When it arrived on the Sega Mega Drive / Genesis back in the early '90s, Steel Empire (or Koutetsu Teikoku / Empire of Steel, depending on which region you live in) made quite an impact. This was partly down to its unique steampunk visual style, which also borrowed elements from Hayao Miyazaki's seminal 1986 movie Laputa: Castle in the Sky, but it also helped that it was a decent shmup on a console that was literally drowning in them.

Acclaim's Flying Edge sub-label duly brought the game to Western audiences, and a cult classic was born. The game was later ported to the Game Boy Advance, such was its level of fame. Now, publisher ININ and developer Mebius are bringing the game to Switch in the form of The Legend of Steel Empire – although those of you with especially good memories might be struck with a feeling of Deja Vu.

You see, Mebius pulled off the same trick back in 2014, when it published an excellent update of the game for the Nintendo 3DS. That game laid down the template for the subsequent 2018 Steam release, which, in turn, is what The Legend of Steel Empire is based on. The same core gameplay exists in all versions; you choose from either a plane or a zeppelin and head off to defeat the Motorhead Empire across a series of levels, occasionally harnessing the power of the 'Imamio Thunder' screen-clearing smart bomb.

The game is unique in that players can fire both in front of and behind their ship, and it has a power-up system that boosts your firepower a level for every three 'P' icons that are collected. The level tops out at 20 but is retained even if you use a continue – which makes The Legend of Steel Empire quite accessible for shmup novices.

Over time, the game's standing in the pantheon of shmups has perhaps diminished a little, but it remains a solid example of the genre nonetheless – and while the loss of the autostereoscopic 3D of the 3DS version is a shame, there's enough quality on display here for The Legend of Steel Empire to be a recommended purchase for shooter fans.