I tried to follow the history of Taito who ran through Showa and Heisei while playing the recorded title of Taito's desktop mini housing 'EGRET II mini'

'EGRET II mini ' is a game machine that Taito packed 40 types of arcade games from the 1978 to 1990s into a desktop-sized arcade cabinet. It is said that you can experience such EGRET II mini prior to the release in March 2022, so while chasing Taito's game history from 40 types of games, from titles that you have never touched to famous titles I played with it.

EGRETⅡ mini | Taito Co., Ltd.

Below is a table summarizing the 40 types of game titles included in the EGRETⅡ mini. Looking at the genres, most of them are action and shooting. In addition, some titles will be ported to home video game consoles for the first time. I picked up 16 titles that I was interested in and played them in chronological order. You can jump to the item of the corresponding title by clicking the title link. The screens are under development and may differ from the actual product version.

Title (○: First home transplant) Release year Genre
Space Invader 1978 Shooting
Lunar Rescue 1979 Shooting
○ Steel worker 1980 Puzzle action
○ Lupine III 1981 action
Quicks 1982 action
Adventure canoe 1982 action
Pirate Pete 1983 action
Elevator action 1983 action
Chack'n Pop 1983 action
○ Outer zone 1984 action
Fairyland Story 1985 action
The Legend of Kage 1985 action
Scramble formation 1986 Shooting
Bubble bobble 1986 action
Halley's Comet 1986 Shooting
Bizarre mysterious world 1986 Action shooting
Rastan saga 1987 Shooting
Ultimate tiger 1987 Shooting
TATSUJIN 1988 Shooting
New Zealand Story 1988 action
Raimais 1988 action
Rainbow Islands EXTRA 1988 action
Volfied 1989 action
Cadash 1989 Action RPG
Dondokodon 1989 action
Violence Fight 1989 Fighting game
Gun Frontier 1990 Shooting
Ninja Kids 1990 action
Hat trick hero 1990 Sports
Liquid Kids Adventure 1990 action
Growl 1990 action
Metal black 1991 Shooting
Rayforce 1993 Shooting
Elevator Action Returns 1994 action
Kaiser Knuckle 1994 Fighting game
Darius Gaiden 1994 Shooting
Bubble symphony 1994 action
Fang 1994 Fighting game
Puzzle Bobble 2x 1995 puzzle
Bubble Memories 1995 action

◆ Space Invader (1978)
This 'Space Invader' is the starting point of Japanese arcade game culture, which has become a social phenomenon, and is a must-have title when talking about the cultural history of the Showa era. It is one of the games that incorporates the now-common system of 'shooting while avoiding the bullets shot by the enemy' into the shooting game, and it is a game that has a particularly significant meaning in the history of Taito's arcade games.

Basically, all you have to do is shoot down all the invaders who are approaching you in a row of dozens. However, the invader's approaching movement gradually becomes faster, so if you get impatient, you will be easily killed.

Also, in order to capture the game, such as 'Nagoya Shooting', a tactic of abandonment that attracts enemies to the end and shoots them down at once by using the bug that 'it does not hit the bullet of the invader who is on the last line to be attacked by your own team'. Technique was developed and had a great impact on game players. The following is a movie of shooting in Nagoya actually released by Taito.

[Demonstration] Shooting in Nagoya-YouTube

◆ Qix (1982)
'QIX' was originally developed by Taito America, an American corporation of Taito, and was reimported to Japan in response to a hit in the United States.

The rules are very simple, a game where you draw a line in the field so that you do not touch the linear creatures (Qix) that move in the field. Be careful as enemies called Sparks are circling around the frame of the field.

The movement of Qix is complicated, and it is extremely difficult to draw a line while avoiding hitting.

Clear the stage by occupying an area with a specified occupancy rate or higher. It's simple, but it's so deep that time goes by quickly as you play.

◆ Adventure Canoe (1982)
'Adventure Canoe' has been released overseas but has not been released in Japan, and this is the first title to be released for Japan with the EGRET II mini.

It is a simple game that uses 2 left and right directions and 2 buttons for acceleration and shooting to go down the river, but the movement of the canoe has inertia, and the animals appearing on the riverside and small islands attack with hostility. Since it comes, the difficulty is quite high.

Of course, if you hit a small island or a rock, the canoe will sink.

◆ Elevator Action (1983)
Released in 1983, 'Elevator Action' is an action game in which you become a spy, invade a building, get confidential documents, and escape. This is one of the most popular and well-known titles in Taito's arcade games.

Armed enemies attack you on your way downstairs using the elevator.

