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FAQ/Walkthrough by ZKeene / WYoshida

Version: 1.02 | Updated: 04/26/03


                   ZANAC X ZANAC FAQ V1.02 (04/26/03 current)

                 Wayne Yoshida, Ph.D. (wayne_yoshida@yahoo.com) and
                      Zach Keene (zjkeene@bellsouth.net)

Zanac X Zanac (SLPS03354)
Original Price:  4980Y
Developed and Published by:  Compile
System:  Japanese Playstation
# CD discs:  One
Released:  11/29/2001
# players:  One (Zanac Original), One or Two Simultaneous (Zanac Neo)
Supports Analog Controller:  Yes
Website:  www.zanacxzanac.com
Official Company Website:  www.compile.co.jp

Please see end of document for author information and legal notes.

             "In one technical and boring sense, of course,
             it's perfectly true that computers always follow
             their programs, since a program is nothing but a
             careful specification of all the relevant
             processes inside the machine.  That, however,
             doesn't prove anything because a similar point
             might be made about us."
                            ---"Artificial Intelligence:  The
                               Very Idea", by John Haugeland

             "Machines take me by surprise with great frequency."
                            ---Alan Turing

Game Description

Zanac X Zanac marks Compile's 15th anniversary of the release of its 
signature NES game, Zanac.  The single-CD Zanac X Zanac package contains 
three different versions of the original NES Zanac, and the new game Zanac 

Zanac was an incredible advancement in vertical shooters.  The graphics and 
sound were decidedly average, even for the time, but the game mechanics were 
brilliantly designed and of a level yet unmatched by many modern shooters.  
In particular, Zanac's auto-adjusting difficulty level and extremely deep 
powerup system won many fans, leading to a legacy of Compile shooting games, 
some of which reached America as The Guardian Legend (NES), MUSHA (Genesis), 
and Space Megaforce (SNES).  However, none of these games were designed to be 
an update of the original Zanac.

Zanac Neo was intended to be the official sequel of Zanac, and it has 
fulfilled its 15-year-long expectation for many fans.  Zanac Neo is an update 
which remains very faithful to the original Zanac.  This might be seen as a 
weakness, as the level designs are much more traditional than even Space 
Megaforce, and might seem positively outdated compared to Treasure's Radiant 
Silvergun.  Graphics are likewise updated to about the SNES level.  However, 
for those shooter fans who understand its unique gameplay, Zanac will remain 
enjoyable for months and years to come.

Zanac differs from other vertical shooters in its ability to adapt to your 
strengths and to adjust the game to attack your weaknesses.  Your performance 
during the game and your choice of subweapon will partially determine what and 
how much Zanac will send at you.  For this reason, no two games are exactly 
alike.  Unlike many other shooters which teach you pattern memorization, the 
game concentrates on quick adaptation and reaction.

Because each game is different, and use of each weapon depends on its 
compatibility with the player's ideas, there is no such thing as a 
"walkthrough" for a game like Zanac Neo.  This FAQ attempts to describe the 
rules of Zanac Neo and hints for gameplay, without implying that there is a 
best strategy or a best weapon for all players.  The FAQ will also describe 
as many of Zanac Neo's hidden tricks as possible so that players can exploit 
these to help finish the game on its higher difficulty levels.

What's New?
Version 1.02 - 26 April 2003
  - No Item Clear tips added (Section [II.5]).
  - Notes on enemy appearence due to subweapon collection in Neo added
    (Section [III])
  - Shot width and speed tables for Original Zanac added (Section [XV.5]) 
  - Some more Original Zanac enemy point values were added and some
    descriptions were clarified. (Section [XV.8])
  - Note about the 2-percent CP rule added to Section [V.4]
  - More minor typo and grammar corrections throughout.
  - Added a section of Original Zanac Score Trial strategies [XV.13]

Version 1.01 - 20 February 2003
  - Original Zanac enemy descriptions added (Section [XV.8])
  - Notes on the appearance of boxes added (Sections [II.11] and [XV.5])
  - Minor typo and grammar corrections throughout.

Version 1.0 - 14 February 2003
  - Everything, obviously, since this is the first version. :)



[I]      Zanac Background
         [I.1]  Zanac Back Story (original)
         [I.2]  Zanac Neo Back Story
         [I.3]  Zanac Neo Characters
         [I.4]  Zanac Neo Music List
[II]     Zanac Neo Basics
         [II.1] Default Basic Controls
         [II.2] Game Screen
         [II.3] Title Screen Selection Menu
         [II.4] Option Screen
         [II.5] Profile Screen/Player's Note
         [II.6] Important Items
         [II.7] List of Faerie Locations
         [II.8] List of Eye-eye Locations
         [II.9] Destructible/Indestructible Bullets
         [II.10] Zanac Neo Area Descriptions
         [II.11] Power Chip Boxes
[III]    Zanac AI
[IV]     Difficulty Levels
         [IV.1] Personal Assessment of Difficulty Levels
[V]      Scoring
         [V.1] Free Ships
         [V.2] Boss Battles
         [V.3] Combo System (simplified)
         [V.4] Combo System In Depth
[VI]     Two Player Mode
[VII]    The Main Gun
         [VII.1] Five Chip Bonus
         [VII.2] The Three Shell Game
[VIII]   Landers
         [VIII.1] Score Counting
[IX]     Zanac Invulnerability
         [IX.1] Rushing
         [IX.2] Invulnerability Jumping
         [IX.3] Caching Invulnerability
[X]      Charge Shot and Blast Mode
         [X.1] Charge Gauge
         [X.2] Charge Shot
         [X.3] Blast Mode
[XI]     Zanac Neo Subweapons
         [XI.1] Subweapon Powerup
[XII]    Zanac Neo Ship Analysis
         [XII.1] Knife-Edge (R)
         [XII.2] Scar-Face (B)
         [XII.3] Hammer-Duke (G)
[XIII]   Subweapon Description By Category
         [XIII.1] Weapon 0
         [XIII.2] Weapon 1
         [XIII.3] Weapon 2
         [XIII.4] Weapon 3
         [XIII.5] Weapon 4
         [XIII.6] Weapon 5
         [XIII.7] Weapon 6
         [XIII.8] Weapon 7
[XIV]    FC Custom
         [XIV.1] Obtaining the FC Custom
         [XIV.2] FC Custom Main Gun
         [XIV.3] Lander Progression for FC Custom
         [XIV.4] FC Custom Subweapon Descriptions
[XV]     Original Zanac
         [XV.1] Original Zanac Modes
         [XV.2] Zanac Menu Translations
         [XV.3] Comparison of Parameters by Game Type
         [XV.4] Score Trial Course Descriptions
         [XV.5] Zanac Basics
         [XV.6] Subweapons
         [XV.7] Scoring
         [XV.8] Objects in Space
         [XV.9] Fortresses
         [XV.10] Current List of Faerie Locations
         [XV.11] Current List of Eye-Eye Locations
         [XV.12] Current List of Warp Hole Locations
         [XV.13] Score Trial Strategies
[XVI]    Acknowledgments
[XVII]   Legal Notes
[XVIII]  About the Authors



[I.1] Zanac Back Story (translated from the manual, pg 5)

The technology for faster-than-light travel was developed by humankind 
in only a short time.  One of the expeditionary forces sent to 
investigate the stars near our galaxy believed they had found a relic 
of an intelligent extraterrestrial culture, and with this, the "Icon" 
(Holy Statue) was discovered.

The Icon appeared to be intended to test the people who contacted it.  
If those people looked for the proper procedure, they would be able to 
open it in a nondestructive way and would receive beneficial knowledge 
in return.  However, if they instead were impatient and used force to 
open it, it would reward them with destruction.  The expeditionary 
force, each one of them suspecting that something was hidden inside, 
were impatient to make the discovery and turned their spacecraft's 
on-board weapons on the Icon.  From the ruins of the destroyed Icon 
emerged a message which triggered the awakening of a huge battle 
"System," lying in wait in space.

However, it seemed as if there existed another chance to make up for 
humankind's failed test by the Icon.  Another expeditionary team, 
unaware of the danger to Earth, encountered another Icon separate from 
the one that was destroyed, and were able to open it correctly.  The 
Icon transmitted this success to System, requesting it to halt its 
attack.  But System, having remained waiting an extreme length of time 
that its designers could not have predicted, had degraded to the point 
where it would no longer stop until its target was annihilated and thus 
had become a simple instrument of mass destruction.  Because of this, 
the order to stop was disregarded and the attack on Earth was begun.

In spite of the overwhelming difference in attack power, humanity went 
out to meet the approaching machines.  Fortunately, one of the Icons 
was still operating normally, and from information obtained from it, a 
proposal was made to save Earth.

System was a tactical machine, designed to battle against countless 
enemies.  There was little hope of an all-out attack succeeding, but if 
a very small-scale attack with very strong attack power was used, a 
hidden thrust with a needle, so to speak, System would not be able to 
cope with it successfully.  Then, by striking at the core, System would 
be defeated.

Thus, the AFX battle machine (commonly known as ZANAC), the hidden 
trump card against System, was constructed and departed for the battle 
to save humanity.

[I.2] Zanac Neo Back Story (translated from the manual, pg 15)

Humanity was just barely able to repulse the attack by the System bent 
on destroying the earth.  However, the battle was not over just yet.

System had used its long existence to multiply, and even though one 
System was destroyed, it was not long before another System took up the 
attack.  That repeat battle has already been going on for 30 years.

Even though humanity has been holding off System's attack, people are 
tired and exhausted.  However, during the destruction of System's core, 
a pilot discovered the escape of a unit with the ability to transmit 
data.  The unit escaped successfully, but as a result of analyzing who 
the signals were transmitted to, it was discovered that a host computer 
higher than the System existed.  The investigation, along with 
discovering the location of this higher System, was able to establish 
its true nature.  As the System was originally made as one part, this 
could be called its parent.   If this "original System" could be 
destroyed, if it could be silenced, then the command hierarchy could be 
used to stop all other Systems, and finally the unending attack on the 
citizens of Earth could be ended.  

There was a big problem.  The specs of the original System far exceeded 
that of the other Systems.  If they raised a hand against it, humanity 
would certainly become a target for this original System.  If they did 
not succeed on the first try, then it need not be said what the final 
outcome would be.  Should they challenge it, or should they continue to 
endure?  Faced with the slow decline of humankind, they decided to 

And now, the Zanac unit heads out to begin the final battle.

[I.3] Zanac Neo Characters (translated from manual Pages 16-19)

-----Hokuto Yuki (page 16, left)
Age 21
Pilot of Machine #1, Knife Edge

Piloting the red machine #1, he is a young man filled with a sense of 
justice.  In admiration of his commanding officer, his soul burns for the 
accomplishments of war.

-----Noa Clonebit (page 16, right)
Age 13
Pilot of Machine #2, Scar Face

Due to her genius-level sense of aircraft control, a special exception was 
made to select this young girl as a civilian in military employ.

-----Myctness Ikstess (page 17, left)
Age Unknown
Pilot of Machine #3, Hammer Duke

A member of the Icon investigation team, he specializes in knowledge about 
the System.  With his calm composure, he has overall the appearance of a 

-----Maxis J. Vanguard (page 17, right)
Age 45
Commanding Officer

20 years of defending against system's attacks has brought him to the point 
where he is a soldier of soldiers.  In battle he exhibits the highest level 
of responsibility and duty.

-----Gwen B. Hoban (page 18, left)
Age 29

A mechanic who is a genius in all matters related to machines.

-----Sara Northland (page 18, right picture tall blond)
Age 22
Operator (i.e. bridge babe #1)

Skilled in many languages, she is a capable operator trusted relied upon for 
her excellent situational analyses.

-----Suzuka Shinonome (page 18, right picture shorter Asian)
Age 19
Operator (bridge babe #2)

A recent graduate just out of the academy.  She has a beautiful voice.

[Note]  You really don't see anything of the characters.  It's not like 
Radiant Silvergun where you're constantly reminded they're there.  Nobody 
talks, not even a popup text window.  You don't even see the pilots in the 
ship selection screen!  They're all in the manual, but you won't see anybody 
except in a loading screen or at the end of the game.

[Note]  Unless I translate this wrong, it really appears as if Suzuka really 
IS there as window dressing...at least Sara has some useful skills. 
[Note]  Not to complain, but try playing two player and have the second 
person pick Hokuto (Knife Edge).  Can you imagine the man of burning justice 
flying the pink plane?  Not I.

[Note]  Who flies the FC Custom?  Maybe Suzuka?  :)

[I.4] Zanac Neo Music List (adapted; see credits) 

Title                                Artist              Area
-----                                ------              ----
00: Title (Virus Science Remix)      Kou.Hayashi         ZXZ Opening Screen
01: Title (Breaks Lose a Past Mix)   Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Opening Screen
02: Option                           Kou.Hayashi         Neo Option Screen
03: Chosen Quietly                   Kou.Hayashi         Neo Ship Select
04: Instant Replicant                Katsumi.Tanaka      Neo Area 0
05: Main Theme (Sawtooth Remix)      Kou.Hayashi         Neo Area 1
06: Blind Spot                       Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Area 2
07: Green                            Kou.Hayashi         Neo Area 3
08: The Air Current                  Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Area 4
09: Filtering Sky                    Katsumi.Tanaka      Neo Area 5
10: Snowfield Story                  Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Area 6
11: Invasion                         Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Area 7
12: Intruder                         Kou.Hayashi         Neo Area 8
13: Some Bizarre                     Katsumi.Tanaka      Neo Area 9
14: No Feel -Reply-                  Kou.Hayashi         Neo Boss Theme 1
15: No Feel                          Kou.Hayashi         Neo Boss Theme 2
16: Bottom of the Wheel              Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Last Boss
17: Driving Away                     Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Boss Defeated
18: Stage Clear                      Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Stage Clear
19: Spider to Sleep                  Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Ending Screen
20: Score Ranking                    Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Ranking Screen
21: Gameover                         Daisuke.Nagata      Neo Game Over Screen
22: Zanac 01 -The Decade-            Katsumi.Tanaka      Not used in Neo



Zanac Neo operates in a manner similar to modern shooters, but has extremely 
deep game mechanics.  This section describes the nuts-and-bolts basics of 
playing, while the following sections describe the game in more detail.

[II.1] Default Basic Controls
Directional Pad:            Control Ship
Left Analog Stick:          Control Ship
Square:                     Fire Main Gun
Triangle:                   Fire Charge Shot/Blast Mode
X:                          Fire Subweapon
Circle:                     Fire Sub/Main Simultaneously
R1:                         Fire Charge Shot/Blast Mode
Start:                      Pause; Also Gives an Options Menu
Start+Select+L1+L2+R1+R2    Abort Game

[II.2] Game Screen
Meter in Lower Right:       Charge Gauge
Far Upper Left:             # Ships Remaining
Below # Ships:              Combo # Hits
Below Combo Hits:           Jackpot Bonus
Right of # Ships:           Score
Right of Score:             Current Subweapon/SW Level

[II.3] Title Screen Selection Menu
Game Start                  Choose profile and start game
Continue                    Continue at last level reached
Score Trial                 Play through one level only for score. Only areas
                            you have reached during the regular game will be
			    available to select. 
Option                      Go to Option Screen (see below)
Ranking                     8-person high score list
Return Title                Return to Zanac/Neo game select

[II.4] Option Screen
Game Level                  Select difficulty:  Easy, Normal, Hard, or
                            Very Hard
Key Config                  Set in-game controls
Player Data                 Create a player profile to save game stats,
                            or view or delete current profiles
Data Save                   Save options to memory card
Data Load                   Load options from memory card
Auto Save                   Allow Zanac Neo to save options automatically
Vibration                   Turn controller vibration on/off
Sound                       Stereo or Mono
BGM Test                    Music play test

[II.5] Profile Screen/Player's Note
The profile screen shows your profile data including total time played, ships 
destroyed, etc.  If you press the "O" button, the Player's Note will be 
displayed.  The Player's Note is a set of four screens which list specific 
accomplishments that you have completed, much like R-Type Delta.  At the 
beginning all accomplishments are marked with "????" but they will fill in as 
you play more of the game.  Strange that they don't tell you what they are so 
you can do them?  Unfortunately, nothing happens if you fill in the whole
Player's Note except bragging rights at the local vertical shooters bar.

Entries in the Player's Note are listed below in order:

Page 1
Easy Mode Beaten              - Pretty self-explanatory
Normal Mode Beaten            - Ditto.
Hard Mode Beaten              - Ditto.
Very Hard Mode Beaten         - And again...
Beat Game with Machine 0      - That'd be the FC-Custom, and you can do
                                this on any difficulty.
All Bosses Destroyed          - Don't let the time run out on you.
Beat Game with No Mistakes    - i.e., don't die. Ever. Difficulty doesn't
                                matter, fortunately.
Beat 1 Area With No Mistakes  - That can be Area 0 on Easy with the FC-
                                Custom, for all the game cares. :)

Page 2
No Item Clearing              - Ouch. No chips, no subweapons, no
                                Lander. Difficulty doesn't matter.
All Faeries Collected         - See section [II.7]
All Eye Eye Collected         - See section [II.8]
All Items Collected           - If it appears, you must grab it.
10000000 Points Achieved      - Easier done than said...
15000000 Points Achieved      - Self-explanatory.
20000000 Points Achieved      - Ditto.
All Subweapons Fully Powered  - Yes, in one game.

Page 3
Get 100 Chips With No Mistakes- Not terribly difficult...
Have 50 Ships Remaining       - I think you have to beat the game, but
                                you don't still have to have 50 ships at
                                the end.
Hit counter reaches 500       - Straightforward enough.
Hit bonus reaches 5000        - Ditto.
No Shot Play                  - Clear an area without firing a single
Use Charge Shot 100 Times     - In one game, that is.
No Charge Shot Play           - Hello, FC-Custom! :)
Chain Combo reaches 30        - Those box swarms in the last area are
                                good for this.

Page 4
Wide Shot Acquired            - Yes, all you have to do is hit an Eye-Eye. :)
3 Landers Acquired            - See "point counting", above.
20 Landers Acquired           - Ditto.  Or use FC Custom's W6 trick.
500 Boxes Destroyed           - Yawn...
Item Received From Faerie     - Keep a faerie is still alive until a
                                boss battle is over (see "Rio/Faerie",
Play Time Reaches 10 Hours    - Everyone has this by now, right? :)
Play Count Reaches 100        - If you really want this, you can just
                                start a game, immediately pause and
                                choose quit, repeat ad nauseum...
Finish Count Reaches 20       - Not too hard, but it'll take you about
                                20 hours.

[Note]  For those of you who like a challenge, the hardest Player's 
Note appears to be No Item, which requires you both to dodge lots of 
unwanted items and to fight with very low levels of power. If you are up to
the challenge, here are some tips:

1) The Eye-Eye is not considered an item. The first available one is at the
   beginning of Area 2, so you'll still have to fly through two levels at
   minimum power. (It's my understanding you can still pick up Rio as well,
   but I have not confirmed that.)

2) Don't die. That is not only obvious but also easier said than done, but
   let's examine the consequences of death in the No Item game:

   Loss of Life - Obvious, but since keeping combos can be difficult in the No
   Item game, you probably won't have many lives to lose.

   Loss of Power - Not a problem in the first two areas since you can't power
   up anyway. But since your only source of power is the Eye-Eye, you may find
   yourself a long way from the next one. (Especially if you die right after
   the Eye-Eyes in Area 4 and Area 7.)

   Box Creation - Zanac Neo always produces six Boxes after you die. In a
   normal game this is quite helpful, allowing you to quickly regain some
   power. However, in the No Item game, it just creates more targets that
   you'll have to shoot through in order to hit something more threatening,
   and possibly creating more Power Chips that you'll have to avoid.

   Regeneration - In what has to be the most frustrating aspect of the No Item
   challenge, it is possible for your ship to regenerate on top of an item
   after you die and before you regain control of your ship. If this happens,
   you _are_ disqualified from getting the No Item Clear on your Player's
   Note. Be extremely careful during Area 8 and the beginning of Area 9, as
   these areas are swarming with Boxes.

3) Choose your ship wisely. I had (relatively) little problem with the
   FC-Custom, but note that it has no offense* against the blue Carlas at the
   end of Area 8. Normally you could pick up an item and ram them while you
   were invincible, but obviously that's not an option here. (The three normal
   ships can Charge Shot them, but use them wisely... it can be a long wait
   for a recharge.)

   * - Except dying and ramming them, but see point number 2 above. When (not
       if) you do die, and are lucky enough not to regenerate on an item, you
       may as well clear a few of them out though.

4) Combos. They will be extremly difficult to maintain, for different reasons
   in different levels. Early on, your lack of firepower will make it
   extremely difficult to destroy everything (especially trying to deal with
   the splitting Amoebas in Area 0.) Later on, even after you've hit an
   Eye-Eye, the inability to speed up your firing rate will cause problems as
   large, multi-hit enemies will block your attempts to hit fleeing Carriers
   and various other enemies. And in any stage, sometimes the arrangement of
   onscreen powerups will conspire against you. (Especially in Area 4, where
   Carriers tend to clog the center of the screen... right where the ground
   turrets are.) 

   IMO, the only Area worth attempting to combo in is Area 2 after you get the
   Eye-Eye (but if you can keep a combo before that, all the better.) It's
   relatively easy to keep a combo here with Eye-Eye support, and you can
   stall the battle at the end after destroying everything but the two Round
   Eyes to gain some more points and build up a fleet of extra ships. You're
   probably going to need them.

5) Enemy Erasers. Make every effort to _not_ hit Icons. Enemy Erasers creep
   extremely slowly, meaning you'll be dodging it for a long time. Ground
   based Icons that accompany some fortress will be set off once you defeat
   the fortress, so the best thing to do is set them off as you approach them
   before the screen stops scrolling. Hopefully you'll unleash the EE at the
   very top of the screen, where they will quickly disappear (and be out of
   the way in the meantime.)

[Note] Slightly easier is All Items Collected.  If you get everything,
consider yourself an excellent player!

[II.6] Important Items

-----Power Chip Box (pg 31, upper left picture)
A small blue box, appearing in sets of three.  Destroy to reveal power chips.
(more notes in section VII.2)

-----Power Chip (pg 31, upper right picture)
Small yellow sphere, appears after destroying boxes.  Take power chip to 
upgrade main gun. (more notes in section VII.1)

-----Subweapon Powerup Carrier (pg 31, second from top, left side picture)
Small ship with arms holding a red or green number.  Destroy to reveal 
subweapon powerup item. (more notes in section VIII.1) 

-----Subweapon Powerup (pg 31, second from top, right side picture)
Small red or green box with a weapon number 0-7.  Take to increase subweapon 
power level (if same as current weapon) or to change subweapons. (more notes
in section XI.1)

-----Icon (pg 31, third from top, left side picture)
Small brown building located on ground.  Shoot Icon multiple times to release 
Enemy Eraser.  (In Zanac NES, continuing to shoot Icon would eventually 
destroy it, giving player a free ship.  This does not occur in Zanac Neo)

-----Enemy Eraser (pg 31, third from top, right side picture)
White and pink flashing sphere, fairly large.  Take Enemy Eraser to destroy 
all shots and small flying enemies on the screen.  Does not affect ground 
targets or large flying enemies.  Enemy Eraser can be "kept" on the screen 
but slowly travels up the screen as time proceeds, eventually leaving.

-----Lander/Randar (pg 31, bottom picture)
Blue or red face, sometimes appears when destroying Carrier.  Take Lander to 
receive a free man (more notes in section VIII).

-----Faerie/Rio (not shown)
Hidden faerie that appears when you fire at specific points on the ground.  
You can keep Rio on screen but it slowly moves off the screen like Enemy 
Eraser.  In Zanac Neo, touching Rio destroys everything on the screen, 
exactly like an Enemy Eraser.  After that, Rio follows the player and guards 
the player from a single bullet which would destroy it (Rio disappears when 
this point of armor is used).  If Rio is still following player when the next 
sub-boss or boss is destroyed, then Rio departs, leaving behind a bonus green 
subweapon powerup.  The current list of faerie locations is below.

-----Eye-eye/Ai-Ai (not shown)
An Eye-eye is a small face on the ground which appears in fixed locations in 
various stages.  Shooting the eye-eye until it triggers will give you the 
wide shot powerup and maximum level in your current subweapon.

[II.7] List of Faerie Locations

Area 1      - When the stage starts, immediately head to the far right
              side of the screen.
Area 2      - Shoot the second green dome you find on the left side of
              the screen (the first green dome on the left will be
              halfway off the screen; you want to hit the next one.)
Area 3      - Shoot the last floating platform that appears before the
              first fortress. Aim for roughly the center of the screen.
Area 4      - Shoot the single tree on the far left screen right before
              you enter the forest portion of the stage. (There'll be
              another single tree just left of the center of the screen;
              this isn't the one you want.)
Area 6      - Shoot the small platform on the far left of the screen
              opposite the Eye-Eye right before the final fortress.
Area 7      - Shoot the far left side of the screen after passing
              through the area with a series of small destroyable blue
              domes on either side of the screen.
Area 7(2)   - Shoot the large red zone in the middle of the screen
              shortly after the second boss.
Area 8      - Shoot the last floating island that appears slightly right of
              center just before the claw boss. 
Area 9      - Hmm... there is no really good way to describe this one...
              It's at the beginning of the stage, on the right side of
              the screen, right at the purple line where the "buildings"
              on the edge of the screen end. It's not terribly far into
              the level, appearing a little bit after the box swarms
              start appearing.
Area 9(2)   - After the long vertical drop after the second fortress,
              head to the far left of the screen. The faerie can be
              found at the first girder that appears.

[II.8] List of Eye-Eye Locations 

Like in Zanac, hitting an Eye Eye will instantly give you the Wide Shot and 
boost your current subweapon to max power. Unlike Zanac, you can't keep 
shooting the Eye Eye for extra points. Also unlike Zanac, the Wide Shot 
granted to you by the Eye Eye is permanent (until you die), regardless of the 
state of your normal shot before hitting the Eye Eye. Again, hitting them all 
in one game is worth a mention in the Players Note. 

Area 2      - The first Eye Eye appears slightly right of center, not too
              long after the green dome that contains a faerie.

