Space Invaders: Wikis


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Space Invaders
Space Invaders cabinet at Lyme Regis.jpg
Japanese version of the Space Invaders arcade cabinet
Developer(s) Taito Corporation
Publisher(s) Midway
Designer(s) Tomohiro Nishikado
Platform(s) Arcade
Release date(s) June 1978[1]
Genre(s) Fixed shooter
Mode(s) Single-player
Input methods Joystick (Japanese release), or two motion buttons (American release), one fire button and two start buttons

Space Invaders (スペースインベーダー Supēsu Inbēdā?) is an arcade video game designed by Tomohiro Nishikado, and released in 1978. It was originally manufactured and sold by Taito in Japan, and was later licensed for production in the United States by the Midway division of Bally. Space Invaders is one of the earliest shooting games and features two-dimensional graphics. The aim is to defeat waves of aliens with a laser cannon and earn as many points as possible. In designing the game, Nishikado drew inspiration from popular media: Breakout, The War of the Worlds, and Star Wars. To complete it, he had to design custom hardware and development tools.

Though simple by today's standards, it was one of the forerunners of modern video gaming and helped expand the video game industry from a novelty to a global industry. When first released, Space Invaders was very successful and popular. Following its release, the game caused a temporary shortage of 100-yen coins in Japan, and by 2007 had earned Taito US$500 million in revenue. Guinness World Records ranks it the top arcade game.

The game has been the inspiration for other video games, re-released on numerous platforms, and led to several sequels. The 1980 Atari 2600 version quadrupled the system's sales and became the first "killer app" for video game consoles. Space Invaders has been referenced and parodied in multiple television shows, and been a part of several video game and cultural exhibitions. The pixelated enemy alien has become a media icon representing video games as a whole.



The player-controlled laser cannon shoots the aliens as they descend to the bottom of the screen.

Space Invaders is a two-dimensional fixed shooter game in which the player controls a laser cannon by moving it horizontally across the bottom of the screen and firing at descending aliens. The aim is to defeat five rows of eleven aliens—some versions feature different numbers—that move horizontally back and forth across the screen as they advance towards the bottom of the screen. The player defeats an alien, and earns points, by shooting it with the laser cannon. As more aliens are defeated, the aliens' movement and the game's music both speed up. Defeating the aliens brings another wave that is more difficult; a cycle which can continue indefinitely.[1][2][3][4]

The aliens attempt to destroy the cannon by firing at it while they approach the bottom of the screen. If they reach the bottom, the alien invasion is successful and the game ends. A special "mystery ship" will occasionally move across the top of the screen and award bonus points if destroyed. The laser cannon is partially protected by several stationary defense bunkers—the number varies by version—that are gradually destroyed by projectiles from the aliens and player.[1][2][3][4]


Space Invaders was created by Tomohiro Nishikado, who spent a year designing the game and developing the necessary hardware to produce it.[5] The game's inspiration is reported to have come from varying sources, including an adaptation of the mechanical game Space Monsters released by Taito in 1972, and a dream about Japanese schoolchildren who are waiting for Santa Claus and are attacked by invading aliens.[1][6] However, Nishikado has cited Atari's arcade game Breakout as his inspiration. He aimed to create a shooting game that featured the same sense of achievement from completing stages and destroying targets, but with more complex graphics.[5][7] Nishikado used a similar layout to that of Breakout, but altered the game mechanics. Rather than bounce a ball to attack static objects, players are given the ability to fire projectiles at their own discretion to attack moving enemies.[8]

Early enemy designs included tanks, combat planes, and battleships.[5] Nishikado, however, was not satisfied with the enemy movements; technical limitations made it difficult to simulate flying.[5][9] Humans would have been easier to simulate, but Nishikado thought that shooting them was immoral.[9][10] After seeing a magazine feature about Star Wars, he thought of using a space theme.[5][7] Nishikado drew inspiration for the aliens from H. G. Wells' The War of the Worlds—he watched a film adaptation as a child—and created initial bitmap images after the octopus-like aliens.[5][7][9] Other alien designs were modeled after squids and crabs.[5][9] The game was originally titled Space Monsters, inspired by a popular song in Japan at the time ("Monster"), but was changed to Space Invaders by Nishikado's superiors.[5][7]


