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Terra Cresta, or The Cresta Series is a series of Shoot 'em ups by Nichibutsu, that started with Moon Cresta in 1980.
In each game, you pilot a different ship. The main thing each ship has in common is access to various power-ups that increase your firepower, but often render you more vulnerable due to the increase in the size of your ship's hitbox. However, getting a part hit will not destroy your entire ship - Just destroy that part. The drawback here is that Power-ups have to be gotten in a certain order, which can make things a little frustrating for some.
This series provides examples of:
- Combining Mecha : A Combining spaceship. Your power-ups are additional pieces of your ship, more often than not.
- Critical Existence Failure : Averted, If you have power-ups and a enemy shot hits a piece, only that piece will be destroyed.
- Endless Game : Moon Cresta and Terra Cresta
- Follow the Leader: The sequel, Terra Force, took a page from Gradius's book with its side-scrolling underground areas, attack drones, and missile sub-weapon.
- Nintendo Hard
- Spiritual Sequel : Dangar UFO Robo. They both are by Nichibutsu, run on the same hardware, have the same art style, and involve modular protagonists.
- Unstable Equilibrium : The Power-up system is a bit unforgiving.