For the time it was originally released in arcades, Finalizer: Super Transformation is an advanced vertical-scrolling shoot ’em up that features a wide variety of enemy types and a fun power-up system. It is a good game that fans of the genre should appreciate, though technical limitations of the original hardware keep it from being truly great.
Players begin Finalizer: Super Transformation as a jet, but as the title suggests you can transform into a robot by collecting power-up items. Once in robot form, you are given a shield that can withstand several hits and can collect even more powerful weapons.
As you fly over a realistic world map, you will be confronted by several enemy types, each with their own flight and attack patterns. Every so often, you will encounter a boss ship that spews a large number of projectiles similar to modern “bullet hell” games.
The main drawback that I found is that even after 20-30 minutes of play in a session, I’ve only encountered one boss type and it takes a long time for the difficulty to ramp up. Compared to more modern games, Finalizer: Super Transformation is tame, though it avoids being cheap or frustrating like many 1980’s contemporaries and the game rewards both skill and a sound strategy.
As more enemies appear on-screen, the graphics will flicker and the game will slow down noticeably. Another complaint related to limitations of the original hardware is that enemy ships can be obscured because of a limited and bland colour palette. The sound effects in this game are not particularly good and the music is jarring when appears, seemingly at random.
Despite its technical shortcomings, fans of the shoot-em-up genre should consider giving a spot in their Game Room to Finalizer: Super Transformation.
+ Good Variety of Enemy types
+ Fun Robot Power-Up System including a Shield
+ Responsive Controls
+ Fun but Limited Boss Encounters
– Colour Palette can Obscure Enemies and Obstacles
– Weak Sound Effects and Music
– Flickering and Slowdown Later in Game
– No Auto-Fire, Button-Mashing Required