|"Arcade games made a pathway for modern games."|
This page is about arcade games.
Astro Blaster is an arcade game that was released by Gremlin/Sega in 1981.
Players control a ship (bearing a resemblance to the Battlestar Galactica from the tv series of the same name) which can fire and move left and right. Players must continuously monitor the onscreen temperature and fuel gauges; if their ship overheats by shooting too often, its weapon is disabled, and if it becomes totally depleted of fuel, the vessel itself explodes.
The player must battle through waves of enemies, which attack with varied formations and flight patterns. Once a wave is destroyed, a new one appears. At the end of each sector, the player flies through an asteroid belt and can obtain extra fuel by shooting fireballs. After this, the mother ship is encountered, where the player docks and refuels for the next sector.
Astro Blaster had speech synthesis, a novel feature that was shared with Midway's contemporary arcade title Gorf, which had been pioneered a year earlier by Stern with Berzerk (Vectrex). Astro Blaster was also notable for rewarding secret bonuses for accomplishing certain things like shooting all enemies in a specific order or shooting all enemies without missing.
Astro Blaster had many secret bonuses.
- Laser temperature bonus--this is awarded if the player makes it through an entire sector without their laser temperature hitting Critical.
- Docking--this is awarded if the player docks with the mother ship without moving their ship at all.
- Horizontal Bonus--this is awarded if the player shoots a row of enemies before any of them reaches the other end of the screen.
- Life Bonus--this is awarded if the player makes it through an entire sector without losing a ship.
- Paint Scraper bonus--this is awarded if the player scrapes against one of the docking arms of the mother ship without being destroyed during docking.
In Sega's 2001 Dreamcast Shenmue game, an Astro Blaster cabinet can be seen in the YOU Arcade in Dobuita, but it has an "out of order" label on it and is not playable.