(Wii Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

Blazing Lazers (Wii Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

Game Profile

Blazing Lazers (or Gunhed in Japan) is a vertical-scrolling shooter that was praised for surpassing the limitations of the hardware of its time. Players control the extraordinary firepower of their Gunhed Star Fighter to take on the Dark Squadron that has begun its invasion of Earth. Collect power-ups to increase your ship's battle strength so it can cut through enemies and defeat the bosses in all nine areas.

Of course, as part of the 'Soldier' series, the game contains a good combination of fast-paced speed with catchy, drum-propelled background music, coupled with the Field Thunder that can be used to destroy enemies in one fell swoop for the ultimate sense of satisfaction. With its fine-tuned difficulty levels, Blazing Lazers is a shooting game that anyone can enjoy.

Game Review

Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Damien McFerran

Blazing Lazers is a vertical-scrolling shooter that was praised for surpassing the limitations of the hardware of its time.

Originally released in Japan as Gunhed, Blazing Lazers was one of the most heavily featured titles in the original TurboGrafx-16 adverts, and with very good reason. Considering the age of the title (it was originally released in 1989!), it's nothing short...

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User Comments (44)

deggs

#1

deggs said:

my god... i remember this game being super amazing when i was a kid. a friend of mine had it and everyone would just hangout at his place playing it for hours and hours

__Tedowski

#2

Tedowski said:

YES! I can't wait for this to come out. I have this for the TG-16.
This is one of my favorite games. I was hoping for this to be released!

DazzaAdmin

#4

Dazza said:

If I was to give Soldier Blade 95% I would give Blazing Lazers 93% - The difference really is minimal. For fans of the genre downloading this is a no-brainer! :-)

__Shiyo

#5

Shiyo said:

Sweet, another shooter. I love these. I still haven't beaten Soldier Blade and Super Star Soldier (They're really freaking hard @_@) but I'll definitely get this one. I love the genre.

ajwight2

#9

ajwight2 said:

I just bought this and I haven't played it before and I love it. Very good $6 purchase

michinmuri

#10

michinmuri said:

A shooter not to be missed. I've never played Soldier Blade, but will get it due to the rave reviews. You can't pass on this one either.

Game_Over

#13

Game_Over said:

I love how the VC has given some of these old gems their due respect. I had never played this game before I downloaded it based off of the comments section on this very page. I have always loved this type of game. Non stop thumb action with all sorts of dodging tons of enemies. I am not a master at these games but the great colors and and vibrant action really make this game a good starting point into this genre. I loved learning the different power up system and how to rack it up with the best combo of main weapon and sub-weapon. The reviews are right when they mention the first levels are pretty easy if you amass a killer weapon. However it does get quite challenging and I am currently only on the "easter Island" Head Guy level. Seriously download this game. The soundtrack is super rocking and I just love the hypnotic tracks. I have it hooked up to my stereo and it is awesome. One last tip...If you are not the greatest at this type of game but still would like to enjoy...track down the 30 continues cheat online...nobody said you had to play fair to have fun?

DEMON212

#14

DEMON212 said:

Can't believe this is a Soldier game. It's so much slower and there's no 2 min and 5 min mode. Which is missed. Still good though :D

Merlin

#15

Merlin said:

The soundtrack for this game is stellar. In more than one way. Great shooter.

T_Wii

#17

T_Wii said:

A very good and challenging shmup, albeit bordering on unfair at times. Certain enemy projectiles are friggin huge, paired with unforgiving collision detection. Whatever, I like it nevertheless. Go download it :) .

jeffo

#18

jeffo said:

Do yourself a favour and download this old gem. Definately in my top five of all time. Currently working on area 9 (I forgot how freakin' hard it gets). Good assortment of weapons, although, come on, who really uses the photon blaster or the ring blaster. I take the deceptor wave and sheild all the way to the bubble level if I can and then it's pretty much field thunder from there on. Superb shooting gameplay. Excellent graphics (for their time). Great cheesy 80's style electronic drums and keyboards music (kinda like mid-eighties Phil Collins' Genesis-but better). I have also downloaded SSS and Soldier Blade but I'm waiting until I can finally crack this one again before I really venture on.

Nigel

#19

Nigel said:

This was my first ever shooter when I downloaded it a few months ago. I used to think shooters were too hard, and now I can't stop playing them! Blazing Lazers is still one of the best, even though I can sweep through the first three levels without taking a hit. The music is great and the power-up system is fun. Once you loose your power-ups at the giant statue heads you're screwed, though.

I'm at level 7 (when I can get past those damned heads), so I've still got a little ways to go yet.

5 stars!

Manicfatty

#20

Manicfatty said:

An excellent game, but yet another that reminds me just how bad I've become as a gamer! :P I need to get back to basics I guess! This game is one of the reasons I bought the system. It was always on display at a local video game store, and blew my mind at the time. Still impressive today.

