Space Harrier (Sega Master System, 1986)
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|Space Harrier is a fast-paced rail shooter game played in a third-person perspective behind the protagonist, set in a surreal world composed of brightly colored landscapes adorned with checkerboard-style grounds and stationary objects such as trees or stone pillars. The title player character, simply named Harrier, navigates a continuous series of eighteen distinct stages while utilizing an underarm jet-propelled laser cannon that enables Harrier to simultaneously fly and shoot. The objective is simply to destroy all enemies—who range from prehistoric animals and Chinese dragons to flying robots, airborne geometric objects and alien pods—all while remaining in constant motion in order to dodge projectiles and immovable ground obstacles.
The first two-megabit cartridge produced for the console, the game was given a plot in which Harrier saves the "Land of the Dragons" (rather than the "Fantasy Zone") from destruction, with a new ending sequence in contrast to the arcade version's simple "The End" message. All eighteen stages were present but the backdrops therein were omitted, leaving just a monochromatic horizon and the checkerboard floors. An exclusive final boss was included in a powerful twin-bodied fire dragon named Haya Oh, who was named after then-Sega president Hayao Nakayama.
Ed Semrad of The Milwaukee Journal gave the Master System port a 9/10 rating, and Computer Gaming World deemed it "the best arcade shoot-'em-up of the year ... as exciting a game as this reviewer has ever played".
|Publisher||Sega of America, Inc.|
|Platform||Sega Master System|
|Genre||Shooter, Classic Arcade|
|Number of Players||1|
|Game Series||Space Harrier Series|
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