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Blaster Master

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Title Screen

Blaster Master

Also known as: Chou-Wakusei Senki: Metafight (JP)
Developer: Tokai Engineering
Publisher: Sunsoft
Platform: NES
Released in JP: June 17, 1988
Released in US: November 1988
Released in EU: April 25, 1991
Released in AU: April 9, 2010 (Wii Virtual Console)

DevTextIcon.png This game has hidden development-related text.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
ItemsIcon.png This game has unused items.
DebugIcon.png This game has debugging material.
LevelSelectIcon.png This game has a hidden level select.
RegionIcon.png This game has regional differences.

ProtoIcon.png This game has a prototype article

The story of a young boy chasing his radioactive pet frog into the depths of the earth, where he finds an ancient battle tank.

Stage Select

Blastermaster ss.png

Game Genie code XTVYGGAV (EKNYUYAA for the Japanese version) activates a stage select. There's two different "sets" of places to go: one starts you off in a particular world with the tank, and the other starts you off right before the boss.

In the Japanese version (Metafight), the stage select itself works fine, but in the US version, some things were altered so it turned into more of a demo viewer than anything, unfortunately.

(Source: CaH4e3)

Debug Features

To do:
There's more to this; the Japanese version includes some editing functionality that doesn't work in an unmodified ROM.

The Game Genie code GAUGIKGK enables a couple of minor debug features:

  • Pressing Up on Controller 2 freezes the game on a black screen. Probably linked directly to development tools.
    • In Metafight, using the stage select code EKNYUYAA allows you to pause and teleport to wherever you wish. Start returns to the game.
  • In top-down areas, your gun points will instantly be maxed out.
    • If at any time you run low on Gun Power, pressing B on Controller 2 will refill the Gun Power meter.

(Source: CaH4e3)

Unused Graphics



Subscreen and item graphics for an unused Spike item, which was to be acquired in Stage 8. It is guessed that this item would have been dropped by the Plutonium Boss upon defeat, and made either Jason or the tank immune to spikes (many of which appear there). Though a hack of this game uses that ability, it was not in the original code.

If this were actually true, then it is also possible that:

  • The two bosses of this stage were to be fought in separate areas instead of in succession (which would explain the great difference in their rooms' features).
  • The entrance to the Underworld Lord's lair was to be blocked off by a large amount of spikes, thus requiring said item to safely access.

The item graphics would later be used for the Wall items in Blaster Master: Enemy Below. Additionally, an upgrade with the above function would appear on Blaster Master's WiiWare remake Blaster Master Overdrive, where it was known as the Super Tires.

A pointer for the "SPIKE" text tilemap still exists in the subscreen data, and is actually loaded by the screen drawing code if the corresponding bit is set in the tank upgrade flags (bit 6 of RAM address $99); however, the tilemap itself was removed and replaced with a single $80.

Intro Cutscene Blinking Animations

Graphics for blinking animations for both Jason and Fred are loaded among the other cutscene graphics. Since these are the only blinking animations for the cutscene, Sunsoft must've figured it was weird to have it for only one scene.

Original Mockup
Blaster Master Intro Cutscene1.png Blaster Master (NES)-Opening Cutscene blink.png

Unused English Title Screen Graphics

CHR Mockup
Chou-Wakusei Senki - MetaFight-unused.png Metafight (NES)-Early Title screen mockup.png

An unused set of tiles for an English "MetaFight" logo, possibly meant to be used on the title screen. Unfortunately, no tilemap data remains in either the Japanese or international ROMs.

Regional Differences

Title Screen

Japan America Europe
Blaster Master JPN title screen.png Blaster Master-title.png Blaster Master EU title.png.png

The title screen was completely changed for releases outside of Japan. The Japanese title translates to Extra-planetary War Chronicles: Metafight (超惑星戦記メタファイト: Metafight). The American and European versions have the title and Sunsoft logo flash. The European version, appearing similar to the American version, changes the cyan color to white and has less copyright information.

