Gunstar Heroes is a run and gun video game developed by Treasure and published by Sega. It was Treasure's debut game, originally released on the Sega Genesis in 1993. The game's premise is centered around a pair of characters, the Gunstars, in their efforts to stop an evil empire from recovering four powerful gems. The characters can fire guns and perform a series of acrobatic maneuvers to fight enemies across each stage. There are four weapons in the game which can be combined with one another to create different shot types.
Development on Gunstar Heroes began among a team of staff working at Konami in 1991. Following an unwillingness of Konami to embrace their original game ideas, the team quit in 1992 and formed Treasure to see their project through. The team wanted to develop their game for the Genesis because of the system's powerful Motorola 68000 microprocessor. Sega initially rejected their proposal, but later granted approval after they had been working for Sega for several months on McDonald's Treasure Land Adventure (1993). Treasure worked on both games in parallel, and released Gunstar Heroes worldwide as their first game in 1993.
Gunstar Heroes was a critical success, being praised for its frantic action and advanced graphics. It helped establish Treasure's place in the industry, and introduced several design conventions which would become characteristic of their later work such as large bosses and a unique sense of humor. It was re-released several times, including dedicated ports to the Game Gear and Nintendo 3DS, and received a sequel on the Game Boy Advance. In retrospect, it is considered one of the best action games of the 16-bit era, and one of the best video games of all time by several publications.
Gunstar Heroes is a run and gun game played from a side-scrolling perspective similar to Contra. The game can be played in single-player, or cooperatively with a partner. The players take on the role of Gunstar Red and Gunstar Blue as they battle with an evil empire for control over a set of powerful gems. The game features seven stages, of which the first four can be tackled in any order. The stage formats vary; while some feature a typical left-to-right format, others have the player riding in a mine cart along walls, fighting enemies on a helicopter, or playing a board game. Completing a level grants the player an extension to their maximum health.
When starting a game, the player can choose either a free or fixed firing stance; the fixed stance immobilizes the character when shooting, while the free stance has the player move in the direction they are firing. The player also has a choice of starting weapon. There are four shot types in the game: a homing shot, lightning blaster, flamethrower, and machine gun. Each weapon has its strengths and weaknesses, and can be swapped with others from item drops in each stage. The weapons can be combined with each other to produce unique shot types. For example, the homing shot can be combined with the machine gun to add a homing effect to the latter, or two lightning shots can be combined to create a more powerful lightning gun. In addition to firing their weapon, the player characters can pull off a series of acrobatic maneuvers including jumping, sliding, and grabbing and throwing enemies.
Find digital download of this game on
This version of Gunstar Heroes was designed for Sega Genesis (known as Sega Mega Drive in Europe), which was the first ever 16-bit
video game console manufactured
by Sega in the years 1988 - 1997. It was a direct competitor to the SNES console and the successor of the well known 8-bit console Sega Master System.
The unit price of Genesis was approximately $ 190 and worldwide about 40 million units of this console were sold. More information about Sega Genesis
can be found here.
Recommended Game Controllers:
You can control this game easily by using the keyboard of your PC (see the table next to the game). However, for maximum gaming enjoyment, we strongly recommend using a USB gamepad that you simply plug into the USB port of your computer. If you do not have a gamepad, buy a suitable USB controller on Amazon or AliExpress or in some of your favorite online stores.
Available online emulators:
5 different online emulators are available for Gunstar Heroes. These emulators differ not only in the technology they use to emulate old games, but also in support of various game controllers, multiplayer mode, mobile phone touchscreen, emulation speed, absence or presence of embedded ads and in many other parameters. For
maximum gaming enjoyment, it's important to choose the right emulator, because on each PC and in different Internet browsers, the individual emulators behave differently. The basic
features of each emulator available for this game Gunstar Heroes are summarized in the following table:
If you like Gunstar Heroes you'll probably like also some of the similar games in the overview below. The games you see here
are selected based on title similarity, game genre, and keywords. However, the list is generated automatically and can therefore be very 'subjective'
especially for some specific games. To find a particular game, please use our search form.
This website is NOT sponsored or endorsed by Nintendo, Atari, Sega or by any other video games company.
RetroGames.cz makes no claim to the intellectual property contained in the individual games.
Text content of RetroGames.cz
is available under the
Creative Commons 3.0 License. You can copy it freely, but indicate the origin and keep the license.