|Distributor(s)||Xbox Live Arcade, GameTap, Wii Virtual Console|
|System(s)||Arcade, Atari 7800, MSX, NES, Family Computer Disk System, NEC PC-9801, Fujitsu FM-7, Sharp MZ-1500, Sharp MZ-2500, Sharp X1, Sega SG-1000, Casio PV-2000, Xbox 360, Mobile, Wii|
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Galaga is a spiritual successor to Galaxian. Building on the formula established by its predecessor, Galaga introduces several new concepts to the fixed vertical shooting genre that made it incredibly popular in the arcades. It can still be found in arcades to this day (along with Namco's most successful game of Pac-Man), and performs rather well next to more modern-day offerings.
The most notable new feature of Galaga was the chance to increase your firepower by intentionally allowing one of the Boss Galagas to capture your Fighter, and rescue it with your next Fighter, returning the original Fighter to your side. Upon rescuing your ship, you are granted side-by-side double fire power, albeit with an increase in size, and therefore, vulnerability. Another popular feature of Galaga was its presentation of "Bonus Rounds" (dubbed "Challenging Stages", which were pioneered by Namco's own Rally-X and its sequel New Rally-X) between the action which offered a large 10000-point bonus for perfection.
Galaga seems to represent something of a "sweet spot" in game design, having performed better than either its predecessor or its successor, Gaplus (which was later renamed to "Galaga 3" when it was released in the United States to increase recognition and boost sales). However, despite its incredible popularity in the arcade, it saw comparatively few official home conversions in the United States. Several homebrew programmers have supplied alternate versions of this game stateside, while Japan saw an incredible number of conversions for popular computer models which were only available to in the "Land of the Rising Sun".
As with its predecessor, there is no official story to Galaga. You are simply the only pilot capable of staving off the invasion of the Galaga army, who are a race of enormous insect-like (specifically bees, butterflies, scorpions, stingrays and dragonflies) aliens.