Because microcomputers in Japan were not powerful enough at the time to perform the complex tasks involved in designing and programming Space Invaders, Nishikado had to design his own custom hardware and development tools for the game.[5][9] He created the arcade board using new microprocessors from the United States.[7] The game uses an Intel 8080 central processing unit, and features raster graphics on a CRT monitor and monaural sound generated by analogue circuitry.[10][11][12] Despite the specially developed hardware, Nishikado was unable to program the game as he wanted—the Control Program board was not powerful enough to display the graphics in color or move the enemies faster—and considered the development of the hardware the most difficult part of the whole process.[5][9] While programming the game, Nishikado discovered that the processor is able to render the alien graphics faster the fewer are on screen. Rather than design the game to compensate for the speed increase, he decided to keep it as a challenging gameplay mechanic.[7][13]

Mirrored holographic display and cardboard background of a Midway Space Invaders Deluxe arcade cabinet

Space Invaders was first released in a cocktail-table format with black and white graphics, while the Western release by Midway was in an upright cabinet format. The upright cabinet uses strips of orange and green cellophane over the screen to simulate color graphics. The graphics are reflected onto a painted backdrop of a moon against a space background. Later Japanese releases also used colored cellophane.[3] The cabinet artwork features large, humanoid monsters not present in the game. Nishikado attributes this to the artist basing the designs on the original title, Space Monsters, rather than referring to the in-game graphics.[5]

Impact and legacy

Space Invaders is considered one of the most successful arcade shooting games.[14] After the first few months following its release in Japan, the game became very popular.[10] Specialty arcades opened with nothing but Space Invaders cabinets, and Taito produced 100,000 arcade machines for the Japanese market over the next few years.[5][10] 60,000 machines were sold in the United States.[15] The arcade cabinets have since become collector's items with the cocktail and cabaret versions being the rarest.[16] A shortage of 100-yen coins in Japan was attributed to the game, and this led to an increase in production of these coins.[5][14][17] By 2007, it had generated almost US$500 million in revenue.[5] The 1980 Atari 2600 version was the first official licensing of an arcade game and became the first "killer app" for video game consoles by quadrupling the system's sales.[3][18]

Legendary game designer Shigeru Miyamoto considers Space Invaders a game that revolutionized the video game industry; he was never interested in video games before seeing it.[19] Several publications attribute the expansion of the video game industry from a novelty into a global industry to the success of the game. Edge attributes the shift of video games from bars and arcades to more mainstream locations like restaurants and department stores to Space Invaders.[20] According to The Observer, the home console versions were popular and encouraged users to learn programming; many who later became industry leaders.[17] stated that Space Invaders showed that video games could compete against the major entertainment media at the time—movies, music, and television.[10] IGN attributes the launch of the arcade phenomenon in North America in part to Space Invaders.[21] Game Informer considers it, along with Pac-Man, one of the most popular arcade games that tapped into popular culture and generated excitement during the golden age of arcades.[22] IGN listed it as one of the "Top 10 Most Influential Games" in 2007, citing the source of inspiration to video game designers and the impact it had on the shooting genre.[23] In 2008, Guinness World Records listed it as the top-rated arcade game in technical, creative, and cultural impact.[2]

As one of the earliest shooting games, it set precedents and helped pave the way for future titles and for the shooting genre.[23][24] Space Invaders popularized a more interactive style of gameplay with the enemies responding to the player controlled cannon's movement.[7] It was also the first video game to have an intermission between gameplay, and to popularize the concept of achieving a high score.[1][14][23] In describing it as a "seminal arcade classic", IGN listed it as the number eight "classic shoot 'em up".[21] Space Invaders has inspired the development of several games, and led to multiple sequels and rereleases. Arcade games, like Namco's Galaxian and Galaga, were modeled after Space Invaders's gameplay and design.[25] In 2002, Taito released Space Raiders, a third-person shooter reminiscent of Space Invaders.[26][27]

