of Neo Geo vertical shooters as well as the later Radiant Silvergun and Giga Wing.

Plot[edit]

After exhausting the Earth’s resources, particularly fossil fuel, innumerable trade companies team up with NASA and begin initiating space programs dedicated to finding resources outside the planet Earth. Mining facilities are established in different areas outside of Earth, particularly on large asteroids near the Moon and most especially on Mars. Various resources are found from these areas and distributed to Earth which aid in the world economy. The largest company that is established from this is the Jin-Sei (Exhausting Star) Corporation set in Japan which is worth 1 trillion in New Yen investments, founded by the Miama family.

However, after years of space resource distribution, the separate companies started initiating attacks that would dominate other company’s resources. The strongest of these attacks started on Martian colonies established by the second largest company on Earth, Eight Luck Interstellar Development Inc., which banded with smaller companies across Earth including ones in China, England, and America. Eight Luck planned on claiming Mars for its own so as to monopolize on the outsourcing of minerals as well as developing terraformed areas.

In response to these attacks, the Jin-Sei formed a union with the JSDF (known in the future as JDF) and began working on a space fighter program organized by Defensive Section 2 of the JDF known as the Scarlet Lotus Team (SOQ for short), which utilized a unique laser technology fighting system known as NALS (Non-blind spot All range Laser System) in combat. The threat of eco-terrorism was on the rise as out-spoken ecosystem protectionism groups opposed the company's outsourcing of materials; these were used as subsequent cover-up stories to hide the company war waging between Jin-Sei and Eight Luck from public awareness. Made up of the best fighters adapted to this combat system as well as innumerable stamina strengthening tests for space travel, the SOQ are sent in to defend company territory from rival companies on Earth and space at all costs.

Release[edit]

Terra Diver was originally an ST-V arcade game, so it received a near-perfect Sega Saturn release. It also received a PlayStation port which had a slight loss of graphical clarity and some additional slowdown. Later on in the Saturn's lifetime, Soukyugurentai Otokuyo, a slightly enhanced port fixed up some bugs when playing the game on an American unit with the Pro Action Replay, and included a playable demo of Battle Garegga. Mobile phone version of the game was released in 2005.

Reception[edit]

Sōkyū Gurentai was one of Raizing's most popular arcade games.[1] Consoles + rated the Sega Saturn version at 92%.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Zverloff, Nick (2010-11-26). "Raizing / Eighting". Hardcore Gaming 101. Retrieved 2016-08-03. 
  2. ^ "Photographic image of Terra Diver magazine review" (JPG). Download.abandonware.org. Retrieved 2016-08-03. 

External links[edit]