Space Harrier is a forward scrolling shooter game, released by Sega in 1985. Yu Suzuki, the man responsible for many popular Sega games, produced it. It had two sequels: Space Harrier II, and Planet Harriers (2001).
Space Harrier was originally made for the arcades, and later saw ports to many home game systems (see below). Space Harrier's release on the Sega Master System is notable: there were two versions. One was just like the arcade, while the other, entitled "Space Harrier 3D", supported 3D glasses.
Space Harrier is set in "the Fantasy Zone", a surreal world composed of bright colors and checkerboard-styled ground. The enemies are also unique, featuring prehistoric animals, Chinese dragons, and alien pods. The player is forced along the levels, running or flying (via jetpack) around enemy fire, while shooting back with fireballs. The character graphics are sprite-based, though the level backgrounds are faux 3D. The 3-D Battles of World Runner by Square bears more than a slight resemblance to the game.
The arcade version of Space Harrier used digitized voices, making it among the earliest games to do so. The voice would sound off while the game was idle, greeting potential players with "Welcome to the Fantasy Zone!".
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