Gunstar Heroes is a run-and-gun side-scrolling shooter much in the vein of Contra. The playable characters, Red and Blue, represent different control schemes: Red being free shot, which allows the player to move freely while shooting; and Blue being Fixed Shot, which makes the player stay fixed in one spot while firing. There are four different basic weapon types the player can choose from at the beginning of the game: Force, which fires a rapid series of small bullets; Lightning, which fires straight lasers that pierce through enemies; Chaser, which fires stars that home in on enemies; and Flame, a short range flamethrower that is very powerful.These weapons are dropped as power-ups throughout the game, and the play may hold onto two at a time. By combining two weapons, a new weapon can be formed. For example, combining Lightning and Flame results in a short range beam weapon that ignores most collision from walls and enemies. Counting the basic weapons, there are a total of 14 different possible weapons in the game. In addition to using weapons, the player can engage enemies in close quarters combat. Enemies can be tossed, and other moves can be performed, such as sliding and jumping attacks, and a long-range skid.
The first four stages of the game can be played in any order from a stage select screen. Unlike most games in the genre, the player has life in the form of a numerical health counter. However, the player only has one life, although there are unlimited continues. The game’s main focus is on its boss encounters, which are often made up of multiple sprites allowing for fluid movement and simulated scaling and rotation. There are often multiple bosses per stage, each with their own special moves and abilities
This is easily one of the best games on the Sega Mega Drive – it featured fantastic audio and visuals, fast and frenetic gameplay and numerous interesting bosses to defeat at the end of each level, it was and is a fantastic game to play
I award this game a score of 90%
Unlimited Health Power Ups
In Level five be on the lookout for the last power up pod that shows up. That power up pod drops health power ups, but unlike the usual ones where they drop only about 2 or 3, this one keeps dropping power ups every time you kick it. You can gain vitality points of up to 999 using this method.