Rolling Thunder is a run-and-gun shooter action game produced by Namco, originally released as a coin-operated arcade game which ran on the Namco System 86 hardware in 1986. It was distributed in North America by Atari Games. The player takes control of a secret agent who must rescue his female partner from a terrorist organization. Rolling Thunder was a commercial success in arcades, and was released for various home computer platforms in 1987 and the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1989. The original arcade game has also been included in various classic game compilations as well. It influenced later arcade action franchises such as Shinobi and Time Crisis, which borrowed mechanics such as taking cover behind crates.
The player controls Albatross, a member of the WCPO's (World Crime Police Organization) 'Rolling Thunder' espionage unit. Albatross's mission is to save a missing female agent named Leila Blitz from a secret society named Geldra located in New York.
Albatross must travel through two different segments or 'stories', each composed of five stages, for a total of ten stages. Depending on the DIP switch settings, the player has the option to skip any of the first four stages and start at any point in 'Story 1'. On each stage, the player can enter doors to hide and take cover from enemies, and can also use crates or other obstacles to take cover from enemy fire. The player can jump over crates, or jump up to higher or lower floors with rails, including stairs. The stages in 'Story 2' are essentially harder versions of their 'Story 1' counterparts, featuring more traps and different enemy placement. At the end of each stage, scenes from Leila's capture and ensuing torture are shown on an in-game large monitor screen.
The player begins the game armed with a standard-issue pistol, which can be replaced with a sub machine gun (that appears based on the distinctive real life Beretta M12 SMG) that allows for continuous firing by holding down the shoot button. The player can find ammunition for either weapon by entering doors which are marked 'bullets' or 'arms'. If the player runs out of machine gun ammo, they will switch back to the pistol. However, if the pistol runs out of ammo as well, then the player can only fire a single slow 'chaser' bullet on-screen at a time until more ammo is acquired. The player can only take two physical hits from the enemy; a single hit drains half of the life meter and the player is killed instantly when struck by a projectile attack such as enemy bullets or lasers, the time reaches 0, and when falling without a floor.
The main enemies are hooded soldiers known as Maskers. Their various outfits and colors determine their strength and attack pattern respectively. Some Maskers only throw grenades, and others will shoot while kneeling. Other enemies include ninjas, mutated bats known as Gelzos, panthers, shrieking yellow creatures known as Blogas, and lava men. At the end of the final stage, the player must battle the Geldra leader Maboo to rescue Leila and complete the mission.
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This version of Rolling Thunder was designed for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), which was an eight-bit video game console manufactured
by Nintendo in the years 1983 - 2003. In that time, it was the best-selling video game console for which more than 700 licensed games and a number of non-licensed
games were created. Worldwide, approximately 62 million units of this console were sold at approximately price $ 100 per unit. More information about the
NES console 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, you can buy one of these NES controllers:
Available online emulators:
6 different online emulators are available for Rolling Thunder. 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 Rolling Thunder are summarized in the following table:
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