I translated the Battle Garegga backstory for STG Weekly #18. The story was much more “intense” than I expected, and there were some funny dramatic readings on the show.

Battle Garegga – Story/Characters/Setting

Official Raizing homepage mirrored and translated in English!
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Raw text translation is below.

Battle Garegga

(C)EIGHTING (C)1996 RAIZING

They created the ultimate weapon… 
And now, it has become their ultimate enemy.

February 1996 – Arcade release

August 1996 – Gamest Video Vol. 27 Battle Garegga released
(C)EIGHTING (C)1996 RAIZING (C)SHINSEISHA

February 1998Electronic Arts ・Square releases Saturn port
(C)1996,1998 EIGHTING / RAIZING (C)1998 Electronic Arts

December 2004INH releases 「INSANITY DVD THE MADNESS」
(C)1996,1998 EIGHTING / RAIZING (C)2004 INH CO., LTD.

Game System

It was an age when it was still possible to believe that science would bring mankind happiness… In this time of great freedom, where men lived as men and women lived as women, the two engineers known as the Wayne brothers will challenge the Federation in a deadly fight. This is the world of Battle Garegga, a vertical scrolling STG from Raizing.

Controls use a standard arcade stick and 3-button setup. Button 1 is shot, Button 2 fires your special weapon, and Button 3 changes the option formation. Destroying ground and air enemies releases bonus items. Collecting these without missing any raises their point value, and is an important part of scoring.

Story and Background

STORY

The long night that was like a nightmare finally ended. But when the morning sun rose and illuminated the landscape, it let all know that the nightmare was far from over. A mountain of rubble spread out, covering those places where, only yesterday, people congregated together and lovers talked of love and their future; now only the wailing of voices and the weak, pathetic cries of babes ring out. Before long even those sounds were dissolved under the light of the morning sun, leaving only silence.

How did it come to this?

In a country town there lived two brothers who ran a small factory. One day they received a request which contained an irresistible appeal to them: to develop new weapons for the Federation. That day they were lost in the innocent zeal of their own engineering, competing to see who could design the machine with the most horsepower or top speed. Even if their designs were to become weapons, they never expected a day like that fateful day would come to pass. Thus with their own hands did they deliver many weapons to the Federation, blithely unaware that their creations would only be used to take life.

This was the result of their naiveté.

What appears before them now is harsh reality, the reality that they had tried to escape seeing. But they will turn away no more. The weapons they created with their own two hands, shall be laid to rest by those same hands. There is no honor or righteousness in this; and yet, as their plane engine revs higher, they cannot resist their own pulse from rising with it… Fine. Let it be. To fulfill their duty, no great honor is required. All that’s left now is to wait for the moment to strike. For all they’ve become. For all they yet could be…

SITUATION

The Wayne brothers were born in a country town located on a peninsula lying at the southernmost tip of the Western continent. Influenced by their Father, the brothers loved tinkering with machines from a young age. Upon reaching maturity they took over the operations of a small auto factory their Father left them, producing various automobiles and planes of their own original designs. Unbeknownst to them, rumor of their prowess eventually reached the Federation.

The Federation took the unusual step of issuing a development contract for their novel ideas and audacious designs, and the brothers were thus able to refine and increase their production speed with their financial backing. Finding the brothers’ numerous creations perfectly suited for their imperialistic ambitions, the Federation wasted no time in putting their plans into action.

Realizing too late what they had done, the brothers turned to 4 experimental fighter planes still under development. Hiding themselves and working on the ships in secret, they resolved to stop the Federation’s advance. However, the war had only just begun, and before long the Federation’s assault reached the town where the brothers were hiding. And so it was that the reality of war and their own naïveté were laid bare before their eyes.

LOCATION

The story takes place several decades after the industrial revolution, in the militaristic state called “The Federation” and the surrounding area. The many factories have polluted the sea and sky, but the majority of the Earth is still pristine, untouched nature.