Area 3      - The Eye Eye here appears on the right side of the screen at the
              beginning of the flying platform area, just after the Cube

Area 4      - An Eye Eye is partially obscured by the forest just after the
              first fortress. 

Area 6      - An Eye Eye appears at the far right of the screen just before
              the final fortress. (A faerie is hidden on the opposite side of
              the screen from the Eye Eye.)

Area 7      - Two Eye Eyes appear at opposite edges of the screen after the
              first fortress. 

Area 9      - There's an Eye Eye at the right of the screen just as you
              approach the first fortress. - A second Eye Eye appears with
              the second fortress. 

[II.9]  Destructible/Indestructible Bullets
The following text will reference "destructible" and "indestructible" 
bullets.  In Zanac there are two main types of bullets.  "Destructible" 
bullets are those that can be destroyed by normal subweapons or shots fired 
from the main gun.  These bullets are normally shaped somewhat like white and 
blue elongated diamonds which spin as they fly, although there are 
exceptions, such as the large round blue bullets fired when going down the 
steel corridor in the last level.  "Indestructible" bullets are those which 
cannot be destroyed by normal fire; the subweapons and main gun pass through 
them.  Indestructible bullets are usually round dots, either glowing 
orange/red or purple/white.  Indestructible bullets can be destroyed with
"shielding" type weapons (see below).

[II.10]  Zanac Neo Area Descriptions

There are 10 separate levels of play in Zanac Neo, each called an "Area" and
numbered 0 through Final (9th).  The levels of play are each fairly long and
the environments are pleasantly varied.  Zanac is a traditional vertical
shooter and there is generally no "terrain" that you can ram your ship into
and be destroyed (unlike Space Megaforce, Radiant Silvergun, Ikaruga, and
horizontal shooters in the vein of Gradius, R-type, and Darius).  Most of the
levels have one or two mid-bosses and a end-of-level boss, the corresponding
timers and boss point values are listed below (values based off of Normal
difficulty level).

Area 0 - Flash Back -
Mid Bosses:  None
End of Level Boss:  System Core (i.e. the "Brain Trio") (90 sec/100K)

    The zeroth area of Zanac is intended to be a flashback of the destruction
of the first System by the Zanac unit 30 years prior to the events of Neo,
occurring on the last portion of the 12th level of the original Zanac. The
level opens with a race down a corridor over an abyss filled with an evil
red mist.  Zanac makes its way past docked frigates in service to System, and
fights its way to the center to once again destroy System's Core. The Core
incongruously attacks with cute 'lil pink saucers until the brains are blasted
to a certain level, then it begins to hurl out small swarms of indestructible
bullets which are fairly easy to avoid.

[Note] Strangely, if you are equipped to destroy the indestructible bullets
during this battle, doing so will add to your Hit counter but you do not get a
jackpot bonus for them. This is almost certainly a bug.

Area 1 - Star Fleet -
Mid Bosses:  Asteroid Base (45 sec/50K)
             Battleship Turrets (60 sec/50K)
End Boss:    Hexapus, a roundish battleship with six independent
             turrets (90 sec/100K)

     Area 1 takes place among the litter of an asteroid field in which Zanac
has to fend off flying asteroids along with a slew of enemy machines.
After several seconds, the ship hits warp speed and hurtles through space,
ending up near a planetoid where a rocky satellite midboss awaits.  Following
the destruction of the rock, Zanac finds itself in the midst of a gigantic
fleet of enemy battleships.  After taking out several large battleships, the
end boss appears.

Area 2 - Satellite Base -
Mid Bosses:  Black Manta Flying Wing (45 sec/50K)
             Small Fortress (60 sec/50K)
End Boss:    Mobile Ground Turrets (90 sec/100K)

     Area 2 opens with the Zanac ship flying low over a rocky satellite which
has been mechanized by the System.  Machinery shows through various rents in
the earth, and later both the rocks and machinery give way to occasional
patches of forest which mysteriously grows here.  In the vacuum. The first
mid-boss is a large flying wing known as the "Black Manta", the second
mid-boss is a fortress of three ground turrets, and the boss appears to be a
set of mobile ground turrets.

Area 3 - Cloud Kingdom -
Mid Bosses:  Small Flying Fortress (45 sec/50K)
             Cube (60 sec/50K)
End Boss:    Flying Battle Tank (90 sec/100K)

     Area 3 is a battle in the clouds above a aquatic world.  Several
floating islands full of System's lackeys ensure that the battle will not go
easy for the Zanac ship.  The puffy white clouds give way to dark storm clouds
and lightning strikes halfway through the level, but the sky clears just in
time to bring out the Treasure-inspired Cube boss.  Nearing the end of the
level, the clouds begin to turn gold with the evening light, as the end boss

Area 4 - Remains of an Ancient -
Mid Bosses:  Medium Fortress (60 sec/50K)
             "Sand Rats" Twin Hovertanks (60 sec/50K)
End Boss:    "Killer Eye" Battleship (90 sec/100K)

     Area 4 takes place above the dense forests of a distant planetoid.
Nestled between trees are bullet-firing turrets that try to take out the ship.
After the first mid-boss and a onslaught of Degid attacks, the forest gives
way to a rocky blasted plain filled with roving tanks.  Past this plain are
what appear to be the titular remains of an ancient civilization, complete
with rocky buildings and roads.  Soon enough, the land becomes a rocky
cliff and a giant lake appears.  Here, a battle with a mechanized
eyeball-equipped battleship (once again, shades of Space Megaforce) awaits.

Area 5 - Storming Party -
Mid Bosses  :  None
End Boss    :  None
     Area 5, as the halfway point, is really a bonus level.  Compile also
used short levels as breathing room in Space Megaforce, and this is much the
same idea.  The entire level takes place over a frozen lake with huge icebergs
floating in it.  Here, powerups flow as freely as water...uh...well, like
ice...or put another way, like water WOULD flow in this level if it weren't
already frozen, but it is, so it can't, so it won't, but the powerups will.
Yes.  Anyways, the stage ends with a horde of frigates flying through the
screen, so make sure not to get killed just after having taken the time to
collect all of those powerups.  There are no bosses or mid-bosses here.

Area 6 - Blizzard -
Mid Bosses  :  Lava Lake Medium Fortress (60 sec/100K)
               One-armed Battlecruiser (60 sec/100K)
End Boss    :  Large Fortress (90 sec/200K)

     Area 6 takes place over the frozen tundra of a world which holds the
Original System computer.  After a short jaunt over System's
refrigerator/freezer, the action pauses over a lake of lava where a fortress
sits taking advantage of free geothermal energy.  Sinking the fortress into
the lava, the Zanac ship encounters a short while later a battle cruiser
which appears to be protecting a series of ground installations.  The level
ends as the planet reveals its metal core and a large fortress attacks the

Area 7 - Hell's Gate -
Mid Bosses  :  Medium Fortress (60 sec/100K)
               Twin Missile Crab (75 sec/100K)
End Boss    :  Large Fortress (90 sec/100K)

     Armed to the teeth, the Zanac ship descends into the planet holding the
the Original System.  Area 7 contains a mass of weaponry installed in an
attempt to thwart just such an attack.  Through the layers of metal, the
player will be able to spot the glowing green laser communication lines of
the System far below.  After a short dash of incredible speed, the ship is
forced to stop to confront a crab-like boss sporting twin missile platforms.
After this mid boss and several plateaus full of tanks the ship arrives at a
entrance gate.

Area 8 - Mystic Space -
Mid Bosses  :  Hexapus (Area 1 boss) (45 sec/100K)
               Cube (Area 3 mid boss) (45 sec/100K)
               Killer Eye (Area 4 boss) (60 sec/100K)
               Twin Claw Boss (75 sec/100K)
End Boss    :  Squid Generator (90 sec/200K)

     Not too clear on this one, but my best guess is that level is a gigantic
area inside of Original System, which would explain the litter of space
debris and the "fight the bosses again" motif.  Perhaps this place is the
factory where all of the earlier bosses were put together.  If this is true,
then the distant blue planetoid in the background is probably the floating
Core, the final area of the game.  This area also marks the return of the
jellyfish, aka "the subweapon soaking squid, help!" The final boss is a
literal squid generator.

Final Area - Core of System -
Mid Bosses  :  Mobile Ground Turrets 2 (90 sec/100K)
               Large Fortress (90 sec/125K) 
End Boss    :  Original System Core (infinite/0)

     The final battle consists of Zanac's rush down the corridor to the
Original Core, much like the attack on System in Area 0.  However, Original
System isn't going down quite as easy.  The journey takes Zanac down through
layers of defenses which end in a steel corridor dropping straight down to the
silent heart of the planet.  The final defenses include an attack by Zanac
clones which the Original System presumably adapted from data on Zanac's
attack on the first System, 30 years prior.

[Note] For the first incarnation of the Original Core, you must open the
central shield to shoot the core by destroying the four "brains" on either
side of the core.  The brains regenerate, so you may have to retrace your
steps if the shield closes before you destroy the core.

[Note] For the second incarnation of the Core, you have the shoot the "tiara"
of the giant head.  The gem appears once every time you destroy a satellite,
so remember you have to shoot both the satellites and the gem.

[Note] Final incarnation of the Core:  relax, this isn't Radiant Silvergun.
though it may certainly look like it.

[II.11]  Power Chip Boxes

In Zanac Neo, power chip boxes appear at regular frequencies, tied closely to
the number of enemies destroyed.  At the start of the game, an internal
counter is set to 11 and counts up one with every enemy destroyed (producing
the first set of boxes when 7 enemies are destroyed).  When the counter
reaches 18, then it resets to 0 and a set of 3 boxes is produced.  As far as
I can tell, each time 18 enemies are destroyed, Zanac Neo produces another
set of boxes.

SIGs, Broms, and other enemy destructible bullets ARE treated as enemies for
the purposes of this counter.  It appears that boxes and subweapon carriers
are NOT treated as enemies by this counter.  I suspect (but cannot yet
confirm) that multishot enemies are also "one" enemy, but multipart enemies
count as multiple enemies.

[Note]  Boxes also appear as "set" enemies in certain sections of the level.
These "set" boxes do not change the timing of the counter, and indeed it is
possible for the box sets to overlap.

[Note]  When your lose a ship, Zanac Neo conveniently produces two sets of
boxes (6 boxes total) for you to regain your power.  If at all possible, you
should gamble on them for the 5-chip bonus (see below).



Perhaps the most unique feature in the Zanac series is the ALC, or Auto Level 
Control (Japanese:  Jidounanidochouseikinou).  In both Zanac NES and Zanac 
Neo, ALC adjusts the game difficulty on-the-fly in order to compensate for 
player skill.  The ALC works together with the difficulty level adjustment in 
the options screen.  In general, if you perform well during a game then the 
difficulty automatically increases; if you perform poorly then it decreases.

Not all the parameters of the Zanac ALC are given, but the following are 
confirmed in the manual:

-  As the number of shots you fire increases, the difficulty increases
-  Powering up your ship increases the difficulty level
-  When your ship is destroyed the difficulty level decreases a lot

Here are other things which may influence the difficulty level, but are not 

-  Increasing score may increase the difficulty level
-  Difficulty level may increase the longer your ship (each ship?) survives
-  Destroying enemy ships/increasing combo counter may increase the
   difficulty level
-  Increasing ships in reserve may increase difficulty level
-  Finishing a level may reduce or reset the ALC counter
AI advancement speed is much faster at harder difficulty levels such as Hard 
and Very Hard.  At these levels you get a short break when your ship is 
destroyed but things quickly heat up to maximum levels.

In addition to ALC, the AI also compensates for current subweapon type.  
Wielding certain weapon subtypes will cause Zanac Neo to put out more 
creatures designed to defeat that particular type of weapon.  For instance, 
players building up Hammer-Duke's Banishing Laser (GW1) will find Zanac Neo 
starts to put out enemies that attack from the side (e.g. Degid) more often, 
which is a blind spot with this weapon.  In fact, it has been suggested by
other authors (see acknowledgments) that each weapon # is associated with
one or more particular types of enemy, which appear in larger-than-normal
frequencies when you have that weapon.

The following is a table of Neo enemies that are associated with each weapon.
These enemies are likely to appear when you have taken a subweapon powerup
which matches your current subweapon...however, their appearance is not
assured or immediate.  In particular, enemy appearance does not hold during
boss battles or in parts of the Area where enemy types are fixed.

Table and ideas adapted from website referenced in [XVI] Acknowledgements: 

Subweapon #               Enemy Type(s)
===========               =============
0                         Crude
1                         Back Degid
2                         Degid and Degis Golgos
3                         Drov
4                         Brio Golgos
5                         Lio Golgos
6                         Effine (Mio barrier type)
7                         Takawarshi

It is thus possible to induce the appearance of certain enemies in score
trial in order to score points.  In particular, taking W3s can make Drov
appear, and the divided shells can then be shot or charge shot for points.



The game's overall difficulty level can be set in the options screen.  There 
are four levels of difficulty:  Easy, Normal, Hard, and Very Hard.

The difference between the levels are difficult to quantify because they 
affect the ALC in undetermined ways.  Suffice to say that the obvious effects 
appear to be:

-  ALC goes up faster and to higher maximum levels at higher difficulty
   levels (i.e. the game gets really hard more quickly) 
-  Enemies start to fire more bullets, sometimes in different patterns.
-  Subweapon losses change (see below)
-  In addition, on Very Hard difficulty level, you no longer get the
   complimentary bar of charge gauge when you die. 

The major visible effect of difficulty level is the loss of your subweapons 
when you lose a ship.

-  On Easy, when you lose a ship, your currently equipped subweapon drops by
   one level.  You keep all "stored" subweapons at their last equipped
-  On Normal, when you lose a ship, you lose all levels of your currently
   equipped subweapon (returning to level 0).  All stored subweapons remain
   at last equipped levels.
-  On Hard, when you lose a ship, you lose all levels of your currently 
   equipped subweapon, and one level of each stored subweapon.
-  On Very Hard, when you lose a ship, all subweapons return to level 0.
   Welcome to Zanac.

[IV.1] Personal Assessment of Difficulty Levels
(Ignore this if you are using the FC-Custom, which is a definite advantage 
and deserves its own assessment)

Because it is more difficult to hold combos (earning extra ships), and it is 
also more difficult to keep from losing ships at higher levels, the 
difficulty levels are NOT linear.  My wild guess is that Normal is about 
twice as hard as Easy, Hard is about twice as hard as Normal, and Very Hard 
is twice as hard as Hard.  Or more.


Easy is about suitable for those who have not played vertical shooters to any 
extent.  A skilled shooter fan can get through the entire game on Easy with 
very little problems.

Normal is suitable for those who have played vertical shooters before. A 
skilled shooter can still get through Normal, but it might take a few tries.

Hard is the normal level for skilled shooter fans.  Hard can be won too but 
it may take some effort, and things will be pretty close near the end.  Hard 
is fun.

Very Hard is for very skilled shooter fans, or skilled shooter fans who have 
also played the original Zanac until their thumbs dropped off.  Or 
masochists.  I still can't beat Very Hard without the FC Custom, but I might 
have been able to if I was practicing instead of writing this FAQ!  :)

Also, I noticed that harder difficulty levels tend to shift me toward 
defensive weapons.  For easy and normal difficulty levels, it is no problem 
to take full-offense, high-power weapons like W1s or W6s.  However, for Hard 
and Very Hard, the difficulty eventually becomes too high for me to 
concentrate on keeping combos and thus I try to preserve ships instead.  This 
is when W1s stop becoming good choices and W3s start becoming viable options.  
Don't be surprised if you have to shift strategies when you play on higher 
difficulty levels.



The scoring system in Zanac is not incredibly complicated, like Ikaruga or
Radiant Silvergun.  In simple terms, you shoot things, and they award you
points.  If you can shoot all enemies without letting any leave the screen,
you will start building combo points.  In terms of gameplay, you will need
high scores simply because of the free ships awarded.  Since Zanac is not
a game of pattern memorization, there are pretty much no "safe spots" and
it might be the case that you lose several ships during late game bosses.
You will need reserve ships to absorb this loss, the more the better.  Since
high scores equals more resources, you have to balance your aggression level.
Playing it safe can give you more mileage per ship, but being more aggressive
can award you more free ships.

[V.1]  Free Ships
One of the main purposes of high scoring (besides bragging rights, of course) 
is that free ships are awarded with increases in score; a battalion of ships 
generally helps greatly in surviving the end game (Levels 8-10).  The player 
is awarded a free ship at 50000 points, 100000 points, 200000 points, and 
every 200000 points thereafter.  You will hear the characteristic "Zanac free 
man tune" when you receive one.

[Note]  The free man tune, if you like it, can be put onto your cell phone.  
For those of you with musical inclination, it's (quarter)G(eighth)ABAGB(up 
octave)E(quarter)D.  In terms of Motorola, I can't get eighths, but you can 
play it half speed:  400 20 220 20 40 220 111 330 300.

[V.2]  Boss Battles
When a boss or sub-boss is encountered in Zanac Neo, a counter will show up 
in the upper right corner of the screen, and the player will be given a set
amount of time, to defeat it.  If the boss is defeated, the player generally
gains either 50000 points or 100000 points plus 1000 points per second
remaining on the clock.  See section [II.10] for details on boss times and

It appears that you do not gain a bonus for destroying the last boss, nor do
you receive a bonus for ships remaining at the game end.  This is unlike
Zanac NES.

[V.3]  Combo System (simplified)
The combo system in Zanac is fairly simple.  Basically, your combo counter 
and jackpot counter in the upper left increase every time you destroy an 
enemy.  Every time you destroy an enemy you get the value of that enemy plus 
the value listed in the jackpot counter.  The combo will end and the counters 
will reset if you ever let an enemy leave the screen.

An "enemy" with respect to the combo system includes almost all flying 
enemies, including boxes and weapon carriers, but not destructible or 
indestructible bullets, Enemy Erasers, Faeries, Eye-eye, Icon, or the 
circular spinning enemies that some ground or air targets produce.

[Note]  In many stages, you can use the ground shadows to "see" some enemies
before they actually appear on the screen.  You can use this preview to
position yourself to shoot (or not shoot) a series of boxes, for instance.

[V.4] Combo System In Depth
Each enemy has two score values: a regular point value and a combo point
value (which from here on will be referred to as CP.) As a rule of thumb, the
CP value of an enemy is usually 2% of its regular point value.

Zanac Neo keeps a running total of the CP you've got from destroying
enemies. This CP Total, however, is not the jackpot value you see at the top
of the screen, but they are related. Here's how it goes:

0) At the beginning of each area (or when an enemy leaves the screen), the
   hidden CP total and the visible Jackpot are set to 0.
1) You shoot and destroy an enemy.
2) The visible Jackpot value is then set to the current value of the hidden
   CP total, rounded down to the nearest multiple of 10.
3) The enemy's regular point value and the current Jackpot value are then
   added to your score.
4) The enemy's CP value is now added to the hidden CP total.
5) Go back to step 1.

Another way of looking at this is to assume the jackpot bonus you get came not
from the enemy you just destroyed, but the one that came before it.

An example would undoubtedly be of help right now. At the very beginning of
Area 0 you face Terzas (300 pts/6 CP) and Cargo Carriers (100 pts/2 CP). Let's
assume you destroy a Carrier, 4 Terzas, another carrier, then three more
Terzas. Your score, jackpot, and hidden CP total would progress as follows:

1) Cargo Carrier destroyed (score: 100, CP: 2, Jackpot: 0)
2) Terza 1 destroyed       (score: 400, CP: 8, Jackpot: 0)
3) Terza 2 destroyed       (score: 700, CP: 14, Jackpot: 0)
4) Terza 3 destroyed       (score: 1010, CP: 20, Jackpot: 10)
5) Terza 4 destroyed       (score: 1330, CP: 26, Jackpot: 20)
6) Cargo Carrier destroyed (score: 1450, CP: 28, Jackpot: 20)
7) Terza 5 destroyed       (score: 1770, CP: 34, Jackpot: 20)
8) Terza 6 destroyed       (score: 2100, CP: 40, Jackpot: 30)
9) Terza 7 destroyed       (score: 2440, CP: 46, Jackpot: 40)

Hitting an enemy with a charge shot (of either level) seems award you with 
double the amount of regular points and CP, but the Jackpot bonus seems
unaffected. Despite the multipliers that appear all over the screen when
you set off a chain combo, this doubling appears to be the only bonus you get.

A future revision will include a list of enemy point and CP values.



Zanac Neo is a two-player simultaneous game.  Two player mode can be selected 
by pressing start on the second controller during the game start screen.  
Each player may select a different profile in order to keep their game stats 
separate.  Players may select the same ship if they wish, even with the FC-

The second player's ship color will vary slightly from the one-player color:

Ship                  Player One Color            Player Two Color
----                  ----------------            ----------------
Knife-Edge            Red                         Pink(!)
Scar-Face             Blue                        Green
Hammer-Duke           Green                       Yellow
FC Custom             White                       Dark Grey

The game is over when both players run out of ships.  When one of the two 
players runs out of ships, then he can take one of the other player's ships 
by pressing Start.  

Zanac Neo does offer the option for a second player to join in a current one 
player game.  By pressing start, the second player will take one of the first 
player's ships, and will then be given the option to choose his ship type on-
screen.  In this case a player profile cannot be used.

[Note]  Two player mode is easier than one-player mode because both players 
use the same combo number, instead of having individual combos and splitting 
enemies between them.  With twice the firepower, it is much easier to prevent 
any enemies from leaving the screen and thus run up a huge combo, awarding 
millions of points.  This gives a tremendous amount of bonus ships to both 
players, increasing total resources available.  If you want to compensate for 
this effect you can play at a higher difficulty level for a similar 



The main gun on all three "standard" ships of Zanac Neo is a forward firing 
projectile (non-piercing, see below definitions) weapon.  A maximum of three
shots can be on the screen at once; no further shots can be fired until one
of the three projectiles hits an enemy or leaves the screen.  This means
that firing at an enemy from close range does damage faster than firing at
an enemy from long range.  However, a built-in delay between shots prevents
the gun from firing infinitely fast when you are hitting an enemy at close
range.  This delay can be reduced by obtaining red landers.

The power per shot of the main gun is constant and cannot be increased.  
However, obtaining power chips (yellow spheres) from boxes (blue cubes) can 
increase the weapon's width and the velocity of the bullet. Having a large 
hit area is important; in the case of a miss, the bullet would have to travel 
to the top of the screen and exit prior to "re-use", thus slowing the gun 
down.  A higher shot speed means you fire faster at long range targets, 
because the traveling time to the target is shorter.

The age-old axiom of shooters applies here:  dying in Zanac Neo means that 
you will go back down to 0 chips on your main gun.

The following chart outlines the effects of gaining power chips from boxes on 
gun width measured in percent of ship width (e.g. 100 = same width as your 
ship), and bullet velocity in ship widths per second.

Chips Req.      Gun                                Total       Bullet
Required        Type                               Shot        Velocity
----------      --------                           -----       --------
0               Thin Single Beam                   17          22.4
1               Thick Single Beam                  27          24.7
2               Thin Double Beams                  60          28.2
3               Thick Double Beams                 70          31.3
4               Thin/Thick/Thin Triple Beam        77          33.9
5               Thick/Thin/Thin/Thick Quad Beam    113         36.8
32*             Wide Beam (six beams)              157         40.3
**              Blast Mode Beam                    113         40.3

*   The Wide shot is a special weapon that can be obtained by getting an 
equivalent of 32 power chips without changing subweapons (five-chip bonus is 
allowed). You can power up your current subweapon without losing this count.  
An alternate way to get the Wide shot is to shoot an Eye-eye.

**  The shot width in blast mode is fixed regardless of power chips 
collected.  Yes, this means your shot width actually decreases in blast mode 
if you already have the wide shot.

The chart indicates that when firing at long range targets, Blast Mode fires 
almost twice as fast as the starting gun, which is why it is often useful to 
switch to Blast Mode following ship death.  When firing at extremely close 
range (see "rushing"), there is no shot travel time and thus all the guns 
deliver damage at a rate limited by your ship's built-in shot delay, which is 
approximately 100 milliseconds (10 bullets per second).  Getting red landers 
decreases this shot delay (see below), allowing high-speed close range fire.

[VII.1] Five-Chip Bonus

Power chips are obtained from boxes that float down the screen sporadically 
during the game.  The boxes always come in sets of three and require five 
shots to destroy.  If you shoot a box four times, you will see it flash, 
giving a clue to the contents of the box:

Box Appearance            Effect when destroyed
--------------            ---------------------
Flashing Red              When destroyed, the box lets out two destructible
                          shots aimed toward the lower left and lower right
                          of the box.

Flashing White            When destroyed, the box simply disintegrates
                          without firing shots.

Flashing Circle           When destroyed, the box releases a Power Chip.

Normally, when the player rams a box, the ship is destroyed.  However, if the 
player intentionally hits a box that happens to contain a power chip in it, 
five power chips will be obtained instead of one.  You will only get the five 
chips if you have not shot the box more than three times.  The idea is to 
"gamble" on a box and get five chips in return.  However, ramming the boxes 
when you are invincible *is* allowed and forms a major strategy of the game 
at high difficulties.

[Note]  Obtaining level 5 on the main gun is not difficult in Zanac.  The 
mark of an veteran player is using the five-chip bonus to immediately regain 
lost power after losing a ship, preventing the loss of several ships in a 
row (i.e. the "R-type effect").  During the period of invincibility when you
get a new ship, you should immediately ram all of the boxes in the immediate
area *without* firing your primary or secondary weapon.  If you are firing,
you will hit the boxes as you advance on them, and negate the five-chip bonus.
The five-chip bonus is also critical to getting the 32 chips necessary for
wide shot if no Eye-eye is available.

[Note]  Possession of certain weapons that you can't "turn off" makes the
five-chip bonus more difficult to get.  Notably, that would be all W3
weapons, GW2, FCW2, and maybe GW6.

[Note]  In Zanac NES the WHITE boxes fired the bullets, and the RED boxes
simply disintegrated.  After ten years of Zanac, this was hard to get used

[VII.2] The Three Shell Game

So, how do you identify which box has the chip in it without being 
invincible?  You can figure this out by shooting some of the boxes four times 
to peek at what is in them.

