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|Genre(s)|| Beat 'em up |
Hack & slash
|Platform(s)||Arcade, Sega Genesis, Mega-CD, Game Gear, Master System, Sega Mega-Play, GameTap, IBM PC, Amiga, Atari ST, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, PC Engine CD, WonderSwan, ZX Spectrum, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Virtual Console, iOS, Android, Microsoft Windows|
|First release|| Golden Axe |
|Latest release|| Golden Axe: Beast Rider |
|Spin-offs||Action-adventure games, fighting game|
Golden Axe (ゴールデンアックス, Gōruden Akkusu) is a series of side-scrolling beat 'em up arcade video games developed by Sega. The series takes place in a medieval fantasy world where several heroes have the task of recovering the legendary Golden Axe, the mainstay element of the series.
Golden Axe is a side-scrolling arcade beat 'em up game released in 1989 by Sega. Makoto Uchida was the primary developer of the game and also was responsible for the creation of Altered Beast . The game places the player in control of one of three warriors each bent on revenge against the vile dictator Death Adder. Death Adder has taken over the once peaceful land of Yuria and murdered their friend and partner, Alex. Several ports of the game were created, most notably for the Mega Drive/Genesis and Master System. Several sequels followed.
The game focuses on three heroes. One of them is a battle axe-wielding dwarf, Gilius Thunderhead, from the mines of Wolud whose twin brother was killed by the soldiers of Death Adder. Another is a male barbarian, Ax Battler, wielding a two handed broadsword looking for revenge for the murder of his mother. The last is a longsword wielding amazon, Tyris Flare, whose parents were killed by Death Adder.
Progress is made through the game by hacking and slashing your way through Adder's forces. Aiding the characters in this quest is their ability to cast spells that hurt all enemies on the screen. The force of this magic depends on the number of "bars" of magic power currently available. The bars are filled by collecting blue 'magic potions' found throughout the game. The male warrior Ax, limited to 4 bars, is able to cast Earth spells. The dwarf Gilius, limited to 3 bars, casts lightning spells and the female warrior Tyris can cast devastating fire magic, but her most powerful spell costs 6 bars.
Each of the heroes from the first game return to battle the forces of evil villain Dark Guld in this sequel. While Golden Axe II was a Mega Drive/Genesis exclusive from a development point of view, it saw limited arcade exposure in the MegaPlay series of arcade machines. Released in 1991, the game featured new magic for each of the heroes with the characteristic magic pots from the first game replaced by spell books this time around.
Many video game magazine editors[ which? ] of the time expressed that the game was very likely rushed into production to give Sega another popular title to enable the Mega Drive/Genesis to compete with its new rival, the Super NES. In most respects this sequel was essentially the same as the original, though it had new sprites for enemy characters and new levels. Many fans were disappointed with this title as they were expecting more than a rehash of the first title. However, the title had the virtue of not straying too far from a successful formula and was still quite popular upon its release.
In 1992, Sega released Golden Axe: The Revenge of Death Adder in arcades. Despite its popularity,[ citation needed ] the game remains an arcade exclusive as of 2019.
Only Gilius Thunderhead makes a return, riding the back of new character Goah the giant. The rest of the cast is all new and includes Stern Blade the barbarian, Dora the female centaur, and Little Trix, a young lad who carries a pitch fork. The main enemy is once again Death Adder.
As well as introducing multiple paths to the franchise, the magic aspect was adjusted. Though still found in the classic Golden Axe pots, the magic spells did not increase in power with the number of pots collected but required a set number to work. The Revenge of Death Adder was the only Golden Axe game in which one of the magic attacks was not offensive, as Little Trix grew apple trees with fruit that replenished health.
At the game's end, Death Adder rises one more time. Gilius sacrifices his life to finally end Adder's. During the end cinematic Gilius is shown in a bar with every other character, and a banner appears saying, "See you Next Game!"
