|Thunder Force III|
North American cover of Thunder Force III
|Platform(s)||Sega Genesis, Arcade, SNES, Sega Saturn, Nintendo Switch|
Thunder Force III (サンダーフォースIII) is a 1990 scrolling shooter game developed by Technosoft for the Sega Genesis.It is the third chapter in the Thunder Force series. It was then retooled into an arcade game named Thunder Force AC. In 1991, Thunder Force AC was ported to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System under the title Thunder Spirits.
For Thunder Force III, the free-directional, overhead stage format featured in the previous two games is removed and replaced entirely by the horizontally scrolling stage format.The horizontal format became the new standard for the series.
The player is allowed to choose which of the initial five planets (Hydra, Gorgon, Seiren, Haides, and Ellis), to start on. After the first five stages are completed, the game continues for three more stages into ORN headquarters.
The weapon system from Thunder Force II returns in this game, with some modifications. Some weapons from Thunder Force II are reused or modified slightly (the enhanceable Twin shot and Back shot remain the defaults), while others are completely new and exclusive to the game.
This time, when the player's ship is destroyed, only the weapon that was currently in use is lost (unless it is a default weapon and assuming the game is operating at the default difficulty settings). On any higher difficulty modes than the default one, all weapons are lost when the ship gets destroyed. CLAWs also make their return and have the same behavior and functions, except now when the player collects the CLAW item, the ship automatically receives its maximum two CLAWs (again, CLAWs are lost upon ship destruction in every difficulty modes). Also, when using most weapons, the CLAWs will mimic the ship and fire the same weapon (similar to the Options in Gradius games). The final new addition is that the player's ship now has a speed setting, which can be increased or decreased across four levels at the press of a button.
Thunder Force III takes place about 100 years after Thunder Force and directly after Thunder Force II . Despite their successes, the Galaxy Federation has not been faring well in their battle against the ORN Empire. ORN has installed cloaking devices on five major planets in their space territory that conceal their main base, making it difficult for the Galaxy Federation to locate and attack their headquarters. Also, ORN has built a remote defense system to protect itself named Cerberus, which is especially efficient at neutralizing large ships and fleets. Knowing this, the Galaxy Federation creates the FIRE LEO-03 Styx; a craft small enough to avoid detection by Cerberus, yet equipped with the firepower of a large starfighter. The Galaxy Federation deploys Styx (which is controlled by the player) on a mission to destroy the five cloaking devices, infiltrate the Empire's headquarters, and destroy ORN emperor, the bio-computer "Cha Os".
Thunder Force III was released on June 9, 1990, in Japan. [ citation needed ]Thunder Force AC has been described as a retooling of Thunder Force III because it borrows enemies and stages from the earlier Thunder Force II as well as adding some original content.[ citation needed ]Due to the success of the game for the Mega Drive/Genesis, it was decided that the game would be brought to the arcade scene under the name Thunder Force AC. Ported to Sega's System C-2 hardware, Thunder Force AC is almost graphically identical to its Mega Drive counterpart, with only very minor and often unnoticeable differences.
Thunder Force AC was also ported to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1991 as Thunder Spirits, by Toshiba. [ citation needed ]The SNES version does away with level selection, changes several levels, and features a modified soundtrack.
In 1996, Thunder Force III was re-released in Thunder Force Gold Pack 1 for the Sega Saturn. Thunder Force AC was re-released in Thunder Force Gold Pack 2, also for the Sega Saturn.
With Sega buying the rights to the series in 2016, it was confirmed in 2020 that Thunder Force AC would be re-released on Nintendo Switch worldwide in May 2020 as part of the Sega Ages line. This version includes an easy mode, online leaderboards, improved sound, and various other improvements.
