Mamorukun Curse is a top-down "Bullet Hell" shooter that definitely shows it's arcade and Japanese roots. The storyline is presented in comic-style anime panels, voiced entirely in Japanese with English subtitles. At first, not even the characters know why they are there, with their fearless leader merely yelling "GO!" at them. By today's modern gaming requirements, the story is very bare-bones, but in terms of arcade action, it's really all you need. MC forgoes modern hand-holding and returns to the challenging arcade gameplay feel.
The original four and two bonus characters (all DLC from the original Japanese release is included with the localization) have unique firing patterns to take on the enemy with, making character selection a science in it's own right. The key difference between this title and other vertical scrolling SHMUPs is the Curse Bullet. With four levels to charge, increasing the power of the shot, hitting an enemy with this unlimited power-up will weaken their defenses and increase their reward at defeat at the cost of also increasing their attack power and shot output. It's up to you to decide whether it is worth the risk. In an interesting twist, a low-level curse shot can be placed at your own feet, placing the curse upon yourself, making your defenses drop while boosting your attack dramatically.
Many modes are offered in the game as well, from a challenging full story mode that provides a "Game Over" after all the characters are defeated, to a timed arcade mode with seemingly infinite continues. Local and online leaderboards add even more to the frenzy and challenge, constantly pushing you to try to top the community high score.
Mamorukun Curse may not be for everyone, but those whom it fits will find it a perfect addition to their library. If you have interest in anime or Japanese culture, the story and characters will draw you in. Bullet-hell shooter game fans will find bliss in a game with Ikaruga roots. Arcade gamers will find a minute to learn/lifetime to master game that can be fun as is, but extremely satisfying once perfected. Take a shot (or two, or ten bazillion) with Mamoru and crew to defeat the darkness infecting the Netherworld. Are you up to the challenge?