The boxes appear to come in only three distinct patterns:

Type I.    One Red Box, One White Box, One Power Chip (most common)
Type II.   Three White Boxes (less common)
Type III.  One Red Box, Two Power Chips (less common)

[Note]  Given one set of three boxes, peek in each box one at a time by 
shooting them four times each.  If the first box you shoot is a power chip, 
take it and use the invincibility to ram the remaining two boxes (and any 
other nearby boxes!) in the hope that it is Type III and you will get another 
power chip.  If the first two boxes are red and white, then the trio is Type 
I and you should ram the last box for the power chip.  If the two boxes are 
white and white, then they are Type II, so you can shoot or ignore the last 
white box.  Finally, if you get one red box and one power chip, then grab the 
power chip and ram the last box.  The last box will most likely be a white 
box (Type I) but there is a small chance of getting another power chip (Type 
III).  As a final note, when there are so many boxes that they overlap on 
screen, you're much better off shooting until you find a power chip and then 
using the resulting invincibility to ram the whole mass of the boxes.

In chart form:

First Box            Second Box           You should...
---------            ----------           -------------
Chip                 ->                   Take chip and ram other boxes
Red                  Chip                 Take chip and ram other box
Red                  White                Ram last box for chip
White                Red                  Ram last box for chip
White                Chip                 Ignore last box, it's red
White                White                Ignore last box, it's white

[Note]  Using these techniques, you can easily get the wide shot by picking 
six boxes during the zeroth level, if you are not concentrating on anything 
else (like combos or point counting).



Under certain conditions (described below), destroying a subweapon carrier 
can produce a blue lander.  A blue lander appears as a round blue happy face 
with huge eyes, which slowly travels up the screen.  Shooting a blue lander a 
number of times turns it red, at which point it changes its motion to slowly 
travel down the screen.

Touching a blue lander gives you a free ship.  However, touching a red lander 
both gives you a free ship AND also decreases your fire delay.  Red landers 
are extremely important because they increase the effective damage rate of 
your main gun (which you use all the time, regardless of subweapon), and 
their effects are *permanent* and remain with you the rest of the game 
regardless of ship destruction.  For the three Neo ships, red landers stop 
giving positive benefits after the third lander.  For the FC Custom, benefits 
extend beyond this.

The following chart gives approximate weapon delays in milliseconds and the 
damage delivered in shots per second when rushing (i.e. you are on top of 
your target):

# Red Landers        Delay (msec)          Shots/Sec             
-------------        ----------           ---------
0                       100                   10
1                       85                    12
2                       67                    15
3                       50                    20
4                       "                      "

There are no apparent benefits from getting a blue lander besides the free 
man, so you should always attempt to turn it red before touching it.

[Note]   Neither blue landers nor red landers give you the complimentary 
period of invulnerability that other powerups do...so be sure not to try to 
ram things after taking the lander!

[VIII.1] Score Counting

Blue landers can be made to appear by hitting either a fixed (red) or random 
(green) weapon carrier with a subweapon (not the main gun).  Landers only 
appear this way when certain parts of your score match the total number of 
shot you have fired with your main gun.  Total means the sum of all bullets 
in the game; this number is also maintained between levels.

Main Gun         Lander appears when score is:
Shots Fired 
-----------      -----------------------------
Zero             0-999, 10000-10999, 20000-20999, 30000-30999, etc.
1                1000-1999, 11000-11999, 21000-20999, 31000-31999, etc.
2                2000-2999, 12000-12999, 22000-22999, 32000-32999, etc.
9                9000-9999, 19000-19999, 29000-29999, 39000-39999, etc.

Thus, for the first nine shots fired in the game, landers will appear 
when you hit the weapon carrier with a subweapon when the thousands 
digit of your score matches the number of shots you have fired.  After 
nine shots the pattern changes.  We don't yet know what the new lander 
criterion is, but landers appear periodically through the game if you
hit carriers with your subweapon.

[Note]  Obtaining your first red lander is easy:  simply do not fire 
your main gun at the start of the game.  When the first weapon carrier 
comes out (Weapon 0) then shoot it with your subweapon only.  Continue 
to shoot the lander with W0 until it turns red, and then take it.  
After that, you can either start shooting with your main gun (ruining 
the score counting trick) or continue to use only your secondary 
weapon.  If you can keep your score at below 1000, you can certainly 
get the next weapon carrier (W1) to turn into a lander. After your 
score goes over 1000, then you can either try to survive with just your 
secondary weapon until 10000, or fire shots on your main gun until it 
matches your score in the thousands digit again. Just remember that 
after nine shots, this trick stops working.  If you want to try to get 
a bunch of free men, then you only have a few chances every 10000 
points, but you can keep this up indefinitely as long as you don't fire 
your main gun.

[Note]  In Zanac Neo, the red landers quit increasing your firing speed 
after you get three, them so after that point they are just giving you 
free men.  If you're a super dodger you can try get through the whole 
first level without firing your primary weapon, but unless you are 
playing on Easy or Normal this is probably not feasible.  It is 
recommended that you go for the first three landers to maximize your 
firing speed; this will help in the late game.

[Note]  However, with the FC custom, the red landers keep giving firing
speed increases to the fifth lander, and the fifth one increases your firing
rate by an incredible amount.  The FC custom turns into a killing machine
at this point, so you may want to consider trying to keep the landers going
until you reach this point.  You may break even in ships, but you will
certainly have the firepower advantage for the rest of the game.

[Note]  During the entire game, it is probably best to try to hit every 
weapon carrier with your subweapon rather than your main weapon, in the 
hopes of getting it to turn into a lander.



A major feature of the original Zanac NES game was the short period of 
invulnerability which followed pickup of any power chip or subweapon powerup.  
This is also part of Zanac Neo's gameplay and understanding how to exploit 
this invulnerability is the most important point in the game.  
Invulnerability times have been vastly extended in Zanac Neo over Zanac NES.  
Picking up a power chip now gives you a short (2 second) period of 
invulnerability, and a subweapon pickup gives you a long (5 second) period.  
You are also given a short (2 second) period of invulnerability when you 
regain control after losing a ship.  Along with the five-chip bonus 
strategies listed above, several other methods exploiting this 
invulnerability are suggested.

[Note]  If you pick up a subweapon (5 seconds) and then immediately pick up
a power chip, your invulnerability time is cut to 2 seconds.  And no,
invulnerability times are not additive.

[IX.1] Rushing

Rushing is racing forward with your ship toward a fixed target during a 
period of invulnerability to shoot the enemy from close range.  For the 
primary weapon and for weapons in which only one set of bullets can be on the 
screen at a time, damage can be increased greatly by parking the ship point 
blank to the target, especially after several red landers are obtained.  
Obviously, this strategy only works with careful invulnerability timing. Time 
may be too short to approach the enemy, fire, and retreat, so you may need to 
pick up the invulnerability on the way up to the target, or use "jumping" 
(see below).

[IX.2] Invulnerability Jumping

Invulnerability jumping involves timing your item grab rate so that you grab 
additional powerups just when your last period of invulnerability is up, thus 
"chaining" the invulnerability together.  If there are enough powerups and 
you have good timing, you can stay invulnerable for tens of seconds this way.  
During breaks in the powerup run, you can activate blast mode to keep 
yourself alive.  When you are near a ground target, jumping can be used to 
keep you close to the target for several more seconds over simple rushing.  
While commonly jumping is done with power chips only (to keep your proper 
subweapon), occasionally it is used with subweapons too where you are 
completely overwhelmed but there are plenty of subweapons onscreen (Level 8, 
the section with the weapon-soaking "squid").  In this case, you would simply 
take whatever is available to survive, and switch back to your chosen 
subweapon when you reach the boss.  Conveniently, there is a green powerup
just before the level 8 boss for that purpose.

[IX.3] Caching Invulnerability

In later stages and higher difficulty levels, you can sit next to power chips 
instead of taking them immediately.  When you really need the invulnerability 
(such as when rushing through a difficult enemy fire pattern) then you take 
the chip as necessary.  This can save on use of Blast Mode and provides a 
small advantage during play.  It's best to stay directly to the left or right 
of the chip rather than above or below or on a diagonal, this will reduce 
errors in grab timing.



[X.1] Charge Gauge

The meter in the lower left of the screen is the charge shot gauge, which is 
used to fire charge shots or activate blast mode.  The gauge can hold up to 
two complete bars of energy.  The first fill bar is green and the second
(overlapping the first) is red.  There are several ways to charge the gauge:

1.   The gauge fills up slowly over time, at a rate of 4%(bar)/second
2.   Destroying enemies of any size fills the gauge at 2.5%(bar)/enemy
3.   Taking any subweapon powerup fills the gauge with one entire bar (100%)
4.   BW2 Energy Charger will increase gauge by absorbing enemy bullets
5.   When you die, if you have less than one full bar of charge then you
     will be awarded enough to make it one full (green) bar.
6.   Shooting and hitting some multihit targets (such as bosses) increases
     your gauge.

Thus, if no shooting is done, the gauge will fill to two complete bars in 50 
seconds.  Note that while you are in Blast Mode, methods 1, 2, and 6 of
gaining gauge energy are disabled.

[Note]  On Very Hard difficulty (only), you do not get the complimentary free
bar of charge gauge a la method 5.  Method 5 holds only on Hard difficulty
and below. 

[X.2] Charge Shot

If the gauge has at least one entire bar of energy, then pressing the charge 
shot button will fire a large shot of plasma which travels up the screen, 
absorbing bullets and causing chain explosions if it touches an enemy.  This 
use of the charge shot consumes one entire bar from the gauge (100%).  If the 
gauge is full with two complete bars, the charge shot will be much larger and 
the corresponding explosions will also be larger, making it easier to chain 
the explosions together.  This use consumes the entire two-bar gauge (200%).

[Note]  If you want to fire a single-bar charge shot, enter blast mode by
holding down the charge shot button, then immediately press the button again
after entering blast mode.  You'll fire only a single bar shot, and exit
blast mode.

[Note]  Resist the urge to use Charge Shot with a single bar (especially
right after you die) UNLESS YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING, because it is easy
to miss or have a very small effect.  Even with two bars, there are very few
times where Charge Shot is actually superior to Blast Mode for the average
player.  In particular, it is most effective when fighting ground enemies
which emit swarms of those round flying enemies that move in a circular
motion; the resulting explosions can cause lots of damage to ground targets.
Also, Charge Shot is quite good halfway through Level 0 where the huge ship
comes down with a swarm of smaller enemies.

[Note]  ...that said, videos by ZEX, which can be viewed on
www.zanacxzanac.com, show how charge shot is used by an expert.  Charge
shot is important in score trial situations because of its property of
doubling CP bonuses. ZEX shows that in a score trial situation, it
is so important to increase jackpot that he regularly sacrifices ships
simply to gain gauge charge through method 5 [X.1], and changes subweapons
almost constantly in order to take advantage of method 3.  ZEX attempts to
hit as many things as possible with charge shots, using single bar shots
against groups of enemies such as sets of boxes.  His methods pay off;
after a while his jackpot is so high that he is gaining free ships every
few seconds, resulting in scores like 1,700,000 by the end of Area 0.
Given this strategy, perhaps protection of a few ships by using Blast Mode
might come in second to scoring.

[Note]  The real purpose of the whole charge gauge thing becomes more obvious
when playing on Very Hard.  Blast Mode serves as defense when you have
offensive weapons.  Likewise, Charge Shot serves as offense when you have
defensive weapons (e.g. W2, W3).  This occurred to me when fighting against
fortress bosses on Very Hard; it is very difficult to actually damage such
fortresses when you have W2 or W3 since the enemy destructible bullets block
your main gun shots!  When you are using shields, then the most potent
weapon you have is by far Charge Shot, which produces explosions similar in
power to a W6.  The trick is that it doesn't do much damage when you fire
into a single target.  The best use of Charge Shot against bosses is fired
into a group of Velos.  An acceptable alternative is to fire into a group of
boxes.  If you want to do this, don't shoot the boxes; get on the other side
of the screen; you can briefly use the blast mode "plasma shield" to cross
the screen before firing.

[X.3] Blast Mode

When the charge gauge has at least one entire bar of energy, you can enter 
blast mode by holding the charge shot button until the plasma bolt flies back 
into your ship.  In blast mode, your gun changes to an arc the width of the 
ship, and it also blocks "indestructible" enemy bullets.  In addition, your 
subweapons turn green and they gain the additional ability to block 
indestructible enemy bullets.  While you are in blast mode the charge gauge 
drains at a rate of 20%(bar) per second; two full bars will last 10 seconds.  
You will leave blast mode under the following conditions:

1.  You run out of charge gauge energy.
2.  Your ship is destroyed.
3.  If you still have at least one bar of energy in your gauge, you can
    fire a charge shot, consuming one bar and exiting blast mode.
4.  The level ends.

Blast Mode is an important part of Zanac Neo, and is generally more useful 
than the Charge Shot in higher areas and difficulties.  Since most non-FC 
custom weapons do not block bullets, Blast Mode is necessary in order to 
avoid certain death from large amount of unblockable bullets (Very Hard mode, 
late game ground bosses come to mind!).  Blast mode also creates a ball (very
large when you have two full bars) which flies out in front of the ship a
short distance before returning.  That ball absorbs enemy indestructible
bullets and can be used as a last-minute panic shield.

Blast mode is best used in the following circumstances. 

1.  You have just died and you need a decent primary weapon in order to
    score some power chips
2.  At the beginning of a boss battle, use Blast Mode to safely reduce the
    number of ground turrets, especially those close to you or far to the
    side (reducing the number of attack angles you have to concentrate on)
3.  To save yourself versus a sudden fusillade of bullet(s) flying at the
    front of your ship (e.g. panic shield)

[Note]  It is often useful to immediately start blast mode when you lose a
ship and return with a peashooter (0th-level main gun), starting right when
your 2-second invincibility runs out.  Blast mode will give you the
equivalent of a 5-chip main gun for a few seconds.  This might not be
necessary if there are boxes nearby to ram (see 5-chip bonus, above), so you
will have to make the call.

[Note]  During a boss battle, if you start a two-bar blast mode and then 
destroy a boss, then immediately hit the charge shot button and fire a 
single-bar shot.  You will lose one bar of gauge but you will exit blast mode 
and immediately begin recharging the gauge during the dead time following the 
boss.  This is preferable to waiting until your entire gauge runs out before 
recharging.  You can also do this if you just want to use the ball as a
shield; if you fire immediately after then you will be back to two full bars
in 25 seconds.

[Note]  In blast mode, your main gun projectiles are piercing with respect to
enemy indestructible bullets.  That is, a shot will absorb and pass through
indestructible shots.  Curiously, destructible shots still block your blast
mode shots, so anything firing indestructible bullets will still be hard to
hit with the main gun. 

[Note]  You can extend your gauge time while in blast mode by taking 
subweapon powerups.  This does not end blast mode.  However, destroying 
enemies does not give you extra gauge time.

[Note]  If you have a controller that vibrates (i.e. a Dual Shock or a Dual
Shock 2) then the controller will vibrate when you fire in Blast Mode.  I
imagine this is to let you know when you run out of Blast Mode, so you can
then get out of the way of shots heading toward you.



The most distinctive feature of Zanac Neo is the availability of a variety of 
subweapons.  Eight different subweapons, numbered from 0 to 7, are available 
for each ship.  Each ship has its own distinctive set of weapons, which vary 
from rotating shields to grenades to remote controlled energy balls.  You can 
increase your subweapon's power level by taking numbered powerups during the 
game.  Each weapon has a distinctive type of gameplay needed to maximize its 
benefits.  You can either match your gameplay to a particular weapon type, or 
(better yet) change your gameplay to adapt to each particular weapon's 

Your ship can only carry one subweapon at a time.  If you change weapons, 
then your old weapon goes into "storage". If you later change back to your 
stored weapon, then you will start at the last power level you gained.  If 
your ship is destroyed, your current and stored weapons will drop in power; 
the type of drop will depend on the game's set difficulty level; see 
"Difficulty Level" for details.

[Note]  You do not gain any weapon power levels when you switch weapons, so 
it is usually a good idea to concentrate on one weapon instead of continually 
switching weapon types.  To do this you will have to ignore or even avoid 
powerups of a different weapon number than your current weapon.  Do this.

[Note]  Unlike in Zanac NES, you keep your current subweapon type if you 
lose your ship.  In Zanac NES, you went back to Level 0, Weapon 0 every time 
you lost a ship.

[XI.1] Subweapon Powerup

Your ship begins the game with Level 0 of Weapon 0, regardless of the ship 
type.  Occasionally, weapon carriers will travel down the screen carrying 
subweapon powerups.  They appear as small ships with arms grasping numbers 
marked from 0-7.  Shooting a weapon carrier will cause it to release its 
powerup; if you leave it alone for a few seconds it will quickly leave the 
screen (ending your combo if you have one).  If you take a powerup which 
matches the number of your current weapon, you gain another level of that 
weapon.  If the number does not match, then the powerup switches your weapon 
number to its own number, with no increase in weapon level.

There are two types of weapon carriers:  red carriers and green ("roulette") 
carriers.  Red weapon carriers appear periodically on the side opposite to 
the side your ship is on.  That is, if you are on the right side, then it 
appears on the left side and vice versa.  The red carrier that appears at the 
start of the game carries weapon 0.  Each red carrier that appears after that 
carries a weapon one higher; the next carrier will carry weapon 1, then 2, 
and so forth until it reaches 7. The next one will be a green carrier, then
the cycle will start over at 0. This means if you want to build up a weapon
you will have to wait through six other red carriers to reach your chosen
weapon (but at least you'll get a green one along the way.)

Unlike red subweapon powerups, the numbers on green powerups change.  After 
the carrier is destroyed and the carrier is released, the on-screen powerup 
counts up in number slowly.  The number on the powerup when you take it is 
the subweapon number that you get.  At the point you destroy the carrier, the 
subweapon always reads two numbers below your current subweapon number, 
giving you some time to get to it if you want to improve your current weapon.

[Note] From time to time a carrier (either red or green) will appear in the
center of the screen. Their appearances (and the subweapon powerup they carry)
are predetermined and are not affected (nor do they affect) the usual cycle
described above.

[Note]  Ramming a green carrier (without shooting it first) will give you one 
level in your current weapon regardless of the number displayed when you hit 
it.  Unlike in Zanac NES, ramming carriers does not cause you to lose your 

[Note]  If you want to improve weapon 0 at the beginning of the game, and you 
want to do point counting (see above), then you can simply ram the first red 



Nomenclature (These are subjective definitions)

Offensive:      I consider "offensive weapons" as those that deal out a lot
                of damage quickly but leave the ship relative unprotected.
                Either weapon fires slow and/or covers very little area,
                and/or does not protect sides/rear of ship.  Usually
                piercing.  You can destroy armored targets faster with
                Offensive weapons.

Defensive:      Protects ship better by dealing smaller amounts of damage
                over a wider area.  Fires fast and/or covers a lot of screen
                area and/or protects side/back of ship and/or blocks enemy
                indestructible bullets.  I generally die less with Defensive

General Use/    Weapon is good for general use against either small or fast
Combos:         enemies or larger enemies.  Weapon has wide enough area to
                keep up combos.

[XII.1] Knife-Edge (R):  For Expert Players
Ship Speed:  Fast (10.4 ship widths/sec)

Fast and built toward combos, but subweapons are generally weaker and more 
difficult to learn to use.  Unlike in many other shooters, speed actually
counts in Zanac because sometimes you need to get to the other side of the
screen to keep your combo going.  Use weapon 7 to hold combos.  It is probably
the best weapon of any of the three main ship types for combos, because it is 
fast firing and has a wide area (including rear and side attacks), the down 
side being that it takes a lot of pickups to power up.  You can use weapon 4 
for quick destruction of ground bosses or those moving relatively slow.   
Weapons 4, 5, and 6 have a good deal of power and can be used for boss 
battles.  Weapon 6 has excellent power and decent area if you build it up, 
but relatively low defense.  Weapon 5 is awkward to use due to slow shot 
speed but is acceptable if there are no powerful alternatives.  Weapon 2 
(like all shields) is good against some late-game ground-based bosses and 
enemies that fire hordes of bullets straight at you (such as when 
dropping down the steel corridor in the last level).  However, neither the gun 
nor the shield is particularly effective (compared to other guns or shields), 
although it has a fast firing rate at upper levels.  Weapon 1 is easy to use, 
decently fast, and relatively powerful, but it cannot protect you against 
side attacks.  I general I avoid weapon 0; it's simply too difficult to use 
for anything but the most specialized of situations (such as when you 
desperately need to fend of attacks coming directly from the side).  Weapon 3 
is a decent shield at higher levels, but I get the feeling it tries to be an 
offensive shield and ends up not being as effective as it could be.

Offensive <-> Defensive:     6     5     4     1     2     3     0     7
General Use, Combos: 7
Boss Use: 4, 6
Avoid: 0

[XII.2] Scar-Face (B):  For Veteran Players
Ship Speed:  Medium (8.5 ship widths/sec)

Very versatile, but a little weaker on combo weapons.  Use weapon 0 or 7 for 
combos, since they are versatile and fast (7 need a couple of levels to have 
any effect though).  You will want to keep weapon 0 for a little while to 
point count landers.  Bosses can be handled more easily with Weapon 5 or 
Weapon 6.  Weapon 5 is easier to use in general situations but Weapon 6 
probably does more damage, especially at higher power levels.  Weapon 2 is an 
interesting weapon that is great fun for play but it's probably a little bit 
difficult to hold a combo with unless you are an expert; lots of bullet 
eating but you can use Charge Shot continuously.  Weapon 3 is also very good 
for static bosses, but it is rather weak at low levels and it has very weak 
combo ability.  It becomes more efficient at higher difficulties where 
everything is trying to kill you.  Weapon 1, like W1 (R), has decent power, 
decent fire rate, and decent protection, but is fairly mundane except in 
blast mode and never covers that much area.  I generally avoid weapon 4, 
which has practically nothing to recommend it except perhaps blocking bullets 
in blast mode (large area).

Offensive <-> Defensive:     6     5     1     4     2     7     0     3
General Use, Combos: 0, 7
Boss Use: 5, 6 (Offensive); or 2, 3 (defensive)
Avoid: 4

[XII.3] Hammer-Duke (G):  For Beginning Players
Ship Speed:  Slow (7.8 ship widths/sec)

Lots of powerful weaponry, but slow speed and low firing rates/areas 
generally inhibit combos.  Weapon 6 is quite amazing, use it for combos since 
it can shoot in any direction and fire rate is not bad since it is piercing.  
Weapon 7 is also a good choice due to area of effect, but it will be a little 
hard since fire rate is low.  Hammer Duke has a powerful weapon 1, but it has 
pretty much the smallest area of effect; this makes it very dangerous (read: 
impossible) to use at higher difficulties.  The AI also senses when you pick 
up a W1 and adjusts its strategy to attack from the side.  Weapon 5 is 
powerful even at low levels, so it is a potential option against bosses, 
though it takes an expert to use it effectively against smaller enemies.  It 
can fire in any direction as a straight shot so theoretically it's a 
replacement for the W0, which is quite ineffective.  Avoid W0, it's seems 
really difficult to use effectively.  I also avoid W4, since there isn't much 
you can do with it except perhaps block small enemies who are trying to ram 
you, or use in blast mode to block a large area of bullets.  Much better 
options are available in either case.  W3 has its moments, especially at 
higher power levels, but you still have to be careful because it doesn't 
block everything.  W2 might be effective, but at lower levels it just runs 
out of juice too fast.  I suspect the same situation would occur against 
higher level bosses that fire a bazillion bullets at a time.  Plus W2 is not 
much of a combo helper.

Offensive <-> Defensive:     1     5     6     7     0     4     2     3
General Use, Combos:  Weapon 6 (G), Weapon 7 (G)
Boss Use:  Weapon 6 (G); or Weapon 5 (G), maybe Weapon 2 (G) (defensive) or 
possibly W1
Avoid:  Weapon 0, Weapon 4



Although it is certainly true that the three ships available in Zanac Neo 
have different weapon sets, it must be noted that weapons of the same number 
have similar philosophies in terms of area covered, damage, etc.  For ease of 
description, this review will give the weapons as categories compared between 
ships.  See the previous section for the analysis of which weapon out of the 
8 is best for a *given* ship (much more useful I suppose).  To save space, 
ship weapons are abbreviated by their color for the normal three ships 
(R=Knife-Edge, G=Hammer-Duke, B=Scar-Face), or "FC" for FC Custom.  This is 
followed by "W" and the weapon number, from 0 through 7. For example, "RW0" 
stands for Knife Edge, weapon 0.


Piercing     - Weapon goes through enemies and shots without being destroyed;
               hits multiple times.  RW1356 BW13456 GW1356 FCW13457

Projectile   - Weapon stops when it hits an enemy or destroyable shot,
               dealing a fixed amount of damage instantly.  RW0247 BW067
               GW047 FCW06 

Shielding    - Weapon absorbs or destroys indestructible bullets without
               Blast Mode enabled.  This doesn't necessarily mean it looks or
               acts like a shield.  RW23 BW23 GW23 FC0*1234567

Rear/Side    - Weapon fires to rear or side.  Important ability which often
               increases the defensive ability of the weapon and helps in
               keeping combos

Shot Limit   - Method of shot limiting.  Either "Leave Screen" which means
               total number of shots on screen is limited to a certain
               number, or "Fixed Rate" which means the weapon fires at a
               fixed rate no matter how quickly the shot leaves the screen.
               Some "Leave Screen" weapons are better for rushing.

Max Level    - The maximum level of the weapon. The first pickup of a
               weapon is level 0, not level 1.

Neo          - "Neo Ships" refers to the three normal ships, Knife Edge,
               Scar Face, and Hammer Duke, excluding the FC Custom ship.
               Likewise, "Neo Weapons" are the subweapons of those three
               ships, excluding FC Custom.


A versatile and quick multidirectional shot, all three ships start with power 
level 0 of this weapon at the beginning of the game. Powering up generally 
gives it a larger shot, increasing its area of effectiveness, and its power.  
All three ships can direct the shot in any of the eight directions simply by 
moving the ship as the shot is fired.  Only one W0 shot can be fired at a 
time; the shot must leave the screen or hit an enemy before another can be 
created.  W0 is one of the few directed weapons which can attack enemies 
which are approaching from the side.  Since these enemies are some of the 
more difficult in the game to deal with, W0 can be considered a more 
"defensive" weapon.  Since W0 is also one of the few weapons in the game that 
can attack behind the player's ship, it can be used to keep combos alive in 
expert play.

