Detana!! TwinBee (出たな!! ツインビー, "Here Comes TwinBee!!"), originally released outside Japan as Bells & Whistles, is a vertical-scrolling shoot-'em-up game originally released by Konami in 1991 as a coin-operated video game. It is the fifth game in the TwinBee series and the second released for the arcades following the original TwinBee (the previous sequels were released directly to home consoles). In Japan, Detana!! TwinBee was ported to the X68000 computer in 1991 and to the PC Engine in 1992, as well as for the PlayStation and Sega Saturn in the compilation Detana!! TwinBee Yahoo and for the PlayStation Portable in TwinBee Portable. The PC Engine port of the game was released for the Wii Virtual Console in North America and Europe in 2009 as a "Hanabi Festival" release. The game was released for the PlayStation Network in Japan on June 16, 2010.
Detana!! TwinBee marked the debut of Japanese animator Jujiro Hamakawa (credited under the pen name Shuzilow.HA) as the series' primary character designer for every subsequent installment. Detana!! TwinBee was awarded "Best Shooting Game of 1991" by the Japanese arcade game magazine Gamest.
Set several years after the events of the original TwinBee, TwinBee and WinBee are relaxing at their island when they receive an SOS signal from the distant planet of Meru. The signal contains a message sent by Queen Melora, who pleads for the salvation of her planet from the invading forces of the evil alien Iva. TwinBee and his friends decides to set off to outer space to defeat the forces of Iva and save Planet Meru. Detana!! marks the first appearance of TwinBee's and WinBee's respective pilots, Light and Pastel, who became prominent characters in many subsequent TwinBee video games and related media, although they were originally unnamed in this game (the characters were given their names in the audio drama TwinBee Paradise).
Aside from the improve graphics and sounds compared to previous TwinBee installments, the gameplay in Detana follows the same conventions established in the arcade version of the original. As usual, the game can be played by up to two players, with player 1 piloting TwinBee, while player 2 pilots WinBee. Controls consist of an eight-way joystick for moving the ship and two buttons. In the Japanese version, one button is used to fire the gun at airborne enemies while the other is used to drop bombs to the ground. In the international arcade release (Bell & Whistles), both buttons are used to do shoot and drop bombs at the same time. This time, holding down the shooting button will cause power-meter at the bottom of the screen to fill up, allowing the player to fire a "Big Shot" attack when releasing the button.
The power-ups consist of bells which can be uncovered by shooting the floating clouds, as well as items uncovered by destroying land enemies. Like in the original TwinBee, the player can shoot the floating bells to change their colors. In addition to the five different colors in the original TwinBee (yellow, white, blue, green, and red), there are two new additional bells as well: a purple bell that provides a "tail shield" that activates multiple barriers around the player's ship and black bell which decreases the player's speed.
The mini-bell and the lucky star from the original TwinBee return as well. GwinBee, a ship similar to TwinBee and WinBee, also appears in the game, allowing the player to combine its ship with GwinBee to fire wider fire beams. Two players can also align their ships side-by-side to achieve the same effect or align their ships vertically for a powerful five-way spread. If both players align their ships with GwinBee between them, he will spring out and destroy all on-screen enemies.
The game consists of seven stages. After the game is completed once, the player can play the game again for a harder second round. The game ends entirely after the second round is cleared. After a game over, the player can continue and receive a "free" power-up.
Arcade Hardware Specifications
Audio CPU: Zilog Z80 at 3.58 MHz
FM Synthesizer: Yamaha YM2151
- ↑ Konami website staff. List of X68000 games by Konami(waybacked) (Japanese)..
- ↑ Konami website staff. List of PC Engine games by Konami (waybacked) (Japanese)..
- ↑ "One WiiWare Game and Two Virtual Console Games Added to Wii Shop Channel". Nintendo of America. 2009-03-23. http://www.nintendo.com/whatsnew/detail/EoYSYHFf5AKsH0a2x8DzVCG9Tx8Mu1M2. Retrieved 2009-03-25.
- ↑ Editorial Staff of Gamest (February 1992). "Gamest's Fifth Annual Grand Prix" (in Japanese). Gamest (Volume 68): p. 8. http://www.netlaputa.ne.jp/~dummy/gamest/magazine/gamest/v068.html.
- ↑ Detana!! TwinBee flyer at The Arcade Flyers Archive..
- ↑ Konami. Detana!! TwinBee/Bells & Whistle (in Japanese/English). Level/area: Operator's manual, page 2 and 4.
- Detana!! TwinBee at the TurboGrafx-16 Virtual Console site
- Detana!! TwinBee wiki guide at StrategyWiki