Get confidential documents at the red door on the way. Rather than defeating the enemy one by one, the point of the strategy is to go ahead while scraping the enemy's bullets and getting on and off the elevator well.

◆ Scramble Formation (1986)
The feature of the 'Scramble Formation' in the story 'Shoot down the mysterious enemy that appeared from the giant meteorite that fell into Tokyo and save Tokyo!' Is that it is set in Tokyo.

The background, which was created based on satellite images at that time, reproduces Tokyo in the 1980s. The parliament building at the starting point looks like this.


Korakuen Stadium etc. will be projected. It can be said that the production of the actual scenery drawn as it is in the game was quite rare at that time.

And, as the title suggests, the point of this game is that you can switch the formation of the aircraft. By defeating the red enemies that appear along the way and getting the items that appear, you will be able to line up wingmen behind your own aircraft.

There are three types of formations, and the point is to capture while switching according to the situation. However, the speed of your ship is slow, and it is often impossible to avoid enemy bullets, so it can be said that the difficulty level is high.

◆ Halley's Comet (1986)
'Halley's Comet' is a vertical screen shooter released in 1986 when

Halley's Comet was approaching. You can see what kind of game it is actually by watching the following movie.

Play the shooting game 'Halley's Comet' that shoots down the approaching meteorite on EGRETⅡ mini --YouTube

A setting to defeat a mysterious enemy that appeared from an approaching great comet. If you shoot an approaching enemy or meteorite, the percentage in the lower right will gradually increase, and when it reaches 100%, the game will be over.

When you actually play it, it is a simple game that 'shoots down all while avoiding enemies', but you can shoot down enemies and meteorites flying with your own machine that powers up steadily, and power up while dodging enemy bullets The addictiveness of 'Halley's Comet' can be said to be quite high, as the pleasure when picking up an item is quite high, and the shot leak is clearly displayed in numbers.

◆ Rainbow Island EXTRA (1988)
'Rainbow Island EXTRA' is a highly difficult version of the

action game 'Rainbow Island ' that aims to reach the goal by climbing up with a rainbow or jump. As the title says 'THE STORY OF BUBBLE BOBBLE 2', this is the second work in Taito's popular game series 'Bubble Bobble'.

Operate the main character, Baby, and defeat the enemy or use it as a scaffolding while emitting a rainbow in the air, aiming for higher and higher. The difficulty is high, but the strategic technique of how to use the rainbow well, such as using the rainbow to move forward and getting items using the rainbow, is required, so the replay element is high.

In addition, the EXTRA version of BGM recorded in EGRETⅡ mini is different from the original 'Rainbow Island', and has been replaced with another song such as

'Cosmic air way ' of 'Darius'.

◆ Cadash (1989)
'Cadash' is an action RPG, a royal road story of 'defeating the devil and saving the princess.' The player chooses a character from four different professions.

The content is like an orthodox fantasy. The beginning seems to be a royal road, and it starts in front of the king.

The graphic expression is precise, and the scrolling of the background is misaligned, so the depth is well produced. In the dungeon, it is a side-scrolling action that advances while attacking with a sword or magic, and you can hear various lines by talking to people walking in towns and castles, which adds depth to the world view.

You can see the play video of Cadash from the following. Since Cadash is an arcade game, there are no saves on the way, and you will continue to push forward until you clear it. In an actual arcade game, a lot of money is required to clear it, but with EGRETⅡ mini you can continue by just pressing the credit button, so even people who could not clear it at that time can clear it.

Play the masterpiece 'Cadash', an action RPG that makes you an adventure as a warrior or a wizard on EGRETⅡ mini --YouTube

◆ Gun Frontier (1990)
Shooting games are a particularly popular genre of arcade games from the 1980s to the 1990s. 'Gun Frontier' uses an arcade board developed by Taito called the F2 system , and features a graphic that makes the best use of its specifications. The opening Taito logo is also displayed with an elaborate effect of hollowing out the burning flames and reflecting the blue sky.

Gun Frontier is characterized by a hard science fiction world view with a Western drama motif.

The following is the opening demo of Gun Frontier as seen on the EGRETⅡ mini. The profound world view is told with detailed graphics and voices flow, and has it evolved so far in 12 years from Space Invader? I am surprised.

Watch the opening demo of Gun Frontier on EGRETⅡ mini, saying 'We were waiting' --YouTube

The game is a vertically scrolling shooting game. The speed is slow overall, and the enemy's bullets are fired ahead of the aircraft, albeit slightly slower. You can power up by collecting 5 coins dropped by the enemy, but if you try to get the coins and move forcibly, you will hit the enemy's bullet that flew slowly.

