Balloon Fight
Developer Nintendo
Publisher Nintendo
Released Arcade: November 1984
Famicom: January 22, 1985
PC-8801: October 1985
Sharp X1: November 1985
NES NA: June 1986
NES EU: March 12, 1987
Zaurus: September 2001
GBA: May 21, 2004
e-reader: September 16, 2002
Added to Museum NES Classic: June 22, 2017
FC Mini: August 10, 2017
e-reader: January 20, 2018

Balloon Fight is a single screen action game by Nintendo. It is the home version of VS. Balloon Fight, the game that used the VS. System for use in arcades. It was released for the Family Computer on January 22, 1985, and for the Nintendo Entertainment System in North America on June 1986. It was one of the thirty games included with the NES Classic Edition and the Famicom Mini, which was released on November 10, 2016.

Story

A nameless balloon fighter has two balloons attached to a helmet, and variates the flying height in order to drop down on opponents to pop their balloons.

The goal of the game is for the balloon fighters to pop all of the balloons of the enemies, while keeping their own balloons afloat.

Balloon Fight can be played with a single balloon fighter, or with two balloon fighters in two player cooperative mode.

There is also an additional mode called Balloon Trip, in which the goal is to avoid lightning while collecting balloons, aiming to get the high score.

Development

Balloon Fight was simultaneously developed for use in arcades using the Nintendo VS. System, as well as for the Family Computer, the Japanese version of the Nintendo Entertainment System. Because both systems share the same processor, the code for the Famicom version was shared with the team making the arcade version. The VS. System version did have a few differences from the Famicom version, due to the fact that it had slightly more capable hardware.

Versions

The Famicom and Nintendo Entertainment System version had three modes, A was single player mode, B was two player mode, and C was the aforementioned Balloon Trip mode. When Hudson Soft ported the game to the computers that were popular in Japan at the time, the NEC PC-8801 and Sharp X1, they retained all three modes. The Nintendo Entertainment System version, with the three game modes, was released to arcades in 1985 using the PlayChoice-10 system. This system allowed gamers to choose between ten Nintendo Entertainment System games. To allow the games to be played in an arcade, a separate CPU was used to control the game select, give hints for the game, and display a timer. The timer would end the game session, but the gamer was allowed to play as many games as they wanted until time ran out.

Retro gaming took off in the early 21st century, as gamers who grew up with the games of the 1980s and 1990s became adults. In lieu of this, Balloon Fight was re-released several times, for many different systems. It was ported to the Sharp Zaurus personal data assistant in 2001. In 2002, the Nintendo Entertainment System version was re-released for the Game Boy Advance e-Reader unit, which allowed gamers to scan in cards to play games or get in-game add-ons for Game Boy Advance games. In 2004, the Famicom version was re-released in Japan for the Game Boy Advance on cartridge.

It has been available on all of Nintendo's Virtual Console digital distribution platforms. It was released for the Virtual Console on Wii in 2007, on 3DS in 2011, and on Wii U in 2013. It is also slated for release on the Nintendo Switch online service, with an online multiplayer function.

Sequels

It spawned a sequel for the Game Boy titled Balloon Kid (released for the Game Boy Color in Japan as Balloon Fight GB and for the Famicom as Hello Kitty World). There was also a remake for the Nintendo DS starring Tingle, from The Legend of Zelda series, titled Tingle's Balloon Fight.

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