Released in 1993, after Revenge of the Death Adder, the third Golden Axe game on the Mega Drive was released only in Japan. However, the game was available for a while in North America on the Sega Channel, Sega's modem-based game downloading system. It was brought to Europe and North America on the Nintendo Wii's Virtual Console. The game's lineup of playable characters includes swordsman Kain Grinder (カイン・グリンダー), swordswoman Sarah Barn (サラ・バーン), giant Braoude Cragger (プラウド・クラッガー) and beastman Chronos "Evil" Lait (クロノス・”イビル”・レート). Gilius also appear as a non-playable character at the character select screen.
In this game the object is to travel along a number of truly branching paths and eventually defeat the main boss of the game, the Prince of Darkness. The player can choose different branching paths in this game toward that objective just as in Revenge of Death Adder. However the paths in this game are more elaborate and do not loop back together. Many of the characters are good characters that were possessed, and once beaten they are freed. A king turned into an anthropomorphic eagle is a recurring boss who may possibly be Prince Hellbringer's right-hand man, and is playable in VS mode.
As opposed to Golden Axe II, where the characters, moves, and controls remained largely the same, Golden Axe III brought many changes to the gameplay. The background scenery was less lush and colorful than in previous games, as were the sprites themselves. There was a greater variety of moves. Furthermore, there were several abilities unique to certain characters: for example, the Braoude could throw, while the Chronos and Sarah could double jump and wall jump. Finally, each character had a super-move with its own unique button combination.
Some features were returned to the title that had been cut in previous sequels. Golden Axe III brought back the thieves from the original game, rather than the mages from Golden Axe II. Also, extra lives could be gained by freeing prisoners scattered throughout the levels. The magic system was returned to the original version where all pots are used at the same time, as opposed to the improved system in Golden Axe II that allowed the player to only use as many spellbooks as they wanted.
Critics applauded Sega's decision not to release Golden Axe III in North America, speculating that the game's drab graphics and generally mediocre quality would have damaged the Sega Genesis's reputation.
The game is titled Golden Axe: Beast Rider and features the return of Tyris Flare, the female amazon warrior from the first installments of the series. Golden Axe: Beast Rider was released in October 2008.
This Master System title tells another epic tale about the Golden Axe. It is an action-adventure game similar to The Legend of Zelda . The storyline continues the theme of the original Golden Axe games. The game's unit of currency is horns, and it is to be imagined that the hero cut these off of the enemies he killed.
Released for the Game Gear, this action-adventure title follows the legend of the character Ax Battler. Unlike its console counterpart, it is based more on Zelda II: The Adventure of Link than the original game. The player moves around a top-view overworld and enemies randomly attack. However the player can not see them like in Zelda II. When a battle begins, the transitions to a platform-style fighting environment. After killing the foe (or the foe wounding them) the hero returns to the overworld.
Unlike previous Golden Axe games, the player can learn new attacks and moves at the training dojos in each town. The currency in this game is pots, the traditional Golden Axe magic-usage item. Pots double as both currency and as an offensive attack.
Released in 1994 in the arcades and in 1995 for the Sega Saturn, Golden Axe: The Duel is a one-on-one fighting game featuring characters who appear to be descendants of some of the characters in the original game. Though the potion-dropping imp mechanic was praised, most dismissed the game as a decent but nondescript one-on-one fighter.
The characters from the original Golden Axe have made cameo appearances in other Sega games. Ax Battler, Gilius Thunderhead and Tyris Flare all make a cameo appearance in the arcade version of Alien Storm . They can be found on one of the in-game television screens; a Golden Axe logo can also be seen during that cameo. Gilius Thunderhead makes another cameo appearance in the game, as part of a panel of judges rating the player's score.
Gilius Thunderhead is also a playable character in Sega Superstars Tennis and Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed . The latter also features a track inspired by Golden Axe called "Adder's Lair". Ax Battler and Tyris Flare are available as playable characters in the Easy Mode of the Sega Ages 2500 version of Dynamite Deka . Death Adder also makes an appearance as one of the game's bosses.