As you play further, the difficulty level will automatically increase little by little. Furthermore, if you are shot down, your aircraft will not be revived on the spot, but will be restarted from a fixed point a while ago, so you can not take the strategy of 'forcibly proceeding while being done in a difficult situation', and the difficulty as a game Can be said to be quite expensive.

◆ Growl (1990)
'Growl' is a side-scrolling action that acts as a ranger unit to crack down on the evil poaching group 'Berser Animal Conservation Corporation' and ward off the attacking poaching corps. There are 4 types of characters that can be operated. The leftmost 'Gen' is a brown Panama hat, a white shirt with an open chest, and a design that you have seen somehow. With the EGRETⅡ mini, you can display the wallpaper when displaying a 4: 3 screen at 16: 9, but the gen drawn on the left side is wielding a whip, and it feels more familiar. It has become.

You can see what kind of game Growl is by watching the following movie. The production is quite radical, such as when you attack the enemy, the enemy's body will fall apart mercilessly.

Play the belt scroll action 'Growl' on EGRETⅡ mini where a familiar explorer defeats an enemy approaching with a whip or a gun --YouTube

The stage often narrows suddenly, and if you're not careful, you may be surrounded by enemies in an instant. The attack power is not good with bare hands, but the enemy drops weapons, so you need the flexibility to pick up and use it each time. Weapons are diverse, including guns, knives, and grenades.

Of course you can also use a whip.

◆ Metal Black (1991)
'Metal Black' is a side-scrolling shooting game released as a sequel to Gun Frontier. However, the 'sequel to Gun Frontier' is just a form, and in reality, a completely different story is prepared. The animation at the beginning that synchronized music and video ...

You can enjoy graphic production that has evolved beyond Gun Frontier, such as the expression of your own machine 'Metal Black' that slips through the abandoned buildings.

'In a world where Earth humans have been defeated by the mysterious invader Nemesis, a man gets into the frozen'Blackfly', which was developed as an anti-Nemesis weapon, and stands up to defeat Nemesis alone.' The story. At the beginning, a fighter will fly to stop such a hero.

By acquiring the red, yellow, and blue particles 'neurons' that float in the air, the beam weapon required to defeat Nemesis is powered up. If you press Energy Release while powered up, you can emit a powerful convergent or diffuse beam. When energy is released according to the enemy's beam ...

The beam interferes and a huge energy sphere is generated. It is also possible to do a lot of damage to a powerful boss by hitting this energy ball.

Below is the actual play of Metal Black on the EGRET II mini.

I played a horizontal STG 'Metal Black' with EGRETⅡ mini, which has a hard science fiction world view and a wonderful graphic effect --YouTube

◆ RayForce (1993)
Taito has released many shooting games, many of which are titles that bring the world of hard science fiction to the fore, such as 'Gun Frontier' and 'Metal Black.' In 1993, it was released 'Rayforce' is also one that, later, ' Ray Storm ,' ' RayCrisis is also leading in the works, such as' games.

The feature of 'RayForce' is to lock on the enemy on the ground or in the back of the screen ...

The point of emitting a homing laser. You can get a lot of points by locking on many enemies at once and shooting them down. Of course, there are also ordinary shots, so you can play by intercepting the approaching enemy with a shot, locking on a distant enemy and shooting through with a laser.

The deep screen production and the homing laser emitted from your own machine in an arc are very beautiful, and you can see that the evolution of Taito's arcade game is exactly in the graphics.

The following movie shows how such 'RayForce' was played on the EGRETⅡ mini. With the EGRETⅡ mini, you can play at home like a game center by outputting HDMI with the vertical screen.

I played 'RayForce' with a lock-on laser that draws a beautiful trajectory with EGRETⅡ mini --YouTube

◆ Elevator Action Returns (1994)
The sequel to 'Elevator Action ' released in 1983 is this 'Elevator Action Returns'.

Graphics have evolved dramatically in 11 years. The spy depicted in pixel art has a unique look.

There are 3 characters that can be used, and each has different physical strength, attack power, and speed. Weapons are also set in detail by the character.

You can see what 'Elevator Action Returns' is like by watching the following movie.

I played 'Elevator Action Returns' with EGRETⅡ mini, which has dramatically improved graphics and gameplay from the previous work --YouTube

The point of 'invading an enemy building, collecting data and escaping while going down the floor with an elevator' is exactly the same as 'elevator action', but the graphic expression is significantly improved and the operability is also Since it is up, you can see that it has evolved considerably as an action game. 'Elevator Action Returns' is quite rewarding as an action game and is recommended.

◆ Kaiser Knuckle (1994)
Many fighting games appeared in the early 1990s, and Taito also released 'Kaiser Knuckle' in 1994. 'Kaiser Knuckle' has never been ported, and it will be the first EGRET II mini to be ported to home video game consoles.

