|Publisher(s)||SNK, Hamster Corporation|
|Platform(s)||Arcade, Xbox One|
|Release date(s)||1994, 20th July 2017 (Xbox One)|
Zed Blade, known in Japan as Operation Ragnarok, is a Shoot 'em Up game released in 1994 by NMK for the Neo Geo MVS system. On July 20th 2017 Hamster Corporation ported Zed Blade for the first time for the Xbox One console, it was released as ACA NEOGEO ZED BLADE.
In the future, mankind travels to every planet in the Solar System. A large project to establish the Space Frontier is started with the development of an automated space station called Yggdrasil which is controlled by a state of the art super computer. The crew of the Yggdrasil refuse to respond to any of Earth's communications months after deployment. Suddenly, Yggdrasil attacks the Earth using a large fleet of highly developed space fighters, robots and war machines. Operation Ragnarok is enacted wherein three of the Earth's best space fighter pilots must restore order by seizing control of Yggdrasil and halting the invasion.
Zed Blade is a typical side-scrolling shooter, with one button for shooting and one button for using smart bombs. The player can choose between three pilots, each with it's own ship with different speeds. After picking a character, the player can pick between three choices for frontal shots, missiles and rear shots.
The game is fast paced, as the player fights waves of enemies and some larger crafts who carry power-ups for the ship's weapons. One interesting feature of the game is that larger enemies and bosses are made of multiple parts, with a red core acting as their weak spot. Power-ups appear as colored orbs with letters on them corresponding to one weapon, ciclying between them if given time. Some enemies will also carry extra bombs and sometimes "Hyper" bombs, which are more powerful than the regular bombs.
- Master Segeant Uncle Beard: Has the slowest ship, but starts with four bombs.
- Sergeant Ms. Charlotte: Has the most balanced ship and starts with three bombs.
- Corporal Swift Arnold: Has the fastest ship and starts with three bombs.
- Frontal Shot
- 3-Way: Fires three streams of bullets forward in an arc.
- Wave: Fires two streams of bullets forward in a waving pattern.
- Vertical: Fires four streams of bullets, two forward and two at the top and bottom of the ship respectively.
- Homing: Fires two homing missiles.
- A.S.: Fires bombs from the top and bottom of the ship respectively.
- A.A.: Fires missiles forward.
- Rear Shot
- 2-Way: Fires two lasers from the rear in a 45‹ angle upwards and downwards.
- Wave: Same as the frontal Wave, only it's fired backwards.
- Twin: Fires two streams of bullets backwards.
- Zed Blade is the only game developed by NMK for the Neo Geo and also their last game.
- Zed Blade's soundtrack was composed by Manabu Namiki, being his second score after Thunder Dragon 2 (also from NMK). He would become famous for his various Shoot 'em Up soundtracks.
- The player can obtain points from shooting scenery and the indestructible parts from large enemies and bosses, making this a very easy scoring trick.