Shortly after the events of the original Darius, while fleeing from the wrath of the Belser Army, the Darian refugees led by Proco and Tiat set up a temporary base on Vadis to act as a main base before a true refugee planet could be settled upon.
However, Belser once again arose, this time from Darius's oceans, thwarting the escape of the remaining Darians and even sending fleets against Vadis itself. A fleet of Silver Hawks were sent to keep Belser from reaching Vadis, but their strength was too great even for them.
Once again, Proco and Tiat are chosen to save the day, this time by putting an end to Belser's attempt to imprison the Darius stragglers.
The gameplay is basically the same as the preceding games in the Darius series. It uses a single screen instead of the three screens of its predecessors.
A minor change is in the power-up system; the 'missile' weapon (the forward gun) no longer has its own power up bar. It can still be powered up in the normal way, but losing a life will results reverting the weapon to a previous level of power. The bomb and arm capabilities do have power-up bars, and retain any new power levels that they have gained. Bomb remained not powered down, but arm will reset to 0 sublevel once you died, required you to recollect arm again from beginning. If you managed to collect enough arm power-up without death, you'll gain more powerful arm and become new default arm.
The Silver Hawk has a new special weapon; a black hole bomb which creates a vortex in the middle of the screen, sucking enemies and projectiles in, usually destroying all weak enemies and heavily damage all strong enemies and bosses.
The mid-level minibosses in the game provide an opportunity for the player to add to their firepower. Every miniboss has a globe on their head; if the player blasts it off and catches it, the miniboss is captured, and fires its weapon to aid the player. This is probably a precursor of the Capture ball in G-Darius.
Stages and Bosses
- Stage 1: Vadis base. Boss: Golden Ogre (ogrefish)
- Stage 2: Vadis wilderness. Boss: Ancient Dozer (horseshoe crab) in B, King Fossil (coelecanth) in C
- Stage 3: Vadis system open space. Boss: Folding Fan (fanfish) in D and F, Electric Fan (sea anemone) in E
- Stage 4: Dimensional corridor. Boss: Prickly Angler (uncertain species of anglerfish) in G and I, Neon Light Illusion (cuttlefish) in H and J.
- Stage 5: Darius system. Boss: Fatty Glutton (piranha) in K and O, Double Dealer (flounder) in L and N, Titanic Lance (orthocerida) in M.
- Stage 6: Darius, part 1. Boss: Crusty Hammer (mantis shrimp) in P, R, and T, Deadly Crescent (mirror dory) in Q, S, and U.
- Stage 7: Darius, part 2. Boss: Z'--Great Thing (sperm whale), V—Risk Storage (gulper eel), W—Vermilion Coronatus (crowned seahorse), X—Hysteric Empress (spider crab), Y—Odious Trident (ocean sunfish), Z—Curious Chandelier (shrimp jellyfish), V'--Storm Causer (another ogrefish)
Darius Gaiden was ported to the Saturn in 1995, and to Microsoft Windows and PlayStation in 1999. The Saturn and PC versions were released in North America by Acclaim and Interplay respectively. The PC version does not work correctly in Windows NT-based kernels, but it works with Windows XP with a little tweaking.
Darius Gaiden was ported to Xbox, PS2, and PC in the Taito Legends 2 compilation. It is also included in the Taito Memories compilations.
This version of arcade game contains rearranged levels, as well as automatically-enabled autofire.
- As in all Darius games before, Taito's in-house band Zuntata composed the soundtrack.
- Mobygames: Darius Gaiden: Saturn, Windows
- List of Darius games
- Gamebank Darius Gaiden page
- Darius Boss illustration explanation of bosses by game designer
- F3 SYSTEM HARDWARE: Darius Gaiden Extra Version