After Burner II

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After Burner II
After Burner II.jpg
European box art (note erroneous use of F-15)
Developer(s)Sega AM2
Designer(s)Yu Suzuki
Programmer(s)Satoshi Mifune
Composer(s)Hiroshi Kawaguchi (Arcade)
Noriyuki Iwadare (Mega Drive/Genesis)
Naoki Kodaka (Famicom)
September 1987
  • Arcade
    September 1987[1][2]
    Atari ST
    March 30, 1989
    Sharp X68000
    Mega Drive/Genesis
    • JP: March 23, 1990
    • NA: March 22, 1990
    PC Engine
    • JP: September 28, 1990
    Sega Saturn
    • JP: September 27, 1996
    Nintendo 3DS
    • JP: December 18, 2013
    • WW: January 15, 2015
Genre(s)Combat flight simulator
Arcade systemSega X Board

After Burner II is an arcade combat flight simulator game released by Sega in 1987.[3] It is the second game in the After Burner series, and was released for the Sega X Board arcade system. In the game, players fly an F-14 Tomcat jet fighter, gunning down enemies while avoiding incoming fire. After Burner II came both a standard arcade cabinet and a servo actuated, sit-down motion simulator version which moved according to the motion of the plane onscreen. The cockpit would bank in the same direction the on-screen aircraft was banking. It is an updated version of After Burner, with the addition of throttle controls. It was a commercial success, becoming Japan's highest-grossing arcade game of 1988.


Development of After Burner II commenced after Out Run was finished. The game was mostly created by three men, Yu Suzuki, Satoshi Mifune, and Kawaguchi. During development, it was codenamed Studio 128 to specify the secrecy of the project.[4] The primary influence of After Burner II was Top Gun, although an art style in the vein of science fiction anime films like Laputa: Castle in the Sky was considered but scrapped due to team wanting to appeal to a western audience. After Burner II was considered to be a reissue of After Burner, that included minor improvements such as a throttle that was absent in the original game.


Arcade version screenshot.

After Burner II has been translated and ported to numerous home systems: PC Engine, Sharp X68000, Mega Drive/Genesis, Famicom, FM Towns Marty, Atari ST, Amiga, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, and Sega Saturn.[5]

The game was rebuilt with stereoscopic 3D feature as one of 3D Classics for Nintendo 3DS.


In Japan, After Burner II was tied with After Burner as the highest-grossing arcade game of 1988.[17]

Mega placed the Mega Drive version at number 38 in their Top Mega Drive Games of All Time.[18] MegaTech magazine praised the smooth and fast gameplay, as well as the sound.


In Japan, After Burner II was released on the PlayStation 2 as part of the Sega Ages classic series.

M2 ported After Burner II in Sega's 3D Classics series to the Nintendo 3DS eShop in Japan on 2013 and worldwide in 2015. This version is faithful to the original arcade game with additions, including Touch Controls and screen layouts that resemble the Upright as well as the Commander and Deluxe cabinets. An unlockable new Special mode was also added, which used a time-slowing "Burst" system similar to After Burner Climax, and featured a different story and altered stages. This mode has no stage select or continues, and instead depends on frequent acquisition of extra lives over the course of the game in order to complete it.[19]


  1. ^ "アフターバーナー 2 ROMキット" [After Burner 2: ROM type]. Media Arts Database (in Japanese). Agency for Cultural Affairs. Retrieved 5 October 2021.
  2. ^ "アフターバーナー 2 シティタイプ" [After Burner 2: Sit-in type]. Media Arts Database (in Japanese). Agency for Cultural Affairs. Retrieved 5 October 2021.
  3. ^ "After Burner II". The International Arcade Museum. Archived from the original on 2020-01-20. Retrieved 1 Nov 2013.
  4. ^ blackoak. "". Retrieved 2019-09-01.
  5. ^ "FM Towns ROM Archive". After Burner II FM Towns ROM.
  6. ^ Fitzgerald, David (October 1991). "Afterburner 2". ACE. No. 49. p. 78. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  7. ^ Haynes, Rik (December 1990). "Afterburner II". ACE. No. 39. p. 104. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  8. ^ Buchanan, Levi (June 29, 2005). "After Burner II". IGN. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  9. ^ J.M. Destroy (June 1990). "After Burner II". Joystick (in French). No. 6. p. 80. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  10. ^ J'm Destroy (November 1990). "After Burner II". Joystick (in French). No. 10. p. 123. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  11. ^ Paul; Gus (March 1993). "After Burner II". Mean Machines Sega. No. 6. pp. 74–76. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  12. ^ Crevette, Tom (April 1991). "After Burner II". Player One (in French). No. 8. p. 36. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  13. ^ "3D After Burner II". Retro Gamer. No. 139. March 2015. p. 102. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  14. ^ "After Burner II". Zero. No. 9. July 1990. p. 74. Retrieved September 8, 2021.
  15. ^ Compute's Guide to Sega, Steven A Schwartz, 1990, ISBN 0-87455-238-9, p5
  16. ^ MegaTech rating, EMAP, issue 5, page 78, May 1992
  17. ^ "Game Machine's Best Hit Games 25: '88 / "Game of the Year '88" By Game Machine" (PDF). Game Machine (in Japanese). No. 348. Amusement Press, Inc. 15 January 1989. pp. 10–1, 26.
  18. ^ Mega magazine issue 1, page 76, Future Publishing, Oct 1992
  19. ^ Sega 3D Classics After Burner II page (Japan) Archived 2015-02-11 at the Wayback Machine

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