-----RW0 Reverse Cannon
Weapon Type:      Projectile
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          8-way reverse shot, small energy arc
Level 1:          8-way reverse shot, large energy arc (increase shot area)
Level 2:          8-way reverse shot, two large energy arcs (increase shot
                  area & power)
Level 3:          8-way reverse shot, two large energy arcs + 1 small
                  energy arc (increase shot power)

     Knife Edge has the Reverse Cannon, a W0 that fires opposite of the 
direction the ship is traveling.  If the ship is standing still, the weapon 
fires opposite to the last direction the ship moved in.  This W0 is generally 
similar to but not quite as useful as BW0.  Higher levels increase the shot 
area and power by increasing the size and number of energy arcs. RW0 is one 
of the few (R) weapons that defends the ship from the side, but it is 
difficult to use even for experts and perhaps RW3 would serve just as well.
     [Note] Firing opposite to the ship's trajectory is more conservative and
allows you to retreat and fire at the same time, but under many circumstances 
you are traveling toward the enemy and thus you can't use the Reverse Cannon 
without some extra effort.  Rushing for instance is particularly difficult. 

-----BW0 All Range Cannon
Weapon Type:      Projectile
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          8-way straight shot, small energy arc (<1 ship width)
Level 1:          8-way straight shot, large energy arc (increase shot
                  area - 1 ship width)
Level 2:          8-way straight shot, two large energy arcs (increase shot
                  area & power - 2 ship width)
Level 3:          8-way straight shot, two large energy arcs + 1 small energy
                  arc (increase shot power - 2 ship width)

     Scar Face (B) has the All Range Cannon W0, the successor to the original 
Zanac's W0.  The ARC fires a quick arc of energy in the direction the ship is 
traveling.  If the ship is standing still, the weapon fires straight forward 
by default, which makes it much easier to use than the other two W0s.  Like 
other W0s, higher levels increase the shot area and power by increasing the 
size and number of energy arcs.  Although beginners may have trouble aiming 
the weapon at first, the ARC is practically the only precision weapon in the 
game, allowing one to hit specific targets but missing others (e.g. boxes); 
thus, it is perfect for experts.
     [Note]  The All Range Cannon is overlooked by many players as a weak 
weapon, but in fact it is extremely powerful. Like all other W0s, the ARC can 
only have one "bullet group" on the screen at a time.  However, it is more or 
less the best weapon for rushing, and if you are close to your enemy, the 
combination of BW0 and your main gun will quickly destroy any target. This is 
best used by making a sudden rush from the bottom of the screen to close 
range shortly after gaining invincibility.  The combination of the forward 
weapon together with the quick shot of the ARC will do incredible damage.  
Rushing is the primary reason why I consider the Reverse Cannon to be the 
weaker weapon; rushing is considerably more difficult with that weapon.
     [Note]  If you are going to make a precision shot at an enemy with W0,
stop firing W0 for a split second before you do it.  This assures that you
will actually have a bullet to use when you make the shot, and you will be
moving in the proper direction when you make the shot.

-----GW0 Twin Cannon
Weapon Type:      Projectile
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          8-way double shot, small energy arc (<1 ship width)
Level 1:          8-way double shot, large energy arc (<1 ship width)
Level 2:          8-way double shot, large energy arc, increased weapon speed
Level 3:          8-way double shot, 2 large energy arcs, increased weapon

     Hammer Duke (G) has the Twin Cannon W0.  At first glance, the Twin 
Cannon appears to be a combination of the All Range (BW0) and Reverse (RW0) 
Cannons.  The Twin cannon fires two arcs of energy, one in the direction the 
ship is facing, and another directly opposite.  Like with RW0, if the ship is 
standing still, the weapon fires in the last direction the ship was moved, 
rather than defaulting to a forward shot.  Higher levels increase the shot 
area and power by increasing the size and number of energy arcs.
     [Note]  The Twin Cannon is a significant defensive weapon against side 
opponents, as the ship can be maneuvered so that the Twin Cannons fire left 
and right and the ship fires forward, covering a great deal of area.  If 
maximum damage is desired, the fire rate of the Twin Cannon is maximized if 
the ship is halfway between the target and the edge of the screen.
     [Note] Unfortunately, the Twin Cannon is significantly weaker than both 
other W0s because both shots must hit the enemy or leave the screen before 
another can be fired.  Thus, rushing is impossible and this removes much of 
the offensive potential of this weapon.  


All W1s are forward firing lasers or cannons which are generally very 
powerful but cover very limited areas, providing little defense from side 
attacks.  W1s are all piercing weapons and are not destroyed on contact with 
enemies but rather travel through them to damage all enemies in a straight 
line to the top of the screen.  Using a W1 is generally a fairly risky 
proposition; since your main weapon also fires forward, this strategy puts 
all its eggs in one basket.  Increases in power level generally add a little 
bit of width and a great deal of destructive power to this weapon.  Sometimes 
when a W1 is taken the Zanac AI automatically releases a wave of side-
attacking enemies in order to try to take advantage of the player's weak 

-----RW1 Wide Crusher
Weapon Type:      Piercing Ball
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        4
Level 0:          Slow, sinusoidal ball (straight fire, width of ship,
                  sinusoid covers 2 ship width)
Level 1:          Fast sinusoidal ball (double shot speed/rate of fire)
Level 2:          Very Fast sinusoidal ball (~triple shot speed/rate of fire)
Level 3:          Two Fast double-helix balls (increase shot power,
                  decrease rate of fire(?))
Level 4:          Two Very Fast double-helix balls (increase shot speed)

     Knife Edge (R) has the Wide Crusher W1.  This weapon simply creates a 
ball of energy and hurls it forward, much like Weapon 1 from the original 
Zanac.  Wide Crusher has a slight sinusoidal motion which makes the 
effective area the largest of any Neo ship W1.  Increasing power level means 
a faster fire rate, and at level 3 and beyond a wide shot of two energy balls 
(which effectively doubles weapon power).  The weapon is generally fairly 
useful and not too difficult to use, but provides little protection from the 
     [Note] At low power levels, the weapon is fairly slow; this means that 
targets must be chosen carefully...firing indiscriminately means that part of 
the time the subweapon is basically useless.  One way to improve fire rate is 
to fire the weapon while your ship is higher up on the screen.  This allows 
the bullet to leave the screen quicker.

-----BW1 Slasher
Weapon Type:      Piercing Laser
Rear/Side:        No (but see notes)
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        5
Level 0:          Thin cloak, thin laser (slow rate of fire)
Level 1:          Thin cloak, thin laser (fast rate of fire)
Level 2:          Large cloak, large laser (slow rate of fire)
Level 3:          Large cloak, large laser (fast rate of fire)
Level 4:          Huge cloak, laser (slow rate of fire)
Level 5:          Huge cloak, laser (fast rate of fire)

     Scar Face (B) has the Slasher W1.  Slasher BW1 gathers a cloak of energy 
for a brief second around the ship before firing forward a beam composed of 
that same energy. The beam is thus fairly wide near the ship but gets thinner 
as it travels away from the ship.  Increasing power levels increase both the 
cloak and the beam size, or increase firing rate. 
     [Note] Although the beam speed (and thus firing rate) is relatively 
fast, the formation of the cloak means there is a significant delay between 
button press and firing of the beam.  In addition, Slasher is rather thin, 
especially at lower levels.  The thin beam and firing delay makes it nearly 
impossible to hit a small flying enemy accurately at lower power levels.  The 
cloak can also damage and destroy enemies near the ship, which makes it 
somewhat effective as a defensive weapon, but until Slasher reaches higher 
levels, neither beam nor cloak will be large enough to be effective.
     [Note] The cloak remains where the subweapon button was pressed and the 
beam fires from that location.  An advanced strategy is to use the cloak as a 
sort of portable shield.  When an enemy approaches from the side, the cloak 
can be set and then the ship moved in order to escape the enemy.  Many times, 
the pursuing enemy will simply run into the cloak and be destroyed.  This 
gives BW1 some side defense potential.
     [Note] At the highest level (5), the cloak is large enough to actually 
cover all of the ship plus some.  When blast mode is used, Slasher fires fast 
enough to actually be a decent all-around shield against bullets.

-----GW1 Banishing Laser
Weapon Type:      Piercing Laser
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          Thin (1/4 ship width) forward-firing beam
Level 1:          Medium (1/2 ship width) forward-firing beam,
                  increased damage
Level 2:          Large (3/4 ship width) forward-firing beam,
                  increased damage
Level 3:          Very large (1 1/2 ship width) forward-firing beam,
                  increased damage

     Hammer Duke (G) has the Banishing Laser W1.  This W1 is a powerful laser 
beam emitted from the front of the ship, traveling nearly instantaneously to 
the top of the screen. The laser is fired continuously for about a second, 
after which it needs a short (less than half a second) amount of time to 
recharge.  While the laser is on, it follows the left/right movements of the 
ship and thus may be guided to "sweep" across and through targets.  
Increasing power levels increase the beam width and power, and at the highest 
power levels the beam is wider than the ship.  Unlike many other weapons, the 
firing rate of this weapon is fixed; moving closer to the top of the screen 
does not affect the rate of fire.  
     [Note]  The "sweep" aspect makes this weapon much easier to use against 
normal enemies than both Wide Crusher and Slasher.  However, the ship must 
stay directly in front of the target in order to hit it and this aspect of 
the Banishing Laser might prove inconvenient against fixed enemies or bosses. 


W2 weapons are all forward shields.  They remain very close to the ship and 
protect the ship's front from enemy attacks. W2 weapons and W3 weapons are 
the only Neo weapons that can normally block indestructible enemy bullets.  
Although these weapons are passive, they can be very powerful, since 
possession of a W2 means the ship is almost immune to frontal enemy attacks.  
In Zanac Neo, using a small personal shield might be good defense but will 
partly sacrifice the ability to keep combos in advanced play.  Also, 
sometimes when a W2 is taken the Zanac AI automatically releases a wave of 
side-attacking enemies in order to try to take advantage of the player's weak 

-----RW2 Reflector
Weapon Type:      Shielding (Projectile)
Rear/Side:        No (No)
Shot Limit:       N/A (Fixed Rate)
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          Forward shield.  Upon absorption, fires single stream of
                  fast shots (~4 on screen at once)
Level 1:          Forward shield.  Upon absorption, fires stream of fast
                  shots which spray in a 30 degree arc
Level 2:          Forward shield.  Upon absorption, fires spray of ~1.5x
                  speed shots, 30 degree arc
Level 3:          Forward shield.  Upon absorption, fires spray of ~double
                  speed shots, 30 degree arc

     Knife Edge (R) has the Reflector W2.  The Reflector is a small flower-
shaped shield which protects the front of the ship from enemy bullets; it 
does not block enemy ships.  The Reflector is approximately the width of the 
ship and does not protect from attacks which come from the side or rear.  
Since the shield is very small, moving to the left or right can easily cause 
you to eat a bullet; the shield is most useful against fixed targets.  When 
the shield is hit, it begins to darken in color as it absorbs enemy bullets.  
After the shield has collected enemy bullets, it can be used to fire a stream 
of bullets by pressing the subweapon button.  The shield can be used to fire 
until its store of bullets runs out (maximum ~10 seconds firing time), and 
further power levels increase the spread and rate of the fired bullets.  
Although the bullets are somewhat weak, they fire with amazing speed and a 
prodigious rate...and so this shield is actually a fairly effective weapon, 
if not a particularly good defense.
Unfortunately, while the shield is in attack mode, it closes up into a 
much more compact shape, lowering its protection, and thus the attack mode 
should be used with caution.

-----BW2 Energy Charger
Weapon Type:      Shielding
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        2
Level 0:          Forward shield.  Upon absorption, charges supershot
                  meter (20% bar/shot) (estimate)
Level 1:          Forward shield.  Upon absorption, charges supershot
                  meter (25% bar/shot) (estimate)
Level 2:          Forward shield.  Upon absorption, charges supershot
                  meter (33% bar/shot) (estimate)

     Scar Face (B) has the Energy Charger W2.  This W2 is almost exactly like 
the Reflector in that it is a small shield that protects the front of the 
ship. It is very common to unintentionally eat bullets with your ship instead 
of the shield, since the shield is so small, and so like RW2 it is best 
against fixed targets.  However, when Energy Charger blocks enemy shots, it 
charges the Charge Shot gauge instead of charging bullets.  Needless to say, 
this is an incredible ability and successive power levels charge the gauge 
more per shot absorbed.  Although the shield itself is an asset, the ability 
to charge the gauge faster is invaluable.  This is best used with the Wide 
Shot primary weapon, for additional side defense.  The Energy Charger, like 
Reflector, also does not block enemy ships.
     [Note]  One of the obvious uses of the shield would be to stay in blast 
mode indefinitely.  Unfortunately, that is difficult, since firing in blast 
mode destroys bullets that are in front of you...
     [Note]  Of course, don't forget that you can fire your charge shot 
almost continuously when you have this weapon equipped.  It could be said 
that using Energy Charger is much like having your charge shot as a 

-----GW2 Shield Sphere
Weapon Type:      Shielding
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        3
Level 0:	Two forward shield spheres (~2 ship widths), each takes ~2
                consecutive hits to reach minimum size.
Level 1:	Two forward shield spheres (~2 ship widths), increased sphere
Level 2:	Two forward shield spheres (~2 ship widths), increased sphere
Level 3:	Two forward shield spheres (~2 ship widths), increased sphere

     Hammer Duke (G) has the Shield Sphere W2.  The Shield Sphere is larger 
than both other ship's shields, and takes the form of two rotating spheres 
which cover an area of about twice the ship width and give good protection 
from frontal attacks.  Like the other shields, the Shield Sphere blocks 
indestructible enemy bullets, but when a sphere blocks a bullet it shrinks in 
size, thus reducing the protection afforded.  An extended attack can leave 
the ship nearly shieldless, although the spheres regrow in time.  Higher 
power levels allow the spheres to take more damage before shrinking; also, 
since sphere regrowth rate is constant, higher level shields can more easily 
handle multiple consecutive bullets.  The larger shield size gives good 
frontal protection even from moving targets (unlike Reflector W2 and Energy 
Charger W2), and in addition the shield blocks small enemy ships as well as 
their bullets.
     [Note] Try to avoid hitting enemy ships or power chip boxes with the
     shield.  The five simultaneous hits will discharge the shield almost


W3 weapons are all rotating shields, and can be considered the sons and 
daughters of the NES Zanac's W3.  Unlike W2s, they stay a distance from your 
ship and orbit around it, protecting it to varying degrees from enemy fire 
(including indestructible enemy bullets).  Whereas they cover more area than 
W2s, they are also by nature unpredictable, and need constant monitoring to 
make sure bullets do not get through, especially at lower levels.  W3s 
protect better when you are not moving around too much, since moving toward a 
bullet increases the chance that it will get through the shield.  In order to 
maximize the shield's chance of intercepting bullets, you should tap the 
directional pad to slowly back away from enemy bullets.  Never purposefully 
head toward bullets; that will surely cause a few to pass through the shield.  
High velocity or "spinning" bullets also have a high chance of penetrating 
the shield, so watch for and avoid those bullets.  W3 weapons damage enemies 
they contact, but for some reason they do not damage ground based enemies, 
and some larger flying enemies.  W3s are more valuable at high difficulty 
levels where you just want to cut down the total amount of stuff flying at 
your ship, and you're not worried about destroying everything on the screen.

-----RW3 Neo Circular Alpha
Weapon Type:      Shielding (Piercing)
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          Rotating shield, small ball
Level 1:          Rotating shield, large ball
Level 2:          Rotating shields, 2 small balls with independent
                  offset orbits
Level 3:          Rotating shields, 2 large balls with independent
                  offset orbits

     Knife Edge (R) has the Neo Circular Alpha W3.  This W3 consists of a 
reddish sphere that rotates around the ship quickly, blocking enemies and 
their bullets.   However, when the NCAlpha hits an enemy, it will slow down 
("stick") in order to deal more damage to it. Higher power levels increase 
the number and size of the rotating spheres; since each sphere slows down 
independently, having two spheres is much more useful than one.
     [Note] "Sticking" makes the NCAlpha deal somewhat more damage at close 
range, but it can play havoc with its defensive capabilities.  In general, 
this attempt to increase shield offense at the cost of defense makes no 
sense, but since the shield rotation rate is high to begin with, it is still 
a useful subweapon.
-----BW3 Neo Circular Beta
Weapon Type:      Shielding (Piercing)
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          Rotating shield, small ball
Level 1:          Rotating shield, large ball
Level 2:          Rotating shields, 2 small ball
Level 3:          Rotating shields, 2 large balls

     Scar Face (B) has the Neo Circular Beta W3.  The NCBeta does not 
activate immediately, but when the subweapon button is pressed, a 
magenta/purple sphere flies out of the ship straight forward several ship 
lengths. After a slight delay, the sphere begins to rotate around the ship 
and continues to do so while the button is held down.  When the button is 
released, the sphere flies back to the ship at the same speed.   The NCBeta 
has a considerably slower rotation speed than the NCAlpha, which is a minus. 
Higher power levels of the NCBeta create increase the sphere size or add 
additional spheres.  Having multiple spheres increases the apparent rotation 
rate (since one sphere comes around every half rotation instead of full 
rotation) and thus multiple spheres makes this weapon much more useful.
     [Note] The ability to throw and retrieve the shield ball is extremely 
valuable as an advanced strategy.  By tapping the subweapon button 
repeatedly, an excellent frontal/rear shield can be formed.  Because of this, 
BW3 is actually more useful as a shield than any of the W2s, especially at 
higher power levels or when fighting ground-based enemies.  In addition, an 
advanced player can quickly call the shield back from its rotation and throw 
it out again to destroy bullets from the front, thus creating openings or 
protecting the ship.  This is useful against stationary ground targets.

-----GW3 Neo Circular Gamma
Weapon Type:      Shielding (Piercing)
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          Single fast (small) sphere at medium distance from ship
Level 1:          As Level 0, plus one very slow rotating sphere right next
                  to ship
Level 2:          Two fast spheres, medium distance; one slow sphere,
                  adjacent to ship
Level 3:          Two fast spheres, medium distance; two slow spheres,
                  adjacent to ship

     Hammer Duke (G) has the Neo Circular Gamma W3, which is similar to the 
Neo Circular Alpha W3, except the sphere is dark purple and does not slow 
down when it hits an enemy.  However, at higher levels, the two weapons are 
extremely different.  The NCGamma can power up to a total of four spheres 
instead of simply two as in the previous W3 weapons.  Two of the spheres 
rotate quickly around the ship at a distance and two rotate at a snail's pace 
adjacent to the ship.  GW3 covers the most area of all three W3s, but overall 
is not quite as versatile as BW3. 
     [Note] While the slow speed of the inner spheres looks undesirable, the 
protection afforded by the slow sphere is actually very good.  The slow 
rotation is predictable and you can "hide" behind it like a W2.   At the 
highest power level the slow spheres protect almost 180 degrees approach to 
the ship.


This weapon is different for each ship and does not have a unifying 
philosophy like the other weapons.  There is a slow but damaging missile, a 
rotating ball that slowly creeps its way up the screen, and a dual cannon 
that fires a series of hard-to-aim rings opposite to ship movement.  
Unfortunately, I tend to classify these weapons in my mind as the "hard to 
use" set of weapons (except perhaps RW4).   My best guess is that the missile 
is the odd-man-out, and the W4s are a set of area weapons.

-----RW4 Drill Missile
Weapon Type:      Piercing Missile, but degrades (see notes)
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          Two missiles
Level 1:          Three missiles
Level 2:          Four missiles
Level 3:          Five missiles

     Knife Edge (R) has the Drill Missile W4.  This W4 is a slow projectile 
weapon that fires a fairly narrow missile straight forward.  Shot speed is 
slow, but if the missile intersects a target, it stops and deals damage to 
that target until either the target dies or moves (at which point the missile 
continues) or the missile runs out of gas and disappears.  The initial power 
level allows Knife Edge to have two missiles on screen at a time, and 
subsequent levels of power add on to the number of simultaneous missiles on 
     [Note]  First of all, the Drill Missile is superior against fixed 
targets, since the missiles deal good amounts of damage; several missiles 
fired into a ground target means it is as good as dead and you can be 
elsewhere dodging while this happens.  However, the slow speed and narrow 
width of the projectile makes hitting the smaller enemies a losing 
proposition until the higher power levels are gained.  At that point, enough 
missiles can be used to have a moderate spread and the missiles can perform 
reasonably.   Even though it has drawbacks, this weapon is one of Knife 
Edge's only high-damage weapons, and for that reason it cannot be ignored for 
some boss battles.

-----BW4 Rolling Shot
Weapon Type:      Piercing Ball, but degrades (see notes)
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        5
Level 0:          Slow rotating single shot
Level 1:          Fast rotating single shot (Power up)
Level 2:          Slow rotating double shot (Power up)
Level 3:          Fast rotating double shot (Power up)
Level 4:          Very fast rotating double shot (Power up)
Level 5:          Hyper fast rotating double shot (Power up)

    Scar Face (B) has the Rolling Shot W4. For this W4, a small fireball is 
released from the ship, and rotates in a circle around an invisible point 
which slowly moves up the screen, taking the shot with it.  As the shot deals 
damage, the fireball "loses power" and shrinks, eventually disappearing if 
enough damage is dealt by it (a la the Drill Missiles).  This weapon is 
practically identical to the rolling shot weapon which appeared in The 
Guardian Legend (also by Compile, published by Broderbund); like in that 
game, successive power levels increase the power, speed of rotation, and 
eventually creates a double rolling shot.  
     [Notes]  If used in blast mode, the BW4 blocks indestructible enemy 
shots and you can hide in or behind the weapon (at higher levels). 
     [Notes]  The best use of the Rolling Shot W4 is to fire it so that it 
will clear out one side of the screen, and then cover the other side of the 
screen using your primary weapon.  In theory this is a good idea, but in 
practice the idea rarely works as intended.  The shot is too weak to deal 
serious damage to larger enemies, and it is too small and slow at the lower 
power levels to be effective at all.  Rolling Shot takes too many power-ups 
before it reaches a level where I would consider it very useful.  In 
addition, the slow shot speed and agonizing wait when the shot is misfired 
(and it will happen) make this weapon a disaster for beginner and 
intermediate players.  At the expert level perhaps it could be used to cover 
the screen for extending combos, but I was not able to figure out how to use 
this weapon effectively.

-----GW4 Ring Shot
Weapon Type:      Projectile Rings
Rear/Side:        Side
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate
Max Level:        5
Level 0:          Fire three rings from each side of ship, range ~4 ship
Level 1:          Fire three rings from each side of ship, increase range
Level 2:          Fire three rings from each side of ship, increase range
Level 3:          Fire three rings from each side of ship, increase range
Level 4:          Fire three rings from each side of ship, increase range
Level 5:          Fire three rings from each side of ship, increase range
                  (~80% vertical screen length)

     Hammer-Duke (G) has the Ring Shot W4.  As the name implies, the Ring 
Shot fires two sets of expanding rings outward from the two sides of the 
ships.  As the ship moves forward, the direction of fire rotates gradually so 
that soon the rings are firing almost backward to the left and right of the 
ship.  If the ship moves backward, the direction of fire rotates so that the 
rings are emitted almost straight forward.  If the ship stops or moves left 
or right, the rings fire in the last direction they were "set" in.  Rings 
initially only travel a few ship lengths away before evaporating, but 
subsequent power levels increase the range of the rings.  
     [Note] GW4 feels much like the Reverse Cannon RW0...with all the 
associated aiming problems.  When you move forward to attack, they will be 
firing backward. Although the weapon is arguably a good area weapon and thus 
valuable for screen-clearing defense, the direction of ring fire is so 
sensitive and difficult to predict that aiming the weapon is an exercise in 
frustration.  This is exacerbated by the fact that the ring range is 
extremely short at low power, so enemies can happily fire bullets point 
blank...which of course GW4 does not block.  In Blast Mode this weapon works 
significantly better since bullets are blocked, but it is still difficult to 
control, and like Rolling Shot BW4 is recommended for advanced players.  
     [Note]  One strategy for use is to "set" the weapon to fire somewhat 
forward of the left and right of the ship.  Then, you can sweep the screen by 
moving left and right; the firing direction of the W4 will not change.  This 
gives you a pretty good area of coverage...until something fires at you and 
you have to move forward or backward.  Ugh.


Weapon 5, like W4, is another puzzle.  There is a spreading projectile 
weapon, the yo-yo (a remake of Zanac NES W5), and a highly damaging remote 
control shot.  If I had to describe these weapons the best description is 
that these are big guns...they can all deal significant damage in the right 

-----RW5 Divide Cannon
Weapon Type:      Projectile (primary shot), Piercing Beams
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        5
Level 0:          Crystal Shot spreads to 3 beams on impact (~30 degrees)
Level 1:          Crystal Shot that spreads to 3 beams (Weapon speed up (?))
Level 2:          Crystal Shot spreads to 4 beams on impact (~60 degrees)
Level 3:          Crystal Shot spreads to 4 beams (Weapon speed up (?))
Level 4:          Crystal Shot spreads to 5 beams on impact (90 degrees)
Level 5:          Crystal Shot spreads to 7 beams on impact (120 degrees)

     Knife Edge (R) has the Divide Cannon W5.  The Divide Cannon fires a 
fairly large crystal, which travels forward at a medium-slow speed.  When 
(and if) it hits a target, it divides into a number of beams that spread out 
into an arc of firepower behind the main target.  Powering-up the Divide 
Cannon increases the spread of the arc (by increasing the number of beams).  
The crystal does unexpectedly high damage, and the beams are especially 
useful against groups of ground targets.
     [Note]  Since the spread of the Divide Cannon's quick beams occurs AFTER 
the slow projectile hits the main target, it is imperative to hit a target 
with it...preferably lower down on the screen so that the projectiles can 
actually spread out to hit something.   In theory, so far, so good.  But in 
practice this proves to be less that optimal.  The shot is slow, and only one 
shot can be fired at a time, so it is hard to hit small, fast-moving enemies.  
Thus, you have to save the shot for larger, slower enemies to have a shot at 
making it effective.  But when is the last time you've seen a large enemy 
come down to the bottom of the screen, with smaller enemies gathered behind 
it?  In fact, it rarely happens.  Does it work against ground targets?  Yes, 
if they're in groups it's particularly effective, but there are many other 
weapons that also work well against ground targets, c.f. Drill Missile RW4.   
During the flying portions of the stages, it appears as if the dominant 
strategy would be to fire point-blank into small ships (as is done with 
Zanac's W6 (Enemy Eraser)), creating a spread of beams as the small ship is 
vaporized.  Of course, this means taking significant risks for a glorified 
spread-shot.  Experts only.

