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An alien threat looms over the galaxy and only you and your trusty star fighter can defeat them.

Pulstar is a 2D side-scrolling shooter in which you control your ship as it makes its way past stages filled with waves after waves of enemies bent on your destruction. You can upgrade your main weapons by collecting power-ups and charging up energy allows you to release charged attacks at the cost of power-up consumption. Additionally your ship comes with an ever-present "option" gun pod that floats around your ship and which can be positioned in several configurations to help protect the ship or increase its firepower.

While completely 2D, the game uses pre-rendered 3D sprites and includes fully animated cutscenes between each level. Also features support for two-player gameplay.


Pulstar Arcade Intro.
Pulstar Arcade First wave.
Pulstar Arcade Title Screen.
Pulstar Neo Geo Attack on a large space station

Promo Images

Pulstar Screenshot
Pulstar Screenshot
Pulstar Screenshot
Pulstar Screenshot

Alternate Titles

  • "ACA NeoGeo: Pulstar" -- PS4 title
  • "パルスター" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

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Critic Reviews

Pixel-Heroes.de Neo Geo Sep, 2003 10 out of 10 100
Player One Neo Geo CD Dec, 1995 94 out of 100 94
The Video Game Critic Neo Geo CD Apr 11, 2004 A- 91
All Game Guide Neo Geo 1998 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars 90
Hobby Consolas Neo Geo CD Dec, 1995 90 out of 100 90
Retro Archives Arcade Nov 08, 2018 16.5 out of 20 82
GamePro (US) Neo Geo Dec, 1995 4 out of 5 80
Nintendo Life Nintendo Switch Jan 06, 2018 7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars 70
Video Chums Nintendo Switch Aug 12, 2019 3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars 60
Video Games & Computer Entertainment Neo Geo CD Jan, 1996 6 out of 10 60


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Contributed to by mars_rulez (43795), 666gonzo666 (66585), Rik Hideto (471358), yenruoj_tsegnol_eht (!!ihsoy) (2625), Kennyannydenny (126848), Matthias Günl (1312), Zovni (10623) and Kabushi (257783)
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