Remakes and sequels

Space Invaders has been remade on numerous platforms and spawned many sequels. Re-releases include ported and updated versions of the original arcade game. Ported versions generally feature different graphics and additional gameplay options—for example, moving defense bunkers, zigzag shots, invisible aliens, and two-player cooperative gameplay.[3] Ports on earlier systems like the Atari home consoles featured simplified graphics, while later systems such as the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and PlayStation featured updated graphics. Later titles include several modes of gameplay and integrate new elements into the original design. For example, Space Invaders Extreme, released on the Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable, integrated musical elements into the standard gameplay.[28][29] A spin-off for WiiWare, Space Invaders Get Even, allows players to control the aliens instead of the laser cannon.[30] In 1980, Bally Midway released a pinball version of the game. However, few elements from the original game are included, and the aliens instead resemble the xenomorphs from the film Alien; Bally Midway was sued over the game's resemblance to designs by H. R. Giger.[31] Different ports have been met with mixed receptions; the Atari 2600 version was very successful while the Nintendo Entertainment System version was poorly received.[3]

Taito has released several arcade sequels that built upon the basic design of the original. The first was Space Invaders Part II in 1980; it featured color graphics and new gameplay elements. This version was released in the United States as Deluxe Space Invaders (also known as Space Invaders Deluxe), but featured a different graphical color scheme and a lunar-city background. Another arcade sequel, titled Space Invaders II, was released exclusively in the United States. It was in a cocktail-table format and featured a competitive two-player mode. During the summer of 1985, Return of the Invaders was released with updated color graphics, and more complex movements and attack patterns for the aliens.[3] Subsequent arcade sequels included Super Space Invaders '91, Space Invaders DX, and Space Invaders '95. Each game introduced minor gameplay additions to the original design. Like the original game, several of the arcade sequels have become collector's items, though some are considered rarer.[16]

The game and its related games have been included in video game compilation titles. Space Invaders Anniversary was released in 2003 for the PlayStation 2 and included nine Space Invader variants.[32] A similar title for the PlayStation Portable, Space Invaders Pocket, was released in 2005.[33] Space Invaders, Space Invaders Part II and Return of the Invaders are included in Taito Legends, a compilation of Taito's classic arcade games released in 2005 on the PlayStation 2, Xbox, and PC.[34][35] Space Invaders DX and Space Invaders '95 were included in Taito Legends 2, a sequel compilation released in 2006.[36]

In popular culture

A pixelated alien graphic used at the concert event Video Games Live.

The game has appeared in numerous facets of popular culture. Multiple television series have aired episodes that either reference or parody the game and its elements; for example, Danger Mouse,[37] That '70s Show,[38] Scrubs,[39] and Robot Chicken.[40] Elements are prominently featured in the "Raiders of the Lost Arcade" segment of "Anthology of Interest II", an episode of Futurama.[41][42] Many publications and websites use the pixelated alien graphic as an icon for video games in general, including video game magazine Electronic Gaming Monthly, technology website Ars Technica, and concert event Video Games Live.[10] Video Games Live has also performed audio from Space Invaders as part of a special retro "Classic Arcade Medley".[43] In honor of the game's 30th anniversary, Taito produced an album titled Space Invaders 2008. The album is published by Avex Trax and features music inspired by the game.[44] Taito's store Taito Station also unveiled a Space Invaders themed music video.[45] A French street artist known as Invader has made a name for himself by creating mosaic artwork of Space Invader aliens around the world.[10][46]

In 2006, the game was one of several video game related media selected to represent Japan as part of a project compiled by Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs.[47][48] In the same year, Space Invaders was included in the London Science Museum's Game On exhibition meant to showcase the various aspects of video game history, development, and culture.[49] At the Belluard Bollwerk International 2006 festival in Fribourg, Switzerland, Guillaume Reymond created a three minute video recreation of a game of Space Invaders as part of the "Gameover" project using humans as pixels.[50] The GH ART exhibit at the 2008 Games Convention in Leipzig, Germany included an art game, Invaders!, based on Space Invaders's gameplay. The creator later asked for the game to be removed from the exhibit following criticism of elements based on the September 11, 2001 attacks.[51]


