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Darius Gaiden (Arcade)

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Title Screen

Darius Gaiden

Also known as: Darius Gaiden Extra Version (JP revision)
Developer: Taito[1]
Publisher: Taito[1]
Platform: Arcade (Taito F3 System)
Released internationally: 1994
Released in JP: September 1994[1] (original), 1995 (Extra Version)
Released in US: November 1994[1]


GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
TextIcon.png This game has unused text.
DebugIcon.png This game has debugging material.
Carts.png This game has revisional differences.


The fifth main installment in the Darius series, which introduced concepts such as screen-clearing black hole bombs. Retrospectively, it is often considered one of the greatest side-scrolling shmups of all time.

Debug Menu

Dariusgaiden-debugO.png Dariusgaiden-debugE.png
Original Extra Version

Enabling the following MAME cheat grants access to a debug menu upon inserting a credit. The code for the Original version applies to the dariusg, dariusgj and dariusga sets, while the Extra Version code applies to dariusgx.

Original Extra Version
<cheat desc="Debug Mode">
  <script state="run">
    <action>maincpu.mq@0042A0=4EF9000C61CE4E75</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@0C6139=F9</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@0C613D=CA</action>
  </script>
  <script state="off">
    <action>maincpu.mq@0042A0=4A2DA23D67000024</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@0C6139=B9</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@0C613D=9C</action>
  </script>
</cheat>
<cheat desc="Debug Mode">
  <script state="run">
    <action>maincpu.mq@0042C0=4EF900165D744E75</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@164587=B4</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@165BED=F9</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@165BF1=EA</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@165D37=07</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@165D3A=00163FB4</action>
    <action>maincpu.mw@166258=5D32</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@17817F=6A</action>
  </script>
  <script state="off">
    <action>maincpu.mq@0042C0=4A2DA23D67000024</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@164587=B5</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@165BED=B9</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@165BF1=BC</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@165D07=05</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@165D37=0E</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@165D3A=0002859C</action>
    <action>maincpu.mw@166258=5CD6</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@17817F=68</action>
  </script>
</cheat>

The functions are as follows:

  • GAME - Redirects the player to the "credit entered" screen.
  • BOSS TEST - Allows the player to fight against the bosses of each zone over a blue background. The only ways to exit this screen are by going to the operator menu or by resetting the game.
    Dariusgaiden-boss1.pngDariusgaiden-boss2.png
  • OBJECT TEST - Allows the player to view objects, as well as their palettes and addresses. The only ways to exit this screen are by going to the operator menu or by resetting the game.
    Controls:
    • 1P Up/Down - Switch parameters
    • 1P Left/Right - Toggle parameters
    • 1P A - Confirm
    • 2P Up/Down/Left/Right - Move object
    • 2P A - Change color profile
Dariusgaiden-object1.pngDariusgaiden-object2.png
  • SCREEN TEST - Allows the player to view background tiles, as well as their palettes and addresses. The only ways to exit this screen are by going to the operator menu or by resetting the game.
    Controls:
    • 1P Left/Right - Change tile
    • 1P Up/Down - Change color bank
    • 2P Up/Down/Left/Right - Move tile
Dariusgaiden-screen.png
  • TRIGGER EDIT - Allows the player to view and edit enemy trigger points in levels.
    Dariusgaiden-trigger.png

Exclusive to Extra Version

Aside from the functions below, a series of parameters are displayed on the top half of the screen; while they might be related to each of the game's level "phases", what they show is uncertain.

  • SHOT TEST - Allows the player to verify enemy distance detection. The only ways to exit this screen are by going to the operator menu or by resetting the game.
    Dariusgaiden-shot.png
  • ENEMY TEST - Also allows the player to view and edit enemy trigger points in levels, though it seems to be much less elaborate. It's possible to exit the main editing screen by pressing 1P C twice.
    Dariusgaiden-enemy1.pngDariusgaiden-enemy2.png
  • OTHER TEST - A background stretching function. The only ways to exit this screen are by going to the operator menu or by resetting the game.
    Controls:
    • 1P Left/Right - Stretch horizontally
    • 1P Up/Down - Stretch vertically
    • 2P Up/Down/Left/Right - Move
Dariusgaiden-other.png
(Source: ねこ自慢ブログ (升) Wayder Cheat 0.168)

"Pause" Debug Functions

Dariusgaiden-pause.pngDariusgaiden-pause2.png
In the Extra Version, pressing 1P C allows the player to pause/unpause the game; pressing it while holding 2P C brings up a series of debugging functions. While they are not normally accessible in the original releases, they can be enabled by using the following code:

