Game
Zed Blade game

Zed Blade

NMK's sole game for Neo Geo hardware, Zed Blade is a side-scrolling shoot-'em-up where players customize the weapon slots for their starfighters prior to starting their playthrough.

Overview

Zed Blade (known in Japan as both Operation Ragnarok and Sakusen-mei Ragnarok) is a sci-fi side-scrolling shoot 'em up developed by NMK and released by SNK for arcades (using Neo Geo MVS hardware) on September 13, 1994.

The Japanese studio's sole game for Neo Geo hardware, Zed Blade puts players in control of customizable starfighters as they traverse the solar system to stop an attack on Earth by a mechanized force from the automated space station Yggdrasil. The game is notable for its weapon system, where players start each playthrough by choosing their complete weapon loadout (including both front-facing and rear-facing shots and missiles).

Unlike most games developed for the Neo Geo MVS, Zed Blade received no home release for the Neo Geo AES console nor the Neo Geo CD. However, it later received a digital release as part of HAMSTER'S ACA NeoGeo series for the Xbox One on July 20, 2017, for both the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch on August-September 2017, and for the PC on February 28, 2018.

Gameplay

At the beginning of each playthrough, players choose four parts to their ship:

  • The pilot/ship, chosen from either Master Sergeant Uncle Beard (whose ship has slow movement, but he starts with an additional Bomb and receives 50 pts. for each shot hit), Sergeant Ms. Charlotte (whose ship has average movement, but she receives 20 pts. for each shot hit), or Corporal Swift Arnold (whose ship has fast movement, but he receives 10 pts. for each shot hit).
  • The front-facing weapon, chosen from either 3-Way (where additional shots are fired forward at different angles), Wave (where additional shots are fired in a wide helix pattern), or Vertical (where additional shots are fired straight upwards and straight downwards).
  • The missile weapon, chosen from either Homing (where additional missiles home-in towards enemies), AS (), or AA ().
  • The rear-facing weapon, chosen from either 2-Way (where additional shots are fired backward at different angles), Wave (where additional shots are fired backwards in a helix pattern), or Twin (where additional shots are fired straight backwards).

Stages

  1. Battle Is Begun (Boss: Roc Carrier)
  2. Lunar (Boss: Lunar Walker)
  3. Mars (Boss: Cosmic Slime)
  4. Asteroid (Boss: Constrictor)
  5. Surface of the Jupiter (Boss: Loki)
  6. Frontier of Solar System (Boss: Big Bill)
  7. Yggdrasil (Boss: Insane Ship)
  8. Valkyrie (Boss: Valkyrie)