Release: Dec 21, 2011 - Author: kurisuteian - Translator: Gladion
As the name implies, Parodius is a parody of the space-shooter Gradius made by Konami. Many elements from the Gradius-series are made fun of relentlessly, and a pinch of Japanese media culture is added, accompanied by European art and classical music. Parodius is the second installment of the series consisting of five parts and was released on many platforms, first as an arcade machine, later for home consoles, too.
The game was too dazzling for an American release, because, at the time, numerous anime had been adapted for the American market. Parodius was actually not released in America at all, though, it is often assumed that the reason for this is the second level's boss battle: The American eagle becomes a target and subsequently crashes down from the sky like a grilled chicken. In Europe, the game was released, but with a few little changes, though. None of these have any impact on plot or gameplay, so the western versions aren't any less fun to play. It seems like thos changes only applie to the SNES and not to the NES version. However, we can not confirm this. Uncensored is the Japanese SNES and NES version.
The censored International SNES-version has been compared to the uncensored Japanese SNES-version.
The opening sequence offers a flashback to the Gradius-series so far. An element found often in the Parodius-series are the heads known from the Eastern Islands, also called Moai. Two of these Moai appear in the intro sequence and in the Japanese version, one of them is smoking a cigarette. The European version is missing this cigarette, though.
The second level features clowns as enemies, these are wearing blinking hats which also serve as hit-zones. Landing a hit makes the hat be replaced by the word "OUT". The Japanese version has a Christian cross above these letters. For the European version, this cross was swapped with a windup-key, giving the impression the clowns are windup-toys.
In the middle part of the third level, there is a sequence with "balls" you have to shoot your way through. Covered by these balls in the background, there is a lavisciously-seeming painting to be discovered. This painting is a parody to Sandro Botticelli's famout painting "Birth of the Venus". This was scrapped without replacement for the European version, so you only see the naked wall in the background.
Stage 3 - Boss
The final boss of the third level is a group of eight mouths flying around the player and attacking them with sets of teeth. In the Japanese version, the mouths stop at both the left and right end of the screen and lick their lips, which may seem very laviscious. In the European version, this gesture has been "alleviated". The movement of the lips remains unchanged, but the tounges were retouched, which gives the impression the lips are singing instead.
In the seventh level of the Japanese version, there are "pretty blondes in soap bubbles and bunny costume" as enemies. Since the bunny costume is probably also in Europe associated with a certain American "men's magazine", the bunny-ears and -tails have been retouched in this level.
Annotation: Game cartridge, manual and packaging still feature artwork on which bunny-ears and -tail are still visible.