Vapor Trail: Hyper Offence Formation
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|Vapor Trail: Hyper Offence Formation|
|System(s): Sega Mega Drive|
|Original system(s): Arcade boards|
|Number of players: 1-2|
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Vapor Trail: Hyper Offence Formation, called Kuuga: Operation Code "Vapor Trail" (空牙) in Japan, is a 1989 shoot-'em-up by Data East, originally released internationally in arcades before being ported to the Sega Mega Drive in 1991; this release would only come out in the US and Japan.
Unidentified forces have taken over New York City, and a network of airborne military fleet is manned to reclaim the city. You play as one of three ships in the network: Sliph, a medium-speed attacker/fighter, Valkyrie, a low-speed attacker, and Seylen, a high-speed fighter. A second player can man a second ship for two-player combat.
Each of your jets has three main attacks: a single shot (
), rapid fire (
), and "Roll Bom" (
). Roll Bom appears is a charge with a trail effect left behind that does not to do damage but grants temporal invincibility. Each fighter's regular shot is in a certain configuration: Silph shoots three shots straight ahead, Valkyrie fans four shots out in front of it, and Seylen shoots two shots straight ahead and two shots straight behind it.
Some levels, such as the first level, have a form of depth; certain enemies, like tanks, are on the ground and you cannot get hurt by running into them (though their missiles can hurt you), while running into other jets will hurt you.
A total of 6 stages need to be cleared to complete the game. Unlike other shoot'em ups of that time, this game doesn't go to another loop after clearing it.
- V - standard vulcan spread shot
- B - straight missile, the explosion radius can eliminate enemy bullets (including stage 3 boss' laser attack)
- H - homing missile
- D - circular attack
- S - ship specific super weapon. Can also be sacrificed using the Error creating thumbnail: Unable to save thumbnail to destinationfor a full screen bomb, which also negates enemy bullets
Tips and tricks
- After picking up the "S" power up, shots don't fire at rapid speed, pushing the buttons rapidly gives a higher firing rate than holding them down
Sequels and re-releases
Aside from the expected and unavoidable graphical and sound differences, there are some other differences compared to the arcade version
- Enemies don't flash white when being hit
- The female navigator in the opening sequence has been redrawn
- The aircraft selection screen is missing some images, like the launch sequence
- After clearing a stage, your ship is not picked up by a green carrier ship but flies away on it's own
- The first boss fight doesn't take place in front of a skyscraper
- The rocket in stage 3 doesn't attack, the way to the rocket has been made longer and more enemies were added.
- The carrier in stage 4 (reused stage 2 boss asset) is not present, although the graphics are already in the game as demonstrated by stage 2 boss
- Stage 5 is largely different. The city section is much longer, while the underground base part is missing. Enemy layout has also been drastically changed. The stage boss is a recolored stage 1 boss instead of a the defense facility
- The final boss is missing one attack phase before the cockpit section gets sepparated
- The ending is different
|Language||Localised Name||English Translation|
|English (US)||Vapor Trail: Hyper Offence Formation||Vapor Trail: Hyper Offence Formation|
|Japanese||空牙||Kuuga: Operation Code "Vapor Trail"|
- Main article: Vapor Trail: Hyper Offence Formation/Magazine articles.
|Sega Retro Average|
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- Electronic Gaming Monthly, "October 1991" (US; 1991-xx-xx), page 113
- Sega Pro, "November 1991" (UK; 1991-xx-xx), page 54
- Beep! MegaDrive, "August 1991" (JP; 1991-07-08), page 35 (37)
- Sega Saturn Magazine, "September 1995" (JP; 1995-08-08), page 83 (85)
- Consoles +, "Octobre 1991" (FR; 1991-xx-xx), page 74/75 (74)
- Consoles +, "Octobre 1991" (FR; 1991-xx-xx), page 81
- Player One, "Décembre 1991" (FR; 1991-xx-xx), page 99