Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Release Date: May 5, 1998
Story: Over 100 years ago, a colony on the South Pole of the moon was set up, called Selene. It was a prosperous city. Earth’s forces later challenged the colony’s independence, and an interplanetary war, later called the “First Moon War”, erupted.
It was a very bloody war, which resulted in high casualties and scarred both the Moon and the Earth. Unable to fight any longer, the war came to a halt, without a formal treaty. The nations of the Earth banded together in one nation and called themselves the “empire”.
50 years later, in the year of 2422, Selene, in need of agricultural resources found only on Earth, rekindled the war. With superior weaponry, the Selene troops won many battles in what was now called the “Second Moon War”. Earth’s resources, however, slowly changed the tides of the war, and Selene was forced to retreat.
However, not to give up so easily, Selene sent in highly advanced, prototype fighters to Earth on one-man suicide missions. Surprisingly, these missions went well, and on December 12th, 2245, Selene sent out three more suicide fighters on a final mission. And that is to recon. an enemy capital. I give the story a 8/10.
Gameplay: You get to choose from 3 fighters with numerous gunpods, the Endymion FRS Mk. II (The ship I always use) has 1 machine gun and 3 gunpods, the Endymion FRS Mk. III which has only one gunpod but two machine guns, and last but not least, the Astraea FGA Mk. I, which can hold and fire two gunpods.
Gunpods are your secondary weapons, held and fired by your minipulator arm (If you manage to get one gunpod from and enemy). One of the gunpods is called a vulcan, which is a machine gun, for example.
The scoring is superb too.
The game is also challaenging and REALLY HARD, even on the easy difficulty! I don’t even know how many times I got stuck on the 2nd level!
Also, if you do certain things, you’ll get bonuses. (How to get all the bonuses are on the FAQ’s section of this game on Gamefaq’s).
I give the gameplay a 9/10.
Music/Sounds: The music by Kenichiro Fukui is fantasic, he did a good job with the music on this game. I give the music a 8/10.
Graphics: The backgrounds of the levels are great and the ships and enemies also look good, and the graphics in general are awesome, even for 1998. I give the graphics a 9/10.
Controls: The controls are also flawless:
Square fires your main weapon
X fires your secondary weapon (your gunpod)
L1 or R1 changes your ship’s gunpod (ecxept for the Endymion FRS Mk. III)
I give the controls a 9/10.
Replay value: You’ll mostly replay the game on certain difficulties to unlock the gallery. I give the Replay value a 7/10.
The Critics say:
“Einhänder’s hulking bosses will blow your mind” – OPM
“…great graphics, tight control, amazing sound…” – PSM
“Einhander looks impressive, plays incredibly fast, and has some of the best sound and music ever to grace the PlayStation.” – IGN 1998 EDITORS CHOICE
“It might not be a classic, but many fans of the shooting genre consider this an old favorite.” – The Video Game Critic
“Einhander might be the single most hyped 2D shooter in ‘modern times’. While it is a very good game, the real reason for the hype is obvious: Square made it.” – HonestGamers.com
“If you like shooters, you’ll love Einhander.” – GameSpot
Final thoughts: This game is a great side scrolling shooter, and proves that SquareSoft can make more than just RPG’s. It’s also, in my opinion, one of the best shooters of 1998.
Buy/Rent/Forget about it: Buy.