The original Genesis version received much praise. GamePro called it "a straightforward flying shooter with gorgeous graphics", particularly mentioning the large, detailed enemies and "intricate backgrounds". They described it as extremely difficult, most suited for hardcore shooter fans. [ citation needed ] In 1992 Mega placed the game at #17 in their Top Mega Drive Games of All Time. In 1997 Electronic Gaming Monthly listed it as the 59th best console video game of all time, calling it the best shooter on the Genesis. Japanese gaming magazine Famitsu gave it a score of 31 out of 40.MegaTech magazine praised the use of parallax, as well as the sound and gameplay.
In Japan, Game Machine listed Thunder Force AC on their February 1, 1991 issue as being the sixteenth most-successful table arcade unit of the year.
Famitsu gave Thunder Spirits version a lower score, giving it only 23/40.
Thunder Force is a free-roaming scrolling shooter computer game released by Technosoft in 1983. It is the first game in the Thunder Force series. It was initially released for the X1 computer, and later appeared on the Sharp MZ-1500, PC-6001 mkII, and in 1985 on the PC-8801 mkII. In 1984, it was released for the FM-7 and PC-9801 computers as Thunder Force Construction, featuring an add-on that allowed players to create custom made areas, like a level editor or game creation system.
Raiden is a 1990 vertically scrolling shooter arcade video game developed by Seibu Kaihatsu and published by Tecmo in Japan. The game's story takes place in the year 2090, when an alien species known as the Crystals invaded Earth. Players assume the roles of the Vanquish Crystal Defense pilot duo, taking control of two state of the art Fighting Thunders aircraft to defeat the Crystals and save the Earth.
Truxton is a 1988 vertically scrolling shooter arcade video game originally developed by Toaplan and published in Japan and Europe by Taito, as well in North America by Midway. Set in a future where the Gidans alien race led by Dogurava invaded the fictional planet Borogo, players assume the role of fighter pilot Tatsuo taking control of the Super Fighter ship on a last-ditch effort to overthrow the alien invaders.
Sunset Riders is a side-scrolling run and gun video game developed and released by Konami as a coin-operated video game on the JAMMA arcade platform in 1991. The game is set in the American Old West, where the player takes control of a bounty hunter who is seeking the rewards offered for various criminals.
Gunstar Heroes is a run and gun video game developed by Treasure and published by Sega. It was Treasure's debut game, originally released on the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis in 1993. The game's premise is centered around a pair of characters, the Gunstars, in their efforts to stop an evil empire from recovering four powerful gems. The characters can fire guns and perform a series of acrobatic maneuvers to fight enemies across each stage. There are four weapons in the game which can be combined with one another to create different shot types.
1992 has seen many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins, Art of Fighting, Super Mario Kart, and Mortal Kombat.
Contra: Hard Corps is a side-scrolling run and gun-style shoot-'em-up video game released by Konami for the Sega Genesis in North America and South Korea in 1994. It was also released for the Mega Drive as Contra: The Hard Corps in Japan, and as Probotector in Europe and Australia. It was the first game in the Contra series released for a Sega platform and serves as the first entry in the Hard Corps series, itself a subseries of the Contra franchise. It was re-released in June 2019 as part of Contra: Anniversary Collection for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and Windows, and was also included in the Genesis Mini dedicated console released on September 2019.
Thunder Force II (サンダーフォースII) is a scrolling shooter developed by Technosoft. It was first released in Japan on October 15, 1988 for the Sharp X68000 computer. A year later, it was ported to the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis game console and released in Japan, Europe, and the United States. Thunder Force II was one of the six launch titles for the U.S. Genesis release. The Genesis port was later included in Thunder Force Gold Pack Volume 1 for the Sega Saturn. It is the second chapter of the Thunder Force series.
Thunder Force IV, known in North America as Lightening Force: Quest for the Darkstar, is a shoot 'em up video game developed and published by Technosoft for the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive in 1992. It is the fourth installment in Technosoft's Thunder Force series, and the third and final one created for the Genesis. It was developed by the team at Technosoft that ported Devil's Crush to the Genesis rather than the team that developed the previous Thunder Force games. Like its predecessors, it is a horizontally scrolling shooter, but it also features extensive vertical scrolling with large playing fields.
