Why We Want To Play Solar Jetman
I’ve had Solar Jetman recommended to me a few different times over the past year, so the game has been floating around on my to-do list for a while. And much like our first Together Retro game, Defender, it is a rather unique game with controls that take some getting use to. It doesn’t fit in nicely to any one genre which gets us out of our gaming confort zone a bit and make us learn new skills and hone our eye-hand-coordination and timing.
“The game is a multi-directional shooter in the vein of Thrust and Gravitar. The player’s craft is subject to inertia but not drag, so to stop moving in one direction it needs to thrust in the opposite way. The constant pull of gravity makes stable flight impossible and steering a skill in itself.
Solar Jetman has twelve planets and one hidden planet, each with its own gravity and system of enemy-infested caverns. The goal is to navigate these caves with small jetpods launched from an immobile mothership, on each world bringing back a piece of the warpship and enough fuel to journey to the next one. Items are collected with a tractor beam/tow cable that complicates flight much further, and released over the mothership or deposited in small wormholes deeper in the caverns. Points are earned by retrieving valuables and destroying enemies, and can be spent after every other stage to buy power-ups, both pod-specific and permanent. The most vital ones are found on the field. If a pod is destroyed, the pilot ejects in an agile but feeble spacesuit and can be returned to the ship or a wormhole for another craft. Losing a spacesuit costs one of four lives.”
Full Wikipedia Entry
Even though other ports of the game were planned, the NES is the version to see retail shelves. A C64 version was finished and was eventually leaked well after the platform’s death and is now availible for download.
Emulation for Solar Jetman
If you don’t have an NES, emulation is are very viable option. NES emulators are a dime a dozen and available for just about any platform. The best NES emulators really come down to personal preference. All of the major ones run the game fine so really it comes down to choice in user interfaces.
For the PC, I like NNNesterJ, namely since it supports Kalleria, however UltraFCE is a very popular choice, and who can forget Nesticle. They are all drop and play emulators with very little configuration needed.
However if you are clever and would rather play it on a portable or even the Dreamcast, check out the racketboy links below. If you need assitance setting up any emulator, please post your question in the Emulation section of the forum
How to Play/Controls
Excepted GameFAQs “The main goal of each level is to bring enough fuel to the main ship to blast off again, but before you do, you must first collect a piece of a legendary spaceship (the Golden Warpship) which was broken into 12 pieces. When your spaceship is destroyed you are left along on the planet in just your spacesuit. Luckily, it’s also equipped with a gun and thrusters but it can’t be upgraded besides with different bullets. But as a last resort it can be rather handy, but one shot is lethal.”
- Left/Right – Turn the ship
- Up/Down – Raise/lower shields
- B – Boosters
- A – Gun
- Start – Pause
- Select + B – Stronger boost
- Select + A – Special Weapon
- Start, Select – Map
Together Retro Discussion
Instead of posting in the comments section of the blog, we will be using the forum for all of our discussion in order to keep things more organized. So play Solar Jetman and talk to us about your thoughts and play experiences in the forums. We want to know your tactics, your strategies, your successes and your failures.