  1. ^ a b c d e Kevin Bowen. "The Gamespy Hall of Fame: Space Invaders". GameSpy. Retrieved 2008-04-30. 
  2. ^ a b c Craig Glenday, ed (2008-03-11). "Top 100 Arcade Games: Top 5". Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition 2008. Guinness World Records. Guinness. pp. 237. ISBN 978-1-904994-21-3. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "The Definitive Space Invaders". Retro Gamer (Imagine Publishing) (41): 24–33. September 2007. 
  4. ^ a b Seabrook, Andrea (2008-04-12). "Replay: The Evolution of Video Game Music". All Things Considered. National Public Radio. Retrieved 2008-05-12. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n "Classic GI: Space Invaders". Game Informer (Cathy Preston) (177): 108–109. January 2008. 
  6. ^ Williams, Kevin. "Arcade Fantastic - Part 1". GameSpy. Archived from the original on 2007-11-09. Retrieved 2008-09-19. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Retro Gamer Staff. "Nishikado-San Speaks". Retro Gamer (Live Publishing) (3): 35. 
  8. ^ Loguidice, Bill; Matt Barton (2009-01-09). "The History Of Pong: Avoid Missing Game to Start Industry". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2009-01-10. 
  9. ^ a b c d e f Kiphshidze, N; Zubiashvili, T; Chagunava, K (October 2005). "The Creation of Space Invaders". Edge (Future plc) (154): 7–13. ISSN 1512-0112. PMID 18323584. Retrieved 2008-05-05. 
  10. ^ a b c d e f g Edwards, Benj. "Ten Things Everyone Should Know About Space Invaders". Retrieved 2008-07-11. 
  11. ^ "Space Invaders Videogame by Bally Midway (1978)". Killer List of Videogames. Retrieved 2008-05-12. 
  12. ^ Morris, Dave (2004). The Art of Game Worlds. HarperCollins. pp. 166. ISBN 0060724307. 
  13. ^ Glenday, Craig, ed (2009). "Record-Breaking Games/Space Games". Guinness World Records 2009 Gamer's Edition. Guinness World Records. p. 98. ISBN 978-1-904994-45-9. 
  14. ^ a b c Craig Glenday, ed (2008-03-11). "Record Breaking Games: Shooting Games Roundup". Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition 2008. Guinness World Records. Guinness. pp. 106–107. ISBN 978-1-904994-21-3. 
  15. ^ Ellis, David (2004). "Arcade Classics". Official Price Guide to Classic Video Games. Random House. pp. 345. ISBN 0375720383. 
  16. ^ a b Ellis, David (2004). "Arcade Classics". Official Price Guide to Classic Video Games. Random House. pp. 411–412. ISBN 0375720383. 
  17. ^ a b Richards, Giles (2005-07-24). "A life through video games". The Observer. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 2008-05-22. 
  18. ^ Kent, Steven (2001). Ultimate History of Video Games. Three Rivers Press. pp. 190. ISBN 0761536434. 
  19. ^ Sayre, Carolyn (2007-07-19). "10 Questions for Shigeru Miyamoto". Time.,9171,1645158,00.html. Retrieved 2007-09-04. 
  20. ^ Edge Staff (2007-08-13). "The 30 Defining Moments in Gaming". Edge. Future plc. Retrieved 2008-09-18. 
  21. ^ a b Buchanan, Levi (2008-04-08). "Top 10 Classic Shoot 'Em Ups". IGN. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  22. ^ "Classic GI: King of the Hill". Game Informer (Cathy Preston) (178): 108. February 2008. 
