#7 – Abadox

 

                                      Hot steppin’ all over some guts. What a friggin’ weird cover for an even weirder game.

 

        

                                                                                           Is that you, Gigyas?

 

PLAYERS: 1

PUBLISHER: Milton Bradley

DEVELOPER: ITL

GENRE: Shoot-em-up

RELEASE DATE: March 1990

 

Abadox has such potential. The concept of flying into an enormous creature that feeds on worlds is  amazing. Sadly, no other shmup that I’m aware of has explored this idea (or have they? Prove me wrong! Leave a comment!). It’s a shame that Abadox has gross amounts of lag. When any shooter has lag, it should be for you to slow down, breathe, and shoot some of the swarms of enemies that are suffocating the screen. A shooter should not have lag between shots fired! If I’m tapping the B button rapidly, the amount of times my thumb hits the button should be relative to the number of shots fired on the screen.

 

Lag aside, Abadox is a fairly decent, if not straightforward shooter. Like any other standard horizontal shmup, the gameplay is shoot and move. Eyeballs, gaping mouths, and flying skeletons await your lasers, as you guide your hero through mile after mile of intestinal space. It’s surprising that Nintendo let Abadox slide through their, at the time, Gestapo screening process for games. Though no explicit blood spatter is shown (the title screen excepted), entrails and pulsating red intestines don’t exactly scream innocent. Like many ridiculously challenging Nintendo games, I only recommend Abadox if you have some time on your hands because you will die a lot. Judging by the levels I played through, the game is made for you to constantly add new powers to your repertoire. Unlike many shmups, when you gain different powers, you keep them all instead of simply having one. It’s definitely a nice change. Should you die, though, you lose all your upgrades and if you’re in a later level, you need those powers. “Game over” will probably be your road well-traveled. Happy (en)trails.

 

C+

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  • Esoteric

    This is a really good shooter, but holy crap is it hard.

  • It is really hard. If they had toned down the difficulty just a tad, I would have enjoyed it more.

    • I never found the game difficult, just annoying. (been renting and playing the game since I was in elementary school) The hit detection and the narrow passages is the most aggrevating aspect of the game. Aside from that stage 6 pulls out all the stops but it is beatable. I think it’s quite fun and I can beat the game in one setting no cheats. All the times I died when playing the game growing up have only been on the final stage.

  • I just beat this game this morning, the bosses are ridiculously easy. The first stage boss is actualky the hardest as its the only one that moves around! Every other boss can be dispatched in seconds as they all have a blind spot. For instance, the final boss you have pictured above, you can duck inside by the green orb on the left and blowbit apart in a few seconds.

    The stages themselves are what give this game its difficulty, but man was it fun.

    • You forget that all you need to do on the first boss is just move slightly up and down on the left side of the screen (when the scrolling stops just stay on that edge of the screen) as it jumps back and forth. You can avoid it’s diamond/pellet shots easily the other bosses are easy as well. But I agree; To me the speed booster is a detriment as much as it is a help I typically never try to max out the speed because too much manuverabilty can cause you to screw up by ramming to far into the backgrounds trying to avoid enemies or even go further into the stage, stage 2 is bad about the tight corners.

  • Anonymous

    “The concept of flying into an enormous creature that feeds on worlds is amazing. Sadly, no other shmup that I’m aware of has explored this idea (or have they? Prove me wrong! Leave a comment!).”

    Lifeforce had the exact same plot; from the wikipedia page:

    “The Japanese and European versions are nearly identical, but the American version changes the game’s plot by adding an opening text that establishes the game to be set inside a giant alien life-form which is infected by a strain of bacteria.”