Mega CD

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Silpheed was released for the Mega CD in 1993 and is a 3D space shooter with classic galaxian style gameplay.

The game is regarded as one of the best Mega CD games because of use of polygons in it’s graphics engine. Though this infact was piece of visual trickery, it nevertheless made for an innovative and very impressive looking game.


Game Arts

Silpheed was originally a DOS based game that was released in Japan in 1986 for the 8080 processor.

Silpheed was developed in 1993 by a Japanese game company Game Arts. This company is renowned for their programming skills being able to push Sega’s consoles to their limits and producing some impressive results. Beyond Silpheed other titles from Game Arts include the acclaimed Lunar such as Grandia for the Saturn and Grandia 2 for the Dreamcast are part of their library of renowned titles.

At the time of the games release polygon graphics were only just beginning to be used in games. The most popular game known to make good use of polygons was Starwing a.k.a Starfox on the Super Nintendo and that was with the assistance of a co-processor dubbed Super FX chip. Silpheed, however does not use such a device and its graphics were far ahead of Starwing.

This was achieved by playing back pre-rendered graphics in a background layer as each stage progressed. These graphics were of the same colour palette of the game as opposed to the murky FMV the system was used to and stretched to consume the playing field with some interactively with the playfield.

The only real polygons used in the games are the ships and associated objects. These can be freely manipulated using the games polygon test feature.


In 3076 an unmanned solar space force fleet suddenly begins to attacks colony planets. In the Greason System, the central photon computer that integrates and controls the entire galaxy’s network on the mother planet Earth, is network jacked. A leader of a terrorist group introduced himself as Zakarte.

Survivors of both the Galaxy Union and the Colony Planets Fleet assembled their remaining forces to strike at Zakarte.

Their last resort, Silpheed - the tactical fighter craft - underwent drastic restructuring and reinforcements and began to counter attack. Their destination - the planet Earth - 64 light years away.
Zkarte - Cheif Terrorist Your Silpheed Ship

Case Quote

“Sixty-four light years between the Silpheed and the terriorist stonghold on Earth. Are you just going to sit there?”


The gameplay is basic shoot'em up rules. You must shoot down as many of the attacking enemy ships as possible avoiding incoming fire and various hazards along the way.
Silpheed Silpheed Silpheed


Your Silpheed ship

Your Silpheed Ship

You are a member of Topaz squadron consisting of experimental ships. You are all in contact with each other. Listen to the voice traffic for important warnings and general talk from the other members of your team.

Each stage scrolls a predetermined course. This could be through open space, across the surface of a planet or through a fleet of enemy ships. As you progress you will hear the sounds of activity around you. This could be battles between other ships in the distance or close flyby’s with asteroids.

The D-pad will move the ship around the screen. You can move around approx. 80% of the screen in a roughly trapezium shape. Your ship will always move at the same speed unless you take damage.

Buttons A and C will fire your primary weapons. Button B will fire your Optional weapons. Holding these buttons will give you rapid fire which is quite helpful. Your primary weapons have an infinite amount of energy whereas your optional weapon does not.

Both your primary and optional weapons are customisable. This is done at the end of each stage and is dependant on how many points you have. See later.

Your onscreen display will show your points, optional weapon energy and your shield status.


Enemies scroll on the screen from all angles (eventually) and generally follow some pattern across the screen. Enemy ships come in various, shapes sizes and strengths. In addition there are other objects such as missiles and traps which can not be destroyed by you.

Your shields can protect you against 6 hits of enemy fire or a collision with another ship or object. Your shield indicator is located at the top right of the screen. When you are hit you ship will flash and a unit of energy will be lost. Sheild Strength

When your shields have failed you can take 2 more hits before your ship explodes. A hit with no shields will cause a system failure. This can be either a weapons failure or an engine failure. A weapons failure halves your offensive capability by taking half your primary weapons off-line and an engine failure makes your ship move at about half speed, sluggish and difficult to control. The screen also shakes and alarms sound. This will continue until you gain a repair Power-up or complete the stage.

Your ship explodes upon taking another hit. This then results in game over however, you have 2 continues. Upon game over you are displayed a stats of screen detailing what you accomplished in the game.
Game Over Stats Screen

Game Over

The end of the stage is reached when the word “warning” flashes on the screen and you are alerted and then ordered “attack and destroy!”. This will be an encounter with a larger enemy craft. In later levels some of these craft appear as part of each stage for extra difficulty.

Throughout the course of each stage power ups will arrive. These are always in the same place during a game though their actual existence will depend on the difficulty setting your playing at. Power Ups

All power ups are contained with in orange diamond-shaped containers. These must be shot open for you to access them. Beware these containers can also damage your ship should you collide with them.

1 Sheild Repair

1 Repair - Restores 1 unit of shield energy

2 Sheild Repair

2 Repair - Restores 2 units of shield energy

3 Sheild Repair

3 Repair - Restores 3 units of shield energy

When your shields are already fully repaired and you collect a repair power up you will be rewarded with 1000 points instead.