<cheat desc="Pause Button">
  <script state="run">
    <action>maincpu.mb@01029F=A2</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@010322=611C4EB9000B6F74</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@01032A=082D0000EBB567EE</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@010332=2F3C0000FFFE4E42</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@01033A=588F6000FEF86100</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@010342=00DE610E1B6DEBB4</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@01034A=EBB508AD0007EBB4</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@010352=4E754A2DA23F667E</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@0B6FDC=0006A225</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@0B6FEC=0006A228</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@0B702C=4E714E71</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@0B7072=6600FFC8</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0B7076=4E714E714E714E71</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@0C3A17=8C</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@0C3A33=8C</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F62=1168000C001D082D</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F6A=00001D3667003B26</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F72=4AA800246E003C62</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F7A=217C000100000024</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F82=117C0002001D6000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mw@0C3F8A=3C50</action>
    <action>maincpu.mw@0C7A90=4EF9</action>
    <action>maincpu.mw@0C7A94=3F62</action>
  </script>
  <script state="off">
    <action>maincpu.mb@01029F=9E</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@010322=61000018082D0000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@01032A=EBB567F22F3C0000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@010332=FFFE4E42588F6000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@01033A=FEFC610000E26100</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@010342=00101B6DEBB4EBB5</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@01034A=08AD0007EBB44E75</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@010352=4A2DA23F6600007E</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@0B6FDC=0000A221</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@0B6FEC=0001A220</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@0B702C=536D8090</action>
    <action>maincpu.md@0B7072=67000010</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0B7076=082D0000A22166BE</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@0C3A17=62</action>
    <action>maincpu.mb@0C3A33=62</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F62=0000000000000000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F6A=0000000000000000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F72=0000000000000000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F7A=0000000000000000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mq@0C3F82=0000000000000000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mw@0C3F8A=0000</action>
    <action>maincpu.mw@0C7A90=1168</action>
    <action>maincpu.mw@0C7A94=001D</action>
  </script>
</cheat>

The functions are as follows:

  • EXIT - Goes back to regular gameplay.
  • GAME LEVEL - Adjusts the game difficulty. The higher the meter, the harder the game.
    Dariusgaiden-gamelevel.png
  • SLOW LEVEL - Adjusts the game's speed. It is normally set to 0 (normal speed), and the higher the meter, the slower the game gets. When it's active, a "SLOW" text appears at the bottom corner of the screen.
    Dariusgaiden-slow2.pngDariusgaiden-slow1.png
  • NO DEATH - Enables/disables invincibility.
    Dariusgaiden-nodeath.png
  • HIT MARK - Enables/disables hitbox viewing.
    Dariusgaiden-hitbox1.pngDariusgaiden-hitbox2.png
  • AUTO SHOT - Adjusts the bullet shooting frequency. The higher the meter, the shorter the bullet shooting interval is.
    Dariusgaiden-autoshot.png
  • COLOR EDIT - Allows the player to edit color palettes.
    Dariusgaiden-coloredit1.pngDariusgaiden-coloredit2.png
  • DISPLAY - Toggles between upright and flipped screens.
  • AUTO PLAY - Would presumably toggle between human-controlled gameplay and autoplay, using routines from the game's demo, but it doesn't seem to work.
    Dariusgaiden-autoplay.png
  • AUTO ZONE - Presumably a level warping function, but it doesn't seem to work.
    Dariusgaiden-autozone.png
  • TEST MODE - Redirects the player to the operator menu.
(Source: ねこ自慢ブログ (升) Wayder Cheat 0.168)

Unused Graphic

Dariusgaiden-bos0r14.png
This object, labeled as BOS0R14 in the game's Object Test menu, is a placeholder stored alongside the graphics for the Zone A boss, Golden Ogre.

(Source: ねこ自慢ブログ (升) Wayder Cheat 0.168)

Unused Text

Starting from 0xB8AE8 (original)/0xB8C20 (Extra Version) in the game's memory is a set of unused text strings. Given the Taito copyright text strings directly follow them, these strings could have been part of an earlier version of the game's title screen.