Thunder Force V is a 1997 Japanese side-scrolling shooter video game developed by Technosoft for the Sega Saturn. It is the fifth game in the Thunder Force series. Unlike previous games in the series, Thunder Force V uses polygons to model the larger enemy ships and some of the scenery, in addition to sprites. In 1998, Thunder Force V was ported to the PlayStation as Thunder Force V: Perfect System.
Thunder Force is a series of free-roaming scrolling shooter type video games developed by the Japanese software company Technosoft. The franchise is recognized for its distinctive gameplay, graphics, and synthesizer-based chiptune music soundtracks.
Gley Lancer is a 1992 scrolling shooter video game developed and published by Masaya for the Sega Mega Drive.
Hellfire is a 1989 horizontally scrolling shooter arcade video game originally developed by Toaplan and published in Japan by Taito and North America by U.S.A. Games. The first horizontal shoot 'em up title to be created by Toaplan, the game takes place in the year 2998 where a space matter known as Black Nebula created by robot dictator Super Mech spreads and threatens to engulf human-controlled galaxies, as players assume the role of Space Federation member Captain Lancer taking control of the CNCS1 space fighter craft in a surprise attack to overthrow the enemies with the fighter craft's titular weapon.
Wardner is a side-scrolling platform game developed by Toaplan and published in arcades worldwide by Taito in 1987.
MUSHA is a vertically scrolling shooter developed by Compile and released for the Sega Genesis in 1990. An entry in Compile's shooter series, Aleste, MUSHA places the player in the role of a flying mecha pilot who must destroy a large super intelligent computer threatening planet Earth. The game had a working title of Aleste 2 and featured a style similar to the first game, but it was redirected to a Japanese aesthetic and speed metal soundtrack.
Galaxy Force is a 1988 third-person rail shooter arcade game developed and published by Sega. The player assumes control of a starship named the TRY-Z, as it must prevent the Fourth Empire from taking over the entire galaxy. Gameplay involves shooting down enemies using either a laser shot or a limited supply of heat-seeking missiles, all while avoiding collision with projectiles or obstacles and making sure the ship's energy meter doesn't fully deplete. It ran on the Sega Y Board arcade system.
Lords of Thunder, known as Winds of Thunder in Japan, is a shoot 'em up by Hudson Soft and Red Company for the Turbo CD which was released in 1993. It was ported to the Sega CD in 1995. It is the unofficial follow-up to Gate of Thunder. The game features a heavy metal soundtrack.
Thunder Force VI is a 2008 horizontal-scrolling shooter video game developed and published for the PlayStation 2 by Sega. The game places the player in the role of a starship that must eradicate the Orn Faust empire before they destroy all of Earth. The player must complete each stage by shooting down enemies and avoiding collisions with them and their projectiles, using an arsenal of powerful weapons to destroy them. It is the sixth and final entry in the long-running Thunder Force video game franchise, and the only one to not be developed by series creator Technosoft.
Ginga Fukei Densetsu Sapphire, commonly abbreviated to Sapphire in English, is a shoot 'em up developed by CAProduction for the PC Engine CD-ROM² System. It was published in 1995 by Hudson Soft exclusively in Japan. The story follows an all-women police force in 2092 traveling through time to intercept terrorists committing crimes across the past and future. The player takes on the role of a police officer and controls their spaceship through waves of enemies and powerful bosses.
M2 Co., Ltd. is a Japanese video game developer and publisher, best known for handling emulation of re-released games, such as some Sega Ages titles, Virtual Console titles for Nintendo systems and the 3D Classics series for the Nintendo 3DS. M2 has spent much of their recent time working for Konami, creating not only arcade compilations, but also an entirely new set of games for WiiWare under the ReBirth moniker.