The PlayStation 2, being an old and cheap system to acquire, even a chipped console that can play all region games is really cheap these days, is a great start for someone getting into shmups (shoot’em’ups).
One of the many great releases is CAVEs seminal Dodonpachi Daioujou which packs the arcade game and a new Death Label (CAVE-speak for boss rush) mode. The arcade conversion is great and the Death Label mode is challenging to say the least. The first player to clear it was “MON” who had been chipping away at it for seven-and-a-half-years(!). Only one other gamer has since cleared it and it remains one of the toughest challenges in the video game world.
The makers of shmups sometimes ship DVDs with some really good players clearing the game (1CC, 1 credit clear, no continues used) that aspiring gamers can watch to study patterns and strategize. Yes, really. And MONs performance above is breathtaking.
Dodonpachi Daioujou is a great release for a great platform and highly recommended.
And don’t forget, Dodonpachi Resurrection is getting a Steam release on October 14th!