Japanese arcade flyer of Sky Kid.
|Mode(s)||2 players can play simultaneously|
|Cabinet||Upright, cabaret, and cocktail|
|Arcade system||Namco Pac-Land|
|Display||Horizontal orientation, Raster|
Sky Kid (スカイキッド Sukai Kiddō?) is a horizontal scrolling shooter arcade game that was released by Namco in 1985. It runs on Namco Pac-Land hardware but with a video system like that used in Dragon Buster. It is also the first game from Namco to allow 2 players to play simultaneously. The game was later released on the Famicom (brought to the American NES by Sunsoft), and both this version (and the original arcade version for the Wii) were later released on Nintendo's Virtual Console service.
A sequel named Sky Kid Deluxe was released in 1986. It introduced several new enemies and missions.
Sky Kid is a two-dimensional, scrolling shooter game. The players play as the Sky Kids "Red Baron" and "Blue Max", which are references to Manfred von Richthofen, the famous World War I flying ace, and the prestigious order Pour le Mérite, informally known as Blue Max. The Sky Kids fly around in biplanes and are assigned specific targets during the missions. These missions involve bombing specific targets. The "A" button is used to control the plane's machine gun and the "B" button is used to perform a loop.
A number of obstacles face the player in each level. First, their biplane is not equipped with a bomb to complete their mission, and must be picked up en route to the target. Second, there are both ground and air units that attempt to keep the Sky Kids from accomplishing their mission. Last, the Sky Kids may have to navigate through some very inhospitable terrain or navigate around cities in order to get to the target. The targets that the Sky Kids must bomb will either be a fortress complex or a ship. As the player moves farther up in the 9 missions, multiple targets will begin to appear in the course of one mission. Players receive points for destroying air and ground targets, receiving additional points for how many of these types of targets are destroyed. In addition, players get points based on how much of the target is destroyed.
Sometimes blowing up enemy units will reveal a hidden Namco icon or character, including Pac-Man, Inky, the Special Flag from Rally-X (which has appeared in many other Namco games) or Pooka from Dig Dug.
If the player does a loop in front of girls, the girls send out hearts representing kisses. If the player shoots them, they turn into waving dogs.
After Namco ended its partnerships with both Midway and Atari, they started to release games in the United States. Releases such as Grobda (1984) and Dig Dug II (1985) were some of the games that Namco released. Since the Video Game Crash of 1983 had claimed quite a few arcade companies, Namco managed to fill the gap. Sky Kid was a game that didn't enjoy great success in the United States. The game, however, did show that Namco was on the right track as far as games they released.[original research?] Featuring cartoon-like graphics and different types of missions, Sky Kid would form the basis of several other Namco games based on the same type of gameplay.
Other appearances in media
- In Namco's Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation, three allied pilots have the call signs "Sky Kid," "Red Baron," and "Blue Max."
- In Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War, "Sky Kid" is the name of a singer in a poster in the character Chopper's barracks. The same Sky Kid logo used by Levy in Ace Combat 4 can be seen on several of the Boeing 747 airlines at Apito International Airport in mission 11A (Chain Reaction).
- In Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies, "Sky Kid" is the name of the tavern where the narrator played harmonica as a child. The Erusian Air Force ace pilot Levy uses a Sky Kid logo on the tail fins of his F-14A Tomcat as dose De Vico in his Tornado IDS.
- Ridge Racers, Ridge Racers 2 and Ridge Racer 6 features a Sky Kid-themed Fiera car.
- The song "Taiko March" in the game Taiko Drum Master includes music from several Namco games, including Sky Kid.
- Sky Kid has been recently resurrected as a comic strip as part of the ShiftyLook series of internet comic strips featuring artwork by Udon Entertainment. The strip focuses on the exploits of the two protagonists, Red Baron and Blue Max.
- "Two WiiWare Games and One Virtual Console Game Added to Wii Shop Channel". Nintendo of America. 2008-05-19. Retrieved 2008-05-19.