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1944: The Loop Master is the fifth game in the 194X series of vertically scrolling shoot-em-up games, and the first one to not be developed by Capcom, which just distributed it. It was developed by Raizing/Eighting and released in 2000 for the CPS-2 Arcade board. It never received home ports.
This title takes the setting back to the European Front of World War II after the departure from 19XX: The War Against Destiny. Players control the Lockheed P-38 Lightning and the Mitsubishi A6M Zero, notably the first time in the series where the player controls a Japanese fighter.
1944 is a return to the series roots, adapted to a more modern style of gameplay. The fuel gauge is back, though it never depletes automatically. There is only one weapon available, a fast firing forward shot, but despite this there are a handful of offensive options available to the player. By destroying parts of the scenery the player can pick up golden icons, which when collecting a certain amount allow the player to pick up the Side Fighters, which can be accumulated and replaced automatically whenever one is lost. Bombs once again have their own stock, creating a powerful screen-clearing blast when used. If the player has no bombs left, he can sacrifice the side fighters for a small explosion.
The main gameplay mechanic in this game is the new charged attack: by holding the shot button, a gauge on the bottom of the screen will fill up, and when full the player fighter will fly higher up, unleashing a strong bullet barrage down and becoming invincible for the duration of the attack. After the attack is finished the gauge will enter a cooldown period, during which the player is unable to charge.