-----BW5 Neo Rewinder
Weapon Type:      Piercing Rewinding Ball
Rear/Side:        No (but see notes)
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate (return to ship)
Max Level:        5
Level 0:          Slow spiral shot that rewinds
Level 1:          Medium speed spiral shot that rewinds
Level 2:          Medium speed rewinding shot, Medium power
Level 3:          High speed rewinding shot, Medium power
Level 4:          High speed rewinding shot, High power
Level 5:          Very High speed rewinding shot, High power

     Scar Face (B) has the Neo Rewinder W5, the direct successor to Zanac's 
Weapon 5.  Like the old Rewinder, it throws out a reasonably large rotating 
ball of energy straight forward which gradually slows to a stop about a half 
a screen away.  After pausing there for a short while, the ball flies back to 
the ship and disappears, homing in on the ship if necessary.  Powering up the 
weapon yields a projectile that is bigger, travels faster, and is more 
powerful.   Unfortunately, since the Neo Rewinder ball stays away from the 
ship for a long period of time before returning, especially at the lower 
power levels, it is less useful to protect you from getting rammed by enemies 
and destructible bullets.
     [Note] Although like all forward-firing weapons the Neo Rewinder tends 
to make your ship susceptible to side attacks, it is an excellent all-around 
offensive weapon, especially against ground targets.  The goal is to have the 
weapon stop over your target, dealing massive continual damage to it before 
returning.  Thus, for optimal use it is recommended that you memorize the 
distance that Neo Rewinder will fly before stopping.  For non-boss use, it 
also performs decently, since it is reasonably fast and quite powerful, 
clearing a straight path of enemies where it is fired.  
     [Note] The homing behavior of NR W5 can be exploited; if the ship moves 
out of the way of the Neo Rewinder, the ball of energy can be made to circle 
the ship.  (Side Note:  by continuously moving the ship in a circular 
direction, the ball can be kept out indefinitely, since Neo Rewinder turns 
slower than the ship can!).  This behavior gives a little bit of side attack 
area if the ball is allowed to circle the ship at least once before firing 
again.  Of course, too much circling is probably bad since you will not be 
able to fire Rewinder when you need it.
     [Note] Unlike Rewinder (original Zanac) Neo Rewinder does not become a
laser at high levels.

-----GW5 Remote Control Cannon
Weapon Type:      Piercing Ball
Rear/Side:        Yes
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        2
Level 0:          Remote control shot, medium
Level 1:          Remote control shot, large
Level 2:          Remote control shot, very large

     Hammer-Duke (G) has the respectable Remote Control Cannon W5.  GW5 
throws out a fairly large, bright ball of energy in the direction the ship is 
traveling (or straight if the ship is stopped).  The ball pierces through 
enemies and does excellent damage.  If the subweapon button is held down, 
then the movement of the player can cause the shot to turn in any direction; 
it can even be turned around to travel back the way it has come.  However, 
there is a catch:  the ship moves at a sluggish half speed while the 
subweapon is held down and dodging is nearly impossible (since controlling 
the shot also controls the ship at half speed).  If the button is released, 
the shot continues in whatever direction it was going before the button was 
let go (and the ship resumes normal speed).   Higher levels of GW5 create a 
larger ball of energy, making it easier to hit targets.
     [Note]  I believe GW5 is deadly in the hands of an expert.  By itself it 
does excellent damage, and can be used as a powerful multidirectional 
piercing shot in a pinch (simply press in a direction and tap the button); 
thus, it is an obvious substitute for GW0.  If the shot is controlled by 
holding the button down, it can be made to move in short strokes left and 
right across a target repeatedly, without leaving the screen.  This does 
incredible damage, similar to the Rewinder.   Finally, for the real expert, 
the subweapon button can be let go to dodge an enemy bullet...and by pressing 
the button again, control can be resumed before the RCC shot leaves the 
screen.  This allows a player to get around the problem of dodging. Perhaps 
the best use of the RCC (though an expert touch is needed) is to do the 
reverse; fire the shot and take control of the shot for only the split second 
needed to change the shot's direction.  If the player is skilled enough, you 
have a shot that turns right angles on command, while retaining the ship's 
ability to dodge.  An easy way to start this is to fire the shot, and release 
the subweapon button.  When the shot reaches the same vertical height as the 
enemy, press the subweapon button and the left or right direction 
simultaneously and release.  The shot will make a single left or right turn, 
hit the enemy, and exit the screen.  This will allow you to attack enemies 
with an angle shot.  Finally, increasing the power level increases the size 
of the shot, and the weapon quickly powers up to the maximum level.  If the 
weapon is used in blast mode, the RCC can be swept left and right across the 
front of the ship, clearing bullets from the front.
     [Note]  Another interesting trick is to use the weapon as a shield.  At 
the very bottom of the screen, hold back and continuously fire the subweapon 
into the bottom of the screen.  You will form a shield around your ship with 
the weapon.  This shield will make you immune to some destructible shots and 
some slow-moving enemies (watch out for fast enemies!). If you are in blast 
mode, the shield will also protect you from indestructible bullets.  You can 
move right and left without breaking the shield by pointing diagonally 
down/left and down/right.  This is perhaps not a killer strategy but it can 
help against with those claws (Degid) that come down the sides of the 


All of the W6s are grenade-type or explosive weapons.  The weapons are 
typically slow, very small area, very high damage weapons, and are suitable 
for a strong offense.  However, the low rate of fire might make them 
difficult against faster enemies.

-----RW6 Blast Bomb
Weapon Type:      Piercing Explosion
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate
Max Level:        4
Level 0:          Tossed single grenade, small explosion at set distance
Level 1:          Tossed single grenade, large explosion at set distance
Level 2:          Tossed double grenades, small explosion
Level 3:          Tossed double grenades, large explosion
Level 4:          Triple grenades

     Knife-Edge (R) has the Blast Bomb W6.  The Blast Bomb is a grenade that 
is tossed straight forward from the ship at a medium speed and explodes into 
a medium size transparent red explosion.  The Blast Bomb always travels the 
same distance before exploding, and intervening enemies and obstacles neither 
impede nor detonate the bomb. Increasing the level of power of this weapon 
increases the size and number of grenades thrown simultaneously, up to three 
simultaneous explosions that cover much of the top of the screen.  
     [Note] Like other W6 weapons, RW6 does excellent damage, but its 
complete lack of protective power might make the possession of this weapon a 
death warrant for the less skilled; hitting small or fast enemies with a low 
power RW6 is practically always by chance.  At the highest levels, the 
situation improves since much of the screen is being covered.  Even with this 
formidable power level, though, the weapon does nothing against enemies close 
to the ship and thus is primarily useful for larger or stationary targets on 
the top half of the screen.

-----BW6 Spread Plasma
Weapon Type:      Piercing Explosion
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        2
Level 0:          Single plasma bomb, small explosion (diameter=1.5 ship)
Level 1:          Single plasma bomb, medium explosion (diameter=3 ship)
Level 2:          Single plasma bomb, medium explosion (diameter=5 ship)

     Scar Face (B) has the Spread Plasma W6.  This weapon operates similarly 
to the first three levels of Zanac's W6, without the screen-clearing 
explosion.  The weapon fires a small ball from the front of the ship which 
proceeds to travel forward at a horribly slow speed.  If, and only if, the 
ball contacts the enemy it explodes into a spherical blue plasma explosion 
which deals incredible damage. At the lower power levels, this weapon is 
fairly difficult to use, but increasing power levels means not only a larger 
explosion (up to 1/4 the screen in size) but a larger fired ball, so that 
hitting targets and causing the explosion becomes easier as well. 
     [Notes]  Like Blast Bomb RW6 the Spread Plasma has incredible difficulty 
hitting smaller targets.  A good strategy is to fire your plasma balls near 
point-blank at the enemy, thus ensuring a) a protective explosion, and b) the 
ability to fire another plasma ball soon instead of waiting for the ball to 
float off of the screen. This means that unlike the Blast Bomb W6 (R) which 
is used primarily in the top half of the screen, the Spread Plasma is used 
more easily in the lower half of the screen.  At long range, the weapon is 
too slow to effectively hit a non-stationary target.

-----GW6 Auto Aiming Blaster
Weapon Type:      Piercing Explosions
Rear/Side:        Yes
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        5
Level 0:          Three rotating reticles 120 degrees apart, maximum 3
                  explosions simultaneously
Level 1:          As level 0, but reticles rotate faster
Level 2:          Four rotating reticles 90 degrees apart, maximum 4 
                  explosions simultaneously
Level 3:          As level 2, but reticles rotate faster
Level 4:          Five rotating reticles 72 degrees apart, maximum 5
                  explosions simultaneously
Level 5:          As level 4, but reticles rotate faster

     Hammer Duke (G) has the incredible Auto Aiming Blaster W6.  The weapon 
appears as a series of aiming reticles which rotate around the ship, 
approximately a quarter to a third of the screen in radius away from it.  If 
any of the aiming reticles pass over an enemy (or destructible bullet) then 
the cannon automatically fires a shell from the ship, causing a small 
explosion similar to the lowest level of Spread Plasma at the target 
location.  No button press is needed to fire the weapon.  Each reticle can 
independently fire a single one of these plasma bullets and as far as I can 
tell, this means that you can have as many explosions on-screen as there are 
reticles.  Each level of power on GW6 alternately increases either the number 
of reticles (from three to five) or the speed of rotation.  The subweapon 
button, if pressed, reverses the reticle rotation.  
     [Note]  If desired, pressing the subweapon button rapidly can force a 
reticle to remain over one target, firing plasma at a fixed rate.  Other than 
this effect, I'm not sure what the rotation reversal button is for.
     [Note]  GW6 is one of the stronger weapons in the game due to its 
omnidirectionality, power, and area of coverage.  Unlike many other weapons, 
it is simultaneously easy to use and fairly effective.  Its one weakness is 
that the range of the weapon is just a few inches too short for many battles, 
and using GW6 as effective offense requires virtually standing next to the 
target at times.  This is especially apparent in some boss battles where the 
desired target is located on the other side of a bunch of indestructible 
bullets.  Still, all things considered, the weapon is one of the most 
powerful in the impressive Hammer Duke arsenal and it is suggested that 
beginners try out GW6 first as a method of quick success.
     [Note] To hold combos, it is necessary to be able to move an empty 
reticle over the desired targets.  Keep a view on the entire screen and move 
just enough to cover the target.  Reverse directions if necessary.


W7s are versatile and quick weapons with generally low power, and are 
generally very good for smaller, faster enemies, and maintaining combos, 
especially for Scar Face and Knife-Edge's W7s, which have high rates of fire. 
Hammer Duke's GW7 is much slower firing but covers a larger area.  Due to 
their lower power, W7s seem to unfortunately take several powerups to reach 
useful power levels.

-----RW7 Hyper Velocity
Weapon Type:      Projectile
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate
Max Level:        5
Level 0:          Small energy wave, low fire speed 
Level 1:          Small energy wave, high fire speed
Level 2:          Medium energy wave, low fire speed
Level 3:          Medium energy wave, high fire speed
Level 4:          Large energy wave, low fire speed
Level 5:          Large energy wave, high fire speed

    Knife-Edge (R) has the Hyper Velocity W7.  This weapon fires a wave from 
the rear of the ship which travels a few ship lengths backward and then turns 
around to fly straight forward up the screen.  If the ship is standing still, 
the wave goes straight back and then forward, but if the ship is moving left 
or right, then the wave fires to the right rear or left rear of the ship and 
travels horizontally some distance before flying straight forward.  This 
means you can "shake" the wave beam to cover more area by making quick 
left/right movements, much like Zanac's "High Speed" W7.  Powering the weapon 
up alternately increases the rate of fire (important!), and the size and 
power of the wave.  
     [Note] RW7 is probably one of the very best weapons to hold a combo 
with.  It has pretty much the perfect match of powers for this:  1)  fire 
rate is high, and it fires continuously, 2) the projectiles travel very fast, 
3) the weapon can hit enemies behind the ship, and 4) the weapon can hit 
enemies to the side of the ship.  By shaking the beam you can clear nearly 
the entire screen if the weapon is fully powered.  In addition, the weapon 
passes through the ship's local area on the way forward, which allows a 
greater measure of protection than simple fire-and-forget weapons.   When 
combined with Knife-Edge's high mobility, I believe this series of traits 
makes RW7 one of the more effective sub-weapons in the game.  
     [Note] There are two weaknesses to consider. W7 has a long powerup curve 
and you will have trouble in situations where you are dying often (i.e. Very 
Hard) because level 0 is generally quite pathetic. It also has somewhat 
limited power and thus destroying certain late-game bosses and enemies can go 
slowly.  Consider switching weapons if you are at a boss and you die.

-----BW7 Rapid Cannon
Weapon Type:      Projectile
Rear/Side:        No (but has some left-right movement)
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate
Max Level:        5

Level 0:          Four small energy bursts, large pause between firing
Level 1:          Four small energy bursts, medium pause between firing
Level 2:          Four medium energy bursts, medium pause between firing
Level 3:          Four medium energy bursts, small pause between firing
Level 4:          Four sets of double (i.e. 8) medium energy bursts, 
                  small pause between firing
Level 5:          Five sets of double (i.e. 10) medium energy bursts, 
                  small pause between firing

    Scar Face (B) has the Rapid Cannon W7.  This weapon at first glance looks 
similar to Zanac's "High Speed" W7.  The Rapid Cannon fires a series of 
bursts of energy from the front of the ship.  If the ship is not moving left 
or right, all the bursts go forward, but if the ship is moving left or right 
the bursts fire in a sequential arc moving from the ship's front to about 30 
degrees in the direction of the ship's movement.  This spread fire allows the 
weapon to cover more area, increasing its effectiveness.  Powering up the 
weapon increases the number and side of bursts.
     [Note] Although similar in idea to Zanac NES W7, BW7 has one large flaw: 
there is a long and dangerous pause between each sequence of bursts that it 
fires.  Also, it is impossible to "shake" the beam instantaneously as can be 
done with RW7 or Zanac's "High Speed".  Once the bursts start coming out, 
they do not change direction.  However, the wide area of BW7 is at least 
equivalent or better than its alternatives, except for perhaps the extremely 
versatile W0 (B).  At higher power levels, BW7 is a welcome addition to the 
arsenal, and it is not too shabby at lower levels.

-----BW7 Viper Missile
Weapon Type:      Projectile
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        3
Level 0:          Two missiles, hourglass pattern
Level 1:          (4 missiles) Two missiles in hourglass pattern, two missiles
                  in spread pattern
Level 2:          (6 missiles) Two missiles in hourglass, four missiles in wide
                  spread pattern
Level 3:          (8 missiles) Four missiles in wide hourglass, four missiles
                  in wide spread pattern

     Hammer Duke (G) has the Viper Missile W7.  The viper missiles fire a 
small cluster of missiles from the rear of the ship.  The missiles travel a 
few ship lengths backward, and then pause for a short while as they turn 
around to face forward.  Then they dart forward at high speed, tracing out an 
interesting hourglass pattern which generally causes them to cover a wide 
column in front of the ship.  Getting weapon power-ups increase the number of 
missiles from two to eight.  The higher level missiles fire in a wider 
pattern, eventually covering a wide range to the back and side of the ship.   
     [Note]  GW7 is quite useful.  Although the annoying pause makes the 
weapon fire much slower than either W7 (R) or W7 (B), the missiles themselves 
cover a generous area especially at higher levels, and thus compensate 
greatly for Hammer Duke's inherent lack of speed.  For this reason it is 
important to have the weapon powered up as quickly as possible.  If you wish 
to hit a single target with more missiles, you will notice that there is a 
"bottleneck" in the hourglass pattern where the missiles travel through on 
their way up the screen.  Memorize the distance to the bottleneck and place 
the enemy at that point. The bottleneck also creates some holes in your 
firing pattern which you also have to take into account.
     [Note] An interesting fact of GW7 is that you can rush with it, much 
like BW0.  However, in this case, you have to place the enemy just to the 
rear of the ship.  Only one set of missiles can be on the screen at one 
time...but a new set fires as soon as all of the old set hits their target.  
If you place the rear of your ship on top of the enemy (hopefully while you 
are invulnerable) you can get a rapid fire effect.  Unfortunately, it is 
difficult to position the ship correctly for this move, and when you are 
above the enemy your primary weapon is not hitting it either.  Considering 
the risk, it's probably best not to use this unless you have just lost your 
ship...or you have plenty of power chips to jump from.


[XIV] FC CUSTOM (Machine #0 = Zero Gouki)

Ship Speed:  Medium Fast (9.7 ship widths/sec)

The FC Custom, or Machine #0, is a hidden ship in Zanac Neo, probably 
intended to be a reward for fans of Zanac NES.  The ship's weapon set is a 
slightly rebalanced version of the weapons of the original Zanac NES ship.  
The appearance and color is also similar to that of the old Zanac NES ship.  
Unlike the newer Neo ships, the FC possesses no charge gauge and thus cannot 
use charge shots or blast mode.  Instead, the gauge indicates energy 
remaining in the current subweapon (if necessary), emulating the weapon 
degradation existing in the original game.  The FC custom is perhaps the 
perfect speed, below that of Knife-Edge, but above that of Scar-Face, 
allowing it to easily hold combos but not being too fast to maneuver.

[XIV.1] Obtaining the FC Custom

There are two ways to obtain the FC Custom ship:

1.  Save game data from the original Zanac (you don't even have to play
    it), then create a player file in Zanac Neo and play 20 games using
2.  At the ship select screen, press Left, Left, Up, Up, L1, R1, L1,
    R1, L2, R2. 

[XIV.2] FC Custom Main Gun

The FC Custom ship has a different powerup progression, based loosely off of 
the original Zanac ship.  Unlike ordinary Neo ships, a maximum of two or 
three bullets are allowed on the screen simultaneously, and there is no blast 
mode.  Notice that bullet velocities of the FC Custom ship are lower than the 
Neo ships, thus it is expected to do less damage at long range.

The following chart describes the FC Custom Main Gun (bullet velocities again 
in ship widths/sec).

Chips     Gun Type              #          Total Proj          Bullet
          (FC Custom)         Shots       Width (%ship)       Velocity
-----     ------------------  -----       -------------       --------
0         Thin Single Beam      2             17                18.3
1         Thick Single Beam     3             27                21.7
2         Thin Double Beams     2             60                24.3
3         Thick Double Beams    3             70                26.7
4         Thick Triple Beams    2             113               29.7
5         Thick Triple Beams    3             113               32.7
32*       Wide Beam (triple)    3             243 (!)**         35.3

*   As before, you must get 32 chips without switching subweapons, or hit an 
Eye-eye, to get the Wide shot powerup.

**  Unlike the Neo ship Wide shot, the FC Custom Wide shot originates from 
points directly to the left and right of your ship, providing excellent 
protection from the side.  The Neo ship Wide shot is still wider than the 
ship but originates from above the ship nose.

[XIV.3] Lander Progression for FC Custom
The effect of red Landers extends beyond three for the FC Custom ship, as it 
did in the original Zanac.  The weapon fire delays and shots per second while 
rushing are estimated below.

# Red Landers        Delay (msec)          Shots/Sec             
(for FC Custom)
---------------      ----------            ---------
0                    100                   10
1                    85                    12
2                    67                    15
3                    50                    20
4                    35                    29
5                    17                    58
6                    "                     "

[Note] Level 5 of this seems a little insane (six times more powerful than 
normal shot, three times the highest speed of Neo ships), but that's what 
calculations tell me.  And under practical use, Lander Level 5 does seem to 
allow me to destroy the Area 0 brains in under one second of sustained fire, 
so perhaps that's correct.

[XIV.4] FC Custom Subweapon Descriptions

FC Custom weapons are updated versions of the original Zanac NES weapons, 
except they are hideously unbalanced in this game. It is not because of their 
destructive capability; while the FC Custom weapons have a great deal of 
power, so do for instance GW6 or GW1.  I believe that FC Custom weapons are 
powerful primarily because pretty much all of them block or destroy 
"indestructible" bullets.  It is easily seen that the Zanac Neo designers 
considered bullet-blocking as a major power; only shields (RW2, BW2, GW2, 
RW3, BW3, GW3) can normally do this, forcing the player to trade off offense 
for defense.  Blast mode was designed to give the player limited ability to 
block bullets with an offensive weapon.  In disregard for this tuning,
weapons like FCW7 are piercing, fire fast, have strong offense, AND block
bullets; a fantastic combination that is absent in the weapons of the three
"normal" ships.  Overall, a bit *too* excellent to provide a balanced
challenge (compared to Neo ships).

Like original Zanac weapons, FC weapons have a power gauge timer, which is 
displayed instead of the charge gauge of the Neo ships.  Depending on the 
weapon, the gauge either counts down automatically when the weapon is being 
used, or holds a certain amount of "shots".  When the gauge is exhausted, 
then the ship reverts back to FCW0.  However, the current level of the 
exhausted weapon is retained and the player can switch back to that weapon at 
a later time.  The gauge is recharged fully when a subweapon powerup is 
obtained, or the ship is destroyed.

Unlike the original Zanac ship, the FC does not revert back to FCW0 when you 
lose each ship, but keeps the last obtained subweapon like Neo ships do. 

-----FCW0 All Range Cannon
Weapon Type:      Projectile (Level 0-2), Shielding Projectile (Level 3)
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        3
Gauge:            None
Level 0:          Fire one small energy ball in any of eight directions
Level 1:          Fire two small energy balls (adjacent) in any of eight
Level 2:          Fire two small energy balls (wide pattern, 1 ship width
                  apart) in any of eight directions
Level 3:          As level 2, but destroys indestructible bullets

     FCW0 is the familiar All Range Cannon, almost identical to BW0.  FCW0 
can be used for "rushing" much like BW0.  The upper levels of FCW0 are wider 
and thus easier to hit with.  However, unlike BW0, the upper levels of FCW0 
are still single projectiles and deal the same amount of damage as lower 
levels.  Finally, like in the original Zanac, FCW0 gains the power to destroy 
indestructible enemy bullets at Level 3 (although it is still not piercing).

-----FCW1 Straight Crusher
Weapon Type:      Piercing Shielding Ball
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        2
Gauge:            Per Shot
Level 0:          Fire large slow moving energy ball straight forward
Level 1:          Fire two large, slow moving energy balls straight forward,
                  wide pattern (1 ship width)
Level 2:          Fire single very large energy ball straight forward,
                  increased shot speed

     FCW1, Straight Crusher, is an improved version of Zanac NES W1, with 
updated graphics, larger shot area, and better shot speed.  FCW1 is very 
similar to RW1 in that it fires a ball of energy at a relatively slow speed, 
moving straight forward until it leaves the screen.  Unlike RW1, it pierces 
through and destroys enemy bullets.  The "sonic boom" and white wave graphics 
do not affect enemies, only the blue ball is destructive.  Higher power 
levels increase the weapon area of coverage, and at level 2, there is a
noticeable increase in shot speed (and thus shot rate).  Shot gauge decreases
very slowly and is generally not a concern.
     [Note] The wide pattern, Level 1, are two separate sprites and bullets can
pass between them...possibly to your detriment.  
     [Note] The wide pattern bullets also appear to the left and right of your 
ship.  This actually provides some cover from the side, since they block 
indestructible bullets.  Of course, the fire rate is pretty slow so it's not 
that good of a shield.

-----FCW2 Field Shutter
Weapon Type:      Shielding (degrades)
Rear/Side:        Side and Rear
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        3
Gauge:            Per Hit absorbed
Level 0:          Shield bubble surrounds ship, 18 hits of shield power
Level 1:          Similar to Level 0 ?
Level 2:          Similar to Level 1 ?
Level 3:          Similar to Level 2 ?

     FCW2 Field Shutter is the equivalent of the Zanac "Shield" W2.   Unlike 
Zanac NES W2 which protected the front and sides of the ship in an arc, the 
FCW2 protects the entire ship from enemy shots and one-hit enemies.  
Unfortunately, unlike the Zanac W2 which could have up to 140 hits, FCW2 does
not last very long at all, and most of the time the player will end up
protecting the shield rather than vice versa.  
     [Note]  Notice that while the shield is on, the player cannot take 
advantage of item invulnerability (ramming enemies drains the shield).  This 
is a major limitation which makes this weapon one to be avoided.  Ah, useless 
weapon 2:  just like Zanac NES!
     [Note]  In Zanac NES, powering up Field Shutter would give you more hits
on the shield.  This doesn't seem to be the case with FCW2, and I wonder why
the Zanac Implementors did not take this opportunity to "fix" W2 over the
original Zanac.  Either that or I don't understand FCW2's powerup system
     [Note]  In Zanac NES, getting enough Field Shutter powerups would give 
you a full-ship shield that made you invulnerable for 90 seconds, once per 
game.  I have not yet identified whether this shield exists in Zanac Neo.  So 
far, I suspect not.

-----FCW3 Circular
Weapon Type:      Shielding (Piercing)
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        5
Gauge:            Timed
Level 0:          Single small energy ball rotates around ship, low rotation
Level 1:          Single small energy ball rotates around ship, high rotation
Level 2:          Two (adjacent) small energy balls rotate around ship, low
                  rotation speed
Level 3:          Two (adjacent) small energy balls rotate around ship, high
                  rotation speed
Level 4:          Two (wide pattern) small energy balls rotate around ship, 
                  low rotation speed
Level 5:          Two (wide pattern) small energy balls rotate around ship,
                  high rotation speed

     FCW3 Circular is nearly identical to the similar BW3, except the energy 
balls are considerably smaller.  The powerup of FCW3 is a little different, 
each powerup alternately changes the speed and the shield's area of coverage.  
Like in BW3 and RW3, it is fairly easy for enemy bullets to slip through the 
shield and thus it must be used with caution even at higher levels.   Like 
BW3, it does not hit ground-based enemies.  It seems to rotate a little 
faster than BW3.
     [Note]  Since most FC weapons already are shielding, FCW3's powers are
relatively less special in this subweapon set.

