maj 24, 2014
Image Fight, famicom
Another shoot'em up?! First I would like to make a praise to Irem. The had many ideas for very original games with nice graphics and music, and always great playability. The are like Konami, except that Irem always had much smaller release numbers and so their games are usually harder to find.
Maybe Irem games made their games for adults more than other gaming companies did, becaues in general Irem games have a low amount of stuff that only kids could tolerate, such as cheap deaths, lack of continues, painful music and terrible controls.
I also think Irem famicom carts are the best looking because of their screenshot on the back.
Image Fight has no passwords or save function and needs to be completed in one go (unless you use a cheat). At first it seemed annoying because of the easy deaths, but then I found that the charm is in the infinite continues. In practice you has infinite lives because even after game over you get to restart at the same checkpoint.
The famicom version has a nice black background like flying in space. From looking at youtube videos, the NES version replaced it with a blue background, which to me seems weird.
There may be other changes between the two version but I have not found them documented.
The number at the bottom of the screen indicates plane speed. Change with the A button.
You need to accomplish on average 90% on the first five levels. I have tried looking around the net, but no guide informs what this number refers to or how to get 90%. The guides also say that you have to replay the stages if you get less, but on the famicom version I played you'll be taken to a penalty area (at 5:27 in video). This difficult area is where I took up my turbo-controller, at last, because without it my thumb went numb. The game doesn't otherwise require a turbo controller.
The game isn't always easy, but isn't too hard until the final boss. If you die on the boss there, you'll restart at a check point without powerups that makes it almost impossible. It would probably be easier to replay the entire game. Quite a shame that it went so easy with a good powerup, and so impossible without it. There is a stage selection cheat one can use, maybe I'll try that the next time to replay just the last stage.
You can usually find it cheap. 5-7$ loose, and 15$ boxed, or so. It isn't anything special but it also isn't too bad except that it is annoying how impossible it got in the ending... It has some fun powerups, nice graphics and sound and because you have inifinite lives you'll keep on playing.
The game is also on Pc Engine and is usually considered better than the famicom/NES version. A problem with the famicom/NES version is that it feels like it could need more polish. First you have five "training stage", but they still have real bosses and all. Then three "real battles", that are very easy with the right power ups, but if you die at the final boss the game almost becomes unwinnable.
Here is another review that I thought was most accurate. Maybe because it also reviewed the famicom game, unlike other reviews.
Here is another review. Don't just read the first half of it!