  23. ^ a b c Geddes, Ryan; Hatfield, Daemon (2007-12-10). "IGN's Top 10 Most Influential Games". IGN. Retrieved 2008-07-11. 
  24. ^ Craig Glenday, ed (2008-03-11). "Record Breaking Games: Shooting Games". Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition 2008. Guinness World Records. Guinness. pp. 88. ISBN 978-1-904994-21-3. 
  25. ^ Osborne, Scott (2001-06-01). "Hall of Fame: Galaxian and Galaga". GameSpy. Retrieved 2008-04-30. 
  26. ^ "Space Raiders: Release Summary". GameSpot. Retrieved 2008-04-30. 
  27. ^ ed. Rico Komanoya, ed (2004). "Space Raiders". Japanese Game Graphics: Behind the Scenes of Your Favorite Games. New York, NY: Harper Design International. pp. 116–121. ISBN 0-06-056772-4. 
  28. ^ Hatfield, Daemon (2008-04-02). "Space Invaders Extreme Set for US". IGN. Retrieved 2008-06-07. 
  29. ^ "Space Invaders". Official Nintendo Magazine (29): 46. May 2008. 
  30. ^ IGN Staff (2008-06-17). "Space Invaders Set for WiiWare". IGN. Retrieved 2008-08-19. 
  31. ^ "A Whole Different Ball Game". Retro Gamer (Imagine Publishing) (45): 47. January 2008. 
  32. ^ Calvert, Justin (2004-01-22). "Empire signs Space Invaders titles". GameSpot. Retrieved 2008-05-10. 
  33. ^ Nix (2005-05-12). "Boot To The Head For Bootleggers". IGN. Retrieved 2008-06-07. 
  34. ^ "Sega and Empire Interactive Launch Taito Legends for PlayStation 2, Xbox, PC". Sega. 2005-10-25. Retrieved 2008-05-05. 
  35. ^ Surette, Tim (2005-08-13). "Sega goes old school with Taito". GameSpot. Retrieved 2008-05-10. 
  36. ^ Sinclair, Brendan (2007-04-10). "More Taito Legends headed to US". GameSpot. Retrieved 2008-05-10. 
  37. ^ "Custard". Danger Mouse. ITV. 1982-01-04. No. 12, season 2.
  38. ^ "Donna's Story". That '70s Show. Fox Broadcasting Company. 2001-11-20. No. 84.
  39. ^ "My Bad Too". Scrubs. NBC. 2008-04-10. No. 7, season 7.
  40. ^ "Suck It". Robot Chicken. Cartoon Network (US). 2006-04-02. No. 1, season 2.
  41. ^ "Anthology of Interest II". Futurama. Fox Broadcasting Company. 2002-01-06. No. 18, season 3.
  42. ^ Baker, Chris (2007-12-17). "Videogames & Futurama, Part 1: Raiders of the Lost Arcade". Wired News. Retrieved 2008-05-12. 
  43. ^ Microsoft (2007-08-28). "Microsoft Brings Video Games Live To London". GameSpot. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  44. ^ "30周年記念 スペシャルコンピレーションアルバム発売!" (in Japanese). Taito Corporation. 2008. Retrieved 2009-04-06. 
  45. ^ 弓削 (2008-10-21). "店舗限定で配信中のアニメーションPVを大公開しちゃいます!" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-04-06. 
  46. ^ Fairey, Shepard. "Space Invader". Swindle Magazine. Retrieved 2008-05-06. 
  47. ^ Wyman, Walt (2006-10-04). "Japan honors NES, PS2, Mario". GameSpot. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  48. ^ "日本のメディア芸術100選" (in Japanese). Japan Media Arts Plaza. Retrieved 2008-05-05. 
  49. ^ Boyes, Emma (2006-10-09). "London museum showcases games". GameSpot. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  50. ^ "Space Invaders — Guillaume Reymond — video performance". NOTsoNOISY. 2006. Retrieved 2008-05-22. 
  51. ^ Remo, Chris (2008-08-25). "Creator Of Space Invaders-Based 9/11 Art Piece Pulls Exhibit". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2008-08-25. 

