Raiden Fighters Jet (ライデンファイターズJET Raiden Faitāzu Jetto ) is the third and last game in the Raiden Fighters series. This game retains the same intensity and manic gameplay as its predecessors, while introducing several new mechanics.
The Hybrid Attack from Raiden Fighters 2 returns in this game. This special attack has been given a graphical facelift, but otherwise remains the same functionally.
The game contains Normal, Special, and Expert game modes.
In this mode, stage progression depends on player performance. If the player performs well in a stage, the next stage will have a higher level number, allowing the player to reach the real levels (Phase 1 and Phase 2) earlier. In other cases, the next stage will have a lower level number, or the stage loop ends early. The most advanced stages in the game, Real Mission (in which the player repels a terrorist attack) can only be reached by performing extremely well and not continuing. Real Mission Phase 2 has two bosses; the second true final boss (called the XTB-1(An experimental aircraft)) can be reached by not dying in Phase 1. In Japanese version, there is only 1 stage loop; in other versions, there are 2 stage loops, with 2nd loop unable to progress further than the highest level in 1st loop.
This is a boss rush game mode, where players play through all stages' boss encounters. The true final boss is always available in this mode.
Available in the Japanese version, enemies return fire after being destroyed.
The medal system has been changed as well. Medals are initially jewel-shaped. Airborne versions of these medals will follow any Slave wingmen or player ships when they graze bullets. Airborne medals in contact with another will combine, growing larger and increasing in point value. Jewel medals are initially worth 100 points, and 2,048,000 points in the largest form.
After collecting the largest combined medal, when nine 100-point shield medals appear on-screen simultaneously, they will all explode. At this point, large gold medals will appear. Gold medals are worth 10,000 to 100,000 points; their values are increased by collecting all medals onscreen. Dropping one medal resets future bar medal value to 10,000 points. Players cannot recover point values of the bar medals even when a higher-valued medal remains on-screen.
The regular bonuses are achieved in the same manner as in the first two games, but in this entry a chaining system involving the event messages (such as "DESTROYED AT A TIME!" and "DISCOVERED THE FAIRY!") has been added. As simultaneous bonus event messages appear, the multiplier for the next bonus event is increased by 1, up to a maximum of x9. The multiplier is reset once all the bonus messages have disappeared.
The array of fighter crafts in Raiden Fighters Jet consists of most of the crafts in Raiden Fighters 2, including the cameo ships. The only fighter craft from RF2 not included in RFJ are the Aegis II-c and the Dark Sword. Players are now given the option of choosing a color for any of the standard craft by pressing one of the two buttons to select their craft.
There is only one new craft in Raiden Fighters Jet, the Ixion. The physical appearance of the Ixion is best described as an aircraft with a forward-swept wing configuration. This design is similar to the Grumman X-29 and the Sukhoi Su-47.
It has a fast movement speed. It has a missile weapon that is similar to the Dark Sword's from RF2, but the Ixion shoots out a swarm of these fully powered up. The Ixion's Laser is a rapid fire version of Beast Arrow/Eraser's straight-firing Laser Beam. The Charged Laser special consists of the Ixion generating four energy spheres each firing powerful laser beams. A very important capability of the Ixion is that both its charged specials take a very short time to charge. The Ixion can participate in the Hybrid Attack with the seven standard aircraft and the Hell Diver. After the Slave and Judge Spear, the Ixion is the highest-tier plane in the game.
The Ixion is immediately available in the selection screen on some machines via software settings. Another indirect method of acquiring the Ixion is to reach Phase 1 with any of the standard (non-cameo) fighter craft. Upon reaching Phase 1, the player's craft will be replaced by the Ixion. This Ixion inherits the secondary weaponry of the player's initial craft, while retaining the main vulcan gun and the speed of the Ixion itself.
Changes among the fighter craft from the previous entries include but are not limited to the Miclus/Fairy's flamethrower bomb attack. The duration of the attack, as well as the invincibility timer, have been reduced.
The previous two Raiden Fighters games' soundtracks were composed by Go Satoh. Raiden Fighters Jet's soundtrack was composed by Yasuhiro Hashimoto. There is notable difference in style between both composers' works, even though both composers wrote the soundtrack in techno style.
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- In Greek mythology, Ixion was king of the Lapiths, the most ancient tribe of Thessaly, and a son of Ares or Antion or the notorious evildoer Phlegyas.
- Raiden Fighters Jet pays homage to a boss from Raiden II and recycles several bosses from previous games in the series.
- Level 01's boss is a machine that resembles the twin walkers bosses in Stage 1 of Raiden II. The Raiden Fighters Jet machine has four legs as well, but are completely immobile and act as struts for swiveling treads that provide the machine locomotion.
- Level 10's boss is the flying boat in the Train Yard stage of the original Raiden Fighters.
- Level 20's boss is similar to the forest stage giant tank boss from the first Raiden fighters.
- Hummingbird XB-3, the boss of the Bomber Squadron stage in Raiden Fighters 2, makes an appearance in Level 35 as a mid-boss.
- Level 35's final boss is the gigantic flying fortress from the end of Mission 2 in the original Raiden Fighters.
- Level 50's first mid-boss in the giant hover tank from the second stage of Raiden fighters 2.
- Level 50's second mid-boss is the giant tank boss from the Forest Stage of the first Raiden Fighters.
- Level 50's final boss is Red Eye, the true final boss from Raiden Fighters 2. However it says B-7 instead of XB-7, suggesting it is the production model of the Red Eye in Raiden Fighters 2
- Phase 1's boss is based on the helicopter boss from the first Raiden Fighters with a more difficult attack pattern.
Ports and conversions
On November 21, 2007, Japanese video game magazine Famitsu reported the development of a compilation of all three Raiden Fighters games for the Xbox 360. This compilation is titled Raiden Fighters Aces, published by Japanese software company Success Corporation and released on March 27, 2008.