Intro Cutscene

An intro was added to versions outside of Japan that completely changes the plot.

In this somewhat ridiculous intro we see the hero, a young boy named Jason, playing with his pet frog, Fred. Fred then escapes, hops outside, and encounters a mysterious box of radioactive waste. Upon touching it, the frog grows large, and then jumps down a nearby hole. Jason accidentally follows his frog down the hole and finds a tank that is conveniently designed to attack radioactive mutants. Thus, Jason's adventure begins to find Fred! In Jason's journey to find his frog, he will destroy mutants and overthrow their leader, the Plutonium Boss.

In Japan, the plot is completely different and was only explained in the manual. Instead of taking place on Earth, the game takes place on a planet called Sophia the 3rd in the year 2052 of the space age calendar. The Inbem Dark Star Army, led by the intergalactic conqueror Goez, start invading Sophia the 3rd. The Science Academy of NORA, a satellite orbiting near Sophia the 3rd that escaped the invasion, builds a tank, the Metal Attacker, to thwart the Inbem Army. A young soldier named Kane Gardner is chosen to be the pilot of this weapon.

Originally the tank did not really have a name in Blaster Master, but because the display that says "Sophia the 3rd NORA MA-01" on the menu screen was left unchanged, the "Worlds of Power" novelization inadvertently named the tank after the planet where Metafight takes place and later games in the series went with that.

(Source: VG Den)

Strange Digital PCM Track

After about 13.5 seconds during gameplay demos, this strange bit of "music" plays on the digital PCM channel, producing what sounds like orchestra hits every couple of seconds. It's unknown what its intended purpose was or why it plays only during demos, though it seems to line up perfectly with the track played during the intro cinematic. Stranger still, this track is completely absent from the European version (which adds level music to the gameplay demos).


Japan US
Blaster introJP.png Blaster introNA.png

The area where the tank speeds off in the introduction to Level 1 was changed to a cave in the American version to fit with the new intro.

Area 4

Japan US
BlasterMaster-Area4-JP.png BlasterMaster-Area4-INT.png

The top-right section of Area 4 was changed. This is the section that leads to Area 5. To quote an interview with game designer Yoshiaki Iwata:

[T]here was a part of the map in Area 4 where the player was forced to control Jason and make a desperate suicide-leap for a ladder suspended in mid-air. We reluctantly changed that [...] following complaints from the U.S. staff.


The ending also has some changes between versions.

Japan US
Blaster1JP.png BlasterMaster-End1-INT.png

The tower, only shown during the ending, is different between regions. The Japanese version of the tower has a more alien-like design to go along with the extraterrestrial setting of Metafight.

Japan US
Blaster2JP.png BlasterMaster-End2-INT.png

The frog buddy doesn't exist in the Japanese version, so he was added to the game's ending.

Japan US
Blaster3JP.png BlasterMaster-End3-INT.png

The Japanese version's ending shows chibi-style renditions of the game's hero and heroine, Kane Gardner and Jennifer Cornet. Jennifer, who is shown prominently on the Japanese version's boxart and even has a profile in the manual (which establishes her to be the young gifted NORA scientist responsible for building the Metal Attacker), never actually appears in the game outside this one image. The Sunsoft logo is also moved left a bit.


Some names in the staff roll were changed between regions. The full credits are presented below with changes bolded.

Japan US Europe

Number of continues

The Japanese version has unlimited number of continues, while the Western versions have only 4. However, in both versions, the number on continue screen is not displayed.

Development Text

The European version has some developer notes not present in the other versions:

0x01428A: " DATABODY "
0x017FF0: " *** BANK 5 *** "
0x01BFF0: " *** BANK 6 *** "
0x01FFF0: " *** BANK 7 *** "


The European version has a few extra glitches not found in the other versions:

  • You can stop movement by pausing and allowing double (and more) jumping.
  • A changed zip mechanism exists that allows you to warp through things such as walls.