-----FCW4 Vibrator
Weapon Type:      Piercing Shielding Ball
Rear/Side:        No (but see notes)
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate (but see notes)
Max Level:        2
Gauge:            Per Shot
Level 0:          Medium size energy ball flies forward and vibrates left
                  to right
Level 1:          Large size energy ball flies forward and vibrates left to
                  right, increased durability?
Level 2:          Very Large size energy ball flies forward and vibrates left
                  to right, increased durability?

     FCW4 Vibrator.  No, I didn't name this weapon, I'm just reading it out 
of the manual...so you can all stop thinking what I'm sure you're thinking.  
FCW4 is a difficult weapon to describe.  When fired, an energy ball flies out 
of the ship and sets up a rapid left-to-right oscillatory motion at a certain 
distance in front of the ship.  FCW4's energy ball stays in that oscillation 
until it absorbs a certain amount of hits and is destroyed (the ball will 
shrink to indicate power loss), or it will slowly exit toward the top of the 
screen if it is left alone for a number of seconds.  Higher levels mean a 
larger energy ball, which covers more area and is also more durable.   FCW4, 
like most FC weapons, blocks indestructible enemy shots.
     [Note]  Careful observation reveals that FCW4 actually overshoots 
forward a bit, and then pulls back slightly to settle in its oscillation 
path.  Memorize the firing distance and fire it so that it settles in a path 
over ground targets, dealing damage and blocking bullets simultaneously.  
     [Note]  Another use of FCW4 is to fire it on one side and let it cover 
that side while you cover the other side with your primary weapon.  This 
works much better at higher levels of FCW4.  Just like BW4, except it really 
     [Note]  At Level 2, the ball is large enough so the ship can hide in it 
or behind it, avoiding indestructible and destructible enemy bullets.

-----FCW5 Rewinder
Weapon Type:      Piercing Shielding Yo-yo (Level 0-3), Piercing Shielding
                  Laser (Level 4-6) 
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate
Max Level:        6
Gauge:            Per Shot
Level 0:          Medium size energy ball flies forward and returns to ship
Level 1:          Medium size energy ball flies forward and returns to ship,
                  increased speed
Level 2:          Two (adjacent)  medium size energy balls, increased speed
Level 3:          Two (adjacent)  medium size energy balls, further increased
Level 4:          High speed laser, three ship lengths long
Level 5:          High speed laser, six ship lengths long
Level 6:          High speed laser, length of entire screen

     FCW5 Rewinder (Yo-yo ball to some) is almost the same as BW5, with some 
interesting differences.  The weapon fires an energy ball that flies forward 
and slows to a stop 3/4 up the screen.  After pausing for a short time at the 
end of its flight, it falls back toward the player's ship and is recaptured.  
Only one ball can be fired at a time.  Unlike the fire-and-forget BW5, the 
FCW5 tracks the motion of the ship, so you have to be in front of the target 
to deal damage to it.  Increasing the weapon levels alternately increases the 
area of effect, or the weapon flight speed.  
     [Note] However, when the weapon reaches power level 4, it mutates into a 
laser.  The laser is a thin (low area coverage) straight-firing beam weapon 
which also tracks with the ship, much like GW1.  The laser can be raised to 
power level 6; successive levels increase the laser length (and thus the 
damage per shot).  The laser is fantastically powerful and blocks enemy 
bullets like the balls.
     [Note] The energy ball returns to the ship much faster than it did in 
Zanac NES W5.  This means it is a "safer" weapon but deals a little bit less 
damage than in that game.  Zanac NES W5 was much harder to keep up until the 
laser because the weapon clearly lacked defense; when you were in the lower 
half of the screen, your weapon was in the upper half.  Obviously the FC 
Custom has lessened that problem.
     [Note]  This is the only weapon in the game that has a maximum power 
level of 6.  The laser is powerful but it has little defense, so it is best 
paired with a wide-shot primary weapon.  The best way to reach Level 6 is to 
get FCW5 right before a full-power face (Ai-ai), giving you maximum level and 
wide shot simultaneously.

-----FCW6 Plasma Flash
Weapon Type:      Projectile Shielding Plasma Bomb(Level 0-1),
                  Shielding Plasma Flash (Level 2-4), Projectile Shielding
                  Free Man Bomb (Level 5)
Rear/Side:        The Whole Damn Screen
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        5
Gauge:            Per Shot
Level 0:          Fire energy bomb, 13 shots
Level 1:          Fire energy bomb, 13 shots
Level 2:          Energy burst, 13 shots
Level 3:          Energy burst, 13 shots
Level 4:          Energy burst, 13 shots
Level 5:          Free man energy bomb (1 shot, limit 1 per game); after
                  that, Energy burst, 13 shots

     FCW6 Plasma Flash is a near-perfect copy of Zanac NES W6, which was a 
radical gameplay addition and perhaps the most impressive weapon in that 
game.  The weapon is simply a small plasma ball which is fired forward from 
the ship and travels extremely slowly.  However, when it hits any enemy or 
bullet (destructible or indestructible), it explodes in a flash that destroys 
all flying enemies and bullets on the screen.  In any other game, this would 
be known as a "bomb" but in Zanac it's simply another type of subweapon, you 
get 13 of them.  At higher levels, no plasma ball is fired; the weapon simply 
destroys everything on the screen in a burst of energy every time the button 
is pressed.  
     [Note]  A qualification on "destroys everything on screen":  Testing 
with FCW6 suggests that it deals two points (where 1 pt = 1 shot with main 
gun) of damage to almost everything flying on the screen.  Some exceptions:
FCW6 destroys boxes, which are worth 5 "points"; FCW6 doesn't appear to harm
the asteroids in Area 1.  Maybe they're "ground" enemies?
     [Note]  There are a few limitations to FCW6:  you have a very limited
supply of bombs, and the plasma flash does not affect enemies on the ground
and certain larger enemies.  FCW6 is generally a defensive weapon, although
it's screen-clearing flash helps to hit bosses hiding behind clutter of
their own making. However, if you happen to have a full load of FCW6, you
can use it to deal around 26 damage to each part of a multipart flying boss
such as the hard-to-hit end boss of Area 8.  FCW6 seems especially strong
versus that boss; on Normal Difficulty, two full loads of FCW6 was able to
pretty much destroy it.
     [Note]  At lower levels, you need the plasma ball to hit something in 
order to flash the screen; if it doesn't hit something then it will simply 
float up the screen with excruciating slowness.  To prevent this, don't fire 
it unless an enemy or bullet is almost point blank.  Don't fire right at 
point blank; FCW6 is an autofire weapon and you will use multiple bombs, 
especially if you are firing at a bigger opponent.
     [Note]  The infamous "free man bomb" is in the game!  The first time 
maximum level is reached with FCW6, you will gain a single energy bomb which 
will turn every enemy currently on the screen into a blue lander (free man) 
when it strikes.  Use it wisely, because only one such bomb can be obtained 
per game.  After that, level 5 in this weapon acts exactly like Levels 2-4.
     [Note]  In Zanac NES you got 20 shots instead of 13.  Perhaps they felt 
it was too powerful after all?
-----FCW7 High Speed
Weapon Type:      Piercing Shielding Wave
Rear/Side:        No (but see notes)
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        2
Gauge:            Per Shot
Level 0:          Fire small energy ball wave; high speed, low area coverage
Level 1:          Fire medium energy ball wave; lower speed, higher area
Level 2:          Fire large energy ball wave; lower speed, higher area

     FCW7 has, in my mind, been slightly downgraded from its status in Zanac 
NES.  The weapon fires a energy ball straight forward which can be "shaken"; 
i.e. if the ship is steered left then the weapon fire line leans ~30 degrees 
left and if the ship is steered right, the weapon fire line leans 30 degrees 
right.  The functionality of this weapon is similar to BW7, but the firing is 
continuous, and FCW7 also blocks bullets.  Higher levels slow down the fire 
speed but increase the ball size.  
     [Note] FCW7 is an excellent general weapon; it can be steered in a 
certain direction but it does not have as much directionality as FCW0 and is 
thus easier to use.  It also blocks bullets and powers up quickly to maximum 
level.  You can move the joypad left and right rapidly to sweep the beam 
across most of the screen.  This happens instantaneously, unlike BW7.
     [Note]  You might notice that it appears that the ball "skips" between 
discreet sites on the screen.  This is not a graphic error, the weapon 
actually can only hit certain spots on the screen, and enemies and shots can 
pass horizontally between these sites; you can confirm this yourself.  Higher 
levels of this weapon actually add more "sites" but the ball stays in each 
site the same length of time:  ergo, the weapon fires slower but covers more 
area of the screen.



The original 8-bit version of Zanac NES can be played from the same Zanac X 
Zanac disk by selecting it from the menu which appears when the CD is first 
booted.  Original Zanac remains generally faithful to the original versions 
of the game, complete with original graphics and synthesized sounds.  In
addition, a brand new remix version of Zanac has been included.  For fans of
Zanac whose NES systems have gone on the blink, this option alone is probably
worth the purchase.

[XV.1] Original Zanac Modes

The first thing you'll notice upon selecting Zanac from the main title screen 
is that you're presented with four different versions of the game: 

* Disk Version * 
The original Famicom Disk System version. 

* ROM Version *
The NES version that I'd guess most of the people reading this are most 
familiar with. There are some slight differences between this and the FDS 
version; so far I've noticed some differences in subweapon placement (notably 
some extra Plasma Flash and All Range Cannon chips in Area 1) and that mini-
bosses now change colors as you damage them. The options menu for this 
version includes a "ROM Plus" setting. I have no idea if ROM Plus mode is 
meant to represent any actual previous Zanac release, but what it does do is 
increase the number of objects that can appear on-screen. (Read: enemies are 
now able to flood the screen with more bullets. Have fun!)

* Special Version *
A brand new version exclusive to Zanac X Zanac. This one has some differences 
in enemy patterns (well, more so than usual anyway :), and many subweapons 
have different behaviour as well. I especially love the fire-breathing Rio. 
:) Fortress battles also give you extra bonus points for time remaining on 
the clock in this mode.  On the other hand, this mode has its enemy accuracy 
and max on-screen object parameters set higher than the Disk and ROM 
versions, meaning it is noticeably more difficult (given equal difficulty 

[Note]  In general it seems like the idea behind Special is to make you more 
powerful but the enemies more numerous and powerful as well.  You seem to get 
a lot of stuff in Special, but you also have to deal with lots of enemies.

* Score Trial *
Select one of 16 different courses and try to score as high as you can! Some 
of the courses are familiar Zanac levels (or portions thereof); others are 
brand new challenges. 

* Edit Mode *
Upon fulfilling certain conditions (which are unfortunately currently 
uncertain to those of us on this side of the Pacific), this mode unlocks. 
From the option menu you can alter many aspects of the game, such as enemy 
shot accuracy, enemy frequency, and subweapon set (your choice of the Disk 
Version set, ROM Version set, or Special Version set.) 

[Note] It is currently believed that finishing the Disk, ROM, and Special 
versions at Normal difficulty without continuing will unlock Edit Mode; this 
worked for me but it could be the case that you need certain statistics in 
Neo as well for this to work.  Save after each victory before exiting to the 
main menu, just to be sure.  If you turn off the machine and reboot, you must 
go into any other mode and perform a Load operation, otherwise Edit Mode will 
not appear.

[XV.2] Zanac Menu Translations

Most of the menus are in English, with the exception of the Option menus,
which will be translated below. Note that there are no auto-save and auto-
load functions in Zanac (unlike Zanac Neo), so you will need to load before 
each play session and save after each play session to keep track of your 
accomplishments. (Saving or loading in any one mode will save or load data 
from all modes.)

[Note] It is worth mentioning that you can exit a play mode of Zanac by
pressing Start, Select, R1, R2, L1, and L2 simultaneously.  I don't think
this is mentioned anywhere in the manual.

[Note] New to the Zanac X Zanac versions of Zanac is the difficulty
setting. The default Normal setting is where most players familiar with the
old NES versions (or veterans of shooters in general) will want to place
it. Very Easy makes several gameplay alterations. All weapons (main
and subweapon) destroy indestructible enemy bullets, and the amount of
invincibility time you get from picking up Power Chips has approximately
doubled. (Strangely, the Wide Shot is disabled in Very Easy.) Everyone
except the most inexperienced novice will probably wish to avoid this
mode. Hard and Very Hard are there for those of you who can beat the Giga
Wing games without dying. :)  [WY:  Or like seeing your ship's explosion
graphics, there's plenty of that to be had.]

Disk Version Option Menu
Exit                 - Return to game menu
Sound Test           - Press O to start playing the selected sound bite or 
                       music track
Game Difficulty      - Alters difficulty of the game.
Final Fortress Timer - Turn off to have unlimited time to defeat the
                       final fortress.
Button Setup         - See Below
Game Load            - Loads previously saved data (for all modes)
Game Save            - Saves current game data (for all modes)

ROM Version Option Menu
Exit                 - Return to game menu
Sound Test           - Press O to start playing the selected sound bite 
                       or music track
Game Difficulty      - Alters difficulty of the game.
Ship Speed           - Alters the speed of your ship.
ROM Plus             - ROM Plus mode allows for more on-screen objects
                       (read: enemy bullets!)
Final Fortress Timer - Turn off to have unlimited time to defeat the
                       final fortress.
Button Setup         - See below
Game Load            - Loads previously saved data (for all modes)
Game Save            - Saves current game data (for all modes)

Special Version Option Menu
Exit                 - Return to game menu
Sound Test           - Press O to start playing the selected sound bite or 
                       music track
Game Difficulty      - Alters difficulty of the game.
Ship Speed           - Alters the speed of your ship.
Final Fortress Timer - Turn off to have unlimited time to defeat the
                       final fortress.
Button Setup         - See below
Game Load            - Loads previously saved data (for all modes)
Game Save            - Saves current game data (for all modes)

Score Trial Option Menu
Exit                 - Return to game menu
Sound Test           - Press O to start playing the selected sound bite or
                       music track
Ship Speed           - Alters the speed of your ship.
Final Fortress Timer - Turn off to have unlimited time to defeat the
                       final fortress.
Button Setup         - See below
Game Load            - Loads previously saved data (for all modes)
Game Save            - Saves current game data (for all modes)

Edit Mode Option Menu
Exit                 - Return to game menu
Sound Test           - Press O to start playing the selected sound bite or 
                       music track
Game Difficulty      - Alters difficulty of the game.
Ship Speed           - Alters the speed of your ship.
Final Fortress Timer - Turn off to have unlimited time to defeat the
                       final fortress.
Button Setup         - See below
Set Rules            - Go to the Edit Mode Rules Menu
Game Load            - Loads previously saved data (for all modes)
Game Save            - Saves current game data (for all modes)

Edit Mode Rules Menu
Specify Rules          - Press "O" to automatically select default parameters
                         to make game equal to Disk, Rom, Rom Plus, Special,
                         or any Score Trial game.  (See chart below)
Enemy Appearance Limit - Choose appearance rate of enemies and bullets,
Enemy Aiming Accuracy  - Accuracy of enemy aimed bullets, 16/32/64/256
Ship Weapon Type       - Equipped Subweapon Set.  Choose from 1st type
                         (Disk), 2nd type (ROM), or 3rd type (Special)
Map Type               - Level layout from 1st type (Disk), 2nd type (ROM),
                         3rd type (Special), or 4th type (Score Trial)
Enemy Type             - Enemies from 1st (Disk), 2nd (ROM), or 3rd (Special)
Timer Bonus            - Set On to give remaining time bonus for destroying
                         a fortress boss; Off for no bonus
Score Trial Mode       - Off for no effect, any other selects an score trial
                         area to play; after the one level, the game ends.

Button Setup Menu
Restore Defaults           - Restores settings to default.
Main Shot                  - Fires your main weapon
Subweapon                  - Fires your current subweapon. 
Main + Sub                 - Fires both weapons at once.
Shot Control               - In Special Version, this button can be used to
                             alter some subweapons' behaviour.

[XV.3] Comparison of Parameters by Game Type

By using Edit mode's "Specify Rules" you can identify the differences in
parameters between the various game modes.  They are listed below in chart

| Version | Limit | Acc | Weapon | Map | Enemy | Timer | Trial |
|Disk     | 21    | 16  | 1st    | 1st | 1st   | Off   | Off   |
|ROM      | 21    | 16  | 2nd    | 2nd | 2nd   | Off   | Off   |
|ROM Plus | 42    | 256 | 2nd    | 2nd | 2nd   | Off   | Off   |
|Special  | 42    | 256 | 3rd    | 3rd | 3rd   | On    | Off   |
|Course 1 | 21    | 16  | 2nd    | 2nd | 2nd   | On    |Area  1|
|Course 2 | Off   | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  2|
|Course 3 | Off   | 16  | 3rd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  2|
|Course 4 | Off   | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  3|
|Course 5 | 42    | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  4|
|Course 6 | Off   | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  6|
|Course 7 | Off   | 16  | 3rd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  6|
|Course 8 | 32    | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  8|
|Course 9 | Off   | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  9|
|Course 10| Off   | 16  | 3rd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area  9|
|Course 11| 32    | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area 10|
|Course 12| 32    | 16  | 3rd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area 11|
|Course 13| 42    | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area 12|
|Course 14| 54    | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area 12|
|Course 15| 80    | 16  | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area 12|
|Course 16| Off   | 256 | 2nd    | 4th | 2nd   | On    |Area 12|

[XV.4] Score Trial Course Descriptions

To view these, place the cursor next to the course selector (it's the
only Japanese option on the Score Trial mode's main menu.) Pressing left or
right at this point will select a course (from 1 to 16), and pressing "O"
will allow you to see the high score table for that course, along with a
short description in Japanese.

Course 1  - Identical to ROM Version Area 1.
Course 2  - Battle with a lot of armored Giza.
Course 3  - Stronger weapons version of trial 2.
Course 4  - Trial where a lot of Icons appear.
Course 5  - Trial where one fortress after another appears.
Course 6  - Battle where a lot of "scissor"-like Degid appear.
Course 7  - Stronger weapons version of trial 6.
Course 8  - Jellyfish (Carla) confrontation. Destroy the jellyfish by
            ramming them.
Course 9  - Battle with a lot of ground enemies.
Course 10 - Stronger weapons version of trial 9.
Course 11 - Like Score Trial 1, except with enemy reinforcements.
Course 12 - Begin at the confrontation at the final fortress, entry level.
            A little difficult.
Course 13 - Final fortress, level 1.  Quite a challenge.
Course 14 - Final fortress, level 2.  If you can clear this, you have
            considerable ability.
Course 15 - Final fortress, level 3.  If you can clear this, you have
            amazing skill.
Course 16 - Final fortress, final level.  If you can clear this, you are

[Note] Course 16 is extremely difficult for gaming mortals.  You get pretty 
much one Sart and one set of boxes (the chip is on the left) before the boss 
starts, so you'll have one red lander and a 5-chip blaster, with W0 Lv0.
What makes it difficult is that you need to live a certain amount of time
before weapon carriers start coming out (see below note on power chips and
Sart), and you just don't live long enough to do it.  You will have to live
for some long seconds with W0, Lv0...by the time the carriers start to
arrive then the screen is filled with stuff.  Assuming you live that long.

[XV.5] Zanac Basics

No matter which mode you select, your ship is the AFX-6502-ZANAC. Your 
ship has two sets of weapons. Your normal shot (controlled by the Square
button) is your standard pea shooter, which can be powered up to a triple
shot by collecting Power Chips. Power Chips are found by destroying the
blue Boxes that appear during the game. Ramming into a box that contains
a Power Chip is worth 5 Chips... but ramming into a box that does not 
contain a Chip is worth your instant death. Feeling lucky?

Your normal shot can be transformed into the Wide Shot if certain
conditions are met (which we'll get back to later.) The Wide Shot is actually
somewhat wider than your ship, which obviously makes hitting things much
easier.  Like the FC Custom's weapon, the fire originates from directly to
the left or right of the ship, providing good side protection.

Your ship is also equipped with a subweapon system. By default you start
with Subweapon 0 (All Range Cannon), but there are seven other different
subweapons you can use. Subweapons can be changed or powered up by 
collecting numbered Subweapon Chips. This will be discussed in further detail
in the next section.

Much of the earlier material in this FAQ pertaining to Zanac Neo is also
applicable to Zanac as well. Therefore, in the interest of brevity it will not
be repeated here. Instead, refer back to sections [II.6], [II.11], [III], 
[VII.1], [VII.2], [VIII], and [IX] for further information. That said, keep the
following differences in mind:

From [II.6]: The "red" Subweapon Powerups are transparent in this game, and
the green "random" Subweapon Powerups do not exist. (There also some
differences in the effects of Rio and the Eye-Eye that will be addressed
later.)  Rio also acts differently, as described below.

From [II.11]:  In Zanac original, sets of three boxes appear every 16 enemies
destroyed, and the counter starts at 14 (first set of boxes at 2 enemies).
Boxes and Sarts that you turn into Landers do not count as a destroyed enemy,
nor does activating an Icon or shooting a Tank to get a subweapon.  Sarts that
you actually destroy DO count as enemies.  Initial tests suggest that dying
does not affect the counter, nor does it get you extra boxes like in Neo.
Enemy bullets that you destroy count as enemies as well.

From [VII.1]: A note discusses needing 32 chips for getting the Wide Shot. In
Zanac, the criteria for obtaining the Wide Shot are much more complicated.
Zanac maintains a chip counter, the exact status of which is not visible to
the player. It works as follows:

- The chip counter begins at 0 at the start of the game, and does not change
  if you die.
- The chip counter increases 1 point for every Power Chip you collect when
  your Main Gun is at least at its maximum non-Wide Shot power (i.e., the fast
  triple gun you get at 5 Power Chips.) Yes, if you ram a Box containing a
  Power Chip under these conditions, you get 5 points on the chip counter.
- The chip counter decreases 5 points any time you grab a Subweapon Powerup
  from a Cargo Carrier. Picking up Subweapon Powerups released from ground
  objects imposes no penalty on the chip counter.

If the chip counter is 5 or higher, Sarts will be replaced with Cargo
Carriers. (This is your only indication to the status of the counter.) If your
ship is using Subweapon 0 and this counter reaches _exactly_ 13, you will be
awarded with the Wide Shot. Obviously, it's just easier to use the Eye-Eye. :)

It may be tempting to try to keep this counter below 13 at all times (by
avoiding Power Chips or changing subweapons unnecessarily) in order to easily
(re-)gain a Wide Shot after you die. I would recommend against this, because
near the end of the game your only source of subweapons will be the Cargo
Carriers, and you can easily cut them off if your chip counter is low. (And
Subweapons are much more vital to your survival when the going gets rough than
the Wide Shot will be.)

From [VII.2]: In Zanac Original, the WHITE boxes fire the bullets and the RED
boxes just disintegrate.  Also, you can peek in the box with only three shots
but it still takes five shots to destroy it.  You can still play the Three
Shell Game but the box types are slightly different:

Type I:    One White Box, One Red Box, One Power Chip (~50% of all sets)
Type II:   Three Red Boxes (less common)
Type III:  Chip on Left, White in Center, Chip on Right (less common)
Type IV:   Two White Boxes, One Power Chip (less common)

The general rule I use in this case is:  if the set has a white box, it also
has at least one power chip.  Also, a Type III where the chips are adjacent
has never (to my knowledge) been observed.

Due to the sprite limit on the original versions of the game, it is possible
for boxes to appear in sets of two or even one.  Obviously, you can't play
this guessing game with just one box.

[Note]  One game hint is that if you hit the first Sart and then two Dusters
(rock-like flying ships) then the first box set is a Type I with the chip
on the LEFT side.  If you don't hit the first Sart, I think the chip is on
the RIGHT side.  It seems that the box type and chip placement may be tied
in to the player's score, but the exact method remains a mystery.

From [VIII]: You can pretty much safely replace all instances of "subweapon
carrier" with "Sart or Cargo Carrier" throughout this section. A fair bit of
the specific information there is Neo-specific, but the Score Counting method
outlined there works in Zanac as well.

Note that in Neo there may be no advantage to taking a blue Lander over a Red
one, but there is in Zanac. The AI responds to the number of shots fired much
more sharply than it does in Neo, and grabbing a ton of red Landers can
cause the AI to launch a serious fireworks display if you are shooting

Also, Enemy Erasers can eliminate Landers in this game, giving you 30000
points in the process. This is usually not good from a survival standpoint,
since extra ships are usually worth 80000 points. (This can be useful in
Score Trial mode to squeeze out some extra points.)

From [IX]:  Zanac's invulnerability times are shorter than Zanac Neo's.
In Zanac, power chips give you about 1 second of invulnerability, while
subweapon powerups give you about 4 seconds.  This means power chips give you
half as much invulnerability than in Neo.

[Note]:  The chart of shot width and bullet velocity for Zanac's main
gun (a la FC Custom [XIV.2]) is listed below.  Note that the Zanac
ship width is slightly smaller than Zanac Neo's FC custom, so apparent
velocities may not match your expectations.  Each type of beam (single,
double, triple) makes a particular firing sound, with the higher levels
having a lower pitch.  You can easily tell what kind of weapon you have
without looking at the screen.

Shot widths are once again in ship width %, and bullet velocity is in
ship widths/sec.