Chickenleg, the pink cockatrice with the tail lash from the first game, first appeared as an enemy in Altered Beast .
In 2014, Sega formed the production company Stories International and teaming up with Evan Cholfin for film and TV projects based on their games with Golden Axe as an animated project with Universal Studios developing as a Movie or TV series.
Gilius makes frequent appearances in the 2014 anime Hi☆sCoool!, alongside other SEGA characters. Of the cameo characrers, Gilius notably appears and is referenced more often than some of the others.
Golden Axe was featured in the British comic "Sonic the Comic", which was published by Fleetway. The series was titled "The Legend of the Golden Axe" and had two six-issue runs, written by Mark Eyles and illustrated by Mike White. Issues 1–6 feature the story "Citadel of Dead Souls", wherein a necromancer attempts to resurrect Dark Guld. Issues 13–18 have the story "Plague of Serpents", which involves a snake-charmer named Cobraxis kidnapping the Queen of Gilius' dwarf race. The story takes place in the aftermath of Golden Axe II.
Characters from Golden Axe would later appear in the Worlds Unite crossover from Archie Comics alongside several other Sega and Capcom franchises.
The main themes of the series were later used in the one-on-one fighting game Soul Edge in 1995, as well as its sequels. The setting was similar (i.e. historical fantasy), and the storyline was for the heroes to recover a legendary weapon (this time an eponymous sword).
Streets of Rage is a side-scrolling beat 'em up video game developed and published by Sega for the Mega Drive/Genesis in 1991. It is the first installment of the Streets of Rage series, followed by Streets of Rage 2, Streets of Rage 3 and Streets of Rage 4. The game was later converted to the Game Gear, Sega CD and Master System, and was also released for the Wii's Virtual Console and for the iOS via the App Store, as well as being made available as part of Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection in 2009 on both the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 consoles.
Golden Axe is a side-scrolling beat 'em up arcade video game released in 1989 by Sega for the System 16-B arcade hardware. It is the first game in the Golden Axe series.
1988 saw many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Super Contra, Super Mario Bros 2, Assault, Altered Beast, Mega Man 2, Double Dragon II: The Revenge, and Super Mario Bros 3
Sega Classics Arcade Collection is the name of two compilations released for the Sega CD. Despite their titles, both versions of Sega Classics Arcade Collection include only the Sega Genesis ports of all the games included.
Dungeons & Dragons: Shadow over Mystara is an arcade game developed and published by Capcom in 1996 as a sequel to Dungeons & Dragons: Tower of Doom. The game is set in the Dungeons & Dragons campaign setting of Mystara.
Guardian Heroes is a 2D side-scrolling beat 'em up video game in the vein of Final Fight or Golden Axe, but with RPG elements. The development team called it a "fighting RPG". Guardian Heroes was developed by Treasure and released in 1996 for the Sega Saturn video game console. A sequel was released in 2004 for the Game Boy Advance entitled Advance Guardian Heroes.
Golden Axe Warrior is an action-adventure role-playing video game, developed and published by Sega. It was released on the Master System in 1991 as a spin-off of the popular Golden Axe video game series. The game follows a young warrior who tries to avenge the death of his parents by exploring ten labyrinths, collecting nine missing crystals and battling with the evil tyrant Death Adder. Players must cross a large world, fight enemies, seek mysterious labyrinths, fight bosses, and obtain the crystals that are guarded by many monsters. All the playable characters from the original Golden Axe make cameo appearances.
Shinobi is a series of video games created by Sega. The ninja (shinobi) Joe Musashi is the protagonist of the original series of games.