The following movie shows Kaiser Knuckle played on the EGRET II mini.

The fighting game 'Kaiser Knuckle' that was first ported on the EGRETⅡ mini looks like this-YouTube

The game system is an ordinary fighting game, but the major feature is the 'crash gauges' on the left and right. If you hit a special move with the crash gauge fully accumulated ...

An electric shock runs on the screen, increasing the attack power of the special move. It is a system that can reward you even if you keep being killed, but the difficulty of command input is high, the connection of techniques is bad, and the reaction of the enemy is tremendous anyway, so it can be said that the difficulty is very high.

Furthermore, if you meet certain conditions and win with no continue until the end, the back boss general will appear. This general is said to be the strongest boss in fighting game history ...

I was greeted with a super reaction that made me think that I was looking ahead to the input, and I was killed with overwhelming speed, power and special move.

The following movie is a place to actually have an audience with General. The EGRETⅡ mini is equipped with an 'always save / load' function, so you can easily meet the general at home and try again and again. Due to the high difficulty of Kaiser Knuckle and the strength of General,

there is also a 'Kaiser Knuckle Society ' that studies the capture of Kaiser Knuckle and General in Nico Nico Douga, so if you are interested, please use EGRET II mini. Please try to capture.

'Kaiser Knuckle' that can be played on the EGRETⅡ mini makes the strongest boss 'General' in the history of fighting games messed up --YouTube

◆ Darius Gaiden (1994)
'Darius Gaiden' is one of Taito's shooting game 'Darius' series. The arcade version of 'Darius' and 'Darius II' featured an ultra-horizontal screen with three screens arranged side by side, but Darius Gaiden has only one screen.

The game is much easier to play than the previous two games in the series, and bombs that can be used for emergency avoidance are also adopted, so even people who have never played side-scrolling shooting games can easily play. In addition, since the EGRETⅡ mini has a continuous shooting button, even people who are not good at continuous shooting of buttons can play without problems.

The following is where I actually played 'Darius Gaiden' on the EGRET II mini.

Play the masterpiece 'Darius Gaiden' of side-scrolling shooting with EGRETⅡ mini --YouTube

◆ Fang Fang (1994)
This 'Dankuuga' is an adjustment of the ' Kaiser Knuckle' to make it easier to play. Although the location test was carried out, 'Kanjou' was a phantom title that was not released after all due to various reasons, and this time it will be officially released for the first time on the EGRET II mini.

In addition to two difficulty levels, normal and professional, there is also a training mode where you can practice special moves and final mysteries within the time limit.

In training mode, you can check the command of the character, so you should definitely play it before you challenge the actual battle.

What I felt when I touched 'Kaiser Knuckle' was that it was clearly easier to play than 'Kaiser Knuckle'. The connection of the techniques has improved overwhelmingly, and it has become easier to make combos by linking the techniques by canceling the return. Overall, the game speed has increased slightly and command input has become looser, so I got the impression that the operability has improved significantly compared to the 'Kaiser Knuckle.'

The following movie is where you actually play 'Fang'.

EGRETⅡ mini allows you to play Taito's phantom fighting game 'Kanjou'-YouTube

As I actually played the game on the EGRET II mini, I could see how the game evolved. Not only will the graphics be cleaner, but by taking advantage of the improved graphics performance, it will be possible to express effects that were not possible before, and it is clear that the world view of the game will also be convincing. In addition, by adopting a new production, I was able to feel the history of arcade games, which added a novel system that has never been seen before.

The size is such that it can be placed on a table, and the main body also has a 5-inch monitor, so you can take it out and play when you want to play. Also, if the monitor is a horizontal screen, the vertical screen tends to be narrow and difficult to see, but it is attractive that the EGRETⅡ mini can play games for vertical screens by physically turning the monitor.

In addition, the EGRET II mini can output to a TV or monitor with HDMI output, so you can enjoy arcade games on a large screen. In addition, since you can save at any time, it is a nice point that you can easily capture games that could not be cleared without stacking 100 yen coins at the game center. You can operate it with the levers and buttons attached to the main unit without any problem, but it is recommended to use the dedicated controller pad or control panel (sold separately) because it will be easier to play.

EGRETⅡ mini is accepting reservations on Amazon.co.jp. At the time of writing the article, only the main body is 16,973 yen including tax, and the luxurious special edition with all controllers, original clear file, mouse pad, acrylic key chain, sticker sheet, etc. is 49,478 yen including tax.

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in Review,   Video,   Game, Posted by log1i_yk