R-Type is a critically acclaimed shoot-'em-up developed by Irem. Following its initial arcade release in 1987, the game was ported to a variety of home computers and consoles, including the Sega Master System in 1988; this version was ported without credit by Compile.
The Master System version of R-Type was brought to the Wii's Virtual Console service in 2009. It is seen as an odd move, as a superior port to the TurboGrafx-16 had been available since 2006. This did not last long; it was removed from Virtual Console on 30 September 2011 in the US and 18 October 2011 in Japan presumably because Irem had been losing a lot of money at the time.
At the time of release, the Master System version of R-Type was one of the most accurate (and complete) home ports of the game and the easiest to get ahold of. It is technically superseded by the PC Engine version released earlier in the year in Japan, however in this instance, the game was split into two parts due to the cost needed to manufacture higher capacity HuCards, and would not come together as one product until 1989.
Sprites in the Master System version are smaller than their arcade counterparts (and are smaller too relative to the scenery), and when too many on-screen can lead to flickering and slowdown which is less apparent in its original form. Nevertheless virtually all the enemy patterns are retained, although the numbers are decreased in high volume areas for performance reasons. The level layouts are sometimes artifically lengthened or shortened to try and manage this workload further while balancing the differing sizes of the graphics.
Incidentally the PC Engine version's approach to the smaller screen resolution is to introduce vertical scrolling, ensuring part of the playfield is obscured at all times.
Bosses are fought against a solid colour background (echoed in other Master System shoot-'em-ups such as Fantasy Zone). Some graphical effects have also been removed; for example, when player shots hit scenery there is no longer an explosion or flash as is seen in the arcade original.
<div style="width:Expression error: Unexpected < operator.px; padding-left:2px; padding-top:9px; padding-right:2px;">Print advert in Computer & Video Games (UK) #90: "April 1989" (1989-03-16)
also published in:
Computer & Video Games (UK) #91: "May 1989" (1989-04-11)