Burning Force

From Sega Retro

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  • NTSC-J
  • PAL

BurningForce MDTitleScreen.png

BurningForce MD JP title.png

BurningForce MD PAL title.png

Burning Force
System(s): Sega Mega Drive
Publisher: Namco (JP,US) Sega (EU) Tec Toy (BR)
Developer:
Original system(s): Namco System II
Publisher(s) of original games: Namco
Developer(s) of original games: Namco
Genre: Shooting[1]

















Number of players: 1
Release Date RRP Code
Sega Mega Drive
JP
¥5,8005,800 T-14023
Sega Mega Drive
US
$54.9554.95[3] T-14026
Sega Mega Drive
EU
1029
Sega Mega Drive
UK
£34.9934.99[4] 1029
Sega Mega Drive
SE
(Rental)
Sega Mega Drive
BR
Non-Sega versions

Burning Force (バーニングフォース) is a Sega Mega Drive third-person vertical shoot-'em-up developed by Nova. A port of the titular 1989 Namco arcade game Burning Force, it was first published in Japan in October 1990 by Namco themselves, and was later brought to the United States, Europe, and Brazil in the following months.

The game is notable for its extensive use of line scrolling to create the illusion of a three-dimensional playfield (in a similar manner to OutRun) and for its lighthearted tone and synth-rock soundtrack. Burning Force was well-received by the gaming public, and is one of the more fondly remembered of Namco's early Sega Mega Drive games.

Story

Hiromi Tengenji, a 21-year-old cadet at Earth University (or an ensign in the United Galaxy Space Force, UGSF, in the Japanese version), must pass a six-day final examination of fighting enemies over water to become a Space Fighter Pilot. She pilots a futuristic hover bike called the Sign Duck, which can transform into a small fighter craft.

Gameplay

The game is a third-person shooter similar to Space Harrier but with more limited control. The player controls Hiromi on an hover bike that can move with Left and Right. It cannot normally move vertically, but stages contain ramps that can launch the Sign Duck upward (usually to collect power-ups). Holding Up speeds up, holding Down slows down, and letting go returns to normal speed. Hiromi shoots her normal weapon with A, which has unlimited ammunition and can be held for continuous fire, or missiles with B, which are limited in supply. Hiromi can find power-ups in the stages that upgrade her standard weapon and missiles.

Though Hiromi can only sustain one hit before being destroyed in the arcade version, she has three hit points in this version and loses one each time she takes damage from an enemy. Running into obstacles generally knocks her back or slows her down rather than damaging her. If she loses all of her hit points, she loses a life (as well as any weapon upgrades she may have); the game ends if she runs out of lives. The player can continue the game from any stage up to the most recent one played as long as there are credits remaining. Extra lives are given at certain score thresholds. If Hiromi collects green orbs in the stages, she can exchange five of them for temporary invincibility by pressing C. Hit points and green orbs are retained between stages.

Each stage represents one day in Hiromi's final examination. Each day is divided into four areas. Areas 1 and 2 are normal shooting areas on an airbike that can only move left and right. Area 3 is a boss area in which the airbike is transformed into a plane with the same controls but with added vertical mobility with Up and Down. This area is preceded by an interlude where Miss Kyoko, Hiromi's instructor, identifies the weak points of the boss. Area 4 is a bonus round in the plane where the goal is to collect as many points and power-ups as possible.

Items

Bullets

Burning Force, Items.png
Laser
Changes the player's primary weapon into a high-damage laser.
Burning Force, Items.png
Wide Range
Changes the player's primary weapon into a wide row of pellets.
Burning Force, Items.png
Cross Laser
Changes the player's primary weapon into a helical beam that is wider and more powerful than the standard shot.

Missiles

Burning Force, Items.png
Homing Missile
Changes the player's missile weapon to a volley of homing missiles that seek out enemy targets.
Burning Force, Items.png
Max Missile
Changes the player's missile weapon to a single devastating missile that explodes into a ring of expanding fireballs.

Other

Burning Force, Items.png
Invincibility
After collecting five green spheres, the player can exchange them for temporary invincibility by pressing C. Green spheres are sometimes found by destroying obstacles in the playfield. The amount of spheres that the player has is retained from area to area.

