It would appear that TAITO Corporation has not completely forgotten about us Android users when it comes to a mobile version of RAYSTORM. Seeing that iOS received theirs all the way back in 2012, it almost appeared as though we would never see the port. But lo and behold, RAYSTORM has officially been released on the Play Store, and it is just as great as it was on the PS1.
So you may be asking yourself, what is it you get with this newly released port? Well, I am glad to report that you receive quite a bit of content. For anyone familiar with the shoot 'em up genre, you will know that there is going to be very little story surrounding the gameplay. RAYSTORM does not differ in this regard. But what you do get instead, is plenty of deep shooter gameplay with two different games modes and shooting methods. The two game modes consist of a remix and arcade mode. The remix mode is optimized for touch screen controls, while the arcade mode is more geared towards the hardcore player. When it comes to the two different shooting methods, there is an auto and manual setting. Obviously, the auto method will allow your ship to shoot at all times automatically. And manual mode is just that, a way for you to control every shot you perform manually. Frankly, both of the shooting methods as well as the two game modes are very welcome, as they cover any and everyone's differing needs. Heck, TAITO even included HID controller support, for those that would prefer to play with even more precise controls.
As for the gameplay, it is just as good as it was on PS1. To start, there are two different ships at your disposal, the R-GRAY1 and R-GRAY2. Each provides its own playstyle. The R-GRAY1 offers more of a concentrated and powerful shot that will destroy things in front of you very quickly but leaves you vulnerable when many enemies surround your ship. The R-GRAY2, on the other hand, has a weaker laser shot. But it is capable of locking on to multiple enemies, which is helpful when the screen is swarming with targets. Essentially each ship has its positives and negatives, and it is up to you to decide which works best with your preferred method of play.
While I can understand that the shoot 'em up genre may not be for everyone, due to the severe lack of story, for those that do enjoy a good SHMUP, RAYSTORM is not only an excellent choice but it is one of the best titles in the genre. Honestly, I would be remiss if I did not recommend this release. Really, the only issue I can see holding people back from grabbing this game on Android is its price point. At $7.99, RAYSTORM may be considered too high of a price for what is essentially a 21-year-old game. Luckily there are no advertisements or in-app purchases included with the download. So short of any possible issues you may have with the high price, there is still quite a lot to love about this classic shoot 'em up port.