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Irem's R-Type is a classic Arcade shooter that influenced many later shooting games. Both it and its sequel R-Type 2 were released as PC Engine Hu-Card games. Therefore, it was natural to combine them both and release them as one package named R-Type Complete CD.
Players fly through a series of stages, shooting and evading enemy units before dispatching the stage boss. The R-Type ship begins with a regular laser, but players can hold down the shoot button to charge up a more powerful beam attack. Several types of special weapon power-ups are available to players and can be revealed by destroying certain designated targets. These weapons include a spread shot, a large ring shot and a wall-hugging fire shot. The first time players pick up a weapon power-up, it only gives the ship a small pod that flies alongside it and shoots whenever the ship shoots. The second weapon power-up collected will enable the special attack at reduced strength. Players must pick up three power-ups to get the weapon at full strength.
Other weapons that players can collect include missile shots and an option that flies above the ship. The pod that comes with a special weapon power-up can be used in a variety of ways. It can fly ahead or behind the ship, and can be attached onto the ship for shielding purposes. Players can then fire the pod forward or backward at enemies. When the pod is attached to the back of the ship it fires backward. ~ Kyle Knight, All Game Guide