G-Darius is a game released for the arcades in 1997. It is the sixth game released in the Darius Series, and is the prequel to the original Darius game, thereby making it the first game in the series canon.
Taken from the game's prologue:
"Within the vastness of this great universe, a fierce battle was fought.
Resulting in the disappearance of a planet.
This prompted various evolving life forms which have been under long hibernation to emerge one after another.
They began their quest to overtake the universe.
The Amnelia Royal Cosmic Force challenged these unknown intruders, but unfortunatetly suffered a miserable defeat.
However, they did manage to complete a unique and sophisticated fighter craft using the forbidden enemy power and technology.
They named it "Silver Hawk".
At present, the main thrust of the enemy fleet is near at hand, and we are on the verge of the fierce fight to control the universe and decide the fate of the human race.
You will see the creation of new lives."
Levels and Bosses
A second version of the game was released in the arcades in 1999, with the following changes:
- Increased difficulty.
- Default play cost is increased to 2 coins per credit from 1 coin per credit.
- Added beginner mode. In beginner mode, the game ends after completing only 3 zones.
- Standard auto-fire button.
- When using a Capture Ball, the player is no longer invulnerable.
- With the super shield, the player is vulnerable to obstacles. With the hyper shield, the player can take a single hit from obstacles.
- All stages include mid-bosses.
- Boss battles include a timer (3 minutes for normal bosses, 7 minutes for the final boss). 10000 bonus points are added for each remaining second after destroying the boss.
- The high score table records high scores for each zone.
- After continuing, the player is given one of each Missile, Bomb, Arm and Capture Ball powerups instead of a single item that provides the first three.
G-Darius was ported to the Sony PlayStation in 1998, and to the PC in 2001. In addition to the original game (labeled as "Arcade" mode), these versions also included a "Beginner" mode, "VS-BOSS" mode, autofire and an option screen where the player could view cutscenes from the game.
The game was also included in the PlayStation 2 version of Taito Legends 2, released in 2006. It was a direct port of the original arcade version and thus did not include any of the changes from the other ports, nor Ver.2, however the Taito Legends 2 port has loading screens in a similar way to the PlayStation port.