Levels are structured in a tree format requiring you to complete two of three tasks to move on to a higher difficulty. Therefore, while there are
only five levels, each subsequent stage has more varieties. Level 5-A is significantly less challenging than 5-E (which I've never beaten). Completing
a stage with no miss isn't as hard as it sounds, as you have an auto bomb that will recharge as you defeat enemies.
Like Ketsui and some other familiar Cave games, the closer to an enemy you are when you defeat it, the larger the star/point value. The
homage to Ketsui can also be found on the pair of level three bosses (Black Draft and
Cinderella Amber). In addition the Tigershwert ship from Ketsui makes an appearance.
While DDP: Maximum is a unique take on the DDP formula, it feels familiar enough and is designed for quick, short games. By unlocking stage 5-E you can find a
hidden bonus stage. Simply turn on Easy Mode in the options menu and then go choose stage 5-E.