Stages

Burning Force, Stage 1-1.png

Burning Force, Stage 1-2.png

Burning Force, Stage 1-3.png

Burning Force, Stage 1-4.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 1-1.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 1-2.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 1-3.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 1-4.png

1st Day: Bay Yard

Burning Force, Stage 2-1.png

Burning Force, Stage 2-2.png

Burning Force, Stage 2-3.png

Burning Force, Stage 2-4.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 2-1.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 2-2.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 2-3.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 2-4.png

2nd Day: Sahara Sands

Burning Force, Stage 3-1.png

Burning Force, Stage 3-2.png

Burning Force, Stage 3-3.png

Burning Force, Stage 3-4.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 3-1.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 3-2.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 3-3.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 3-4.png

3rd Day: Aero Space

Burning Force, Stage 4-1.png

Burning Force, Stage 4-2.png

Burning Force, Stage 4-3.png

Burning Force, Stage 4-4.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 4-1.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 4-2.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 4-3.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 4-4.png

4th Day: Meadow

Burning Force, Stage 5-1.png

Burning Force, Stage 5-2.png

Burning Force, Stage 5-3.png

Burning Force, Stage 5-4.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 5-1.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 5-2.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 5-3.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 5-4.png

5th Day: Another World

Burning Force, Stage 6.png

Burning Force, Stage 6 Boss.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 6.png

  • Burning Force, Stage 6 Boss.png

6th Day: Lunar Spaceport
The final day is a single segment played solely in the plane with a boss fight at the end.

History

When brought to the United States by Sega of America, the company purposefully concealed the player character's gender, likely under an antiquated notion that games will sell less by featuring a female protagonist. A completely new cover artwork was commissioned, this time showing Burning Force being played from the perspective of another character entirely[6] (while still managing to work Hiromi into the artwork, now being attacked by the player), and the entirety of the manual and box's text was carefully worded to recontextualize the game as not starring a woman.[7][8][6] Instead, Burning Force now features a new and nameless protagonist who is training alongside Hiromi[7] and helping guide her through the tests.[8][6]

Production credits

  • Game Program: Ogawann
  • Sub Program: Kobakun
  • Sound Program: Kwaeru
  • Story by: Makotomas
  • Charactor Designers: Kuma, 7852
  • Sound Designers: Noririn
  • Constructive Manager: Koh
  • Total Coordinate: Gen
  • Special Thanks: Big Gan, Kero, Udauda
  • Directed by: Makotomas
Source:
In-game credits[9]


Magazine articles

Main article: Burning Force/Magazine articles.

Promotional material

FinalBlaster PCE BurningForce MD JP PrintAdvert.jpg
JP print advert

BurningForce MD US Flyer.pdf

PDF
US flyer
Logo-pdf.svg
Print advert in GamePro (US) #18: "January 1991" (199x-xx-xx)

Physical scans

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
{{{{{icon}}}|L}} Division by zero.
Based on
0 review
Sega Retro Average 
Publication Version Score
1700 igr dlya Sega (RU)
30
[10]
ACE (UK)
69
[11]
Ação Games (BR)
75
[12]
Beep! MegaDrive (JP) NTSC-J
68
[13]
Complete Guide to Consoles (UK)
76
[14]
The Complete Guide to Sega (UK)
76
[15]
Cool Gamer (RU)
30
[16]
Entsiklopediya luchshikh igr Sega. Vypusk 1 (RU)
30
[17]
Famitsu (JP) NTSC-J
63
[18]
Famicom Hisshoubon (JP) NTSC-J
50
[19]
Hobby Consolas (ES)
75
[20]
Joypad (FR) PAL
71
[21]
Joystick (FR)
71
[22]
Sega Mega Drive Advanced Gaming (UK) PAL
38
[23]
Mega Drive Fan (JP) NTSC-J
71
[24]
Mega (UK) NTSC
41
[25]
Mega Force (FR) PAL
75
[26]
Mega Play (US) NTSC-U
63
[27]
MegaTech (UK)
76
[28]
Micromanía (segunda época) (ES)
60
[29]
Mean Machines Sega (UK)
76
[30]
Player One (FR)
62
[31]
Play Time (DE)
63
[32]
Power Play (DE)
51
[33]
Raze (UK) NTSC-J
77
[34]
Sega Power (UK) NTSC
50
[35]
Sega Power (UK) PAL
40
[36]
Sega Pro (UK) NTSC
28
[37]
Sega Saturn Magazine (JP) NTSC-J
59
[38]
Top Secret (PL)
75
[39]
Tricks 16 bit (RU)
42
[40]
VideoGames & Computer Entertainment (US) NTSC-U
70
[3]
Sega Mega Drive
59
Based on
32 reviews

Burning Force

Mega Drive, JP
BurningForce MD JP Box.jpg
Cover
BurningForce MD JP CartTop.jpg
BurningForce MD JP Cart.jpg
Cart
Burningforce md jp manual.pdf
Manual
Mega Drive, US
BurningForce MD US Box.jpg
Cover
BurningForce MD US Cart.jpg
Cart
Burningforce md us manual.pdf
Manual
Mega Drive, EU
BurningForce MD EU Box.jpg
Cover
BurningForce MD EU Cart.jpg
Cart
Mega Drive, SE (rental)
BurningForce MD SE Box Rental.jpg
Cover
Mega Drive, SE (rental; alt)
BurningForce MD SE rental cover.jpg
Cover
Mega Drive, BR
BurningForce MD BR Box.jpg
Cover
BurningForce MD BR Cart.jpg
Cart

