Taito Essentials

Taito is a gaming company that has been around in one form or another since the 1950s. Today, it is wholly owned by Square Enix, though the Taito branding has been kept as a distinct thing rather than being absorbed completely by the Square Enix corporate machine.

Taito is best known for its arcade games from the late ’70s up until the late ’90s, though has released a number of console games over the years, too. For arguably the definitive collection of Taito classics, pick up copies of Taito Legends and Taito Legends 2 for PlayStation 2, Xbox or PC.


Articles about Taito games (by title)

Parasol Stars: The Bubble Bobble Everyone Forgets - At the time of writing, the world is gearing up for a fourth official installment in the Bubble Bobble series. Wait a minute, I hear you ask, fourth? What happened to the third? I don’t judge you too harshly for asking this question; I know some people who weren’t even aware that Rainbow Islands was the second Bubble Bobble game, … Continue reading Parasol Stars: The Bubble Bobble Everyone Forgets
PS2 Essentials: Energy Airforce - A core part of my gaming “diet” in the 16-bit home computer era and onwards into the early days of mainstream PC gaming was the military flight simulator. I have many fond memories of piloting numerous pieces of military hardware around the virtual skies, dropping bombs on filthy commies (this was the height of the … Continue reading PS2 Essentials: Energy Airforce
Puzzler Essentials: Cleopatra Fortune - Cleopatra Fortune is an arcade game from 1997, developed as a collaborative effort between Taito and Natsume. It’s a falling block puzzle of the type that was fashionable throughout the 16- and 32-bit eras in the mid-to-late ’90s. But despite having a touch of Tetris about some of its mechanics, it’s an altogether unique experience. And, moreover, … Continue reading Puzzler Essentials: Cleopatra Fortune
Puzzler Essentials: Puchi Carat - I’ve always had a soft spot for block-breakers, ever since Arkanoid on the Atari 8-bit, and Puchi Carat makes me happy in all the right ways. Combining elements of traditional classic block-breakers with mechanics from puzzle games such as the Puzzle Bobble/Bust-a-Move series, it’s an enormously addictive, highly unusual game that is simultaneously unique and absolutely representative … Continue reading Puzzler Essentials: Puchi Carat
Taito Essentials: Cameltry - What a glorious name for a video game: Cameltry. Say it to yourself a few times. Cameltry. Cameltry. Cameltry. So far as I can determine, there is no meaning to the word beyond “a 1989 arcade game by Taito”, which is sort of a shame, but, well, a game having such a peculiar name is … Continue reading Taito Essentials: Cameltry
Taito Essentials: Continental Circus - Ah yes, Continental Circus, the game which UK magazine Sinclair User declared “Cock-Up of the Year” in 1988 for the assumption that its peculiar title had rather prominently misspelled “Circuit”, only for it to become apparent sometime later that this was, in fact, deliberate. The term “Circus” has been used over the years in both … Continue reading Taito Essentials: Continental Circus
Taito Essentials: Elevator Action Returns - Elevator Action is an established classic of the ’80s arcade scene, and saw a wide variety of ports to most of the popular computer and console systems of the period. While the original game is still relatively well-known today, many people remain unaware that Taito followed it up with an official sequel in 1994, some … Continue reading Taito Essentials: Elevator Action Returns
Taito Essentials: Lunar Rescue - When someone mentions Taito arcade games from the 1970s, the first one that doubtless immediately springs to mind is the genre-defining Space Invaders. However, this is far from the only game Taito put out in these early years of the games business — and moreover, it’s far from the only good one, too. Today, we’re taking a … Continue reading Taito Essentials: Lunar Rescue
Taito Essentials: Super Qix - Super Qix is an immensely irritating follow-up to an immensely irritating game. And, like all the really good immensely irritating games of the world, there’s a magic ingredient in there that keeps you coming back for more. Super Qix is also an interesting game from a historical perspective, in that it’s a game that Japanese developers decided to … Continue reading Taito Essentials: Super Qix
Taito Essentials: The Electric Yo-Yo - One of the nice things about the two Taito Legends compilations on PS2, Xbox and PC (and the separate PSP release, which acts as a kind of “best of” compilation containing elements of both) is that it includes both well-known games and more obscure affairs. One such example of the latter is The Electric Yo-Yo, an unusual … Continue reading Taito Essentials: The Electric Yo-Yo
Taito Essentials: The New Zealand Story - New Zealand, as beautiful a country as it is, is not a place that gets a lot of attention. I mean, it’s tucked away down there right in the corner of the map where everyone forgets about it. However, back in 1988, the country left a sufficiently lasting impression on one of Taito’s programmers that, … Continue reading Taito Essentials: The New Zealand Story
Taito Essentials: Volfied - Mid to late ’80s Taito were good at a lot of things, but one thing they were particularly good at was iterating on an established formula and bringing it more “up to date”. Probably the most famous example of this is Arkanoid, a game which took the incredibly simple concept of Atari’s Breakout — hit ball with paddle to … Continue reading Taito Essentials: Volfied
Taito Essentials: Zoo Keeper - The technological constraints of old video games often led to some highly creative experiences. In logical or narrative terms, these games would often make very little sense whatsoever, but taken from a strictly abstract, mechanical perspective, they had the potential to provide extremely compelling, addictive experiences. One such example was 1983’s Zoo Keeper, a game developed by … Continue reading Taito Essentials: Zoo Keeper

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