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Darius was Taito's effort to compete in the arcades against the likes of R-Type and Gradius. Technically impressive, it featured three screens depicting the largest playfield seen in a game so far (the same system was employed for Ninja Warriors), with the player sitting atop a big set of loudspeakers. Visually and audibly, it was a league above Irem's and Konami's offerings.

When Taito (and others) ported the game to home machines, they were forced to shrink the playfield to fit in one single screen, and re-dubbed it Darius Plus.

The plot of Darius involves the two heroes Proco Jr. and Tiat Young fighting the menaces posed by galactic fish and other sea animals again their homeworld.

What sets Darius apart from other shoot'em-ups of the time is its way of letting the player choose his path with a certain amount of freedom. At the end of each area (level), you are able to choose between one of two worlds which the area branches into. This renders a higher replay value, since there are many paths to reach the end of the game by. Apart from this, the gameplay is on the simplistic side, both due to unimaginative attack waves and little interaction with the surroundings, but mainly due to the very basic powerup system, which is nowhere near the complexity of the aforementioned R-Type's and Gradius'.


Darius TurboGrafx-16 Game over
Darius TurboGrafx-16 The green orb is a powerup
Darius TurboGrafx-16 Heavy bombardment
Darius TurboGrafx-16 Your ship, the Silverhawk

Promo Images

Darius Magazine Advertisement

Alternate Titles

  • "Super Darius" -- PC Engine CD title
  • "Sagaia" -- Game Boy title
  • "Darius Wide" -- Mobile title (widescreen devices)
  • "Darius Plus" -- PC Engine title
  • "Darius+" -- Amiga/Atari ST/ZX Spectrum title
  • "Arcade Archives: Darius" -- PS4 title
  • "ダライアス・プラス" -- PC Engine Japanese spelling
  • "ダライアス" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

There are no reviews for this game.

Critic Reviews

Defunct Games Nov 06, 2005 93 out of 100 93
Raze May, 1991 88 out of 100 88
Power Play Jan, 1991 80 out of 100 80
1UP! May 09, 2008 72 out of 100 72
All Game Guide 1998 3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars 70
Video Game Den Mar 01, 2012 3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars 60
Retro Archives Jan 27, 2018 11 out of 20 55
The Video Game Critic Mar 08, 2017 D 25


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1001 Video Games

The Arcade version of Darius appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.

References to the game

Darius references can be found in several other Taito games. Rainbow Islands has a secret Darius level with a cutesy rendition of the soundtrack, and tunes from the game are also used in the arcade game Metro Soldier Isaac II.

Cancelled C64 port

The Edge announced a C64 version of the game and there even was a test of in ACE 1990/2, which is unlike was really about the C64 version of the game. Just because after payment troubles at the Edge several programmers left and the graphic developer Tahir Rashid only ever finished the graphics for level 1 and the development for that version was stopped (Source:

Игги Друге (46327) added Darius (TurboGrafx-16) on Apr 11, 2006
Other platforms contributed by f1reball (293), Rik Hideto (396070), Kabushi (256829), gamewarrior (5048), Игги Друге (46327) and JudgeDeadd (26841)