Technical information

ROM dump status

System Hash Size Build Date Source Comments
Sega Mega Drive
CRC32 bdc8f02c
MD5 da536d20ac0f0e3a62d9709078690032
SHA-1 28fcb1c9b5c72255443ab5bb950a52030baaf409
512kB 1990-10 Cartridge (US)
Sega Mega Drive
CRC32 776ff6ff
MD5 623b2c54f05869ffb3aac936f4a4182a
SHA-1 a25930ee55a2d88838e3999fb5939d9392fd0efa
512kB 1990-10 Cartridge (EU)
Sega Mega Drive
CRC32 0c1deb47
MD5 62e665f85281a33fb17cecd27674684a
SHA-1 8849253262f545fbaf6140bfa5ca67a3caac9a80
512kB 1990-10 Cartridge (JP)

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 https://sega.jp/history/hard/megadrive/software_l.html (Wayback Machine: 2020-07-02 23:21)
  2. https://groups.google.com/g/rec.games.video/c/yWklh_du7Ik/m/sTDr7WmQ5vcJ
  3. 3.0 3.1 VideoGames & Computer Entertainment, "February 1991" (US; 1991-0x-xx), page 52
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Sega Power, "January 1992" (UK; 1991-12-05), page 10
  5. Supergame, "Setembro 1991" (BR; 1991-09-xx), page 37
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 File:BurningForce MD US Box.jpg
  7. 7.0 7.1 File:Burningforce md us manual.pdf, page 3
  8. 8.0 8.1 File:Burningforce md us manual.pdf, page 5
  9. File:Burning Force MD credits.pdf
  10. 1700 igr dlya Sega, "" (RU; 2003-03-10), page 40
  11. ACE, "January 1991" (UK; 1990-12-xx), page 104
  12. Ação Games, "Setembro 1991" (BR; 1991-09-xx), page 24
  13. Beep! MegaDrive, "November 1990" (JP; 1990-10-XX), page 23
  14. Complete Guide to Consoles, "Volume IV" (UK; 1990-11-xx), page 28
  15. The Complete Guide to Sega, "" (UK; 1991-05-xx), page 45
  16. Cool Gamer, "9" (RU; 2002-10-13), page 44
  17. Entsiklopediya luchshikh igr Sega. Vypusk 1, "" (RU; 1999-xx-xx), page 299
  18. Famitsu, "" (JP; 1990-1x-xx), page 1
  19. Famicom Hisshoubon, "1990-20, 21 (1990-10-19, 11-02)" (JP; 1990-10-05), page 17
  20. Hobby Consolas, "Mayo 1992" (ES; 1992-0x-xx), page 72
  21. Joypad, "Avril 1992" (FR; 1992-03-1x), page 138
  22. Joystick, "Décembre 1990" (FR; 1990-1x-xx), page 119
  23. Sega Mega Drive Advanced Gaming, "January 1993" (UK; 199x-xx-xx), page 90
  24. Mega Drive Fan, "January 1991" (JP; 1990-12-08), page 87
  25. Mega, "February 1994" (UK; 1994-01-20), page 65
  26. Mega Force, "Janvier 1992" (FR; 1992-01-15), page 99
  27. Mega Play, "February 1991" (US; 199x-xx-xx), page 44
  28. MegaTech, "Xmas 1991" (UK; 1991-12-06), page 76
  29. Micromanía (segunda época), "Septiembre 1992" (ES; 1992-0x-xx), page 85
  30. Mean Machines Sega, "October 1992" (UK; 1992-09-xx), page 137
  31. Player One, "Janvier 1992" (FR; 199x-xx-xx), page 90
  32. Play Time, "5/92" (DE; 1992-04-08), page 92
  33. Power Play, "1/91" (DE; 1990-12-14), page 183
  34. Raze, "January 1991" (UK; 1990-11-29), page 71
  35. Sega Power, "October 1991" (UK; 1991-09-05), page 53
  36. Sega Power, "February 1992" (UK; 1992-01-02), page 36
  37. Sega Pro, "April 1993" (UK; 1993-03-11), page 64
  38. Sega Saturn Magazine, "September 1995" (JP; 1995-08-08), page 87
  39. Top Secret, "Kwiecień 1995" (PL; 1995-xx-xx), page 57
  40. Tricks 16 bit, "Tricks Sega Gold 800 igr" (RU; 1998-03-20), page 33


Burning Force

BurningForce MDTitleScreen.png

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