STORY / GAMEPLAY
Delta space is a mysterious section of the universe, and only very little of it has been explored. In there, there is a system of five planets which were all part of the Aalan Empire. The four smaller planets are ruled by the inhabitants of the Aalan planet, and your mission is to liberate and ally with these planets of the system, relying heavily on the activities of the resistance movements of the opposed planets to discreetly place extra weapon pods along the chosen attack path. Once planet defenses have been destroyed, bypassed and conquered, the Aalan governor of the planet must be confronted and blasted.
Armalyte is very much in the style of R-Type and Salamander, even down to the weapon that increases its power the longer you depress the fire button, sending a high-powered beam flying across the screen and liquidating all in its path. Your ship's armory can be augmented by collection of additional equipment, provided by changeable icons. Blasting the coins causes them to cycle through the available add-ons, from a simple munitions pod to vertically firing lasers, and temporary shields. The gameplay takes it a step further by animating parts of the scenery to make some areas of the level more of a puzzle-solving exercise. These kind of decisions have to be made very quickly as the screen continually scrolls to the left. And this makes the game seem nearly impossible for the first few goes I think, losing your precious three-only lives easily.
GRAPHICS / SOUND
The graphics on the Atari ST version are of a quite good quality with a variety of partly animated backdrops, but missing a lot of the Amiga details. Frame-rate drops occasionally too, while it sports up to 30 colors on screen. There are a wide range of aliens, from the small but beautifully animated walkers to the huge end-level bosses. Sound and music are fine, offering a thumping tune along with some fine blasting effects. The main-menu soundtrack is far from a thrilling musical experience and not the sort of music you leave playing loud while taking a bath, but it is well composed.