External links

Strategy wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From StrategyWiki, the free strategy guide and walkthrough wiki

Space Invaders
Box artwork for Space Invaders.
Developer(s) Taito Corporation
Japanese title スペースインベーダー
Release date(s)
Genre(s) Shooter
System(s) Arcade, Atari 8-bit, Atari 2600, Atari 5200, Game Boy, MSX, NES, TurboGrafx-16, TurboGrafx-CD, Sega SG-1000, SNES, WonderSwan, Sega Saturn, PlayStation, GameTap, Mobile, Virtual Console
Players 1-2
Space Invaders marquee

The importance of Space Invaders to video game history cannot be overstated. While Pong introduced video games to the world, Space Invaders was the industry's first resounding worldwide success story. Space Invaders captured the imagination of thousands of players, as well as a ton of their quarters. At the same time, it captured the ire and negative attention of some concerned parents.

Space Invaders first appeared in Japan, as the creation of arcade manufacturer Taito. Video games prior to Space Invaders served as a distant second to Japan's most popular past-time, pachinko, and did not appear to make any dent in pachinko earnings. When Space Invaders arrived, that was all about to change. Popularity for the arcade game sky rocketed and Japan was soon faced with a shortage of the yen coin needed to play the game. Almost over night, pachinko parlors cleared large amounts of floor space for the game. Note that when written in Japanese Katakana, the title of the game is actually "Space Invader" - singular, not plural.

The reaction in the United States was not quite as drastic, but just as successful. Space Invader machines could be seen popping up in more locations than just the usual arcade halls. Hotels and grocery stores started setting them up to cash in on the phenomenon. Compared to other arcade games of skill that were also available, Space Invaders provided players with a sense of urgency that immersed players into the game. Due to the surprising reaction to the popularity of the game, Atari decided they needed to have this game on their home systems.

While Atari had brought many of their popular arcade games to the Atari 2600, they never considered another company's game. They made history by being the first company to ever license another company's game for home conversion. And it paid off. Making the official conversion Space Invaders available only on the Atari 2600 helped Atari sell more consoles than ever before.

Since then, Space Invaders has often been seen as the icon for the birth of the industry, the start of Japanese success at game design, and the symbol for retrogamers across the world. Taito continues to published the game on modern day consoles, with remarkable accuracy.


Title screen

The legion of space invaders are attempting to take over the earth, but first they must establish a staging ground on the surface of the moon. Your mission is to prevent the moon from being taken. You must single handedly destroy each faction of the space invader army, and you must not let a single alien touch down on the moon's surface, or the humanity's future will be over.

Table of Contents


Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Wikia Gaming, your source for walkthroughs, games, guides, and more!

Space Invaders
Developer(s) Taito
Publisher(s) Midway
Bally Astrocade
Sega Saturn
Atari 2600
Atari 5200
Game Boy
Nintendo 64
Game Boy Color
Game Boy Advance
Designer(s) Tomohiro Nishikado
Release date Arcade:
Atari 2600:
1979 (NA)
Bally Astrocade:
1981 (NA)
March 2, 1990 (JP)
Genre Fixed Shooter Shoot 'em up
Mode(s) Single player
Age rating(s) N/A
Atari 2600
Bally Astrocade
Atari 5200
Game Boy
Super Famicom
Super Nintendo
Nintendo 64
Game Boy Color
Game Boy Advance
CERO: Free
Sega Saturn
Platform(s) Arcade
Atari 2600
Bally Astrocade
Atari 5200
Game Boy
Super Famicom
Super Nintendo
Sega Saturn
Nintendo 64
Game Boy Color
Game Boy Advance
Media HuCard
Compact disc
Sega Saturn
Input Arcade:
2-Way Joystick, 1 Button
Atari 2600 Joystick
Atari 5200 Controller
Turbo Pad
Super Nintendo Controller
Sega Saturn Controller
Playstation Controller
Nintendo 64 Controller
Credits | Soundtrack | Codes | Walkthrough

Space Invaders is a classic arcade game that made a huge impact on the game industry.

The game also marked one of the earliest and biggest successes of Japanese developers in the industry.



Space Invaders pits your space ship, three lives, and four destroyable shields against an onslaught of aliens from above that only get faster. You maneuver from left to right, shooting enemies, while taking cover underneath your shields. The shields can be destroyed by the enemy shots, or by you yourself. While shooting through your own shields gives you more openings to hit the aliens, it also puts your ship at risk.

The enemies gradually come down until they reach the bottom. The more you kill, the faster they move. Eventually, when there is only one left, it will move at high speeds as it increases speed, drops down, and reverses direction.