Chips Req.      Gun                                Total       Bullet
Required        Type (# simultaneous shots)        Shot        Velocity
----------      ---------------------------        -----       --------
0               Single Beam (2)                    24          14.3
1               Single Beam (3)                    24          20.0
2               Double Beam (2)                    76          22.7
3               Double Beam (3)                    76          22.7
4               Triple Beam (2)                    92          25.7
5               Triple Beam (3)                    92          25.7
*               Wide Triple Beam (3)               280(!)      31.3

*  Wide beam obtained by methods outlined elsewhere in this section

The real (cm/sec) speed of Zanac's bullets are in general 10-15% slower
than the FC Custom, except for the 0 chip shot, which is 20% slower.
This of course means that you have to get out of 0 chip as soon as

The corresponding chart for Red Lander shot delay reduction (in
milliseconds) and shots/second while rushing is given as follows:

# Red Landers        Delay (msec)          Shots/Sec             
---------------      ----------            ---------
0                    100                   10
1                    82                    12
2                    66                    15
3                    50                    20
4                    34                    30
5                    17                    60
6                    "                     "

By all accounts, this is identical to the FC Custom Lander progression
chart, if one accounts for experimental error and rounding. I believe
that the delay with 5 landers is in the right range; anyone who has
tried to destroy an Icon with the main gun can confirm that it is
really much easier with the excess landers (several seconds instead
of forever).  However, the fast fire rate can cause your bullets
to "pile-up" to a single projectile, which is bad especially for 0
chip shot, it will feel like firing one shot per second.  In addition,
you have to worry about the AI increase due to excessive shots fired.

Like in Neo, the red lander benefits stay with you the rest of the
game, regardless of ship destruction.

[XV.6] Subweapons

As mentioned earlier, you start the game with Subweapon 0, the All Range
Cannon. Your subweapon can be powered up or changed by collecting numbered
Subweapon Powerups (woah), which appear when certain ground targets are
destroyed or when a Cargo Carrier drags one onscreen.

The four ships of Zanac Neo allowed you to "store" subweapons when you
switched back in forth.  Zanac does not allow you to do this; taking a new
subweapon completely discards all levels in your old subweapon.  Also, if
you die, you not only lose all levels in your current subweapon, but you
revert back to W0.

In Zanac Neo, the FC Custom's subweapon set is basically adapted from the
subweapon set in this game. However, there are a surprising number of
differences, so it's worth another look at them.


Zanac's weapon effect sizes are standardized sprites:

(T) = Tiny         -  A tiny hollow bubble, 0.8 ship width in diameter
(S) = Small        -  A small weapon "ball", diameter 1 ship width.  This size
                      of ball is a solid color, not a hollow "bubble" like all
		      other sizes
(MS)= Medium Small -  A smallish sized weapon bubble, 1.15 ship widths in
(M) = Medium       -  A medium weapon bubble is 1.33 ship width
(L) = Large        -  A large weapon bubble is 1.8 times ship width.
(H) = Huge         -  A huge weapon bubble is 2.2 times ship width.

-----W0 All Range Cannon
Weapon Type:      Projectile (Level 0-3), Shielding Projectile (Level 4)
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        4
Gauge:            None
Level 0:          Fire one (S) energy ball in any of eight directions
Level 1:          Fire two adjacent (S) energy balls in any of eight
Level 2:          Fire two widely spaced (S) energy balls in any of eight
Level 3:          As level 2
Level 4:          As level 2, but destroys indestructable bullets.
     The All Range Cannon fires in the direction that your ship is moving (or
straight ahead, if you're not moving.) It might not be the most powerful
subweapon in the game, but it is quite versatile and has the advantage of
having unlimited ammunition. At its highest level, it's quite useful.

[Note] In Special version, you can lock the direction ARC fires by holding
down the Shot Control button (R1 by default) when you've got it firing in the
desired direction.  (...shades of Space Megaforce)

[Note]  Because of the way the level 4 All Range Cannon fires, you can use it
as a nearly perfect shield.  You need to (continuously) press left or right
at on the edges of the screen and fire straight into the wall.  The
continuous bullets will form a small sphere around your ship which will make
you immune to:  slow-moving 1 hit enemies (e.g. Degid), indestructible
bullets, and destructible bullets.  You should continue firing the main gun,
preferably with the wide shot to help clear out enemies.  If a fast moving
enemy or a multihit enemy heads toward you, release the shield, destroy it,
and continue using the shield.  This technique can allow you to get through
some difficult areas without losing a life.

-----W1 Straight Crusher 
Weapon Type:      Piercing Shielding Ball
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Leave Screen
Max Level:        5, [Disk:  2]
Gauge:            Per Shot
Level 0:          Fires one (S) ball straight ahead. (160 Shots)
                  [Disk]:  Fires one (S) ball straight ahead (200 shots)
Level 1:          Fires two adjacent (S) balls straight ahead. (180 Shots)
                  [Disk]:  Fires two adjacent (S) balls straight ahead,
                           slightly faster but not as fast as ROM (200 shots)
Level 2:          Fires one (M)/(L) fast ball straight ahead. (190 Shots)
                  [Disk]:  Fires one (H) ball at high speed, straight ahead
                           (200 shots), max power level for Disk.  Not as
                           fast as W1 Lv 1 ROM.
Level 3:          Fires one (L)/(H) even faster ball straight ahead. (200
Level 4:          Fires (H) ball straight ahead, extremely fast (210 shots).
Level 5:          Like level 4, but slower and the (H) ball rotates around an
                  invisible point that moves slowly forward.  Total coverage
                  is a circle with diameter ~5 times ship width. (220 Shots)

     Relatively slow, especially since you can only have one onscreen at a
time. However, it is quite powerful, clearing a path directly in front of your
ship. Given that it can also take out most fortress parts in one or two hits
(and take several of them out in one hit if they are vertically aligned), I
usually grab one of these during fortress battles unless I have something
better already. (On the flip side, this offers no protection from the sides or
behind, so watch your back while you use this.)

[Note]  If you look at the changes made to this weapon between Disk and ROM,
it's seems like the designers realized that W1 was underpowered in Disk.  In
Disk W1 probably does more damage by virtue of it being slower.  However, it
is difficult to get over the "hump" of slow, minimal area Lv 1 to
the faster, wider Lv 2.  The designers improved the fire rate in ROM, making
it a slightly more defensive weapon.

-----W2 Field Shutter
Weapon Type:      Shielding (degrades)
Rear/Side:        Side
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        5, but see notes.
Gauge:            Per hit absorbed (Levels 0-4); Timed and per hit absorbed
                  (Level 5)
                  [Special] Per hit absorbed or timed (decoy)
Level 0:          Shield bubble surrounds front of ship. (50 Hits)
Level 1:          Larger bubble surrounds front of ship. (80 Hits)
Level 2:          Larger arc surrounds front of ship. (100 Hits)
Level 3:          Same as Level 2. (120 Hits)
Level 4:          Same as Level 2. (140 Hits)
Level 5:          Grants 90 seconds of complete invulnerability.

     A shield bubble surrounds your ship and protects the front and sides (or
your entire ship, level 5.) An almost purely defensive weapon (you can ram
stuff with it, but doing so will quickly drain your shield energy.)

[Note] As your remaining shield strength decreases, so does it's size (i.e.,
a level 3 shield with 79 hits or less will have the same appearance as a
fresh level 1 shield.)  However, the shield generally still protects the ship
from most side attacks, even if it appears like it would not.  The cutoff
points for the graphics are as follows:

Hits              Shield Size
1-15              (T)
16-31             (T)/(MS); the shield oscillates between these two states
32-47             (MS)
48-63             (M)/(MS)
64-79             (M)
80-95             (M) bubble/(L) arc
96+               (L) arc

[Note] The Level 5 shield loses one second per hit, so you cannot act with 
complete impunity if you want your full 90+ seconds of invincibility. 

[Note] Collecting extra Subweapon 2's while having a Level 5 shield adds an
additional 30 seconds to the timer.

[Note] In Special version, holding down the Shot Control button will plant the
shield bubble at the your ship's current location, and enemies will act as if
your ship is in this location regardless if your ship has moved on or
not. Enemies with fixed firing patterns will be unaffected, but those who aim
at or attempt to follow (or ram, in the case of mini-bosses) your ship will
attempt to take out the decoy. This makes the Field Shutter much more useful
in Special version than in the other two versions. (You lose one hit per
second while this is in effect.) Note that this ceases to work once you've
acquired the Level 5 shield. 

[Note] When using Field Shutter, you can press the back of your ship
against the lowest edge of the screen, preventing enemies from attacking you
from the back.

[Note] Interesting tidbit:  You can "turn off" the Field Shutter by just
touching the midboss-size enemies with it.  As I recall, the shield will go
flying off and will not reappear until you press the subweapon button.  Of
course, if you ram the midbosses, you will die, and you won't have a
subweapon while it is turned off...so this is somewhat less than useful.

[Note] AFAIK W2 is rarely used by most Zanac players due to its tendency to
cause all sorts of nasty enemies (especially Degid "scissors") to appear
every time you power it up.  If you do want to use it, avoid touching it
to boxes, multihit enemies, or huge chunks of bullets.

-----W3 Circular
Weapon Type:      Shielding (Piercing)
Rear/Side:        Rear and Side
Shot Limit:       N/A
Max Level:        5
Gauge:            Timed
Level 0:          (S) energy ball rotates clockwise around ship. (250 seconds)
Level 1:          Same as level 0, except faster. (250 seconds)
Level 2:          Two adjacent (S) energy balls rotate clockwise around ship.
                  (250 seconds)
Level 3:          Same as Level 2, except faster. (250 seconds)
Level 4:          Two widely spread (S) energy balls rotate clockwise around
                  ship. (250 seconds)
Level 5:          Same as Level 4, except faster. (250 seconds)

     Mostly a defensive weapon, and preferable to the Field Shutter IMO. For
one thing, it's guaranteed to last 250 seconds, no matter how many hits it
takes. For another, it can protect your sides and back without getting it to
the maximum level. Obviously it's not a perfect defense, as shots can still
sneak in between rotations, so you do need to be careful.

[Note] Two differences in Special version. First, the direction of rotation
changes every time you power up the subweapon (so that Levels 1, 3, and 5
rotate counterclockwise.) Secondly, holding the Shot Control button will make
the energy balls slow down upon contact with an enemy, causing more damage
(but leaving you more open to attack.)

-----W4 Vibrator
Weapon Type:      Piercing Shielding Ball
Rear/Side:        Well...
Shot Limit:       Fixed Rate, but see notes.
Max Level:        5; [Disk:  2]
Gauge:            Per Shot
                  [Disk]:  Per Hit Absorbed, recharging
Level 0:          (L) size energy ball flies forward a short distance while
                  vibrating.  (160 Shots)
                  [Disk]:  (M) energy ball flies forward a short distance
                           while vibrating (60 charges)
Level 1:          As Level 0, but (H) size ball. More durability. (170 Shots)
                  [Disk]:  As Lv 0, but (L) size energy ball (60 charges)
Level 2:          Same as Level 1, more durability. (180 Shots)
                  [Disk]:  As Lv 1, but (H) size energy ball (60 charges),
                           max power for Disk.
Level 3:          Same as Level 2. More durability. (190 Shots)
Level 4:          Same as Level 3. More durability. (200 Shots) 
Level 5:          Same as Level 4. More durability. (220 Shots)

     The Vibrator is yet another standard issue Zanac Energy Ball
Weapon[TM]. This one flies forward a short distance, while vibrating left
to right all the way. Once it has reached its maximum vertical distance, it
stays there until either a certain amount of time has passed, or until it
has dealt a certain amount of damage to enemies or bullets. (The energy
ball will shrink as it takes hits to indicate how much durability it has
left.) This can make a fairly decent shield of sorts, removing enemy shots
from a good area right in front of you. (You could also place your ship in
its path or right in front of it, providing some side or rear
protection. I'd advise some caution in doing so, however.)

[Note] In Disk version, A Vibrator shot will not disappear until it has
been completely worn down (or you fire it off of the screen). That means if
you shot it somewhere where this is nothing happening, you may be unable to
fire it again (in a more advantageous position, perhaps) for quite some time.
The gauge in Disk indicates the weapon's remaining hit absorption remaining
for that shot, but you have infinite use of the weapon.

[Note] In Rom version, the Vibrator will fly out to some distance, vibrate,
and then slowly fly off toward the top of the screen after a few seconds,
allowing you to fire another.  The Vibrator has durability but there is no
gauge, only visual clues (ball size).

[Note] In Special version, once the Vibrator has flown forward its maximum
distance, it will slowly fall back unless you are holding down a fire
button (your choice of Main, Subweapon, or the the Main + Sub button.) Once
it has started falling backward you can make it go forward again by
resuming fire.

-----W5 Rewinder
Weapon Type:      Piercing Shielding Yo-yo (Level 0-4), Piercing Shielding
                  Laser (Level 5-10)
Rear/Side:        No
Shot Limit:       Fixed rate
Max Level:        10
Gauge:            None
Level 0:          (S) energy ball flies forward, stops, then returns to
Level 1:          Two (S) adjacent energy balls fly forward, stop, and
                  return to the ship
Level 2:          Same as Level 1, but faster.
Level 3:          Two widely spaced (S) energy balls fly forward, stop, and
                  return to ship.
Level 4:          Same as Level 3, but much faster.
Level 5:          Narrow piercing, shielding laser fires straight forward,
                  Laser beam length 2.7 times ship width 
Level 6:          Laser beam length 4.5 times ship width (higher damage) 
Level 7:          Laser beam length 6.2 times ship width (higher damage) 
Level 8:          Laser beam length 8.0 times ship width (higher damage) 
Level 9:          Laser beam length 9.8 times ship width (higher damage) 
Level 10:         Full-screen length laser weapon, massive damage

     At a glance this seems similar to Subweapon 1; a slow shot plows through
everything directly ahead. However, Subweapon 5 has unlimited uses, and if
positioned correctly, can do a ton of damage. Ideally you'll want to place
yourself so that the energy ball(s) stop right over your target. On the
negative side, you can only have one shot at once, so this weapon fires
relatively slowly (although the higher levels make up for this somewhat.)

[Note]  Successfully stopping W5 (at any power level) over any non-mobile
enemy in the game will destroy it.  It's that powerful.  But it still does
bounce off of armored mid-bosses.  If you are good with the weapon, it is
still useful against fortresses at its lowest level, so if you die during
such a battle, consider taking it if one is available.

[Note]  That power comes at a price.  W5 is the LEAST defensive weapon in the
game, seeing as it spends most of its time far away from you.

[Note]  One sort of risky but mildly useful strategy is rushing with
slow sub-laser W5.  If you move the ship forward while continuously firing W5,
the ship will overtake W5, "catching" it, and then immediately fire it out.
This cycle will keep a W5 ball(s) over your ship.  Since W5 has a small
radius, this can make your ship almost immune to bullets while you continue
traveling forward.  The downside:  once you stop moving forward, W5 will fly
to the end of the screen and you'll be left with practically no protection.

[Note] Levels 5-10 are completely different, firing a fast moving narrow laser
directly forward. The laser is quite powerful (it can knock out a Drov shell
in two hits) and eliminates otherwise indestructable enemy bullets. However,
its narrow size makes it a bit difficult to use defensively. This is
alleviated somewhat by the fact that it follows your ship horizontally,
allowing you to sweep it across the screen somewhat.  It can be safely said
that the W5 Lv10 laser is the most powerful (damaging) subweapon in the game.

[Note]  The laser is the only subweapon which doesn't bounce annoyingly off
of armored mid-bosses.  At its highest level, 3 or 4 shots can kill fairly
tough mid-bosses.
-----W6 Plasma Flash
Weapon Type:      Projectile Shielding Plasma Bomb (Level 0-1), Shielding
                  Plasma Flash (Level 2-5), Free Ship Projectile Shielding
		  Bomb (Level 5)
Rear/Side:        Entire screen!
Shot Limit:       Leave screen, when there actually is a shot...
Max Level:        5
Gauge:            Per Shot
Level 0:          Fire (S) plasma bomb straight ahead. (20 Shots)
Level 1:          Ditto. (20 Shots) 
Level 2:          Fire plasma flash (20 Shots)
Level 3:          Ditto. (20 Shots) 
Level 4:          And again... (20 Shots) 
Level 5:          (S) "Lander Flash" (1 shot, limit 1 per game); after that,
                  same old regular plasma flash. (20 Shots)

     An excellent subweapon for getting out of sticky situations. Levels 0 and
1 fire a slow moving ball directly forward. If it makes contact with something
(an enemy, bullet, box, whatever), all flying enemies and bullets currently
onscreen are instantly destroyed. From level 2 and beyond, pressing the
Subweapon button simply instantly zaps everything on screen.

[Note] This weapon has no effect on ground enemies (like Barss and the various
fortress parts), but it's still useful to clear out all the bullets that they
like to spit at you.

[Note] At level 5, you get one (and only one) shot of the infamous Lander
Flash. This fires like a Level 0 or 1 Plasma Flash, but hitting something with
it instantly turns all onscreen enemies and enemy bullets into blue Landers.
You only get one use of this per game, and once you've used it, a level 5
Plasma Flash is identical to levels 2-4.

[Note] One useful technique with W6 is the rapid-fire Plasma scoring trick,
usable with W6 at levels of 2 and higher.  When you have the Plasma Flash,
then try to hold it until you can get another W6 powerup on the screen,
keeping careful track of your bombs left.  When you manage to get another W6
floating on the screen, follow it, waiting until the screen is nearly full of
enemies and bullets, and then repeatedly bomb the screen with rapid fire bombs
until you have only 1 plasma bomb left, and then take the powerup.  When you
flash the screen, the enemies will explode, awarding you points.  However,
you can also flash the explosions over and over, multiplying the points by a
huge amount.  When you get to the next W6 powerup, do it again.  And again.
On the other hand, I've found that using this trick makes the ALC go
absolutely nuts.  If you are able to pull this off several times then you'll
start to see Zanac at its worst.

[Note] ..but the rapid-fire Plasma scoring trick doesn't work with FCW6
because you can't flash enemy explosions.  Compile must have noticed and fixed
the problem.

[Note] ..and the rapid-fire Plasma trick doesn't work in Score Trial modes 
either.  I suppose Compile decided it would turn ST into a game of "who can get
the most W6?"

[Note]  If you flash a screen with Giza on it (worth 1000 points each), Zanac
will respond by stopping the production of Giza for a while.  This is good if
you want to clear the screen, bad if you want to see tons of Giza in order to
score points, e.g. Score Trial 2.

-----W7 High Speed
Weapon Type:      Piercing Shielding Wave
Rear/Side         Not quite (Disk and Rom); Side (Special)
Shot Limit:       Leave screen
Max Level:        5 [Disk:  3]
Gauge:            Timed (but only while firing)
Level 0:          High speed (S) energy ball wave, covers small area.
                  (160 seconds)
                  [Disk]: Like Rom, but (200 seconds)
Level 1:          As Level 0, but fires slower and covers larger area
                  (170 seconds)
                  [Disk]: Like Rom, but (200 seconds)
Level 2:          As Level 1, but double (S) energy ball wave. (170 seconds)
                  [Disk]: As Level 1, but even slower speed fire, covers
                          even larger area. (200 seconds)
Level 3:          (L) single energy ball wave, speed as Level 2. (180 seconds)
                  [Disk]: (H) single energy ball wave, but high speed as Lv 0
                          (200 seconds), max power for Disk.
Level 4:          (H) single energy ball wave, speed as Level 2. (180 seconds)
Level 5:          (H) single energy ball wave. (I didn't notice a difference
                  from Level 4 except the extra time.) (200 seconds)

     A bit on the weak side, but makes up for that with its, well, high
speed. Ordinarily this weapon fires straight ahead, but moving left or
right will cause it to fire diagonally. It's not as versatile as the All
Range Cannon, but since it can take out enemy fire at any level it is still
quite useful as a general-use weapon.

[Note] One thing to notice is that while firing, the energy balls only
appear at certain fixed locations in a line. Indeed, these are the only
places the High Speed can actually cause damage; any enemy or bullet flying
in between these locations will come out unscathed. Some levels have more
of these locations (I've labeled these as "faster" in the descriptions
above.) The higher levels have larger energy balls, which also has the
effect of reducing enemy safe zones.

[Note]:  In Disk version, Lv 1 and Lv 0 are about the same usefulness, trading
off area for speed; Lv 2 is much worse than both Lv 1 and Lv 0, because it
is so slow that the fire speed is like W0.  This makes the weapon difficult to
keep until Lv 3...but at Lv 3, both speed and area are superb.  Be prepared
climb over the "wall" in W7 at Lv 2 to get to the good stuff.

[Note] Special version brings two changes to the High Speed. First, holding
the Shot Control button allows you to lock which direction you fire, similar
to Subweapon 0. Second, you can now fire the High Speed at a lower angle,
almost straight left or right, by holding diagonally back/left or back/right
while firing.

[XV.7] Scoring

Unlike Zanac Neo, there are no fancy scoring methods like maintaining combos
or blowing up the entire screen with a chain combo. You basically blow stuff
up and get points based on what it was you destroyed. There are a few ways to
be awarded bonus points, however.

From time to time you will encounter fortress battles, where you are given a
limited amount of time to destroy a set of ground-based artillery. If you
manage to completely destroy the fortress within the given time frame, you
will be awarded a set amount of bonus points (this amount varies from fortress
to fortress.) Additionally, if you are playing in Special mode, you will also
be awarded 500 points for each second remaining on the clock.

Another source of bonus points is the 100000 per ship remaining bonus you get
upon defeating the final fortress. (And thanks to the 2000000 bonus points
you get just for defeating the fortress, you're guaranteed to have at least
25 ships at this point.)

Extra ships are awarded at 20000 points, 80000 points, and every 80000 points

[XV.8] Objects in Space

The following lists are descriptions of the various enemies and other things
you'll encounter during your battle with the system. (I've listed the fortress
parts in the next section about, appropriately enough, fortresses. :) Thanks
go to www.zanacxzanac.com and the other Japanese site listed in the credits
for the names. (I've followed the latter site's enemy groupings here.)

Scoring data is based on ROM version at the normal difficulty (except in the
case of Special version exclusive enemies.)

[Note] Please bear with us as we try to confirm point values and find all of
the enemy variants. 

Enemy Fire

Brom        - Pink destructible balls emitted by Brains during the last
              fortress battle. 100 points.

Lead        - Your standard indestructable circular bullet. You'll be seeing
              quite a bit of these. You can get 10 points for destroying them,
	      if you have a subweapon capable of doing so.

Light Bar   - The oval-shaped destructible bullet.  60 points.

Mio         - The rotating disc that often protects Effine. The mini-boss
              Somas can produce these as well. 0 points.

SIG         - The blue destructible missile. 60 points.  SIGs occasionally
              appear by themselves, or in small groups (or large groups, in
              Special mode)
Super Hard  - Tough to destroy chunks left behind by the mini-boss
Body          Solayd. 1000 points.

Velo        - The rotating blob of doom generated by Round Eyes. Looks like
              a round bubble with a dark center, in which is a tiny glowing
              dot. Somewhat tough to destroy. 500 points.

Airborne Targets

Back Degid  - Degid appear to be small triangular "claw"-like ships, which
              appear in mirrored pairs, each half slowly ascending along the
              left and right sides of the screen. When they are horizontally
              aligned with your ship, they rush together in an attempt to
              ram you.  Once connected, it leaves via the top of the screen.
              (It comes in yellow and red varieties; the red ones accelerate
              as they come together) 800 points, even if connected.

Box         - Blue cubes that passively float down the screen in trios. May
              contain a Power Chip... or it may just fire at you if you
              destroy it. "Red" disintegrating boxes are worth 300 points,
              while "White" trap boxes and power chip boxes are worth nothing.
              Power chips themselves are worth 170, though ramming a power
              chip box correctly is worth 850.  See section [XV.5] and

Brio Golgos - Brio Golgos is a medium sized enemy shaped vaguely like a
              satellite, with a green central section bearing an eyeball
              connected to outer blue "wings".  Brio Golgos looks more
              "solid" than Lio Golgos, and it fires a cascade of Lead
              which fall in parabolic arcs. 2000 points.

Cargo       - Small blue "ships" with long arms that grip large (bigger than
Carrier       the ship) numbers.  These replace Sarts under certain conditions
              (see section [XV.5] for details.) Destroying them yields a
              Subweapon Powerup. 0 points. 

Carla       - Annoying red pulsing jellyfish.  Carla "cancel" subweapons; any
              physical manifestation of a subweapon vanishes the instant it
              touches a Carla.  They cannot be destroyed by firepower, but you
              can safely ram them to kill them. (The Plasma Flash in projectile
              form can destroy them, but only if you hit something else with the
              bomb.) 1000 points.

Degid       - Degid appear to be small triangular "claw"-like ships, which
              appear in pairs, each half slowly descending along the left and
              right sides of the screen. When they are horizontally aligned
              with your ship, they rush together in an attempt to ram you.
              If the two sides meet they combine move straight down the
              screen until they exit. They come in blue and yellow varieties;
              the yellow ones accelerate as they come together while the blue
              remain at constant speed.  Degid start appearing almost
              immediately when you take or upgrade Weapon 2.  300 points
              (even if connected.)

Degis Golgos- Medium sized enemy with a orange, eyeball-bearing center flanked
              by twin white cannons.  Degis Golgos launches SIGs in groups of
              five in your ship's general direction.  Tends to appear more
              when you have W2.  4000 points.

Drov        - Blue teardrop-shaped enemy pod. When you get too close, it opens
              up and launches 3 SIGs at you, leaving behind two shells. A Drov
              is worth 300 points while still in one piece; the tough to
              destroy shells are worth 5000 points each.
Duster      - Small round asteroid with a cracked surface. The slow yellow
              ones are worth 60 points, and the faster blue ones are worth
              170. Special version introduces the green Dusters which come
              in large clusters, still worth 170 points each.

Effine      - Effine look like tiny blue starships with two "Enterprise"-like
              thrusters attached to the main body.  Effine rotate along their
              primary axis.  Effine come in four varieties. The first type
              hides "underneath" the background, coming up from time to time.
              You cannot hit them when they are hiding. The second type
              crosses the top of the screen from one side to the other, firing
              Light Bars the whole way. The third type flies straight down,
              firing Lead to the left and right. The fourth type is shielded
              with the rotating Mio barrier. 500 points for types 2 and 3;
              800 for types 1 and 4.

Giza        - Giza are circular enemies which resemble round jellyfish, with
              a glowing center.  Giza slowly descends from the top to the
              screen bottom without much activity besides destroying your ship
              if you should ram one.  It takes 16 hits to destroy one.
              1000 points.

