Review by Larcen Tyler
"OK, who spiked my cannon?!"
When I read about Cannon Spike, I thought it would actually be an interesting game, considering there aren't many shmups (shoot-em-ups) that are actually worth the time and money these days. Then I heard it had been pushed back to NEXT YEAR?! I was outraged, untill I heard it was moved forward, so I could finally review it before next year. While it wasn't all that I hoped it would be, it's still definitely worth the low price.
Most of the gameplay is done from an overhead view, so you really don't see much. The very few closeups are rather detailed, but it's too bad that there aren't enough of them. The enemies all look pretty much the same, but the bosses are kind of unique. Then again, where else do you expect to see a giant mech designed to look like medieval armor, or Cammy and Charlie wearing jet-powered rollerblades?
The music just plain mediocre. Nothing worth writing home about. I was hoping for some classic tunes from other Capcom games, but no soap. The character voices are all cutesy Japanese-style, giving it more of a kiddie-feel. Thankfully, the weapons actually sound like real weapons!
You move around the small level (if you want to call it that!) aiming at the monsters and shooting. Since your skates (or suit, or even scooter, depending on who you're using!) are jet powered, you can fly around freely and attack from any angle with no problem! (Think rollerblades mixed with a jetpack.) You can attack with your guns, hand-to-hand combat, or even perform a super move! Guns and fist-and-feet have two levels of strength, which are rather devestating I might add!
Basically it's the future (the manual says 20XX, which I assume lets us imagine the last two digits to whatever we want.) Society is in chaos as evil robots are taking over the world. However, help is on the way. Shiba Shintaro, a skateboarding champion, has formed an assault team. With the Motor Boot technology, giving things such as roller skates, skateboards, etc. the ability to fly as well as move on the ground, he has received help from a woman named Simone, and her guardian King Arthur. Charlie, a U.S. Army operative, has joined the fight, as well as Cammy White, a British crime organization soldier. To top it off, Mega Man and Baby Bonnie Hood have even found their way into the fray.
There are 10 levels (if you want to call them that.) Basically, each one is a small area where you take on a group of robots. After you defeat them (and I might add they are tough) you deal with a boss. After that boss, you deal with another one. Lather, rinse, and repeat. Although all the stages are the same, depending on who you play as, you may encounter some of them in a different order. My only gripe is that it's really difficult. I barely beat it on difficulty level 2 (Child,) yet any higher is impossible! Even when you win the game, all you unlock is some artwork. Still it is kind of challenging, and it makes a great two-player game. Plus, each character has his or her own ending!
It wasn't all that I had hoped it would be, but it still proves that shmups are still within this world. At $30, you can't go wrong. Try shooting this Cannon out of your Dreamcast!
Reviewer's Rating: 3.5 - Good
Originally Posted: 11/18/00, Updated 07/16/01
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