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Zero Wing (Genesis)

Critic Score
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
User Score
5 point score based on user ratings.

User Reviews

Get the animated GIF, this game isn't worth your money! J. David Taylor (28) unrated

Our Users Say

Category Description User Score
Acting The quality of the actors' performances in the game (including voice acting). 2.7
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work (player controls, game action, interface, etc.) 3.1
Graphics The quality of the art, or the quality/speed of the drawing routines 3.1
Personal Slant How much you personally like the game, regardless of other attributes 3.1
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 3.3
Overall User Score (15 votes) 3.1

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Computer and Video Games (CVG)
This is an extremely addictive blaster you'll return to again and again until those uncool CATS have finally bitten the dust and you've saved the galaxy once again. Zero Wing is one of those carts which sits there just begging to be played until you finally crack and give it another go. Gimme, gimme, gimme...
Mean Machines
Hellfire was a pretty brilliant blast by all accounts, combining brilliant graphics and sound with awesome playability. Now Toaplan have returned with Zero Wing, another conversion of a horizontally scrolling coin-op blast - and it's pretty damn good! Considering the (very) tired genre, Toaplan have come up trumps with a game that has a very original graphic style, along with some pretty original weaponry too. The sound (as usual for a Toaplan game) is great, with some pretty decent effects and brilliant tunes. But it's usually the difficulty level f a game that either makes of breaks it, and just like Hellfire, Zero Wing is something of a tough mutha - even on the lowest difficulty setting. So if it's thrills, spills and a high death count you're after, look no further!
Die Mega Drive-Version ist, wenn man die um einiges schwächere und farbarme, von der Konsole abhängige Grafik außer Acht lässt, der Arcade-Vorlage sehr ähnlich. Die grafische Schwäche macht diese Version aber durch eine flüssige Spielbarkeit, ein nettes kleines Intro und die in meinen Ohrgängen viel besser klingenden Musikstücke wieder wett.
Video Games
Im Juli letzten Jahres erschien die japanische Version von Zero Wings, erst jetzt kommt‘s auch offizell in unseren Landen heraus. Da ich seit damals nicht mehr hineingespielt habe, war ich vom gelungenen Intro begeistert: Guter Sound, ansehnliche Grafik, einwandfreie Animationen - so hatte ich den Beinaheoldie gar nicht in Erinnerung. Die Faszination war aber schnell dahin: Zero Wings ist eher ein “Gaiares“ für Arme, als eine eigenständige Ballerneuheit. Die Verwandtschaft der Tracking-Strahls mit dem Extradieb von “Gaiares“ ist nicht zu übersehen, trotzdem bringt diese Variante einige originelle Anwendungen mit sich. Leider reizen weder Grafik noch Sound die kompetente 16-Bit-Hardware aus: Die Grafik ist grob und schlicht, die Farbwahl der Sprites seltsam. Guter Durchschnitt, mehr nicht.
Power Play
Langsam wird mir klar, wie unverschämt hoch "Thunder Force III" schon vor gut einem Jahr die Meßlatte für Mega-Drive-Ballereien legte. Bis heute mühten sich zig Horizontalscroller vergeblich, das Edelmodul zu erreichen. Auch Zero Wings bleibt trotz ungewöhnlicher (aber unspektakulärer) Grafik und originellem Level-Aufbau nur knapp über dem Ballerdurchschnitt. Introsequenzen und allerlei Extrawaffen-Schnickschnack helfen der Motivation des Spielers auch nicht. Wer das Genre mag und alle Konkurrenzmodule bereits abgehakt hat, sollte Zero Wings dennoch eine Chance geben: Schlecht ist es nicht.
Gamers (Germany)
Der Spielablauf ist vollgepackt mit netten Extras, gut gestaffelten Raumschiff-Formationen und ein paar witzigen Oberbrummern. Wem Panikspiele wie Gynoug zu hektisch sind, der ist bei Zero Wing besser aufgehoben. Action-Profis wird's hingegen ein wenig zu müde sein.
The Video Game Critic
The scenery and enemies are typical space station fare, and there are some cheesy looking bosses, including one that vaguely resembles a clown head. Three types of weapons are available, and each can be powered up to three levels. The green guided missiles are most effective, so once you've equipped them you'll want to avoid the red (wide) and blue (laser) icons altogether. The best aspect of Zero Wing is your formidable firepower. Two cannons float alongside your ship, allowing you to unleash a constant barrage of missiles. I like how your cannons squeeze together as you navigate narrow passages. Zero Wing's sound is the standard up-tempo electronic music the Genesis is famous for, and it's decent but forgettable. I doubt that a casual gamer will want to hunt down this rare bird, but hardcore collectors will want Zero Wing in their library.
It isn't worth the money, even though it really isn't that bad. You have some nice ideas and average graphics and sound, but the mediocrity and frustration brings it down from being a title worthy of your collection. Zero Wing can entertain you for a moment, but if you seek a great shooter for the Mega Drive, there are plenty of other games to get before this one.
As such, it’s hard to label Zero Wing a complete failure. It’s not like it didn’t have it’s own ideas, like a cool tractor beam feature that lets you trap smaller enemy craft to act as a kind of shield, to either absorb a hit for you, or to be thrown back in the faces of its former allies for kicks and giggles. It simply spends a great deal of its time being a paint-by-numbers scrolling shooter, and asking you to invest a lot of time plodding though its poorly paced stages to catch glances at what could have been. Perhaps it could have been remembered as one of the better 16-bit shooters on the market, but that wasn’t to be. Instead, let’s all listen to people who have never played the game quote the ‘hilarious’ intro until the urge to club them with a half brick becomes too strong.
Thunderbolt Games
Much is made of this game, all things considered. And it's funny, because there's not a whole lot to it. Zero Wing is a side-scrolling shooter, of the deliberate, R-Type variety, not the frenetic Thunder Force variety. That in itself may seem strange coming from Toaplan, the makers of the prototypically hectic Batsugun and its ilk. But that's not the draw of this mostly mediocre shooter. The draw is the story.