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Zero Wing [Model TP-015]

Arcade Video game published 35 years ago by Toaplan Co., Ltd.

Listed in MAME

Zero Wing [Model TP-015] screenshot

Zero Wing © 1989 Toaplan.

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Game ID : TP-015

Main CPU : Motorola 68000 (@ 10 Mhz), Zilog Z80 (@ 3.5 Mhz)
Sound Chips : YM3812 (@ 3.5 Mhz)

Players : 2
Control : 8-way joystick
Buttons : 2


Released in September 1989 in Japan.

Zero Wing was created by most of the same team that previously worked on several projects at Toaplan, with members of the development staff recounting its history through various Japanese publications.

Uemura stated that Zero Wing originally started as a project not intended for commercial launch to train new recruits at Toaplan, handling training for new hires while using his work and engine from Hellfire before ultimately deciding with releasing the game to the market, which made it a more practical learning experience for the new developers. However, Uemura felt that both stage design and characters were cobbled together, leading the game's world being kind of a mess and he also stated the project turned into a battle royale, as staff from both Hellfire and Truxton were mixed with the new recruits.

Sound also proved to be very divisive as Uemura, Yuge and Tomizawa wrote several songs for the game with their own individual styles, though Uemura claimed this was due to dividing the work, while Yuge stated he would go to rest and drink after being stuck when composing for the title during work hours.

Due to being a training project, Uemura stated the team had freedom to just fool around and several features were integrated into the title such as warps, which was taken from Slap Fight. Uemura also revealed that the reason for enemies spawning suicide bullets during loops of higher difficulty was in response to hardware limitations regarding sprites.

Both the single-player and co-op versions were also planned from the beginning of development due to pressure to make two-player games at the time.

The alien Pipiru was designed by Ogiwara, though Uemura claimed such character was not planned.

Zero Wing was the last horizontal shoot'em up title to be developed by Toaplan.

Pony Canyon / Scitron released a limited-edition soundtrack album for this game (Zero King - PCCB-00001) on 21/09/1989.


* Hidden Functions: If the 'Invulnerability dip switch' is enabled, you are invulnerable but you may also 'Pause' the game with P2 Start and restart with P1 Start.


Sega Mega Drive (1991, "Zero Wing [Model T-40023]")
NEC PC-Engine CD (1992, "Zero Wing [Model NXCD1003]")


Game's ROM.
Machine's picture.