Gradius IV

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Gradius IV
Gradius 4 title screen.jpg
The title screen uses the same image as the arcade poster
Director(s)Akinari Takaki
Producer(s)Michihiro Ishizuka
Designer(s)Yasunori Kanetake
Noriaki Yamamoto
Composer(s)Atsuki Watanabe
PlayStation 2
PlayStation Portable
Genre(s)Scrolling shooter
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer
Arcade systemKonami Hornet
DisplayRaster, 512 x 384, horizontal orientation

Gradius IV[a] is the fourth arcade installment in a series of scrolling shooter video games developed by Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo. It was preceded by Gradius III, released in 1989, although spinoffs had been released prior to it such as Gradius Gaiden. This title brings a considerable graphical upgrade, particularly with the use of colored lighting. In addition, there have been several additions and removals to the vaulted weapons system; specifically, the edit mode has been removed and an online ranking system was added.


The core gameplay of Gradius IV remains relatively unchanged. However, several changes were made on the weapons system in the transition from Gradius III. First of all, the edit mode has been completely eliminated, as are the "Snake Option" (s.option), the "Reduce" shield type, and the seventh powerup category. The seventh powerup category was the one that was labeled "!" and would produce detrimental results, such as reducing the speed or eliminating the weapons of the ship.

In this game there are a total of six configurations, the first four of which are migrated from Gradius II. The two new configurations are as follows:

  • Configuration: The missile mode is a vertical mine that is released above and below the ship. After a short delay, the mines explode, yielding a large explosion. The double mode is the standard 45-degree angle split. The laser mode is a thin armor-piercing round that can penetrate multiple enemies.
  • Configuration 6: The missile mode is the flying torpedo, which produces two missiles that fly forward in front of the ship. The double mode is the tailgun, seen in other configurations. The laser is the twin laser seen in Gradius III.

Starting a tradition that is continued in Gradius V, this game introduced an online-ranking system. After a player's game was over, a password was presented. This password, which was hashed scoring information, could be uploaded to a Konami website.[3] This was only available in Japan, and was discontinued on August 27 of 1999. This was similarly done for the Gradius III and IV console release. Score recording was disabled approximately a year after its arcade brethren.


Gradius IV never received a direct home port of its arcade version. It was included in the Gradius III and IV compilation for the PlayStation 2 in 2000 (one of the system's North American launch titles) and as a part of Gradius Collection for the PlayStation Portable in 2006. The former also includes a boss rush mode (play all the game's bosses in a time attack fashion) and a stage select. A Nintendo 64 version titled Gradius 64 just planned released for 1999 but was cancelled.[citation needed]


Gradius IV Fukkatsu Original Game Soundtrack
KICA-7947 front.jpg
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedMarch 5, 1999 (Japan)
GenreVideo game music
LabelKing Records

Gradius IV Fukkatsu Original Game Soundtrack was developed by Atsuki and released by Konami on March 5, 1999 in Japan. Many of Gradius IV themes appeared in the compilations Gradius Arcade Soundtrack (2002) and Gradius Ultimate Collection (2011).


Gradius IV received generally positive reviews.


  1. ^ Known in Japan as グラディウスIV (Gradiusu fō: Fukkatsu, lit. Gradius IV: Resurrection)


  1. ^ "Official press release from Konami announcing the release of Gradius IV Fukkatsu for arcade". Konami Japan Official Website (in Japanese). Konami. 1999-02-02. Archived from the original on 2009-04-16. Retrieved 2012-04-19.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Gradius III and IV Release Information for PlayStation 2". GameFAQs. 2000-11-13. Retrieved 2018-01-14.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2004-12-13. Retrieved 2006-01-30.


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