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Star Guards
Box artwork for Star Guards.
Developer(s)Midway Games
Publisher(s)Midway Games
Release date(s)
Genre(s)Multi-directional shooter
System(s)Arcade
Players1-3
Mode(s)Single player, Multiplayer
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Star Guards marquee

Star Guards is a multi-directional shooter arcade game that was released by Bally Midway in 1987; it was the last game to run on the company's MCR-3 hardware without the two General Instrument AY-3-8910s, and the players must use two eight-way joysticks (one for moving, and one for firing) to take control of three Transformer-like robots (who are coloured as red, yellow and blue respectively). They can fly anywhere they want (and must collect energy, to keep their strength up) - but their objective is to destroy the most "leaders" on each star to conquer it, for once they have conquered four stars they will gain a new weapon (and name). They start out as Flux (who has a magnet as a special weapon), then turn to Tangent (who has a shield), followed by Rebound (who has a boomerang), Kelvin (who has a freeze ray) and Blitz (who has heat-seeking grenades); the player who conquers in the current star will also get to choose the next one on the overworld map. There is a total of seventy-three stars on the overworld map, but once all of them have been conquered the game shall not end - much like in Bally Midway's own Power Drive (which was released in the previous year and also ran on MCR-3 hardware), it shall start over again, and proceed to repeat until all the players have run out of energy. If you are using MAME to play this game with one or two friends, it is not easy to select a unique key to replicate all six joysticks' movements; the same thing can also be said of Konami's X-Men (1992).

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