President_Leever

#21

President_Leever said:

This isn't related to the Soldier series, it's a "side-story" to the Aleste series and it's made by Compile. It's a great, intense game but I prefer the Aleste games that came after it because they have more eye candy and are more forgiving.

GEOFF

#22

GEOFF said:

This is a 8bit and far inferior version (not the exact same game) of super aleste on the SNES which was a revelation cause of the amount of sprites on the screen with no slow down.Maybe they used a chip on the cart or they were wizard programmers.I'm sure this game was great at the time (helped by the wow factor) but unlike R-type it isn't now.

StarDust4Ever

#23

StarDust4Ever said:

This game is definitely one awesomely intense shoot-em-up. By intense, I don't mean insanely hard, because if you've powered up your ship, you can take a hit or two, and there are powerups dropped by almost everything you blow up. There are four different modes of powerups you can use. I recommend getting and keeping the III powerup, as this is the one with the "blazing lazers" that practically blast the whole screen. After that, just focus on piking up the pink blob powerups and avoid the numbers I, II, and IV. There are also multi-fire thingies that will surround your ship and fire away extra blasts. Awesome game, despite my not being able to get past area #1 (I am not an expert player by any stretch on shooter games).

@apexpredator: thanks for the tip-off. I looked up the cheats online and I found a hoard of stuff, including a debug mode [accessible with some bizarre button mashings] with a code 77 for invincibility - Hmmm, I've gotta ty this stuff. Hopfully, if this is true emulation, it will all work [just like the "minus world" and "Thank you dead Mario" glitches still work in SMB].

GEOFF

#24

GEOFF said:

The codes work.You can even make the game harder cause it's way too easy hahaha! Only 1 of those codes work I think.

Stage 9 is just silly hard once you lose your power ups. I had to cheat, gaming gods forgive me.

Eltigro

#25

Eltigro said:

Way back in the proverbial day, when I got my TurboGrafx-16 for Christmas, there was this deal that if you sent in a copy of your receipt and the UPC code off the box, you could get a free game. I chose this game, so it is one of the oldest TG-16 games I own. It is a great vertical Shmup. I remember standing in front of a projection TV in a McDuff's Electronics store in the mall, playing this game. They had it near the front of the store with the TV facing the glass so that people passing by could see it. I was so amazed by this game. The speed, the colors, the variety of enemies, the weapon upgrades... I was even amazed by the voice that announced the new upgrades. It was a little hard to understand, but was much clearer than anything the Genesis ever produced.

I have only had Soldier Blade downloaded on VC for a couple of weeks, so I don't really think I'm ready to make a formal comparison.

A cheat that I used to do on this game... on the level that looks like you're inside some animal (the one in the video where brains are attacking you), there is mid-point boss that is essentially like eight eye sockets on either side of the screen that keep producing eyeballs that home in on you. I would get the highest level of weapon IV, where I had four indestructible satellites that orbit your ship in a circle and sit at the bottom of the screen, just to one side of the center. The eye sockets keep spitting out eyes, your rotating shields keep killing them, you keep getting points, you keep getting extra ships for points. I would do this, turn off the TV, go to bed, go to school or work the next day, come home, turn on the TV and have like 20 or 30 ships ready to go.

Shortay

#26

Shortay said:

How is the easiest difficulty in this game? I'm pretty new to the SHMUP genre and I want to try to find the easiest possible one to start with as I know the genre is notoriously difficult.

hansolo350

#27

hansolo350 said:

If you want an easy shooter I would suggest Soldier Blade and if you have the room, Lords of Thunder.

Cally

#29

Cally said:

I'm going nuts here.

As soon as I pick up fire 3 and the shield item, I can reliably make it ALL the way to area 9 without losing a single ship.

And then I get consummately stomped, all the way through sixteen ships and four continues. :O HELP! :(

Oh and great game of course. Fluid controls, great stages, and not overly-oppressive on the number of killer, slow-moving dots at once. My favorite vertical shooter, I think, though I haven't gotten Star Parodier yet. My only criticism--although this hits pretty much every such shooter ever made, really--is that it's so incredibly hard (hence my above frustrations) to re-power-up your ship after it gets destroyed that one death is very likely to result in another soon after. And that obnoxious difficulty spike at the end.

Eltigro

#30

Eltigro said:

@Cally Yeah, there is kind of a brick wall that it hits that is pretty hard to get over. I have the game for my TG-16 and I can get pretty far (don't remember exactly how far) but at a certain point, it becomes pretty painful. As far as the getting powered back up after dying, yeah, it is nearly impossible. Some games (like Gate of Thunder which I wholly recommend) let you get several different weapons powered up and you only lose the one you were using when you died. So that makes it easier. Even if you have a favorite weapon, and lose it when you die, you still have some kind of backup weapon. And then there are games that, when you die, a little powerup ship comes out and spreads some powerups on the screen to help you get back in the groove (I'm thinking of one of the Darius games but can't remember which one. I have Darius Gaiden for the Saturn and Darius Twin for my SNES and can't remember if both do that.)