Occasionally, a mothership crosses the top of the screen, awarding the player points for hitting it. Although the point values are thought to be random, players of the arcade game have found out how to make the mothership award the maximum amount of points (300 points).

The game is somewhat unique in that it is basically unbeatable.

Space Invaders Deluxe

A sequel game called Space Invaders Deluxe (also Space Invaders Part II) was released in the arcades by Taito and Midway in 1980. While similar in gameplay to the original, it deviates from it in some small ways. First of all, there is the addition of a flashing UFO that crosses the top of the screen that is worth 500 points if you hit it when it's visible. Secondly, from the second wave on, some of the middle-row invaders will split into two smaller invaders. And thirdly, the mothership will appear in later levels to drop reinforcments into the advancing formation. It also includes an intermission scene between waves where one of the invaders flees to the top of the screen, calling out SOS! SOS! SOS!


  • Alien in bottom two rows ("skull") -- 10 points
  • Alien in middle two rows ("toaster") -- 20 points
  • Alien in top row ("conehead") -- 30 points
  • Mystery ship -- 50 to 300 points, depending on how many shots have been fired between appearances
  • Flashing mystery ship in Space Invaders Deluxe -- 200 or 500 points, depending on the chip set being used (Midway or Taito)

Atari 2600 Version

The Atari 2600 version of Space Invaders is one of the most successful arcade-to-home ports ever made and released for the system. While simplified in some aspects (there are only 36 invaders to deal with, you have only 3 shields to hide behind, and the mother ship is always 200 points), it is made up for in the multitude of game player variations, such as:

  • Moving Shields: the player's shields move back and forth.
  • Zigzagging Bombs: the invaders' bombs drop in a zigzagging pattern.
  • Fast Bombs: the invaders' bombs drop faster.
  • Invisible Invaders: the invaders only show up briefly when you hit one of them.
  • One Player: your standard one-player game.
  • Two Players Alternating: your standard two-player game, when each player takes turns.
  • Two Players Competing: both players play at the same time, shooting at the same group of invaders. Here the game ends when either both players lose three laser bases among them or the invaders land.
  • Two Players Competing, Alternating Shots: same as Two Players Competing, except that each player takes turns firing. If a player takes too long to fire, his laser base automatically fires a shot.
  • One Player Moves Left, Other Player Moves Right: the left player can only move the laser base to the left, the right player can only move it to the right. Either player can fire.
  • Players Alternate Control: the left player moves the laser base until he fires a shot, then the right players has control until he fires a shot, and so on.
  • One Player Moves, Other Player Fires: the left player moves the cannon, the right player fires.

By using the difficulty switches, the player(s) can select to choose a small laser base (B setting) or a wide laser base (A setting).


An arcade-accurate homebrew port of both the original arcade game and its sequel Space Invaders Deluxe has been developed and released for the ColecoVision as Space Invaders Collection.

The Gameboy version which was released by Nintendo as a "Super Gameboy compatible" game has an unlockable Super NES version of the game that can be activated when it is played on a Super NES using the Super Gameboy.


This article uses material from the "Space Invaders" article on the Gaming wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

Simple English

Space Invaders is a video game made by the Taito Corporation. Space Invaders is one of the most famous early video games. The game is about protecting the Earth from the Space Invaders by controlling by shooting them all before they can land. There have been seven versions of Space Invaders made by the Taito Corporation. Space Invaders was designed by the Taito Corporations man in charge of the game making department, Mr Toshihiro Nishikado. Mr Nishikado was inspired to make the game after watching Star Wars and War of the Worlds. At first Space Invaders was a coin-operated machine but has been made available for almost every games console and home computer. Before making Space Invaders, Mr Nishikado worked on games called Soccer and Interceptor. He says the hardest part of making a video game is designing the computer inside it. Taito describes Space Invaders as "an international phenomenon".

Space Invaders versions

  • Space Invaders, 1978
  • Space Invaders part 2, 1979
  • The Return of the Space Invaders, 1985
  • Space Invaders '91, 1991
  • Space Invaders DX, 1995
  • Space Invaders '95, 1995
  • Space Invaders 3D,


  • Taito Legends, 2005
  • Taito Legends 2, 2006

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