Electronic Theatre In-depth Review: Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition – Black Label Mode

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The second downloadable content (DLC) pack for the recently released Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition, Black Label Mode, is a significant addition t the videogame’s agenda. While the previous DLC, Ver1.51 Mode will be welcomed by the core fans, Black Label Mode is a package which is considered essential by any true shoot-‘em-up gamer, and with good reason.

The Black Label Mode DLC adds two new gameplay modes to Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition, the standard Black Label mode and a Novice edition of the same. The Novice mode is only a slight variant of the Black Label mode, which unsurprisingly from the title is in regard to the difficulty. Black Label is far less forgiving than any other Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition gameplay mode, and the Novice variant is in place effectively as a steeping stone; few gamers would wish to go from attempting entire runs without continuing to being taken out of the skies in ten seconds, but without the Novice option, it’s likely to happen.

Other renovations of the standard Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition videogame include an increased difficulty specifically for the Strong Style ship option, and the life bar of the final boss has been strengthened dramatically. However, players aren’t left without any options to tackle these new borders, with a significant overhaul of the play style allowing players to experiment once again. Instead of offering Laser and Shot abilities, players can now use both simultaneously as a third aggressive option. Doing so will slow your ship to a crawl, but helps clear the screen of both lightweight enemy craft and more durable opponents far quicker than without. Additionally, the Red Gauge is now easier to fill, offering Hyper Mode much quicker, and bomb pick-ups are far more frequent. This all adds up to an even more explosive experience, with players needing to concentrate on far more aspects of the on-screen action at any one time.

The Black Label Mode adds ten new Achievements with an additional 250 Gamerscore, but prevents you from unlocking the core fifty. For those heavily invested in the Achievement system on Xbox LIVE, in this regard the Black Label Mode DLC is essentially an Xbox LIVE Arcade version of the original retail product: two separate entities that are then combined on a single entry on your profile. It’s a strange way of delivering the new content, but is the outcome of being a basic conversion of the original Japanese releases as opposed to a rebuild specifically for the PAL market. It’s a means to an end rather than a purposeful design decision.

Weighing in at 800 Microsoft Points, the Black Label Mode DLC is considerably more expensive than its Ver1.51 Mode cousin. However, it also offers considerably more for fans of Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition. Whereas Ver1.51 Mode was a pleasant optional addition, Black Label Mode is an overhaul of the basic Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition videogame, increasing the challenge and adding a new layer of ruleset variants that are near essential for any true fan. For casual shoot-‘em-up players Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition will surely offer enough content by itself, but for any gamer with an interest in the genre as a collective, the Black Label Mode for Dodonpachi Resurrection: Deluxe Edition should be a top-priority purchase.











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