I like the controls better in Blazing Lazers than in some similar games such as Soldier Blade. The ship in Soldier Blade seems too quick and touchy, hard for me to make precision shots, even when the ship is at the slow speed.

My personal favorite weapon and power up is the III weapon (Field Thunder) powered up to the level where it has one lazer going straight and two squiggly lazers going up on either side of the straight one. And yeah, as far as homing missles, full power, or shields, shields are the way to go.

lockelocke

#31

lockelocke said:

Ok, question.
I've got Soldier Blade, and love it. I've been playing Super Star Soldier on EMU and I'm really feeling it. Should I go for Super Star or Blazing Lazers? Is one a better game overall?

whalleywhat

#32

whalleywhat said:

If you want some variety, go for Blazing Lazers. I haven't played it yet, but it's developed by a different company than the other two, Compile, which is best known for the Aleste games. I'm thinking about picking it up myself.

Adol

#33

Adol said:

Homing Missiles and the "I" power-up were the best comb IMO. Once your missiles are powered fully, you will soon experience what I called "brushing their teeth", where your missiles will literally dart back and forth on some of the boss's weak points before they attack you. :P

Sharecrow

#34

Sharecrow said:

Is this game harder than Soldier Blade? I am interested in playing it either way, but was just curious...

CanisWolfred

#38

CanisWolfred said:

Yeah, I could not get into this one. It wasn't as bad as Star Soldier, but certainly not up to the quality of, say...the Soldier series.

Cally

#39

Cally said:

Okay . . . I have to revise my statement.

I think I suddenly changed my mind about Blazing Lazers (and Soldier Blade, which I'm starting to appreciate more now). Call it an epiphany, but I have this to say about BL: once you get the right power-ups (and in this game, there definitely are RIGHT and WRONG power-ups) it's the easiest shooter ever. Get your hands on a shield and beam 3 and there's pretty much no stopping you. However, if you should be unfortunate enough to lose your power-ups, it becomes the most insanely hard shooter ever. Especially near the end--oh well, "I just lost one ship," right? WRONG. You'll be shooting peas with thirty to forty deadly objects and dots and trying to weave between them, hating yourself for losing your power-ups, with a checkpoint RIGHT in the middle of the chaos. Good luck!

What I like about BL, still, is the (rather inexplicable) variety of settings. Ancient Egypt with missiles coming out of pyramids? Wha (?) . . . AWESOME! And it's still fun to play around with, but man, enough time with it and you discover some incredibly unbalanced gameplay. Personally, though, I know enough times getting to the end with Shield and beam 3 intact . . . and NOT dying during that stage and I'm sure to see the end. Maybe someday . . .
4/10

Lasafrog

#41

Lasafrog said:

I pulled out Blazing Lazers last night in bed on my old TurboExpress just to see how it held up (it being the TurboExpress as much as this game). It all came back to me and I beat the game on normal difficulty without any continues. The game has a lot of things going for it, and Im thrilled to report it holds up wonderfully. Its got a great difficulty ramp up, beautiful use of color, many memorible bosses (often more than 1 per stage) and a much more customizable weapon set than I had remembered. Also avoiding/destroying certain power ups will cause them to become instant-revives. This along with the method of bomb collection with involves changing/imrpoving your secondary weapon, causes you to both switch things up and adds some strategy to your game. Or more to the point, you learn to stockpile both lives and instant-revives for the brutal final level.

I can say this certainly holds up better than both Star Soldier and Super Star Soldier in terms of presentation, though you wouldn't go wrong with any of the three.

Id give this one a 9/10.

Lasafrog

#42

Lasafrog said:

As a quick addition - I was reading that many of you had a favorite weapon you recommended.

I'd have to say that while I tend to favor the Ring Blaster (IV) and shield in many cases, there are great uses for all. For instance, stage 4 is a breeze with Power Wave (II) and Full Fire. Level 7 is similarly easy with Filed Thunder (III) and Full Fire. In Stage 2, Phonton Blaster (I) and powered up Homing Missiles will completely destroy almost everything, and quickly. Playing around with the weapons is a lot of the fun, and in many cases, you cant go wrong.

jwl

#43

jwl said:

Can anyone get the invincibility code to work? The game seems to crash by it.

JustanotherGamer

#44

JustanotherGamer said:

An Epic "Shoot them up" if your a fan of the genre. This game is a must play. I remember that weapon 4 was a pain to get fully powered up. Once you did this game was a Cakewalk (almost).
Blazing lazers is great for it's arcade like gameplay of days gone by.

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