Thunder Force III

Moby ID: 7887
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The famous shoot'em up series Thunder Force reaches its third installment. Eight new levels of non-stop action, as always packed with gargantuan bosses.

What made Thunder Force stand apart from the other shooters, the ability to switch weapons on the fly, hasn't changed a bit. However, the original mix of side-scrolling and top-view levels that was present in Thunder Force II has been dropped; only the side-scrolling levels remain.


  • サンダーフォースⅢ - Japanese spelling

Groups +


Credits (Genesis version)

11 People

Graphics / Design
Stage Design
Music Composers
Sound Effects
  • Kaoru



Average score: 86% (based on 22 ratings)


Average score: 4.1 out of 5 (based on 21 ratings with 1 reviews)

One of the greatest side scrolling shooters ever.

The Good
Thunder Force III was one of the greatest and most enjoyable side scrolling shooters released on any of the home console systems. It features unique and brilliantly detailed levels, sharp play, a satisfying weapons system, and huge innovative boss characters.

Strangely, its still superior to Thunder Spirits (SNES) and Thunder Force AC (Arcade) which were based upon it. Both of these translations are inferior to the original Genesis title.

I can still remember reading in EGM about this game when it was in prototype stage and how impressed the editors were with it even then. They just don't make them like they used to.

The Bad
There really wasn't much to complain about with this game. I was still enjoying this one back in 2002. It kept my attention for over a decade.

The Bottom Line
If you like this game several others might interest you for the Genesis such as: Gairares, Elemental Master, and Thunder Force 4. Thunder Force 2 is worth checking out as well.

Genesis · by Majestic Lizard (670) · 2006



  • Electronic Gaming Monthly
    • November 1997 (Issue 100) - ranked #59 (Best 100 Games of All Time)


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Related Games

Thunder Force VI
Released 2008 on PlayStation 2
Thunder Force II
Released 1988 on Sharp X68000, Genesis, 2021 on Nintendo Switch
Thunder Force: Gold Pack 1
Released 1996 on SEGA Saturn
Thunder Force: Gold Pack 2
Released 1996 on SEGA Saturn
Thunder Force V: Perfect System
Released 1997 on SEGA Saturn, PlayStation, 2010 on PSP...
Thunder Spirits
Released 1990 on Arcade, SNES, 2020 on Nintendo Switch
Valis III
Released 1990 on TurboGrafx CD, Genesis, 2019 on Antstream
Rambo III
Released 1989 on Genesis
Lightening Force: Quest for the Darkstar
Released 1992 on Genesis, 2018 on Nintendo Switch

Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 7887
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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Cochonou.

Additional contributors: Alaka, j.raido 【雷堂嬢太朗】.

Game added December 10, 2002. Last modified January 25, 2024.