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Bosconian (ボスコニアン, Bosukonian) is a multi-directional scrolling shooter arcade game which was developed and released by Namco in Japan in 1981. In North America, it was manufactured and distributed by Midway Games. Bosconian allows the player's ship to freely roam across open space which scrolls in all directions. The game also has a radar, which tracks the position of the player's ship, the formation attacks, and the space stations. It uses Namco Galaga hardware, but with a video system like that used in Rally-X.[citation needed] A sequel game, Blast Off, was released in 1989 in Japan only; it runs on Namco System 1 hardware and bears more resemblance to Namco's own Dragon Spirit than Bosconian. A related title, Final Blaster, was released in 1990 for the PC-Engine in Japan only, and featured gameplay very akin to Blast Off.

Contents

1 Gameplay 2 Reception 3 Legacy

3.1 Clones

4 References 5 External links

Gameplay[edit] The object of Bosconian is to score as many points as possible by destroying enemy missiles and bases. The player controls a small fighter ship that can move in eight directions, and can fire both forward and backward. Each round consists of a number of green enemy bases that must all be destroyed to advance to the next round (a semi-transparent automap helps identify their location). Each station consists of six cannons arranged in a hexagon, surrounding a central core. The player must either destroy all six cannons (200 points each) or shoot the core to destroy a station (1,500 points), and in later rounds the core is capable of defending itself (opening and closing while launching missiles). Additionally, the player must avoid or destroy stationary asteroids (10 points), mines (20 points), and a variety of enemy missiles and ships which attempt to collide with his or her ship. Enemy bases will also occasionally launch a squadron of ships in formation attacks — destroying the leader causes all remaining enemies to disperse, but destroying all enemies in a formation scores extra bonus points. A spy ship (worth a random bonus value) will also appear occasionally, which must be destroyed or the round will go to "condition red" regardless of how long the player has taken. Throughout the game, a digitized voice alerts the player to various events:

"Blast off!" (start of a round) "Alert! Alert!" (enemies approaching) "Battle stations!" (formation attack) "Spy ship sighted!" (Spy ship advancing) "Condition red!" (enemy attacks become more aggressive; occurs when the player takes too long to clear a round, or misses the spy ship)

Bosconian does not have a definite ending, and will continue until the player has lost all of his or her lives. Similar to Galaga, Bosconian rolls over from Round 255 to Round 0, causing the game to behave abnormally during this round. If the player can successfully complete Round 0, the game continues to Round 1, as though the player had started over. Extra lives stop after scoring 2,000,000 points. Reception[edit] Bosconian won the 1982 Arcade Award for Best Science Fiction/Fantasy Coin-Op Game in January 1983, beating both Atari's Gravitar and Sega's popular Zaxxon.[1] Legacy[edit]

A screenshot of the arcade version.

Bosconian was ported to the Sharp X68000, and MSX, and later appeared in several of Namco's Namco Museum compilations for PlayStation and other consoles. The game has also been released in Jakks Pacific's TV game controllers, and was released as part of the Pac-Man's Arcade Party arcade machine in 2010. A home computer port, Bosconian '87, was released in 1987 for the Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, and ZX Spectrum. An spiritual successor called Blast Off was released in 1989 (only in Japan), a vertical scrolling shooter which had more in common gameplay-wise with Namco's own Dragon Spirit than with Bosconian. Bosconian was the first game to feature a continuation screen and timer after the end of a game, giving a player who had just lost his or her last life a certain number of seconds to insert more coins and press START in order to continue the game from the start of the same round.[citation needed] This feature could be disabled entirely for arcade owners who did not want it, by changing a DIP switch setting. The free-roaming shooter that scrolls in all directions concept would later be used in Konami's Time Pilot and Williams Electronics' Sinistar (both 1982). Clones[edit]

Draconian (1984) for the TRS-80 Color Computer Azarian (1987) [1] for the Atari ST XKobo (1995) / Kobo Deluxe Draconian (2017) [2] for the Atari 2600 Bosconian (2017) [3] for the Atari 8-bit family

References[edit]

^ "Electronic Games Magazine". Internet Archive. Retrieved 1 February 2012. 

External links[edit]

Bosconian at the Killer List of Videogames Bosconian at the Arcade History database Bosconian 87 at SpectrumComputing.co.uk Twin Galaxies High Score Rankings on Bosconian

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