Sega Master System / Mark III / Game Gear
I have been wringing my hands in despair over the stupid number of mindless scrolling shoot 'em ups across most formats and when I discovered Aleste on the Sega was a scroller, I almost threw it out of the window!
But Aleste is like a breath of fresh air. It gives scrolling shoot 'ems a whole new meaning. OK, so it scrolls, and there are aliens to shoot - but the attack patterns are different, the backgrounds are very detailed and tastefully coloured. There are six sectors to cross, and you can start over at the beginning of the sector you died on (hooray).
You start with three lives and earn extra ones ot 20,000 and then every 100,000 points. You can arm your ship by shooting a number from one to eight which appears in the scrolling backdrop, it will then float slowly up the screen and you have to dash up and touch it.
Your normal weapons are bullets and a little fat lazer which can fire in all eight directions. Number one makes the laser fat, two is a big vertical missile, three is a long vertical laser, four is an orb circling you providing protection, five has three orbs circling you and they can be fired, six is wide bullets, seven is double bullets and wide circular front shield and eight is a long sweeping laser which winds up the screen rolling from left to right (now that's what I call a weapon).
The backdrops are active on the higher levels and you may find shooting up the screen dislodges sections of backdrop which can fall down on you, the tunes are good and there is very little flicker despite there being so many aliens on screen.
It appears the rating section was omitted from the magazine by mistake.
See the main page for Power Strike / Aleste (アレスタ)