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This planet was once a quiet, peaceful place to live, until...they came...

An unknown alien race came to this planet and promptly laid waste to it. The remaining defense force has been sent out to try and defeat them. One lucky person gets to fly the latest line of defense ships made: the AX-77 Axelay. However, these ships are still in the prototype stage, and as such, only one exists.

So get out there and head to the alien's homeworld. With some luck, you may just be able to take them out at the source...

Axelay is a scrolling shoot-'em-up where some levels scroll vertically and others horizontally. The game is notable for its use of Super Nintendo's Mode 7. In vertically scrolling levels, the backgrounds are made entirely of Mode 7 graphics giving the playfield the illusion of depth.


Axelay SNES This mech is indestructible
Axelay SNES Shooting at the second boss from behind
Axelay SNES The fourth boss - The purple beam slows down the ship and changes its weapons
Axelay SNES Stage 1 - This midboss keeps turning invisible

Promo Images

Axelay Screenshot
Axelay Screenshot
Axelay Screenshot
Axelay Screenshot

Alternate Titles

  • "アクスレイ" -- Japanese spelling
  • "엑서레이" -- Korean spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

An underrated, revolutionary shoot-em-up. keith jones (5) unrated

Critic Reviews

N-Force Sep, 1992 93 out of 100 93
Digital Press - Classic Video Games Dec 04, 2004 9 out of 10 90
HonestGamers (Staff reviews only) Jan 13, 2004 9 out of 10 90
Quebec Gamers Apr 06, 2008 8.6 out of 10 86
Jeuxvideo.com Jan 15, 2010 17 out of 20 85
Mega Fun Mar, 1994 82 out of 100 82
Video Game Den Nov 08, 2011 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
Pixel-Heroes.de Aug, 2010 8 out of 10 80
Video Games Oct, 1992 80 out of 100 80
RetroGame Man Feb 15, 2016 7 out of 10 70


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1001 Video Games

The SNES version of Axelay appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


Beating the game three times in a row on the hardest difficulty will give players a message after the credits roll the third time:
Konami never made the sequel, blaming it on "lackluster sales of Axelay".


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