Only 20 years have passed since the adoption of the fossil-fuel driven internal combustion engine, and the general state of technology is still low. However, thanks to the combined forces of the Wayne brothers’ genius and the Federation’s financial backing, military technology has advanced as a frightening pace.

ENEMY

The Federation is composed of­ 15 states and covers roughly half of the continent. In the era before the Industrial Revolution, there were many territorial conflicts, but approximately 20 years ago the states were unified into one Federation, and since then there have been no major wars (although smaller skirmishes have continued). However, now that the balance of military power has been upset, the Federation, seeking dominion over the entire continent, has issued a declaration of war. They hold an overwhelming advantage over the foreign states.

Their center of military operations has been fortified and transformed into an impenetrable stronghold, and no one is permitted entry.

Player Ships

The “Garegga Series” (Development Code: G) were developed as the next generation of fighter planes for the Federation. They are the final creation of the Wayne brothers, and represent the highest expression of their engineering genius.

G-1010 Combat Aircraft Silver Sword

A ship balanced in maneuverability and offensive ability. The nose is equipped with four 18 mm machineguns. The four G-series ships each come in four variations with differing payloads. The G-1010 also comes in the “Cannonball”, “Masamune”, and “Shatter Star” types.

G-130 Air-to-Ground Interceptor 「Grasshopper

Equipped with two 14 mm gatling-style machine guns, the Grasshopper was developed to deal with ground-based targets. Its variations are the “Reinforcer”, “DGR October”, and “Diving Fox.”

G-1026 Light Carrier Combat Aircraft 「Flying Baron

Although equipped with only two somewhat weak 16 mm machineguns, the Flying Baron excels in maneuverability and speed. “Stormy Omen”, “Red Impulse”, and “Black Zeppelin” variations exist.

G-913 Heavy Carrier Torpedo Bomber 「Wild Snail

The Wild Snail is a heavy-class bomber equipped with four powerful 30 mm machineguns beneath its fuselage. However, it is also an unfinished design. Of the three variations “Iron Mackerel”, “Rust Champion”, and “Golden Bat”, the Golden Bat is said to have the best handling.

Stages

Stage 1 「VALLEY」

The assault begins on the Federation’s secret factory, constructed in an ore mining region. The Wayne brothers know this place well, as they themselves also carried on certain design and project work here.

The boss, 「MD-113 Nose Lavagghin」, is now a somewhat technologically outdated model. However, the offensive power of its large-scale guns, which also lend stability to the craft, are not to be underestimated.

Stage 2 「PLATEAU」

An alpine town surrounded by beautiful lakes and forests. But the Federation’s attack has reduced even this place to a state of devastation.

The boss, 「SF-4518 Mad Ball」 hovers in the sky through 14 inverted propellers, and when it reaches its destination, it deploys an excavation drill equipped on its underside and anchors itself into the ground. It then can fulfill the role of a provisional stronghold at that location.

Stage 3 「FACTORY」

Heading deep inside the Federation’s heavy arms factory production line, the brothers now aim to destroy the experimental heavy bomber 「Slayer」. Although still under production, part of its weapons are operational, and a difficult battle can be expected.

The boss 「ST-22 Earth Crisis」 is an ultra-heavy tank equipped with 2 giant, rapid-firing rocket launchers. Due to its massive size, it is too large to act as a traditional tank and instead can only be utilized as a mobile fortress; accordingly, only two prototypes were produced. Depending on the location of its deployment, however, it can likely still fulfill a valuable role.

Stage 4 「PLANT」

The ruins of a maritime production plant located in the northern part of the continent. Although the plant itself is already a ruin, the Federation has repurposed it as a front-line base, deploying ground-based forces all over.

The boss 「PS-50 Satanic Surfer」 is a large, armored hovertank, originally designed to serve as a smooth transitional element between sea and ground operations, greatly aiding in landfall tactics. However, its armor and power requirements were not well balanced, and it turned out to be unreliable for non-marine operations.