Golden Axe II is a side-scrolling beat 'em up video game developed and published by Sega, first released on the Sega Genesis in December 1991. It is the home console sequel to the popular game Golden Axe, marking the second game in the series, though the arcade did see a sequel of its own in 1992, titled Golden Axe: The Revenge of Death Adder. Golden Axe II was only released on the Mega Drive, while the original was released on many other platforms. The game later appeared in Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, and as an iOS port on iTunes.
Advance Guardian Heroes is a beat 'em up video game developed by Treasure for the Game Boy Advance. The game was released on September 22, 2004 in Japan, September 14, 2004 in North America and February 18, 2005 in Europe. The American and European editions of the game are published by Ubisoft.
Golden Axe III is a side-scrolling beat 'em up video game developed and published by Sega, released for the Sega Mega Drive in Japan on June 25, 1993. A North American version was released only for the Sega Channel. The game was later re-released a number of times, as part of the Sega Genesis Collection for PlayStation 2 and PlayStation Portable, Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, and digitally on the Wii Virtual Console.
Cadash is a sword and sorcery video game which combines elements of both the role-playing video game genre of games and the platform genre of games. The game was originally an arcade game released by Taito in 1989, later ported to home video game consoles such as the TurboGrafx-16 in 1991, and the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis in 1992. The game was included in Taito Memories Volume 2 which was released for the PlayStation 2 in 2005. It was also included in the Xbox and PC versions of Taito Legends 2 which was released in 2007.
Golden Axe: The Revenge of Death Adder is a side-scrolling beat'em up video game released in 1992 by Sega for the System 32 arcade board. It is part of the Golden Axe series of games. Despite its popularity, the game was never released to home consoles.
Golden Axe: Beast Rider is an action-adventure hack and slash video game for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, published by Sega and developed by Secret Level. It is the first 3D entry in the Golden Axe franchise. The game was released in North America on October 14, 2008 and in Europe on October 17.
Golden Axe: The Duel (ゴールデンアックス・ザ・デュエル) is a fantasy-themed fighting game produced by Sega based on their Golden Axe series. It was originally released as a coin-operated arcade game in 1995 and later ported to the Sega Saturn. It is the third coin-operated installment in the series, following the original Golden Axe and Golden Axe: The Revenge of Death Adder.
Ax Battler: A Legend of Golden Axe is an action-adventure video game spin-off of the popular Golden Axe series. The game was released on the Sega Game Gear in 1991.
Sega All-Stars is a series of crossover video games featuring video game characters from games developed or published by Sega. It consists of four games: Sega Superstars, Sega Superstars Tennis, Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing and Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed.
Tyris Flare, written as Tyris=Flare in her early appearances, is one of the main protagonists of Sega's video game franchise Golden Axe and the sole playable character in Golden Axe: Beast Rider. Tyris was introduced as a princess-turned-amazon in the original beat 'em up game Golden Axe in 1989, and was controversially rebooted as a religious warrior in the 2008 action-adventure reboot Beast Rider. In both of her incarnations, she is fighting against evil forces in a heroic fantasy setting and in particular seeking have her revenge on the power-hungry warlord Death Adder. Tyris has been one of the most popular early heroes of the beat 'em up and hack and slash genres. She is known as one of the iconic female characters of the 16-bit era.
Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing is a kart racing video game, part of the Sega Superstars series, produced for Wii, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo DS, and Microsoft Windows, featuring characters from Sega franchises. A mobile version has been developed by Gameloft. The game was released for iOS in June 2011, as a paid download. A version for OS X was released by Feral Interactive in April 2013.
World Heroes is a 1992 fighting arcade game developed and published by Alpha Denshi with the assistance of SNK. It was originally released for the Neo Geo MVS arcade cabinet on July 28, 1992. It is ADK's first game in the fighting game genre, as well as their earliest attempt in the fighting game trend of the '90s that was popularized by Capcom's 1991 arcade-hit Street Fighter II. It was even the last game with the "Alpha" logo labeled within the game before the developer became "ADK"; however, the "Alpha" logo was last used on one of the arcade flyers of its sequel.