Lio Golgos  - Medium sized enemy that looks a lot like a "tie fighter."  Lio
              Golgos has a blue central eye connected to two yellowish wings
              by a thin bar.  Lio Golgos descends slowly, firing a three-shot
              Lead spread.  800 points.

Loga        - Small pear-shaped carrier ships with tiny rear wings, they
              "open up" in order to fire.  Descends slowly down either edge of
              the screen. The yellow type launches Light Bars at regular
              intervals; the blue type fires one Light Bar when horizontally
              aligned with your ship. Special version includes a green version
              that flies forward a set distance, fires, than leaves. Also
              unique to Special are the red type, which is identical to the
              blue type except that it releases a Velo. 300 points for blue
              and green, 500 for red, 800 for yellow.

Luster      - A dart-shaped, twin-engined aircraft that opens up to fire,
              Luster comes in three varieties. The blue ones slowly descend
              down either edge of the screen, firing Lead at regular
              intervals.  The yellow ones act similarly, except they oscillate
              on the way down. The purple ones take a curved, J-shaped path
              down to the bottom of the screen while aiming Lead directly at
              your ship.  The purple variety fly engine-first, making them
              look like thimbles instead of like darts.  Purple Luster are
              among the most annoying enemies in the game, having high speed
              and a habit of firing indestructible bullets directly into
              your ship at close range.  500 points for the blue and yellow
              types; 800 for the purple ones.

Sart        - Inoffensive white scout ships with round bodies attached to a
              pair of landing gear "legs" and two small antennae.  Appears
              periodically on the edge of the screen opposite your ship.
              Destroying them weakens the AI. 500 points.

Takawarshi  - Small blue ships that look somewhat insectoid, sporting large
              wings and two front guns.  Appears at the top of the screen,
              and attempts to vertically align itself with your ship.  It
              launches a steady stream of SIGs straight downward. Special
              version includes a yellow version that does not follow your
              ship.  Warning:  Takawarshi is happy to flip over and fire at
              your ship from behind, should you happen to get in front of
              them.  2000 points.

Terza       - Terzas appear as small four-pointed stars that resemble flowers.
              These come in several varieties. The White/Blue ones enter from
              the left or right bottom, turn in a circle, then zoom of
              diagonally to the opposite side of the screen. The Yellow/Black
              ones oscillate while descending to the bottom of the screen,
              then they head for the center and zoom toward the bottom of the
              screen. The Red/Black Special version kind are similar to the
              Yellow/Black ones, except they zoom off the opposite side of the
              screen when they reach the bottom. 300 points.

Umber       - Small carrier ships with a large white diamond-shaped nose and
              small rear wings.  Umber come in three varieties. The blue ones
              come down from the middle top of the firing a spread of Lead
              across the screen. Purples one do likewise, but fire two
              rotating Lead diagonally downward in both directions. 300 points
              for blue and purple, 500 for yellow.

Valkyrie    - Circular enemy that superficially looks like Giza, but with a red
              glowing center.  Valkyrie phases onscreen, then homes in on your
              ship.  Valkyrie "leeches" charge of Weapon 2 if you allow it to
              touch your shield.  500 points.

Veybar      - Veybar are manta-shaped ships with two separate wings connected
              by a small bright dot.  Veybar flip over when they are ready to
              turn around and exit the screen.  Veybar come in two varieties.
              The blue ones fly down either edge of the screen a certain
              distance, fire Lead, then zoom off to the opposite top edge of
              the screen. The yellow ones enter the screen flying diagonally.
              500 points.

Ground Targets

Barss 1     - Fires Lead in your general direction. Comes in pyramidal,
              diamond-shaped or invisible varieties. 800 points.

Barss 2     - Roughly hexagonal ground installation that launches Light Bars.
              1000 points.

Barss 3     - Spiderish ground installation that launches Light Bars.

Barss 4     - Small square panels that shoot Light Bars. They often accompany
              fortresses, but you can find them during other parts in the
              level in X-shaped formations. 500 points.

Carw        - Squares labeled with a number. Destroying them reveals the
              corresponding Subweapon Powerup. 500 points. 

Eye Eye     - Smiley Face icons that upgrade your weapons when fired
              upon. Completely destroying one is worth 300000 points.

Groc        - Small golden squares that appear in Area 6. One of them conceals
              Rio, but the rest do absolutely nothing.  500 points

Icon        - Small buildings. The standard type release Enemy Erasers, the
              more face-looking ones release Warp Holes. They can be
              destroyed, but it takes an amazing amount of firepower to do
              so. It is extremely difficult to destroy one while the screen is
              scrolling. 100000 points.

Tank        - Colored bubble that releases a random Subweapon Powerup
              when destroyed.  Otherwise does nothing.  800 points.

Teria       - The only one I know about is in Area 3, the small blue square
              near the beginning of the level that releases Rio. 

Mini-bosses can be annoying. Shots bounce off them and appear to do no damage,
but looks can be deceptive. Keep firing at them and they'll eventually go
down. Be careful though, since they spread shrapnel (in the form of SIGs) when
they explode.

Gired       - Large white and blue creature with 8 arms, shaped sort of like
              like a big asterisk.  Appears in area 6 and follows you,
              firing Lead in all directions.  It is much faster than most
              other mid-bosses, thus it is pretty dangerous.  4000 points.

Hum         - Large green eyeball with thin blue X-shaped wings. They'll
              follow you around the screen trying to ram you, and they
              like to throw "spinning" Lead around as well. Find them in
              areas 5 and 9.  The one in Area 9 seems much weaker (easier to
              destroy) than the one in Area 5, but you have to fight other
              enemies at the same time. 2000 points.

Masel       - The stealth bomber looking craft. They appear, shower you with
              Lead, then disappear, only to reappear somewhere else on
              screen. Look for them in areas 2 (one appears solo) and 11 (two
              appear simultaneously).  2000 points.

Solayd      - Solayd appears in Area 7.  This miniboss is shaped like an "X"
              with extremely thin arms.  The center and upper two arms are
              decorated with an ornate radial pattern with a central "eye".  
              Solayd litters the screen with "Super Hard Bodies", which are
              essentially copies of this pattern.  Luckily, Solayd is fairly
              slow.  4000 points.

Somas       - This large annoying mini-boss is a round yellow ball surrounded
              by huge blue/white folded "wings" of armor plating.  Two
              antennae stick up from the top of the beast.  Somas appears in
              areas 11 and 12.  It follows you slowly, littering the screen
              with circulating Leads, Velos, and Mios.  8000 points.

(Unknown)   - These ships appear as large, yellow, roughly square shaped
              ships with a diamond shaped central "eye".  Their folded armor
              structure is vaguely reminiscent of Somas, except in a much
              more compact form.  No one knows what these are called, but
              they appear throughout several levels in Special version. They
              don't do much except toss a Light Bar at you once and again,
              but since they do reflect shots like other midbosses they can
              still cause trouble by slowing down your rate of fire.  2000

[XV.9] Fortresses

As noted above, fortress encounters happen periodically throughout the
game. Upon approaching one, the screen will stop and a timer will appear in
the top right corner of the screen. You have until the timer runs out to
completely destroy all the parts of the fortress. Succeeding will net you some
bonus points; if you fail, the screen will start scrolling again (allowing you
to bypass the fortress) and the AI will be kicked up a notch.

[Note] As you destroy fortress parts, the remaining ones will increase their
rate of fire to make up for it.

[Note] When a fortress part is destroyed, any bullets or Velos still onscreen
generated by that part will vanish.

[Note]  When you destroy a fortress, everything remaining on the screen in
destroyed in a flash of light similar to an enemy Eraser.  While the score
is being displayed (or the time bonus is counting out), your ship is
invulnerable; this is only obvious if for some reason boxes or AI-triggered
ships like Degids enter the screen at this time.

[Note] Note that failing to destroy the Area 11 fortress will cause you to be
warped back to the beginning of Area 11, instead of being allowed to

Fortresses will be assembled from the following list of parts.

Big Eye         - Looks roughly like a human eye. It launches a combination of
                  destructible and indestructable bullets.

Brain           - These only appear at the last form of the final
                  fortress. They shrink as you fire upon them, but if you stop
                  firing before they are completely destroyed, they will
                  regenerate. (Note that you will have to destroy the large
                  flashing panels nearby before you can actually damage the
                  brain.) They flood the screen with the pink Broms, which are

Combination Eye - A set of four small eyes. They fire indestructable bullets
                  in your general direction in sets of five.

Mono Eye        - A single small eye. Launches indestructable bullets one at a
                  time at your ship.

Panel Eye       - Looks something like a grate, actually. Launches SIGs at you
                  in groups of three. 

Round Eye       - Opens up and launches Velos, the annoying swirling enemies
                  that are tough to destroy. Generally you should try to take
                  these out first; a screenful of Velos is bad news. 

Slit Eye        - A set of four small round eyes, similar to the Combination
                  Eye but smaller. Launches destructible bullets only.
[Note] On occasion you will find many of these fortress parts scattered
throughout non-fortress areas of the level. 

[Note] On the other hand, Fortresses are occasionally accompanied by Tanks
(the bubbles that release a random Subweapon powerup) or various varieties
of Barss (the most common being Barss 4, the small square panel that shoots
destructible bullets.) Destroying them is not necessary in order to defeat
the fortress.

[Note] If for some reason you end up with a screen full of Velos, then you
might lose ship after ship without a way to proceed.  The general solutions
are 1) use W6(s) to clear the screen, then destroy the Round Eye, or 2) Rush
the Round Eye with invulnerability, sacrificing as many ships as it takes to
destroy it.  Don't stay far back from the Eye and try to take on the Velos
conservatively; in general, you will not meet with success.

[Note] Occasionally you will encounter Icons (buildings that release Enemy
Eraser) on the ground near the boss.  Although shooting them a short while
releases the Eraser, continual shooting will cause them to explode, giving
you 100000 points (which guarantees at least one free man).  It will take an
amazing amount of firepower to cause them to explode, so be prepared to wait a
while unless you have an abundance of red-lander sponsored firepower.

The following chart shows the constitution, time limit, and bonus value of
each of the fortresses. (This list was based on ROM version at the Normal

        |Fortress| Timer | Bonus | BE | BR | CE | ME | PE | RE | SE |
        |Area 1 A|    20 |  4000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  1 |  0 |  0 |  0 |
        |Area 1 B|    40 |  8000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  1 |  0 |
        |Area 1 C|    40 | 10000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  4 |  0 |  0 |  4 |
        |Area 2 A|    60 | 20000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  1 |  0 |
        |Area 3 A|    50 | 10000 |  0 |  0 |  1 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |
        |Area 3 B|    40 | 10000 |  0 |  0 |  1 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |
        |Area 3 C|    60 | 20000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  3 |  0 |  2 |
        |Area 3 D|    90 | 30000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  0 |  4 |
        |Area 4 A|    90 | 30000 |  0 |  0 |  1 |  0 |  4 |  4 |  0 |
        |Area 4 B|    60 | 15000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  1 |  0 |
        |Area 4 C|   110 | 30000 |  0 |  0 |  1 |  2 |  0 |  2 |  2 |
        |Area 5 A|    90 | 30000 |  2 |  0 |  2 |  0 |  2 |  2 |  0 |
        |Area 6 A|    90 | 30000 |  2 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  0 |  2 |  2 |
        |Area 6 B|    80 | 40000 |  1 |  0 |  2 |  0 |  0 |  3 |  0 | 
        |Area 7 A|    80 | 30000 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  2 |  0 |  2 |  0 | 
        |Area 8 A|    80 | 40000 |  0 |  0 |  4 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |
        |Area 9 A|    90 | 30000 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  2 |  0 |  2 |  0 |
        |Area 9 B|    80 | 20000 |  2 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  0 |  2 |  2 |
        |Area 9 C|    70 | 20000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  2 |  1 |  0 |
        |Area 9 D|    90 | 20000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  3 |  0 |  2 |
        |Area 9 E|    90 | 40000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  4 |  4 |  0 |
        |Area10 A|    60 | 20000 |  0 |  0 |  1 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |
        |Area10 B|    90 | 30000 |  1 |  0 |  2 |  0 |  1 |  2 |  2 |
        |Area10 C|    90 | 30000 |  0 |  0 |  1 |  0 |  4 |  4 |  0 |
        |Area10 D|    90 | 40000 |  0 |  0 |  3 |  0 |  1 |  3 |  2 |
        |Area11 A|    90 | 70000 |  5 |  0 |  2 |  4 |  1 |  5 |  1 |
        |Area12 A|     * |   N/A |  2 |  0 |  2 |  0 |  2 |  4 |  2 |
        |Area12 B|     * |   N/A |  2 |  0 |  2 |  4 |  2 |  2 |  0 |
        |Area12 C|     * |2000000|  0 |  3 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |

* - If you've turned on the Final Fortress timer, you have 360 seconds to
    defeat all three forms of the Final Fortress. Otherwise, take as long as
    you'd like.

Special version has some different fortresses (any not listed below are
identical to the ROM version as listed above.)

        |Fortress| Timer | Bonus | BE | BR | CE | ME | PE | RE | SE |
        |Area 3 B|    40 | 10000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  2 |  1 |  0 |
        |Area 3 C|    60 | 20000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  6 |  0 |  4 |
        |Area 9 C|    80 | 30000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  2 |  8 |  1 |  4 |
        |Area 9 D|    90 | 30000 |  0 |  0 |  0 |  4 |  4 |  2 |  0 |

[XV.10] Current List of Faerie Locations

The faerie Rio is hidden at several different locations throughout the
game. (Look for places where your weapons seem to be hitting some invisible
object.) Touching Rio when she appears will destroy everything onscreen like
an Enemy Eraser, and cause her to start following your ship. The next fortress
you reach with Rio in tow will be instantly destroyed.

[Note] Unlike Zanac Neo, Rio does _not_ protect your ship from incoming fire,
or give you any subweapons upon destroying a fortress.

[Note] In Special version, Rio will shoot homing fireballs at enemies after
you use her "Enemy Eraser" power, until you reach the next fortress. :)
Area 3      - Not long after you reach the forest area at the beginning of
              the Area, you'll find a blue square to the left. Shoot it to
              unleash Rio.

Area 4      - Toward the beginning of the level, you will see two grey
              rectangular areas, each with four squares forming a "plus
              sign". Shoot the center of the plus sign on the left to
              reveal Rio.

Area 6      - At the beginning of the level you'll come across several
              golden squares on the ground at both edges of the screen that
              can be destroyed (but otherwise do nothing.) The seventh such
              square on the right houses Rio.

Area 10     - Right after the second fortress, you'll soon come across a
              fortress-like emplacement on the left side of the screen. (It
              consists of four Tanks and a Round Eye, just like the second
              fortress of Area 1.) It doesn't count as an official fortress
              though, and the screen will not stop for it. However, if you
              can take out the Round Eye, Rio will pop out.

[XV.11] Current List of Eye-Eye Locations

Eye-Eyes are small "smiley-face" icons that appear on the ground from time to
time. The first time you hit the Eye-Eye, your main gun will turn into the
Wide Shot and your subweapon will upgrade one level, if possible. Additional
hits will continue to upgrade your subweapon until it reaches its maximum 
level. (Contrary to popular belief, the upgrade is not an instantaneous complete
upgrade, but in most cases you really have to go out of your way to get a
partial upgrade from an Eye-eye.)

[Note] If you continue to fire at the Eye-Eye, you can eventually destroy it
for a 300000 point bonus. This is worth at least 3 free ships and is not
terribly difficult to do, so I highly recommend doing this whenever possible.

[Note] Occasionally, if you did not have the Wide Shot before hitting the
Eye-Eye, picking up a Power Chip will revert your weapon back to its dinky
pre-Eye Eye status. I am not yet sure what the exact circumstances behind this
are.  I believe you are safe if you have at least 5 chips (normal gun power
"maxed out"), and will revert if you have 4 or less chips.

Area 3      - Hang to the right when you reach the second large forested
              area after the first fortress. The Eye-Eye appears on the
              right side about halfway through this forest.

Area 5      - It appears slightly right of center during the fast scrolling
              open area where you fight the mini-boss. (The mini-boss and
              the fast scrolling both make this one tricky to hit.  Try draw
              the mini-boss to the lower left corner as long as you can,
              and then rush back to hit the Eye-eye.)

Area 8      - Not too far after the Subweapon 5 that appears in the center
              of the screen toward the beginning of the level (in Disk Version
              a Tank appears here instead, and being reddish it blends in well
              with the surroundings), the Eye-Eye will appear on the left side
              of the screen.

Area 11     - A difficult one to spot. It's on the right side of the screen
              about midway through the blue part of the level. The Eye-Eye
              itself is colored blue here, which makes it blend in with its
              surroundings quite well unfortunately.

Area 12     - Keep an eye on the "yellow brick road" that appears right
              around the same time the mini-boss does. It first appears on
	      the right, then stops while a second one appears on the
	      left. It eventually stops, while a third crosses the screen
	      from right to left. Once the fourth, larger one appears on
	      the right, the Eye-Eye will soon appear slightly right of the
	      center of the screen. (The screen is scrolling fast and more
	      than likely the mini-boss will still be harassing you, so
	      this one can be easy to miss.) 

Area 12(2)  - Blink and you'll miss this one; right when the background
              turns completely yellow (with the odd green rows) toward the
              end of the level, you need to be on the left side of the
              screen, about halfway between the left edge and the center.

[XV.12] Current List of Warp Hole Locations

You will become quite familiar with the Icons that are scattered throughout
the levels, which produce Enemy Erasers when shot. (A picture of the standard
Icon appears on page 11 of the manual.) However, not shown in the manual is a
different kind of Icon, which looks somewhat more like an Eye-Eye, except with
square eyes.

At first these seem no different than the standard Icon, as shooting them
produces a fully functional Enemy Eraser. However, these EE's are different;
if you leave them alone for a few seconds, the middle "ball" of the EE will
vanish, leaving a hollow ring. Flying into this ring will warp you to another

[Note] Nobody ever claimed that the warp would send you _further_ into the
game. Mwhahaha... sorry.

[Note] Once you touch the warp hole, you immediately become immune to enemies
and their bullets for the few seconds it takes for the screen to fade out.

[Note] Flying into a Warp Hole in Score Trial mode immediately ends the
trial. Obviously, this probably isn't a good idea if you are trying for a high

[Note] In Special version, the Warp Icons in the locations noted below have
been removed and replaced with the standard Icons. I have not noticed any new
Warp Icon locations.

Area 1      - This one is on the far right side of the screen near the very
              end of the level. There's very little point in taking it,
              since the fortress isn't much further ahead and it only takes
              you to Area 2.

Area 2      - This one is even more pointless than the Area 1 warp. It
              appears right in front of a regular Icon, even closer to the
              last fortress than in Area 1. It takes you to Area 3. 

Area 3      - Similar to the Area 2 warp. Right before the last fortress,
              on the right side of the screen, right in front of a regular
              Icon. This one takes you to Area 4. 

Area 5      - Appears slightly left of center on an asteroid "island"
              during the fast scrolling area, just a bit past the
              Eye-Eye. The combination of the fast scrolling and the fact
              you may still be dueling the mini-boss makes this one hard to
              catch. If you can get it though, it'll take you to Area 6.

Area 6      - This isn't going to be a great description... There's an
              invisible Warp Icon on the far right side of the screen,
              quite some distance after the first fortress. This warp takes
              you to Area 8.

Area 7      - While you're fighting the mini-boss of this level, two
              columns of Icons will appear. The first nine on the left are
              standard Icons; the next four on the right are Warp
              Icons. I haven't got around to checking them all
              individually, but most of them warp you backward. (The first
              takes you to Area 5, for instance.) The second to last one,
              however, warps you ahead to Area 9. 

Area 11     - There isn't an actual Warp Hole here (that I'm aware of), but
              this is as good a place as any to mention this. Unlike
              practically every other fortress in the game, failing to
              defeat the one at the end of Area 11 before the timer runs
              out will warp you back to the beginning of Area 11. (If you
              manage to completely destroy it after the timer runs out but
              before you actually get warped, you will still get warped
              anyway.) Unlike the other warps, this one still works in
              Special version.

[XV.13] Score Trial Strategies

As Zanac doesn't include the nifty scoring systems of its successor,
squeezing the maximum amount of points out of a given level will take much
more cleverness than simply shooting everything and timing your Charge Shots
well. With that in mind, here are some tips.

At the moment only Course 1 is covered, but more courses will be added to
future revisions.

Course 1 (Wayne's Record: 756170 / Zach's Record: 728360)

Your basic strategy is judicious use of W6. Start by firing W0 at the Sart,
wait until it got closer to the top of the screen, then turn it red. Fire two
W0 shots at dusters (producing a set of boxes), hit the Icon for Enemy
Eraser, ram the left box in the set, THEN touch the Enemy Eraser...without
the Lander leaving the screen. Your score should be 32000, so fire two main
gun shots to increment the score counter without hitting anything. Hang to
the right side without firing, shoot the left Sart and then shoot W0, take it
for the invulnerability, take the Red Lander, then take as many W2 as you can
get (there are three following the W0). The W2 triggers more point-full
enemies to come on the screen so you can shoot them. :) Your shield will last
until the next Icon, at which point you pop the screen (hopefully catching a
few Giza) and then take the two W6s along the right side, trying to flash the
screen several times in between taking the first and the second powerup. 

The rest of the strategy centers around the use of W6. Basically, you must
get enough W6 during the first level to get both the free man bomb and one
other W6 powerup (or an Enemy Eraser, it might be possible if you "save" one)
onscreen at the same time. Use the Lander Flash and then bomb the chunk of
produced landers for ~30,000 points each. Don't take any, free men won't do
you any good in Score Trial. 

You'll need six or seven W6 powerups. I think unless you get at least one
extra W6 from the four tanks at the second midboss you will JUST get the free
man bomb at the end of the level. Also, if you want the first Cargo Carrier
W6 then you need to use the five-chip bonus a few times early enough to get
the Wide Shot counter high enough so that Carriers will come out instead of
Sarts...BEFORE the Sart that is supposed to be W6 comes out. Taking W6
reduces the counter but you can't help that. 

You get a lot of W6 in SC1. Basically you can pretty much use W6 at your
discretion. Bomb whenever you see a Drov shell split for big points. Bomb
rather than letting Giza leave the screen. Bomb whenever there are plenty of
enemy bullets on the screen, or when you think there is a remote chance you
will die. Drag out the sub-boss battles, detonating as many Drov shells as
you can. 

The two times that you will be defenseless: If you see a W5 cargo carrier,
that means that a W6 will be coming. If you flash the screen, you might
destroy the carrier. So basically you have to live by the main gun and your
wits...cache a power chip so that you can safely cross the screen and hit the
carrier without bombing. Second time you are defenseless is when you get the
Lander Flash and you have to carry it until you find another W6. 

Beating our current scores is probably a matter of getting the Lander Flash
early enough and the AI mad enough so that you can get a ton of enemies on
screen. Possible ways might be: never die, take W2 at least once or twice,
fire continuously, and let those Sarts go tell System what a meanie you are. 

[XVI] Acknowledgments

Compile, for this wonderful game.  They tore themselves away from the rampant 
ten-year success of Puyo Puyo to listen to their old fans again.  Thank you 
for bringing back Zanac, keeping what worked, and improving what didn't. It 
took 15 years but it was worth the wait.

Lord Ghaleon

-      For being the first to bring the Area 11 fortress warp in original
       Zanac to my attention on the GameFAQs board. (Although Wayne Yoshida
       discovered this himself not long afterward...)


-      Japanese player whose play videos are located on the official Zanac
       website. Watching ZEX's videos forced me to reconsider my stance on
       the utility of Charge Shot.

Andrew "Andy" T. An

-      First lent me (Wayne) his version of Zanac (Disk) years ago...
       eventually I ended up keeping it.  Started me down the road of no


-      The official Zanac site (especially bulletin boards) was used as
       source material for some ideas, including the existence and method of
       obtaining Edit Mode and the FC-Custom.  Also provided in the site
       were the names of some enemies, which was very useful. Sadly, it
       appears to have been taken down. :(


-      Japanese website containing much useful info; unfortunately I can not
       read Japanese, but Babelfishing this site allowed me to get the
       Players Note information you can find in this FAQ, as well as shedding
       a little bit of light on the original Zanac wide shot mystery.
       [W.Y:  I can read some Japanese, and this site is a fairly good source
       of information about Zanac, but I was unable to establish who the
       author is.  I borrowed the song track list and locations from here
       instead of using the BGM player in options.  The site also clued me in
       to the idea of "Each subweapon causes Zanac to put out more of a
       particular enemy type".  Thank you, unknown author!]

[XVII] Legal Issues
This FAQ is jointly and equally owned by the two authors, Wayne Yoshida and
Zach Keene, (C) 2003.  This FAQ cannot be copied, paraphrased, translated,
or published (in printed or electronic form, for profit or not), in whole or
in part without express permission of at least one of the original authors.
The authors are not affiliated with Kabushikigaisha Compile.  Zanac and
related trademarks are retained by Compile, and the authors make no claims to
Compile's intellectual property.  NES and Nintendo Entertainment System is 
(probably) a trademark of Nintendo as well, and we make no claim to that 

The authors give permission for this FAQ to be displayed electronically 
by Gamefaqs (www.gamefaqs.com) and the authors' websites ONLY.  The most
recent version will be placed on Zach Keene's webpage, at:


Material in this FAQ is original (derived from personal experience) except 
where credited above.  If you're wondering, I sat with a stopwatch and a 
ruler for two days to get that weapon speed data, and it would not make me 
feel good if you steal it.

[XVIII] About the Authors

You may remember Zach Keene from other FAQs for games such as 
Einhander, G.Darius, and several Castlevania games. When not doing 
something important like playing RPGs, shooters, and Castlevania games, 
Zach is attempting to earn undergraduate degrees in mathematics and 
computer science. You can find his ramblings on various video games at 

Wayne Yoshida is a newly minted PhD chemical engineer from UCLA.  His 
research includes RPGs (especially first person), vertical shooters,
driving games, anything 2-player co-op, and occasionally polymers and
surface engineering.  He first started playing Zanac 14 years ago on
a Famicon system and is obviously still interested in it.  This is his
tenth publication, but marks his first video/computer game FAQ.

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