Few shooter franchises bear the prestige of Technosoft’s Thunder Force series, and the name is almost synonymous with the Sega Genesis. Indeed, the three games on that platform are widely held in high regard, and parts three and four are often referred to as classics. The series made the jump to 32-bit hardware with a fifth installment and then lay dormant for over a decade, until it was suddenly jerked back onto consoles with the recent – and import-only – Thunder Force VI for the Playstation 2. We’ve waited ages for this game, but with a new team behind the design and those fabled 16-bit days drifting farther and farther away, is this the reboot the property needs? You’ll have to read our full hands-on to find out.
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If you ask a Genesis fan which shooter they’re most partial to, most of them will likely mention one of the Thunder Force games. Better known than probably any other series in the genre, the three titles released on Sega’s little black box have become the stuff of legend. Most would argue that the fourth game, confusingly (and incorrectly) renamed Lightening Force in the U.S., is the best, but there are those with a soft spot for the epic third installment. The latest installment of Double Take looks back at Techno Soft’s masterpiece and recalls fond memories of the great times playing it.
King of shmups? Best on the Genesis, or best overall? You’ll have to decide for yourself whether or not Lightening Force (Thunder Force IV) truly is all it’s been hyped up to be, and to help you out, we’ve cooked up this handy little review!
Combining maniac action with incredible graphics and awesome soundtracks, Thunder Force took no prisoners.
Yet after its fifth entry for both the Saturn and Playstation, the series upped and vanished. Technosoft quietly left the industry, and the series was no more. Why would anyone let one of gaming’s most cherished franchises disappear? What happened to the fabled sixth installment, which was slated to debut on the Sega Dreamcast? Many questions regarding Thunder Force’s fate have yet to be resolved, and it remains to be seen if they ever will be.
As soon as you plug in Thunder Force III, you know you’re in for a crazy-fueled ride. That vibrant title screen pops up amid scorching rock chords, and that signature theme gets stuck forever in your head. There’s a certain confidence in many of the great video games, a bold swagger that spills over from the artists and programmers and musicians onto the screen. We are witnessing one of the great game studios at the top of their game.