Skyblazer

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Skyblazer
Cover art
North American cover art
Developer(s) Ukiyotei
Publisher(s)
Composer(s) Harumi Fujita
Platform(s) SNES
Release date(s)
  • JP February 18, 1994
  • NA January 1994
  • EU March 25, 1994
Genre(s) Platform game
Mode(s) Single-player
Distribution 8 megabit cartridge

Skyblazer, released in Japan as Karuraou (迦楼羅王?), is a platform video game published by Sony Imagesoft, released in early 1994 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. It involves Sky, the Skyblazer hero (Garuda in the Japanese version) searching for Ashura, the Lord of War, who had kidnapped the sorceress Ariana (Vishnu in the Japanese version).

Skyblazer was obscure at the time of its release, but has nevertheless received respectable reviews from those who have played it.[1][2]

Gameplay[edit]

Skyblazer.jpg

There are a total of 17 levels with a few more stops on the map where the elder (Brahma in the Japanese version) gives passwords to the player and ten bosses including the final boss, Raglan (Ravana in the Japanese version); Four of those must be fought twice, since they reappear immediately before Ashura, who appears before Raglan. An overhead map allows for movement between levels, including back to ones already completed, and its slight non-linearity allows one to skip some levels (at the cost of the magic spells and other powerups obtainable in them).

Most of the levels are side-scrolling, but there are some levels involving flight, either automatically scrolling or in Mode 7, where the player can grab crystals towards extra lives but will exit the level upon touching a spike and falling. Also, some levels expand on the usual platform structure by including waterways whose paths can be varied with switches, and there are areas with rotating towers. Many of the bosses also use extensive Mode 7, expanding and rotating around the screen or coming in the form of rotating walls.

There are eight secondary attacks available beyond the basic punch and kick, but unlike those they require magic power:

  • Dragon Slash — This basic secondary attack is always available with enough magic power, even before completing any levels. It fires a small curved wave with moderate attack power.
  • Comet Flash — Sky jets straight forward, allowing him to traverse long pits of spikes, lava and other dangers.
  • Lightning Strike — Full-screen lightning blast.
  • Star Fire — Shot goes outward in nine directions from the player.
  • Heal — Heals the player.
  • Warrior Force — Temporary invulnerability and doubled attack power.
  • Time Stop — Temporarily stops enemy motion; only works on one boss.
  • Fiery Phoenix — The only weapon that can penetrate Ashura's defense.

Magic powerups, signified by flasks of red liquid in either small or large sizes, can replenish the power needed to use these while flasks of green fluid restore health. There are gems of both small and large sizes; a large gem counts the same as 10 small ones, and obtaining 100 gems will give a player an extra life (much like the coins in Super Mario Brothers, or rings in Sonic the Hedgehog.) There are also outright 1-ups.

Blood from the Japanese release was re-colored green for the Western Releases. [3]

Credits[edit]

  • Game Design — Kenshi Naruse[4]
  • Programming — Tadakatsu Makiuchi, Norihiro Tokeshi
  • Character Design — Teruo Nagato
  • Graphics — Midori Nasu, Michiyo Komura, Sadaki Matsumoto
  • Music — Harumi Fujita (who used a similar style, but militaristic as opposed to Indian in tone, in Bionic Commando)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "GameFAQs reviews and profile". GameFAQs. Retrieved 2007-04-08. 
  2. ^ "GameLemon review (where screenshot was also borrowed with permission)". GameLemon. Archived from the original on February 24, 2007. Retrieved 2007-04-08. 
  3. ^ http://www.superfamicom.co.uk/index.php/karuraou-review
  4. ^ "Skyblazer". MobyGames. Retrieved 2007-04-08.