For the first time in my Blog Series I am going to talk a bit about a single game now and not a series like Crash Bandicoot or Darkstalkers in the last weeks.
This Tuesday it’s all about the scrolling arcade (like) shooter Einhänder from Square back in 1997 when they tried out a lot of different genres for new games on the Sony Playstation.
If you watched the video above you saw already that this game is basically a lot like Gradius as example but it added many own flavours to the genre like the manipulator arm, which can grab gunpods with different powers and ammunition which can change the gameplay of your Einhänder fighter completely and allows a lot of different tactics in the game.
The setting is also quite different from the usual “Aliens Invade The Earth” Plot, instead of fighting giant monsters, your enemies are mostly machines. The gameplay is quite fast, the techno soundtrack by Kenichiro Fukui pulsating and totally fitting. And yes, both the name Einhänder and also some speech in the game is in German.
In short, Einhänder was a really great game for its time and is praised till today. IGN as example named it in their top 10 list of 2D (Gameplay) shooters back in 2007. It sold around 300K copies of the Playstation version while it was not released in Europe sadly. In 2008 they released it as a Playstation Classic on PSN..but only in Japan. The soundtrack was also released separately in Japan.
Why would I like to see Einhänder being continued?
I guess everyone who played the game knows the answer already. Because it was damn good, it was unique and today were almost all shooters are either bullet hell ones or based around gimmicks like the music or colors it would be even more unique. The arcade shoot’em up genre is everything but dead, but we see a lot of games that are relative similar to each other.
How to restart Einhänder and bring it back and make it a success?
Personally I would be totally fine with a new game they just call Einhänder again. The story about the conflict between the Earth and the Moon Colony can be told again, and the game already had a lot of unique features, I don’t think that a lot gameplay designs would have to be modernized a lot. Maybe Einhänder is one of these games that should get a “remaster” instead of a sequel or remake. It can be the same thing, just with more modern graphics, maybe with a few new stages and bosses though for people who played the original game often.
It does not need to have super great graphics, it does not need long cutscenes and could be a game with a small budget, made for a small audience. I doubt this would ever happen though since companies like Square-Enix are mainly caring about big releases for big markets.
Thanks for reading, what are your thoughts and memories about Einhänder and would you like to see it back in action as well?