Stage 5 「CLOUD」

High in the clouds lightning flashes all around, and the brothers chance upon the strategic heavy bomber Slayer leading an aerial armada. The stormy weather limits combat visibility, lending a decisive advantage to smaller ships, and perhaps a battle between the brothers and the vastly larger aircrafts will now be evenly matched.

The boss 「G-616 Black Heart」 was built by the Federation based on the Wayne brothers’ notes. It is the Federations’ strongest positional defensive fighter plane. Its fully mobile 35 mm machineguns are only the beginning of its expansive arsenal; the ultimate secret of its power lies in the miniaturized rocket engine. Although it takes 20 minutes to become operational, its overwhelming heat obliterates its enemies right out of existence.

Stage 6 「BASE」

Slipping through the enemies’ main forces, the brothers infiltrate the base which serves as the center of the Federation’s military operations. The interior is defended not only by gigantic cannons, but also by innumerable tanks, making it an impregnable fortress.

The boss 「DT-38A Junky Monkey」 was originally developed to serve as a machine for the construction and handling of land mines. However, due the state of war it has been retrofitted to construct simple gun batteries and serve as a positional defense if needed.

Stage 7 「AIR PORT」

The brothers now pursue the extra-large escape vessel 「King Crimson」 which has begun take-off from a secret runway. While in pursuit, they engage in a dogfight with 「Black Heart 2」, the newest model fighter that has only just been finished. Defeating it, they pursue the emergency escape unit ejected from King Crimson…

The boss is 「DT-070 Glow Squid」. King Crimson is equipped with a double and triple failsafe escape plan for its passengers in the form of a cockpit unit which can eject and fight on its own. The unit is called Glow Squid, and it too has its own yet-smaller emergency escape unit built-in.

Odds and Ends

Gamest Video

The only Raizing game to have a video made of it is this Garegga video. It was released by Shineisha. It not only contains footage of a stunning bullet-dodging superplay sure to shock even STG maniacs, but it also contains a bonus CD that with music from Raizing’s previous STGs. For a STG video it sold surprisingly well (I think). It seems many people bought the video because they wanted the CD alone. Nowadays, if you buy the Sega Saturn version of Soukyuugurentai, you can hear the CD soundtracks of Mahou Daisakusen, Shippu Mahou Daisakusen, and Battle Garegga there. The Garegga superplay is not included though.

Health

Just before the master app was due, one half of our graphics team, T-DA, was suddenly hospitalized! The company health inspection showed he had hepatitis, and it appears his hospitalization was some kind of terrible experience

So, how was hospital life?

「I was never alone so I couldn’t do ____. That sucked.
That reminds me, thanks for slipping that porno mag in for me!」

…We’d expect no less from the ero-master himself.

「No, I’m no master. Hey, could I borrow one of your videos?」
…Sure. Shall I get the female teacher ones…

(A lengthy discussion on AV stars is omitted)

…It really was terrible…

Dream・on・Dream

The rotatable gun turrent installed on the stage 1 boss was called “Dream Cannon” during development. The full explanation behind the name is thus: 「Whoa, even though there’s no rotation mechanism on that cannon it can smoothly rotate all around! Its like a dream! It’s the Dream Cannon!” And Gamest called it the Dream Cannon too (probably because it was written in our notes that way). It was embarrassing at the time, but it’s a fond memory now.

Sound Man Santaruru

Garegga was also renowned for its music. Here we had a little chat with the man responsible for weaving those fantastic tunes, Santaruru.

Is there anything specific you want people to listen for in Garegga’s music?

「The propeller feel」

Propeller…?

「Yeah, propeller. They go burururu—n.」

…Anything else?

「In the stage 2 boss music I emphasized the feeling of a drill」

…Drill?

「If you look at the design notes Mad Ball has a drill underneath him, right? I mean that.」

…Thank you.

As he says, the music of Garegga is all about the drills and propellers!