If you're a fan of shoot-em-ups – or "shmups," in shorter terms – chances are you may have run across an innovative Treasure game called Ikaruga. The game is a spiritual successor to the developer's Radiant Silvergun, and features a unique color-switching system so you can absorb enemy bullets and fire supercharged blasts back at them, while occasionally taking on larger, more powerful bosses.
The game initially came out overseas for the Sega Dreamcast in 2002, but then was ported to the GameCube a year later, where it became an instant hit with fans. Later on, it would be ported digitally to Xbox 360 in 2008, followed by a release on Steam in 2014.
Now, it appears that the game will be coming to another platform. A German rating group, the USK, has recently rated Ikaruga for the PlayStation 4. The listing is similar to the Xbox 360 and GameCube versions, with the same 6+ rating.
Treasure self-published the game on Steam a few years ago, where it became an immense hit with fans. So there's a distinct possibility it's publishing it for PlayStation 4 as well, though the company hasn't confirmed it just yet.
Here are the features for the game, straight from the Steam page:
Shoot! Dodge! and… Get Hit!?
Ikaruga is a vertical shoot 'em up that features an unique polarity-switching gameplay. Switch the ship's polarity and "get hit and absorb" enemy bullets! Achieve High Score with the chain bonus!
- The player ship, all enemies and bullets are black or white. Player's polarity can be switched at will.
- Your ship can absorb enemy bullets of the same polarity. Filled energy goes to fire powerful homing lasers! (Release Power.)
- Defeat three enemies in a row of the same polarity and get the chain bonus! Building up high scores feels like a puzzle game?
- Spectacular 3D graphics. Fast and smooth game play.
- Two-player game (Local) and Double Play modes: You can play a two-player game with one controller.
- Five levels. Tactical level design and boss battles.
- Three difficulty levels: Easy, Normal, Hard. Change your tactics depending on the difficulty.
- Two game modes: Arcade, Prototype (not hidden).
- Replay data save is available. You can also download them from the Leaderboards.
- Vertical screen mode support. You can also play the game like a side-scrolling shooter by rotating only the game screen.
It's unknown if all of these features will be intact with the PS4 version, but hopefully we'll see an official announcement soon. Us "shmup" fans would certainly be appreciative of it.
If you can't wait, check out Ikaruga on Steam now, as well as GameCube and Xbox 360.
(Hat tip to Gematsu for the details!)