Night Striker © 1989 Taito.
Night Striker is a 3-D shoot-em-up rendered with fast moving, sprite-scaled graphics. Players must guide an armoured hover car through a number of scrolling levels - destroying waves of enemies in the process - in an attempt to rescue a scientist who has been kidnapped by a terrorist organization. A large guardian awaits players at the end of each level, with each one taking several hits to destroy.
Instead of having a set number of lives, the player's vehicle is equipped with a shield that depletes whenever the player is hit by enemy fire or has collisions with either enemies or scenery. The player's shields are recharged at the end of every level.
Night Striker takes its influences from many landmark games of the sprite scaling genre, all of which are Sega releases. The basic shoot-em-up gameplay is similar in style to both 1985's "Space Harrier" and 1987's "Thunder Blade". Some of the game's levels resemble those of 1988's "Galaxy Force II" as well as "Thunder Blade", while the game's level structure - a 'pyramid' of levels that allows players to chose their own route through the game with the use of end-of-level forked roads - is borrowed from the 1986 classic, "Out Run".
Taito Z System hardware
Prom Stickers : B91
Main CPU : (2x) Motorola 68000
Sound CPU : Zilog Z80
Sound Chips : Yamaha YM2610
Players : 1
Control : stick
Buttons : 2
Night Striker was released in July 1989 in Japan and in October 1989 internationally.
Only 303 Japanese versions were produced.
The eerie and ambient game soundtrack is by Zuntata, an internal team of composers within Taito responsible for other great soundtracks including Darius Gaiden, Gun-Lock, G-Darius.
Pony Canyon / Scitron released a limited-edition soundtrack album for this game (Darius II : G.S.M. Taito 4 - PCCB-00010-12) on November 11, 1989.
A new version of the soundtrack was released in 1998 and is sprinkled with anecdotes (spoken in Japanese) about the game (Z-Replica Vol. 2 - Urban Trail Night Striker - ZTTL-0025).
Zuntata Records released a limited-edition soundtrack album for this game (Zuntata History L'ab-normal 1st - ZTTL-0038) on April 1, 1999.
The US version has the 'Winners Don't Use Drugs' screen.
* If you become 'out of control', you can shoot enemies until the continue screen appears.
* When you are on the roads, you will get a 8X bonus score (this don't work on Sky, Rivers and Sea).
Producer: Tohru Sugawara
Director: Kenshi Kaito
Software: Tohru Sugawara, Hideki Hashimoto, Toshiaki Tsukano, Tmr-Win, Iromust, Takashi Kitabayashi
Character designers: Kohzoh Igarashi, Minori Ishino, Takako Kojima, Kenshi Kaito
Hardware: Toshiyuki Sanada
Electric: Tomio Takeda
Mechanic: Tohru Yamamoto, Tohru Hirata, Tomio Suzuki, Nobuyuki Iwasaki
Designers: Shinobu Sekiguchi, Akio Nomura
Sound & music composed by (Zuntata): Masahiko Takaki
Executive producer: Keisuke Hasegawa