The Sega Megadrive was a fantastic machine for shoot \u2018em ups, especially side scrolling ones. \n\n\n\nHere\u2019s Retroheadz pick of the ones to look\nout for, revisit or just be aware of if you ever have the need to destroy some\nevil empires and what not.\n\n\n\nLet\u2019s start with\u2026\n\n\n\nHellfire\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nReleased way back in 1990, Hellfire is an\narcade conversion from Toaplan. \n\n\n\nHellfire looks stunning considering how old\nit is and, in our opinion, looks better than the arcade version which was only\nreleased a year before.\n\n\n\nIts a bright and colourful Shoot 'em up and on top of that Hellfire has some great levels to conquer.\n\n\n\nFrom starting out in space to fighting in\nwhat looks like ancient Egypt, Hellfire is one tough cookie, so expect to get\nproperly frustrated as it takes an age to master.\n\n\n\nIf you want to buy a Genesis copy that will work straight on a PAL Megadrive expect to fork out somewhere in the region of \u00a350.\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nZero Wing\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nZero Wing is awesome, and its intro is the stuff of internet legends. This is the game with the infamous \u2018All your base belong to us\u2019 dialogue that has created untold meme's since well, meme's began.\n\n\n\nHowever, this shouldn\u2019t overshadow the fact\nthat this is one heck of a shoot \u2018em up.\n\n\n\nWith the ability to have two support ships flying\nalongside the Zero Wing and select different types of weapons to being able to\npull in enemy ships with a tractor beam and fire them at the oncoming hordes. \n\n\n\nZero Wing is one challenging and fun shoot 'em up to play.\n\n\n\nA PAL version of Zero Wing should set you\nback between \u00a345-60\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nSteel Empire\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nProduced by Hot B and published by Acclaim\nthis steampunk styled shoot \u2018em \u2018up is great fun. You have either a bi-plane or\na airship to pilot each of which has different attributes to bring to the\nbattle. \n\n\n\nCouple these attributes with some decent music, excellent silent movie style cutscenes, epic settings and boss battles.\n\n\n\nSteel Empire will test your reflexes to the\nmaximum and won\u2019t break the bank to buy either with cart only starting at \u00a315\nand boxed around \u00a325-30.\n\n\n\nCheck out the Retroheadz in-depth review for it here.\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nGley Lancer\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nGley Lancer was a Japan only release so gamers\ncould get it on import only back in the day. \n\n\n\nThis Anime style shooter is gorgeous to\nlook at from the cut scenes to the game itself.\n\n\n\nIt also has tons of speech which impressed\nMegadrive owners back in 1992.\n\n\n\nGley Lancer is one to get hold of but be\nprepared to fork out a lot for it, say around \u00a3300 if you\u2019re lucky.\n\n\n\nHowever, if a copy is found and purchased\nthen proudly display it as even the box art is beautiful.\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nInsector X\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nThis was an early release in the US for the\nGenesis back in 1989 and like the later Steel Empire came from Hot B.\n\n\n\nRather than take place in space, Insector X takes place in what looks like your mums\u2019 flower beds in the back garden and has you up against all manner of creepy crawlies throughout.\n\n\n\nThe main character takes on bugs of all sizes and eliminates them with extreme prejudice, well... if they let you that is. \n\n\n\nIts not that bad a game, but it is showing\nits age being an early Megadrive release.\n\n\n\nIf you want to buy it you\u2019ll be looking at\nspending \u00a340-60 for a boxed copy.\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nGaiares\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nThis Megadrive shoot 'em up is bright, colourful, very trippy and challenging. \n\n\n\nGaiares seems to have it all including some awesome music and anime cut scenes. \n\n\n\nThis title is pretty rare to get hold of\nand cost a pretty penny but if you have to have every shoot \u2018em up on the Megadrive\nthen this one need to be in your collection for sure.\n\n\n\nWant to get Gaiares? It will set you back over \u00a3100, maybe more.\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nThunderforce 4\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nFrom its epic metal infused intro containing some of the best music the Megadrive can produce. Thunderforce 4 is a special game indeed for Sega\u2019s 16 Bit console. \n\n\n\nThe levels are large, varied and come with\nsome of the biggest bosses ever to grace Sega\u2019s 16 Bit console.\n\n\n\nEverything about Thunderforce 4 is awesome\nand any fan of the shoot \u2018em up genre should have or definitely needs to play\nthis classic, we did and here is what we think of this gem of a game.\n\n\n\nThankfully, picking up this seminal shoot 'em up is not that hard to do, expect to pay \u00a340+ or alternatively get it on the Nintendo Switch if you have one.\n\n\n\nThere\u2019s also Thunderforce 3 which is great but this is so much better.\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nGynoug\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nReleased in 1991, Gynoug is a classical side scrolling shmup and by classical we mean during the classical Greek era of all places\n\n\n\nYou take control of your tiny winged Icarus styled protagonist, Wor, and take on a bizarre mix of disturbing creatures and bosses to make the ancient world free again. \n\n\n\nIncidentally, It was also called Wings of Wor in the US and we can understand why as we are still stumped as to how to pronounce Gynoug. Any guesses? \n\n\n\nWant to buy it? Expect to pay around \u00a330 for a copy of Gynoug\n\n\n\nFeeling Nostalgic?\n\n\n\nWhat Megadrive Shoot \u2018em up\u2019s did you love to play back in the day or still do? Which one is your favourite? Share your memories in the comments below.