Kid Icarus/Stage 4
You have made it. You have collected all three of the sacred treasures; the Mirror Shield, the Arrow of Light, and the Wings of Pegasus. After equipping them, you can reach the Sky Palace and ride forth into battle against the Queen of Darkness herself, Medusa. But her top henchmen aren't going to let you waltz right up to her and fight her. You'll have to defeat a good number of them before they will permit you to challenge Medusa. If you do not defeat enough of them, you will find yourself back at the start of the palace to kill more minions until the required number is reached. It is possible to achieve this number in the first attempt. Note that the controls for this stage are different, as you have direct control over where Pit flies throughout the screen. You can only fire to the left or to the right.
- Your first encounter in this stage will be the green Totems. Do your best to attack one or two of them as they fall down (it's impossible to hit all four), but be careful collecting the hearts they leave behind. As soon as you collect the last heart, more Totems will begin to drop on Pit's head.
- In the middle of this section, the pink Moiras will fly on to the screen from the left side from four different heights. They will cross over to the right side of the screen, occasionally trading heights before returning back to the left side. Watch out as they move from behind Pit to in front of him, and shoot the ones closest to you before they return to the left.
- More Totems will begin to appear, this time dropping from the edge of the roof. Use the same strategy as before, taking care to get out of the way quickly before more Totems start to appear.
- A long stretch of pink platform indicates the middle of this stage. On the platform will be a new and strange enemy known as Erinus. This enemy fires a beam from his eye as he wanders back and forth. When he is shot, he does not perish immediately. Instead, his body breaks up into three segments which go flying into the air before dropping back down to the bottom. Be very careful as these pieces move very quickly and it is easy to get struck by them.
- As you continue, more Totems fall from the sky. Only now, they have something to land on, so they will stack up on top of one another. You can remove them all and collect the hearts if you need them. If you're already at 999 hearts, you shouldn't worry about hearts anymore.
- Two new enemies will begin to appear: Syrens and Daphnes. Syrens fly from the right side of the screen to the left in a wave like pattern. Your Arrows of Light should be able to take out many of them at a time. The Daphne flowers behave very much like the Minos from the Overworld. They leap up from the bottom of the screen, hit their peak around two thirds of the way up the screen, and drop back down.
- More Daphnes and Erinus await you at the start of the final portion of the stage. If the beams from the Erinus are not interfering with your flight, it may be better to leave them along instead of risking taking damage from the pieces of his body.
- The final enemy, the ghost like Zurees appear at the end of the stage. They are simple enemies that merely bounce up and down from the top of the screen to the bottom and back. It is a little easier to shoot them at the peak of their motion. They are nothing more than obstacles to be removed or avoided.
- If you have not killed 50 enemies by the time you reach the end of this stage, the stage will loop back around to the very beginning and continue. You will only be able to face Medusa when you have defeated at least 50 enemies.
Final Boss fight: Medusa and Tanatos
The gigantic head of Medusa may appear very imposing, but there is a simple strategy that you can employ to defeat her quickly. Her only weak point is the rather large eyeball in the center of her head. From the eye, she will emit powerful beams that can hurt Pit if they manage to slip past his Mirror Shield. Otherwise, the Shield will absorb the beams. Medusa has a second form of attack, where she sends The Shape Shifting Tanatos (a flying snake) to attack Pit. Tanatos travels in a fixed path that is very easy to avoid. Medusa's beams are much trickier to avoid. She sends them in Pit's general direction. If Pit rises, she raises the angle of the beams. It Pit drops, she lowers them. Because of this, it is possible to position Pit in front of Medusa's eye such that she ends up sending the beams too high or too low. If you can find a position on the screen where Pit can avoid both the beams and Tanatos (there are at least two such places), you can then sit still and fire at Medusa's eye continuously until she is defeated, without getting hurt. Once she is defeated, you will be treated to one of the different endings before the credits role. After that, you may continue over on stage 1 with all of your accumulated power and play through the game again.