Strikers 1945 is a vertically scrolling shoot 'em up arcade game released in 1995 by Japanese company Psikyo. It was followed by two sequels, Strikers 1945 II in 1997 and Strikers 1945 III (also known as Strikers 1999 in Japan), as well as a version for SNK's Neo Geo called Strikers 1945 Plus (which is actually an alternate version of Strikers 1945 II).
Summer, 1945 A.D.
WWII has come to an end and world peace seemingly returned to mankind. However, a secret and mysterious organization named "CANY", thought to be allied with high-ranking officials of the military in several countries, clandestinely plotted to take control. They conspire to conquer the world from within using new yet unseen weapons.
The United Military Command Headquarters perceived disturbing activities within several of these countries and quietly gathered a selection of the best planes and fighter pilots to organize a special mission against CANY, christening themselves as "Strikers".
Now, the secret final World War, untold within the history books, had been set in motion...
The player chooses one of 6 WWII-era fighter craft and shoots through eight stages (the first four levels are randomly chosen, and the last four remain the same each play). Once the game is beaten, a report showing how well the player did is displayed, and the game 'loops' with the difficulty much higher. Each game (on default settings) begins with three lives, and an extend is earned at 600,000. In the console ports however, the stage restarts from the beginning if the player loses all of his/her lives. In the Android version, the player can watch an ad to continue where he/she left off for a maximum of two times.
Each plane in Strikers 1945 has three attacks:
Normal shot (Tap the A button): A spray of bullets that can be strengthened by collecting power-ups. In the Android version, this is done automatically.
Formation attack (Hold the A button until a sound is heard, then release): An attack that summons the plane's wingmen to fire in a specific formation. The strength of this attack is determined by the plane's main shot power (up to four wingmen can support the plane). In the Android version, this is done upon tapping the atom button.
Bomb (Press the B button): An attack that varies for each ship, the plane performs its specific bomb attack to clear the screen of bullets. In the Android version, this is done by tapping the bomb button.
In the Android version, only the Lightning and Mustang are available by default and every other plane will unlock after 2 hours.
All planes other than the Lightning can get an extra power and bomb boost, but will be locked for 2 hours the moment they were selected.
Power-ups are released by shooting certain enemies in Strikers 1945, mainly red ones. When a power-up is collected, the player's normal shot becomes more powerful and a secondary shot (such as homing missiles) may become available. Up to four power-ups can be collected, any after that are worth 4000 points. It is possible to power-down at any time by colliding with any enemy craft. One thing to note is that while the plane powers up, it also gains a wingman.
At the beginning of the game, the player has a stock of two bombs. By destroying certain enemy craft, usually larger ones, a bomb icon will be released and bounce around the screen. When collected, another bomb will be added to the player's stock. A total of six can be collected, any other icons will reward the player with 10000 points.
Gold bars can be found by destroying certain buildings or enemies and are collected for points. Each bar flashes white for short span of time, and if the player collects the bar while it is flashing it is worth more points. Points range from 200, 500, 1000, and 2000.
Stages and BossesEdit
Stage 1 to 4 (random):
Boss: Kii (Battleship/One-eyed navy robot)
Boss: XFB-1 (Flying wing/Spider shield robot)
Boss: Doramascher (Tank/Flying battle robot)
Boss: Khabarovsk (Blimp/Mine robot)
Stage 5: Rocket base
Boss: Samson (Rocket defense base/Elevator/Arabian Robot)
Stage 6: Pacific Ocean to Stratosphere
Boss: Garam Masala (UFO/Air defense robot)
Stage 8: CANY Headquarters
Boss: Mecha CANY (Crab/Gazami/Alien orb)
Originally in the arcade version, if one beats the game by earning all gold medals on every level, the revealed pilots would appear topless. This bonus feature was cut in most releases, which may explain the lack of immediate distribution in North America (as the sequel was released under the name of its predecessor in the US), while the Sega Saturn home version released in Japan avoided the issue completely by clothing all of the pilots and re-arranging their poses, save for the pilot of the Shinden, as he is male.
In Japan, Strikers 1945 was ported to both PlayStation and Sega Saturn in 1996 by Atlus and later ported to PlayStation 2 as part of Psikyo Shooting Collection Vol. 1: Strikers 1945 I & II by Taito. The US PlayStation release of Strikers 1945 by Agetec is actually the sequel Strikers 1945 II under the name of its predecessor. The evidence for this is told mostly through the fighter plane line-up, different levels, bosses and endings.
- It is the only game with pilots revealed.