game Cover
game HuCard
ラビオレプス スペシャル
©1990 Video System
Release: 1990-10-19 (¥6800)
HuCard (3 Mbits) VS-90003
Shooter / Horizontal
Rabio Lepus Special is an horizontal shooter and a remixed version of the arcade game Rabio Lepus originally released by V-System in 1987. In a faraway Kingdom, the king and his two daughters are happy and there is peace and harmony in the land. That is until one fateful day when an unknown spaceship appears like a bolt out of the blue and kidnaps the king and the two girls, all dressed in their bunny suits. The player assumes control of Usagi, a flying robotic-rabbit and his mission is to rescue the captives and eliminate their unknown captors. The rocket-powered rabbit comes equipped with a Vulcan gun and a set of homing missiles. Missiles are supplied in limited quantities and must be refilled frequently. Interestingly, Rabio Lepus Special doesn't reward the player with power-ups. Large carrot-cans are scattered around the levels and drop various items when destroyed such as carrots (life), money jars (points), missiles, raccoons (short invincibility) or a cute yellow hair bow (increases the missiles destruction power) - but nothing is available to boost up the main weapon. However, the rabbit's ultimate weapon are his fists and boxing gloves - when in close range, he can land a punch and inflict a lot more damage to the enemy. Rabio Lepus Special features six stages and three main locations - space station, asteroid and finally the planet surface where the enemy leader hides.
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Rabio Lepus arcade game Rabio Lepus Special is based on the arcade game Rabio lepus (aka Rabbit Punch in the west) originally released by V-System in 1987 (pictures on the right). However, the version tested here is quite different and it can be regarded as a remixed version of the original game (hence the "special" title). The animated introduction sequence was removed as well as the world map, and the soundtrack is completely different. The original game also features twelve stages whereas the PC Engine version only six - however, these stages remix a lot of the enemies and layout elements from the arcade game. Some bosses were moved to different levels (such as the flying monk), some had their attack patterns changed (such as the guardian protecting the last boss) and others, such as the metal panthers were removed. The PC Engine version also features a mini-boss not seen in the original game - the large spaceship located at the beginning of the fist level is exclusive to this version. Finally, the arcade game featured a two-player mode (removed from the PC Engine port) and an interesting second difficulty mode where players could play the game with a completely different enemy layout. As a side note, the American version of Rabio lepus (renamed Rabbit Punch) was censored - the images of the bunny girls were removed as well as the introduction sequence. Finally, Rabio lepus was released for the Japanese Playstation 2 in 2006 as part of the Oretachi Game Center series.

Sonic Wings 2 The original Rabio Lepus was the debut title for game designer Shinsuke Nakamura. He is today highly respected among shooter fans for designing milestone games such as Sonic Wings (aka Aero Fighters in the west), Gunbird, Strikers 1945, Sengoku Ace (aka Samurai Aces) and Zero Gunner. The short-range attack (or vicinity attack) found in Rabio Lepus is a gameplay mechanic that will be later reused in other of his shooters such as Gunbird. Interestingly, the mechanical rabbit from Rabio Lepus also appears as a hidden character in Sonic Wings, as well as the large ghost boss (called Tenukī Chaudo, is he in reality a giant teru teru bozu ?) which appears also in Sonic Wings 2 and Sonic Wings 3 (picture on the left).

Game Staff (Copied from the end credits) :

Rabio Lepus Special

K. Youzi
W. Hiroshi
Kin. Chan
K. Murata

N. Masaru

Shinsuke Nakamura

Music and S.E.
Naoki Itamura

Shinsuke Nakamura

Presented by
Video System co.,Ltd.

Japanese Toy
Japanese Toy


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Enter the following codes at the title screen. A name corresponding to the activated cheat should appear at the top/right corner of the screen, right above the game's title.

Rabio Lepus Special cheats White bow (shadow gun):
Hold select and press Ix4, IIx6, Ix4, IIx6, Ix4, IIx6, Ix4 and IIx6.

Green bow (3-ways gun):
Hold select and press Ix3, IIx3, Ix4 and IIx4.

Yellow bow (powerful missiles):
Hold select and press Ix3, IIx3, Ix3 and IIx3.

Blue bow (Large gun):
Hold select and press Ix4, IIx4, Ix4 and IIx4.

5 life-containers:
Hold select and press Ix9, IIx8, Ix7, IIx6, Ix5, IIx4, Ix3, IIx2 and I.

5 lives:
Hold select and press Ix5, II, Ix5 and II.

Add your Pov here !

In its first minute, Rabio Lepus Special throws enemies and lethal homing missiles at you without mercy, leaving you little time to breathe. All of them are easily wiped out by a barrage of homing missiles, but the insane difficulty level is definitively a reason for concern. Rabio Lepus Special is hard, and not many players will see the end of it. Also, although the controls feel great, the weapon system is somewhat hamstrung by a lack of adequate power-ups. The punch is also a wasted opportunity and can only be used on rare occasions. But if you hang in there, the game will reveal its charm and uniqueness. The enemies are really strange, wacky and the graphics are overall fairly solid. All in all, Rabio Lepus Special is a fun little game as long as you can tolerate its frustrating and unfair difficulty level.

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