Date: 11-27-2010 06:00
Author: Chris Engle

PDC profile: Chris

Sonic Wings Special is a top-down fighter jet shooting classic for the PS1 system that combines features from the first 3 games in the series. You should know that I am typically against these types of games because I lack interest in them.

Soaring the Skies

The game is a classic vertical-scrolling shooter allowing you to maneuver anywhere on the screen and shoot straight ahead of you. You must take down the enemies before they shoot you down or crash into you. When taking down the enemies, items appear on the screen such as power-ups for your weapon and bombs for your special weapon attack. I liked that every level is fairly short, taking no more than 2-3 minutes to complete with a boss waiting at the end. Despite the game having 17 levels, each play-through only takes you through 9 of them. The first stage played is always the same but the remaining 8 are chosen randomly.

The Fighters
There are 5 teams featuring 2 characters per team. They come from 5 nationalities: USA, Japan, Russia, Sweden and P.K.F. Each of the characters has a unique standard attack and special attack. The standard attacks range from straight forward direct attacks to attacks that go off on all sides. Special attacks range from bombing the screen, massive beams that shoot forward, freezing enemies on-screen and more. When you complete a full 9 levels and beat the final boss, you unlock another fighter jet for the character you beat it with, each character has a second fighter jet. There are also 2 hidden teams which can be unlocked.

Other Features
Other features of the game include Score Attack mode which allow you to take on each of the bosses one after the other. They are upgraded to be harder in this mode than from the regular versions. The objective is to simply take on as many as you can, as fast as you can. Other features are minor which include playing BGM sounds, selecting one of the 4 difficulties, and changing the screen to either 'normal', 'scrolling' ( which is vertical scrolling) or 'arcade' (which is a sideways view).

My Final Words
Normally, I canít stand to play these kind of games, I lose interest in them because I find they go on too long for my taste. That said, the levels are short and sweet, you donít need to know any Japanese to play the game because the menu is in English, and the game feels more like an arcade classic than a PS1 game. Buying the game will allow you to play on both your PS3 and PSP systems, so you can take your game and the save on the go. Both of which are a big plus. My only problem with the game is the inconvenient saving system. You have to save both the settings from the options menu and save the game itself between levels. As a final reminder, because this is a PS1 game, if you don't save manually, you'll more than likely lose progress for forgetting. But with itís classic graphics, sound and gameplay this may be a title youíll want to look into picking up for this genre.

ďSonic Wings SpecialĒ was developed by MediaQuest in 1996, has been re-released by MonkeyPaw as a PSone Import, and is now currently available on the NA store for $5.99. It is approximately 103 MB and is playable on both the PS3 and PSP systems. I played the game for roughly 3 hours on both systems equally yet favored it more on the PSP.

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