Thursday, 21 November 2013

Galshell: Blood Red Skies (PC)

I hope this post isn't too clouded by nostalgia, since this (along with Warning Forever and Dan Da DAN!) was actually one of the first few doujin shooters I played when I got my first PC years and years ago. Obviously, the main draw of the game is the amazing Gigeresque visuals, though the detailed sprites have a payoff in that there isn't much animation to go with them. Though what there is is used effectively, with enemies and bullets pulsating and wiggling like gross infectious parasites. Even the two player craft have their
own unwholesome little twitches.
Ufortunately, as you can tell from the screenshots accompanying this post, there's a weird problem I've had while playing Galshell on my current PC: all the explosions and enemy bullets are surrounded by ugly black squares. Though it doesn't effect the game itself, it is very ugly, and a shame considering it gets in the way of the great sprites. A little extra bonus is that all the game's graphics and sounds are just regular files in the game's directory to be enjoyed at your leisure.
The game itself is a lot of fun to play too, of course. There's no fancy scoring system like you'd expect from a modern shooting game, though there is a fairly novel power-up and extend system.
The player gains experience points for every one of their bullets that hits an enemy, and killed enemies drop
blobby red throbbing items, which also give experience when collected. Upon levelling up, the player's weapon is upgraded and they get an extra life. Even when your weapon's fully upgraded, you can continue levlling up to keep gaining extra lives.
Along with the three regular difficulty levels you'd expect (easy, normal and hard), there's also an extra mode, which ramps the difficulty up to crazy levels, but also gives the player experience at a much higher rate.
Galshell is a great game, and definitely worth playing, and if anyone can solve the  black box problem, please tell me!


  1. Wasn't this based on a game made in Dezaemon, or am I imagining that?

    1. I never heard that, but it doesn't mean it can't be true!

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  3. i know this post is from 2013 but here it is: here's a way to fix the graphic problems with Galshell and Hellbound. You want to open up the offending files in mspaint and resave them as 256 color bitmaps instead of 24 bit bitmaps. The alpha channel is what's screwing up the ati cards. In Galshell you will want to do this for bakuhatu.bmp and tama01.bmp. I'm not sure if there are any other files that need to be corrected since I haven't played the game much. Hope that helps.
    alternatively, you could simply right click the games exe, go to properties, compatibility and check "reduced color mode" with 8-bit 256 color, that should work too.