The highly anticipated sequel from hardcore developers Treasure to Radiant
Silvergun – arguablely the best shoot’em up of all time. Rather than being an actual
sequel the game is regarded as being a spiritual sequel in that it follows the same
sort of design and story.
The game is a vertical shooter – 2D gameplay with 3D graphics. The gameplay is
that of any typical vertical shooter. However, the simple rule of shoot everything
you can on the screen and not get shot is only the basis of Ikaruga.
Your ship has 2 polarities (or colours) - white and black. As either one of those
polarities incoming fire from enemies can not harm your ship if it is the same
polarity. The energy will be absorbed. However, being hit with an opposite polarity
will cause your ship to explode.
However, hitting enemies with the opposite colour does double the damage at
greater risk to you. Collisions with ships and other objects will cause you to
In normal mode when you destroying an enemy a cluster of shots of the same
polarity will approach your ship.
For destroying the enemies your ship is equipped with a Vulcan canon and a homing
laser pulse which is powered by the energy you have absorbed.
The action is intense all the way. There are sections where the screen filled with
enemy fire and moves at a very fast pace (excellent!) with round 4 being almost
For earning the most points you need to master the shooting of Chains. The Chain
system earns you increasing amounts of points by shooting the same coloured
enemies and objects in groups of three. The more chains you shoot the more points
you will earn which doubles each time to a maximum of 25600 points per chain.
There are 5 chapters in total each with huge bosses at the end. You will be alerted
when a boss is approaching.
Chapter 1 - Ideal
Chapter 2 - Trial
Chapter 3 - Faith
Chapter 4 - Reality
Chapter 5 - Transmetapsygnosis
At the end of each chapter you are given a ranking depending on how many chains
you gave been able to shoot. You need +75 chains to achieve the rank of S which is
Ikaruga is tough even if only 5 chapters long. Normal mode will take a while to beat
especially if you only have the default 3 credits. There is also a trial game for
practice though the normal game has difficulty setting of easy, normal and hard.
The more you play the game the more credits you earn and various features
become unlocked especially if you complete the game.
The graphics are utterly superb. All the ships are smoothly animated polygons and
the backgrounds are highly detailed.
Ikaruga is also a game that has an Appreciate DVD. Basically a movie showing how
some ultra professional gamers play the game because it’s difficulty can make it
inaccessible to some.
At the time of release in 2002 it was looking like Ikaruga was going to be last ever
Dreamcast title. However, because of it’s popularity other releases have since
followed with these being mostly shooters also. Perhaps Treasure will develop
another title and make sure they have the distinction of having the last Dreamcast
The game was also released on the Game Cube in 2003. For more information on
Ikaruga see some of the links below.
Chapter 1 Ordeal
Chapter 2 Trial
Chapter 3 Faith
Chapter 4 Reality
Chapter 5 Transmetapsgynosis
Place the game disc in a PC compatible CD-ROM drive to find BMP images from the
Sound test option
Successfully complete the game under the easy difficulty setting without using any
continues to unlock the "Sound Test" option at the "Appendix" menu. Alternately,
accumulate at least fifteen hours of total game play.
Accumulate at least six hours of total game play to unlock free play mode.
Gallery 1 option
Successfully complete trial mode without using any continues to unlock the "Gallery
1" option at the "Appendix" menu. Alternately, accumulate at least five hours of
total game play.
Gallery 2 option
Successfully complete the game under any difficulty setting to unlock the "Gallery
2" option at the "Appendix" menu. Alternately, accumulate at least ten hours of
total game play.
Game Mode Option
Successfully complete the game under the normal difficulty setting without using
any continues to unlock the "Game Mode" option at the "Appendix" menu.
Alternately, accumulate at least twenty hours of total game play.
Link to Treasure Official Site (Japenese)
Brilliant Ikaruga Fansite. You can download the sound track from here
Link to Gamecube Version
Review at Gamespot
Ikaruga Sound [MP3]
Link to Radiant Silvergun Info