THE SUPPLEMENTAL STORY               
                                     
 OF                                  
                                     
  OOOO   OOO  OOOO  OOO O   O  OOO   
  O   O O   O O   O  O  O   O O   O  
  O   O O   O O   O  O  O   O O      
  O   O O   O O   O  O  O   O O      
  O   O OOOOO OOOO   O  O   O  OOO   
  O   O O   O O O    O  O   O     O  
  O   O O   O O  O   O  O   O     O  
  O   O O   O O   O  O  O   O O   O  
  OOOO  O   O O   O OOO  OOO   OOO   

Revisional Differences

Dariusgaiden-extratitle.png

Sometime in 1995, a revision of Darius Gaiden, known as Darius Gaiden Extra Version, was released. Its origin is uncertain, with some claiming it is an unofficially hacked version of the original, while others claim it is official, albeit with an extremely limited release. Internally, it is known as v2.7, with a build date of March 6, 1995, compared to the original release's v2.5, dated September 19, 1994.

  • The interval between each bullet fired by the player is lower in Extra Version; this can be seen in the "Pause" Debug Menu, in which the Auto Shot value is set to 80 by default, rather than the original version's 1D.
  • In Extra Version, inserting a new credit as Player 2 enters a new mode in which the player goes through all of the game's zones in order, rather than in branched paths like the original release. The branched path still occurs when inserting a new credit as Player 1, but the level order was modified. Note that the level names take in consideration the original version's order.
Original Extra Version
Zone Captain/Bosses Zone Captain/Bosses
Phase 1
Zone A Deep-Sea Smelt
Golden Ogre
Zone T Sheepshead Wrasse
Crusty Hammer
Phase 2
Zone B Slug Fish
Ancient Dozer
Zone N Valdivia Hoshinonis
Double Dealer
Zone C Slug Fish
King Fossil
Zone O Valdivia Hoshinonis
Fatty Glutton
Phase 3
Zone D Crested Bigscale
Folding Fan
Zone U Sheepshead Wrasse
Deadly Crescent
Zone E Crested Bigscale
Electric Fan
Zone D Crested Bigscale
Folding Fan
Zone F Crested Bigscale
Folding Fan
Zone S Sheepshead Wrasse
Deadly Crescent
Phase 4
Zone G Prickly Angler
Prickly Angler
Zone K Valdivia Hoshinonis
Fatty Glutton
Zone H N/A
Neon Light Illusion
Zone J N/A
Neon Light Illusion
Zone I Prickly Angler
Prickly Angler
Zone G Prickly Angler
Prickly Angler
Zone J N/A
Neon Light Illusion
Zone M N/A
Titanic Lance
Phase 5
Zone K Valdivia Hoshinonis
Fatty Glutton
Zone R Sheepshead Wrasse
Crusty Hammer
Zone L Valdivia Hoshinonis
Double Dealer
Zone F Crested Bigscale
Folding Fan
Zone M N/A
Titanic Lance
Zone Q Sheepshead Wrasse
Deadly Crescent
Zone N Valdivia Hoshinonis
Double Dealer
Zone E Crested Bigscale
Electric Fan
Zone O Valdivia Hoshinonis
Fatty Glutton
Zone P Sheepshead Wrasse
Crusty Hammer
Phase 6
Zone P Sheepshead Wrasse
Crusty Hammer
Zone A Deep-Sea Smelt
Golden Ogre
Zone Q Sheepshead Wrasse
Deadly Crescent
Zone I Prickly Angler
Prickly Angler
Zone R Sheepshead Wrasse
Crusty Hammer
Zone B Slug Fish
Ancient Dozer
Zone S Sheepshead Wrasse
Deadly Crescent
Zone C Slug Fish
King Fossil
Zone T Sheepshead Wrasse
Crusty Hammer
Zone H N/A
Neon Light Illusion
Zone U Sheepshead Wrasse
Deadly Crescent
Zone L Valdivia Hoshinonis
Double Dealer
Phase 7
Zone Z' Vampire Squid
Great Thing
Zone V' Vampire Squid
Storm Causer
Zone V Vampire Squid
Risk Storage
Zone Y Vampire Squid
Odious Trident
Zone W Vampire Squid
Vermilion Coronatus
Zone Z Vampire Squid
Curious Chandelier
Zone X Vampire Squid
Hysteric Empress
Zone Z' Vampire Squid
Great Thing
Zone Y Vampire Squid
Odious Trident
Zone W Vampire Squid
Vermilion Coronatus
Zone Z Vampire Squid
Curious Chandelier
Zone X Vampire Squid
Hysteric Empress
Zone V' Vampire Squid
Storm Causer
Zone V Vampire Squid
Risk Storage

References