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Top Gunner

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Title Screen

Top Gunner

Also known as: Tokushu Butai Jackal (JP), Jackal (INT)
Developer: Konami
Publisher: Konami
Platforms: Arcade (Custom)
Released internationally: October 1986


CopyrightIcon.png This game has hidden developer credits.
RegionIcon.png This game has regional differences.


Top Gunner -- or Jackal as it's known in every other incarnation but the North American arcade one -- is an overhead game set in a warzone. Rescue the good guy hostages in your jeep while annihilating the enemy forces (also in your jeep.)

Developers Credits

Stored at 0x0BE60 in the master CPU:

KONANI 1986 8 04
KOJI HIROSHITA
MASATO OHSAWA
HIROMICHI OKASAKI
HIDEYUKI TSUJIMOTO
SHINJI TASAKA
KENGO NAKAMURA
MASAMI TABATA
KIYOKO MIZUTANI
YOUSUKE UNO
MITSUHIRA IDAKA
(Source: Original TCRF research)

Regional Differences

Graphical Changes

While the setting of Jackal is intentionally vague, Top Gunner, thanks to a set of graphical changes, is definitely meant to take place in Vietnam.

Jackal Top Gunner
TopGunnerPlayerINT.png TopGunnerPlayerNA.png

The flag on the player's Jeep is a nondescript orange and blue flag in every other version but Top Gunner, where it's a star-spangled banner.

Jackal TopGunnerGatesINT.png
Top Gunner TopGunnerGatesNA.png

Red flags (presumably the North Vietnam flag) were added to the enemy gates and campsites in Top Gunner.

TopGunnerEndArea.png TopGunnerProgress.png

Strangely, in every version of the game, the final area and the game's progress map have the same red flags.

Jackal TopGunnerEnemy1INT.png TopGunnerEnemy2INT.png TopGunnerEnemy3INT.png TopGunnerEnemy4INT.png TopGunnerEnemy5INT.png TopGunnerEnemy6INT.png
Top Gunner TopGunnerEnemy1NA.png TopGunnerEnemy2NA.png TopGunnerEnemy3NA.png TopGunnerEnemy4NA.png TopGunnerEnemy5NA.png TopGunnerEnemy6NA.png

Five-pointed red stars were added to most of the enemy vehicles in Top Gunner, to really reinforce the whole North Vietnam thing. The only exception to this is the Molotov Cocktail-throwing van.

(Source: Original TCRF research)

Controls

There are four versions of the game (excluding bootlegs) currently supported by MAME. One romset, known as jackalr, has support for rotary joysticks, which allows the player to adjust the direction their jeep's machine gun is aimed at. This was likely a location test version, as its main program ROMs are labelled "Q" on the PCB and very little information seems to exists about this version online. Because the other versions only support standard 8-way joysticks, the way the player's machine gun works differs between them. The Japanese version, or Version T, has the gun shooting towards the direction the player's jeep is facing, whereas the US and World versions, Version U and V respectively, has the machine gun fixed to always shoot northwards.