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Gun.Smoke (Arcade)

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Title Screen


Developer: Capcom
Publishers: Capcom (W), Romstar (NA)
Platform: Arcade (custom)
Released internationally: November 1985

AreasIcon.png This game has unused areas.
DevTextIcon.png This game has hidden development-related text.
EnemyIcon.png This game has unused enemies.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
ItemsIcon.png This game has unused items.
MusicIcon.png This game has unused music.
DebugIcon.png This game has debugging material.
LevelSelectIcon.png This game has a hidden level select.
RegionIcon.png This game has regional differences.
Carts.png This game has revisional differences.

Capcom's Gun.Smoke is a scrolling shoot 'em up...sans spaceship? What's going on here?

Yes, this game is set in the Wild West, and that means shootin' everyone you come across. Based on the long-running TV show, but not really. Watch out for cow skulls!

Unused Graphics

Notable cymbals {}
While there are around 50 special characters in the game's font, only 18 of them are used.
The 32 other unique characters don't appear anywhere, even in the name entry screen.
Notable symbols include a Hot Spring symbol and a small POW icon.
Tank.Smoke?! Something particularly strange is in the text graphics ROM; an entirely unique, completely unused font!
Note that this image was modified from how it's stored on the ROM; all tiles have been rotated 180°.
It's unknown where this font would be used, and it doesn't match a font used in any of Capcom's games.
The only clue as to what kind of game would use this font is the tank character in the 6th row.
Sign your name where no one will set it until decades later
The name Takashi Aoki is stored in the object graphics ROM.
Those aren't rubies, Petunia
A human skull with red eyes. Cow skulls appear in the game as a power-down item. This does not.
An alternate design for the POW item. This appears in Savage Bees as a weapon power-up.
It might have had a similar effect in this game.
Sure, they're cacti, but are they killer?
Despite being setting in the Wild West and all, there's a conspicuous absence of cacti.
There are some in the object graphics ROM, but they never appear in-game. Odd, that.
This is your left, that's your leftSooo sleepyThis is your right, that's your right
Graphics for an 11th boss! He wields two pistols, has a nifty hat, and looks very sleepy.

Presumably he would appear in the cut 11th stage seen below.
But it wasn't a rockIt was a Rock Mobster
A boulder is found near the cut boss's graphics. Presumably the boss would hide behind it.
There are two boss frames that are cut off at the torso; those could only be used if he was behind something.
(Translation: divingkataetheweirdo)
(Source: Original TCRF research)

Stage Select

A rudimentary stage select is in the game. Set the Slot A / Slot B credit settings to the appropriate value, then turn the Service Mode switch on when the copyright warning screen appears.

Slot B
Slot A
1 / 3 Credits 1 / 3 Credits Stage 2
1 / 4 Credits 1 / 3 Credits Stage 3
1 / 6 Credits 1 / 6 Credits Stage 4
2 / 1 Credit 3 / 1 Credit Stage 5
3 / 1 Credit 3 / 1 Credit Stage 6
4 / 1 Credit 3 / 1 Credit Stage 7
1 / 1 Credit 1 / 2 Credits Stage 8
1 / 2 Credits 1 / 2 Credits Stage 9
1 / 3 Credits 1 / 2 Credits Stage 10
1 / 4 Credits 1 / 4 Credits Ending

(Source: MAME "gunsmoke.c" driver file)

Unused Map

River keeps on rollin'

The map has been rotated to fit in the article.

An unused area is stored in the game's tile map starting at offset 5D40 and ending at 6938. This is probably where the cut boss would be fought.

Otherwise, this is a fairly unremarkable level using the river archetype. The only structures of note are the two parallel bridges near the end of the stage.

(Source: Original TCRF research)

Unused Music

Two tracks are unused.

ID# Track Notes
An unused boss track. Could have been used for either Stage 4 or 7, the only stages to share boss themes.
This is the same length as the other stage clear tracks, so it might have been used for that.
(Source: Original TCRF research)

Serial String

A hidden string can be found at 7E50 in each version. These strings also give an early title for the game.

Japan World NA Set 1 NA Set 2
85113    Gunman   J
    == GSJ_03 ==
85113    Gunman   N
    == GSE_03 ==
85113    Gunman   A
    == GSR_03 ==
85113    Gunman   A
    == GSA_03 ==
(Source: Original TCRF research)

Region Differences

Japan World North America
Gun.png Gun.ogg Gun.zzdummy

In a standard mid-80s Capcom game change, the number of letters per name was reduced from 8 to 3. The Romstar releases further alter the first two names from the World version's high score table.

(Source: Original TCRF research)

Revision Differences

There are two revisions of the North American game. The following changes were made to Set 2:

  • Copyright year changed from 1985 to 1986.
  • The boss demonstration dipswitch was changed. It now controls the number of starting lives, and the demonstration never plays. If the dipswitch isn't flipped, the player will start with 5 lives instead of 3.
  • The default high score was changed from 100000 to 110000.
  • Stages 3 and 6 were swapped, making early progress in the game much more difficult.

(Source: MAME "gunsmoke.c" driver file)