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Dark Arms: Beast Buster 1999 (Japanese: ビーストバスター〜闇の生体兵器〜, Bīsutobasutā 〜 yami no seitai heiki 〜, Beast Buster ~Biological Weapons of Darkness~) is an action RPG spin-off of Beast Busters, developed for the Neo-Geo Pocket Color by Noise Factory and published by SNK. It was released in Japan on October 21st, 1999, in Europe on November 12th, 1999, and in the United States on November 23rd, 1999.

StorylineEdit

"Once upon a time, there used to be a group of people called Beast Busters, specialists in mysterious phenomena and happenings which cannot be explained by science. It is said that among the Busters, there was a book called The Contract of Darkness, and that it contains information on how to acquire an indestructible weapon which enables them to defeat the people of the darkness. It is said that recently one Buster entered into a contract of darkness, and went to the world of spirits to get his almighty weapon."

The game centers on the Beast Buster that entered into the Contract of Darkness with Caso the Shuten Master on a journey to obtain his ultimate bio-weapon. He gives his name (which you can create) to Caso, before losing his memory, and receving a weapon called a "Catcher", which allows the user to capture the souls of the various monsters in the realm of darkness.

GameplayEdit

Dark Arms is a top-down action RPG in the vein of the acclaimed Legend of Zelda series created by Nintendo, in which the player fights monsters, solve puzzles, collect keys to unlock doors, and talk to people for information, in addition to a few other features. Throughout the game, there are "Seeds" which you can collect and create the eponymous Dark Arms, using energy orbs known as "Oum", which are found in certain locations. The player can collect a total of 10 Seeds at a time. Seeds can be found after a boss battle or hidden inside a wall or cabinet in a building. Using the Catcher, the player can collect the souls of monsters to feed to your weapons, in order to build up enough EVP (Evolution Points) to change them into newer, stronger forms. There is a limit; the player can only capture up to 99 monsters at a time. When you leave a level, your weapons earn EXP to reach higher levels and become stronger. EXP is earned by fighting and/or capturing monsters in a level. Depending on the amount of EXP, the weapons can level up more than once. Along with your Catcher, you can equip up to three other Seed-borne weapons at a time. If you do not like the weapon, and would like to make a new one out of it without having to use another Seed, you can initialize the current weapon to turn it back into a Seed.

The monsters can come in three elemental attributes; Fire, Electricity, and Ice, while some do not have any of these attributes. When you feed a monster soul with an attribute to a weapon created from a Seed, it assumes the attribute of that monster. Fire is strong against Ice, but loses out to Electricity. Ice can defeat Electricity attribute monsters, but is weak against the Fire attribute. The Electricity attribute can beat Fire, but cannot win against Ice. Weapons with attributes can be used to find Seeds that are hidden inside walls or cabinets, by revealing their location.

ControlsEdit

Main Menu/CasoEdit

  • Joystick - Select
  • A Button - Confirm selection
  • B Button - Go Back

GameplayEdit

  • Joystick - Move/select 
  • A Button - Use weapon/talk/confirm selection
  • B Button - Switch weapon/decline
  • Option - Pause game

Staff CreditsEdit

Noise Factory StaffEdit

  • Planner and Producer: Keiko Ijuu
  • Sub-Planners: Masahiro Maeda and Jyunn Yamamoto
  • Main Programmer: Hidenari Mamoto
  • Sub-Programmer: Kazuaki Ezato
  • Character Designers: Yoshikazu Nisikawa, Nana Isiguro, and Haruhiko Morita 
  • Background Designer: Masahiro Maeda
  • Sound Producer: Tosikazu Tanaka

SNK StaffEdit

  • Supervisors: Kyoshi Asai and Atsushi Kunoi
  • Development Support: Hiroyuki Simmei
  • Special Thanks: Yuka Nakai and all SNK staff members 

TriviaEdit

  • Dark Arms: Beast Buster 1999 is the only game in the series not to have a release in the arcades, due to being a spin-off.
  • It is also the only game in the series to have a release on official SNK hardware that has the Neo-Geo name, unlike the original game, which was ported to the Atari ST and Commodore Amiga computers.

GalleryEdit

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