Gradius ReBirth falls somewhere between Mega Man 9 and Bionic Commando Rearmed as far as retro remakes go, being an updated version of the original series, but not going as far as to giving things a total face-lift.

The presentation, besides a few graphical flairs here and there, will remind players of the 16-bit era entries, even down to having slowdown when too many enemies come on the screen. The slowdown is a bit puzzling -- was it intentional or just lazy programming? Either way, it is kind of annoying.

Besides that, though, there's really no fault to be found with the core gameplay itself, besides being perhaps a bit on the "easy" side, at least as far as these types of shooters go.

Gradius ReBirth's big problem is that there's only five levels present, meaning most people should be able to get through it fairly quickly.

Die-hard Gradius fans who have a spare 1000 points to burn will still dig this game, especially the wi-fi enabled "score attack" mode, which lets you compare your best score with players from all over the world. But less experienced players would probably be better off downloading one of the other games in the series that are already on the VC.

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