Slap Fight is a science fiction-themed vertically scrolling shoot ’em up where players assume the role of an Allied League of Cosmic Nations (ALCON) fighter pilot taking control of the SW475 space fighter craft in a counterattack effort to defeat an invading alien race led by Gaudy on planet Theron as the main objective.
Besides some stationary helicopters with blades spinning, there are no flying enemies in the entire game.
As far as vertical scrolling shooters go, players control their craft over a constantly scrolling background and the scenery never stops moving until a boss at the end that must be fought before progressing any further is reached.
Players have only two weapons at their disposal: the standard and side shots that travel a max distance of half the screen’s height and length.
The game’s weapon power-up system takes inspiration from Gradius;certain enemies spawn a star-shaped item upon destruction to be collected, activating an upgrade menu at the bottom of the screen that moves a lit cursor through the list of weapon power-ups described below.
However, activating any weapon power-up increases the ship’s hitbox, making it a bigger target for enemy fire and difficult to keep successive lives in the heat of battle.
If any power-up is lit but the player’s ship is destroyed before a power-up could be selected, the star item is “carried over” and the speed power-up is lit on the next life.
A number of hidden bonus secrets to be found are hosted, which is also crucial for reaching high-scores to obtain extra lives, as firing on determined locations and certain set pieces within the scenery in some stages reveals a bonus secret.
Major weapons affect the enemies and terrain differently. For example, certain enemy towers can only be destroyed with laser or homing missile shots; other enemies are destroyed much faster with specific weapons to match.
If bomb or homing missile shots are equipped, certain bonus targets will appear or parts of the landscape may be destroyed to reveal bonuses.
If laser is active, certain plants in the landscape can be shot repeatedly to grow and earn extra points until they scroll off-screen.
It has been reported that a bug in the game enabled the player to obtain all power-ups, simply by allowing themselves to be killed by the first enemy appearing upon starting the game without touching the controls. If this occurred, the next time the player’s ship appears, it has all the power-ups equipped.
The game employs a checkpoint system in which a downed single player will start off at the beginning of the checkpoint they managed to reach before dying.
Getting hit by enemy fire will result in losing a live, as well as a penalty of decreasing the ship’s firepower to its original state and once all lives are lost, the game is over unless the player inserts more credits into the arcade machine to continue playing.
After completing the last stage, the game begins again with the second loop increasing in difficulty and enemies fire denser bullet patterns.
The title does not support continues with extra credits and is believed to loop endlessly.
This game recieved decent ratings, its a solid shooter that doesn’t quite have enough in it to reach a truly great level.
Still fun to play
Some gameplay here