1UP writes: "Chances are, if you remember the days when pizza parlors were jam-packed with cocktail-style arcade cabinets (sticky with the residue of countless grubby pizza-coated hands, screens obscured by rings from countless soft drink cups), you remember Capcom's 1942. The company's breakout title was a simple top-down shooter by today's standards, but in 1984 it was rather dazzling, combining the ship patterns of Galaga with a great power-up system and a ridiculous number of challenging stages. It was repetitive, sure, and the soundtrack was less "music" than "someone blowing morse code on a steel whistle." Even so, it's fondly remembered. And its sequels improved considerably on its ideas.
Capcom seems to be on a mad spree of reviving its old franchises via digitial delivery, and unsurprisingly the 1942 series is one of the first to benefit from an HD facelift. Unlike Bionic Commando Rearmed, though, 1942: Joint Strike isn't simply a high-spec remake. That's a good thing, because unlike Bionic Commando, the original arcade version of 1942 doesn't hold up too well by today's standards. Developer Backbone Entertainment seems to realize the classic's limits and has instead created a sort of reimagined version of the game drawing from the entire series. Joint Strike has more in common with the gameplay mechanics of later sequels like 1944 and 194X, yet it still feels very much like the spiritual successor of the game that launched Capcom to success".