While not so much of a true “oddity” (though the gameplay itself is pretty weird), I happened to stumble across an old arcade game that I always wanted to play, but never found it.

How long did I wait?

Try 10 years.

The game in question is Planet Harriers, an offshoot sequel to the Space Harrier series. I remember reading about the title back in 2000, and being that Sega was on a roll back then, I really hoped that it would have found it’s way to the Dreamcast.

Surprisingly, I actually found a working machine in the Stratosphere of Las Vegas. The gameplay is typical Space Harrier, except your heroes are more rock stars or baseball players or even nurses that fly around and use lasers.

There were a few “classic” Sega shooter touches. For one, players can collect money to visit shops and buy more health or weaponry. If the character dies, Opa Opa from Fantasy Zone was there to give players a chance to continue or lift them off to the great beyond. While the gameplay wasn’t the usual sweeping alien landscapes, the enemies and the weird bosses certainly fit well within the style of the previous games.

Apparently, the game is something of a rarity, which makes sense considering the arcade scene was starting to die, and it never had a home console port, so I felt like I stumbled across something of a gaming treasure this week.

It’s an interesting find if you can ever track it down, and I’ll have to check it out again soon. And yes, it’s fun enough to recommend.

Here’s a little more info. on the game.

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Filed under: arcade gamingarcade oddities