2014-07-09: Found an old MAME save state on my old Dell Inspiron 510m laptop.
Trying out this cool-looking R-Type clone on MAME. Interesting mechanics with regards to shooting: both charging a beam and rapid fire increases meters, and although the beam is similar to that of R-Type, repeated use of rapid fire results in different effects, such as side shots or shields. However, unlike R-Type, it doesn't seem like the 'force' unit can be controlled in any way, making this a somewhat simpler game to play.
I own this ROM now. I bought a Humble NEOGEO bundle and now I own this and 25 other awesome Neo Geo games, including Garou, Real Bout 2, and the Metal Slugs. A physical copy of Pulstar on ebay is 5000 EUR (around 37000 DKK), and good old SNK got 5 EUR for all of the games. That's maybe the best deal I've ever gotten. :)
On the train from Copenhagen to Fjerritslev, I played some of this. The levels and even the enemies are very similar to R-Type II. It's pretty cool, and is checkpointed, but it's also pretty hard.