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Long ago, the Gradius army destroyed an evil life form that was threatening the galaxy. But somehow some of the Bacterian cells survived, and a new army has appeared ready to take over the galaxy! The Gradius forces have developed a super spatial-temporal fighter (called the Vic Viper) which you must pilot in order to destroy all of the enemies. The gameplay in Gradius V is an arcade style shooter and is very similar to the other games in the series. You need to guide the Vic Viper through a series of side scrolling screens and destroy the many enemies that appear (including several very large bosses). Although you begin the game with very limited firepower, additional weapons can be acquired. After destroying certain enemies, a power up capsule is left behind; collecting these will advance the weapon selector. When the weapon you want is selected after collecting enough capsules, you can activate it to equip the Vic Viper with that weapon. Your choices are speed up, missiles, double fire, lasers, multiples (these circle the Vic Viper providing additional firepower), and force fields. As you progress through the game, short animated cut scenes will reveal the story, and the enemies become tougher and more numerous. The game is somewhat customizable, allowing you to set the controls, difficulty level, and number of lives you begin with.


Gradius V PlayStation 2 Don't get hit by the lasers of doom!
Gradius V PlayStation 2 Multiple large craft attacking at once
Gradius V PlayStation 2 Avoid the green stuff - it's deadly
Gradius V PlayStation 2 Be careful in these narrow passageways

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Alternate Titles

  • "宇宙巡航机V" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "グラディウスV" -- Japanese katakana spelling

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Critic Reviews

GameSpy PlayStation 2 Sep 14, 2004 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
HonestGamers PlayStation 2 Feb 13, 2005 10 out of 10 100
Gaming Target PlayStation 2 Dec 02, 2004 9.5 out of 10 95
Worth Playing PlayStation 2 Oct 02, 2004 8.9 out of 10 89
GameSpot PlayStation 2 Sep 14, 2004 8.2 out of 10 82
Super Play (Sweden) PlayStation 2 Oct, 2004 8 out of 10 80 PlayStation 2 Oct 07, 2004 16 out of 20 80
Game Informer Magazine PlayStation 2 Oct, 2004 7.75 out of 10 78 (UK) PlayStation 2 Aug 18, 2004 7 out of 10 70
Netjak PlayStation 2 Jan 08, 2005 6.8 out of 10 68


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1001 Video Games

Gradius V appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


  • GameSpy
    • 2004 – #6 PS2 Game of the Year
    • 2004 - PS2 Shooter of the Year

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Contributed to by Charly2.0 (120326) and Servo (57413)