Optional Weapon power up

Option Energy Up - Boosts power of your optional weapon


Invincibility - Makes your ship temporally invincible

All Repair

All Repair - Fully restores shield


Destroy - Instantly eliminates all enemies currently on screen

Points Bonus

Points Bonus - 1000, 3000 or 5000

Points Bonus

Points Bonus - 10000 or 50000

Customising Your Ships Weapons

The more points you collect the more weapons become available in your arsenal. For every 40,000 points you obtain an additional primary weapon. For every 50,000 points you aquire an additional optional weapon.

The opportunity to assign weapons to your ship comes at the beginning of each stage except stage 1.
Select Your Weapons

Ships Weapons Assignment

Primary Weapons - Left Shot /Right Shot
Forward Beam

Forward Beam - Fires a beam directly ahead. Your ship is outfitted with two of these. Default on Stage 01

Wide Beam

Wide Beam - Fires 2 beams over an arc of 120o. These are pretty powerful when using on both left and right shot. The disadvantage is that they are short range.

Phalanx Beam

Phalanx Beam - Fires a beam in a V shape ahead. Two phalanx beams are overall powerful with a good range.

Auto Aiming

Auto-Aiming - Lock onto an enemy when your fire at it. This weapon is pretty limited in power.

Secondary Weapons Option Energy

Your secondary weapons gain more energy as you shoot down more enemy ships. Energy is used when you fire or take damage, pickup optional weapon energy up power ups and upon completion of stages. Your optional weapons are assigned to you at random every time you earn enough points. A good source of optional energy is the smaller asteroids that fly at you in clusters in Stages 2 and 6.
Graviton Bomb

Graviton Bomb - Sprays a short range plasma burst ahead of your ship and blocks incoming enemy fire. Does very little damage as a weapons.


Antimatter Bomb - Launches a slow moving projectile in a straight line. This does major damage to ships it impacts. Best used for bosses and large enemy craft.

Photon Torpedo

Photon Torpedo - Fires 8 tracking projectiles in different directions simultaneously. Useful for taking out clusters of ships.

Antimatter Bomb

E.M. Defence System - This creates a barrier around your ship blocking incoming enemy fire. This can sustain 3 hits before dissipating.

Options Screen

The games options screen can be accessed from the title screen. They are:

Game Level - You can set the games difficulty to either Normal or Hard. Hard mode reduces the amount of power-ups and doubles how much damage each enemy ship needs in order to be destroyed.

Music Test - Listen to each of the tracks of the games. some PCM some CD AUDIO. Press A, B or C to start or stop the music.

Sound Test - Listen to the sound effects of the game. A, B or C starts and stops the sounds.

Ship Control - You can adjust the controls for the game.

Polygon Test - You can view and play with all of the objects in the game - that are polygons anyway. You can zoom, rotate etc.

Options Screen

Options Screen


Click on the stage number for more info.

Stage 01 Stage 02 Stage 03 Stage 04
Stage 05 Stage 06 Stage 07 Stage 08
Stage 09 Stage 10 Stage 11 Stage 12


Silpheed | 1986

The original Silpheed also created a pseudo 3D world to play in. The mission in this game is similar - you must overthrow an evil warlord. The game is apparently quite challenging.
Oringal Silpheed Oringal Silpheed

Orignal version of Silpheed

Silpheed: The Lost planet | Playstation 2 Silpheed: The Lost Planet Silpheed: The Lost Planet

Another Silpheed title was produced in 2001 for the Playstation 2 entitled Silpheed: The Lost Planet. It was a collaborative effort from Game Arts and Treasure.

In this adventure you battle against an invasion from parasitic monsters sweeping across the known universe, devouring all the resources in it’s path.

Check out a review here:

Silpheed The Lost Planet Review


Stage Select

During the opening demo, just after the Game Arts logo, enter down, down, up, up, right, left, right, left, A,B then start. There will now be Stage Select on the title screen. Stage 01-12 are the stages of the game. 13-22 are the in game cinemas.

Extra Continues

During the opening demo press Right, Up, A, B, C, Left, Left, Down, C, A and Start. The title screen should now show that you have 10 continues.

Extra Shields

During the opening Demo, using controller one, press Right, Left, A, Right, Up, C, B, Down, Left, B, A, Up then Start. During the game should you find yourself with no shields pressing A controller 2 will restore your shields.

Hard Game

For a extra hard game, using controller two during the demo just after the Game Arts logo press B,B,A,C, up, left, right, down, C, up and A.

Voice Test

On controller two press and hold A,B and C and then on controller one move the cursor to OPTIONS and then press start. The options screen will have sound test replaced with Voice Test.

Destroy Missile

On the first round you can destroy the third missile that is launched at the planet. This will give you a handy 10000 points.

Optional Energy

A good source of optional energy is the smaller asteroids that fly at you in clusters in Stages 2 and 6.

Read Errors

Sometimes the game crashes out with a read error and hands you an extra credit. This usually means your CD needs a clean.


This is the CD audio in game. These are not actually used in the game because the in-game music is done by the Mega CD’s sound chip.

#02 CD Audio of Opening Movie
#03 Stage 1 - Greason System
#04 Stage 4 - Asteroid Base
#05 Stage 5 - Warp Speed
#06 Stage 9 - Moon
#07 Boss
#08 Ending / Credits


Gens - Seems to work perfect with Gens. Must have the perfect synch option enabled.

Kega - Works perfectly in Kega also. Must have the perfect synch option enabled.

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