Catalogue of Arcade Emulation Software - the Absolute Reference

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Top Gunner (US)

Top Gunner (c) 10/1986 Konami.

Top Gunner is a pseudo-three-dimensional dimensional shooter. The game starts by dropping a jeep, by parachute, onto a beach. Then two men parachute in and get into the jeep. Now it's up to you to do two things. First, liberate the POW's and second, wreak mayhem and chaos as you blaze a path of glory toward main headquarters. Of course, the road to victory won't be easy. In your path stands an enemy ready to repulse your attack with a whole arsenal of weapons at their disposal. You do have, though, a jeep capable of turning that arsenal of weapons into a mass of scrap metal.


Game ID : GX631

Main CPU : (2x) M6809

Sound Chips : YM2151

Screen orientation : Vertical

Video resolution : 224 x 240 pixels

Screen refresh : 60.00 Hz

Palette colors : 512

Players : 2

Control : 8-way joystick

Buttons : 1 (FIRE)


This game is also known outside US as "Jackal" and in Japan as "Tokushu Butai Jackal".

Alfa Records released a limited-edition soundtrack album for this game (Konamic Game Freaks : Konami Kukeiha Club - 28XA-135) on 25/03/1987.


In this version, the jeep has an American flag flying next to the cannon and the sound effects are slightly different.


Scoring in this game is pretty complicated due to the fact that there are a lot of things you can get points for.

BOMBER : 2000 Points

ENEMY SOLDIER : 100 Points





HELICOPTER : 2000 Points

MISSILE : 400 Points


GUN BOATS : 800 Points






You also get points for saving POW's and dropping them off at the airfields. The scoring goes like this for POW's; for POW's you liberate from the huts :

First : 100 points

Second : 200 points

Third : 400 points

Fourth : 1000 points

Fifth : 2000 points

Sixth : 3000 points

Seventh : 5000 points

Eighth : 10000 points

You get 10,000 points for every POW rescued after the eighth one. If your jeep gets destroyed, the progression starts over again.

For POW's you drop off at the airstrip, the progression works the same as for liberated POW's. The difference is that if you move away from the airstrip, the progression starts over at 100 points again. If you manage to offload all 8 POW's without breaking away from the airstrip or getting destroyed, each POW

liberated after that is worth 10,000 points.


The name of the game is POWERUPS. Your success in this game will depend solely on your ability to obtain and KEEP powerups. Your jeep is equipped with two weapons : a machine gun (always shoots up in TG) and a rocket type weapon that shoots the direction you are facing and can be 'boosted' in various ways and usually in steps or levels of powerup. The default level is short range rocket, which Will stop and destroy many buildings and all vehicles.

Here are the levels of powerup you can obtain for your rocket weapon :

1) Short Range Rocket (default) - shoots a short range rocket.

2) Long Range Rocket - shoots a long range rocket (almost the entire length of the screen).

3) Horizontal Exploding Rocket - same as above but the rocket explodes in two directions horizontally, taking out anything the schrapnel hits.

4) Diagonal Exploding Rocket - same as above but the rocket explodes in 4 directions diagonally, taking out anything the schrapnel hits.

There are a couple of ways of boosting your rocket weapon. The assumed way is to blow up the special bunkers that have a single gun turret and a single POW - picking up the POW will give you a nice points bonus as well as a POWERUP to the next level of rocket weapon. These bunkers are available every so often - but you will need a little something extra to get further in the game. You need to get full powerup quickly - and this is how you do it. A diversion in the game (not required to actually finish it) is to shoot open bunkers and pick up POWs - this is above and beyond the single POW bunkers you can snag guys from. Your jeep can handle a total of 8 POWs. First trick - NEVER fill your jeep to capacity - always leave a single slot open. If you fill your jeep up and run across a single 'power up' bunker, you won't be able to pick the POW up and get your powerup. Now, just before you get to the helicopter pad (to release the POWs), you will almost ALWAYS find a bunker with a single powerup POW. Blow it up, get the POW ,the powerup, and that will fill your jeep to capacity. YOU WANT YOUR JEEP FULL BEFORE STOPPING AT THE CHOPPER PAD. Clear the area of enemies around the pad (you don't want any suprise enemies popping up and making you move) then park and start releasing the POWs. DO NOT MOVE UNTIL THE LAST MAN IS AWAY. Once all eight are out of the jeep, you can get the heck out of there (chances are, you will being stalked or about to be killed) You will receive a great bonus of points and FULL POWERUP on your rocket weapon! Talk about tilting the odds in your favor! You can do this EACH and EVERY time you are at a helicopter pad! This will earn you HUGE scores and keep your weapon up to snuff.

Remember, every time you die, you lose ONE level of powerup - so aside from the understood incentive for staying alive, you want to also maintain your weapon. Best of all - YOU GET A HUGE BONUS for picking up the powerup POWs when you are at full rocket weapon strength. If you want to see your score skyrocket, get full powerup and start plucking those powerup POWs up. Later in the game, you will need to strategically stop on the helicopter pad to allow yourself to shoot up and to a left angle to shoot down bomber planes that will DEFINITELY start showing up. If you can kill them the second they appear on the screen, none of their bombs will hurt you. If you miss lining up the jeep right, or you miss the plane, you will HAVE to move before the last guy gets out of the jeep or die. It takes some practice (you can't 'reposition' the jeep after the first man gets out or you lose the bonus) but you'll get to be a pro in no time. Enemies are not random in this game, so you can learn where tanks and enemy jeep vehicles reside quite quickly. While it sounds like a 'duh' tip, keep the enemy count low - especially enemy soldiers on foot. While they are little more than an annoyance at the beginning of the game, they QUICKLY become formidable enemies and keeping the number of them 'on screen' to a minimum is a requirement. The enemy subs can be killed before they are all the way out of the water as well as while they are going back in (i.e. when they aren't firing). Learn their location and plant rockets in the water before they have a chance to fire on you. In a two player game, have the player NOT offloading POWs to the helicopter 'stand guard' against the bomber planes (and other enemies for that matter). Then swap off and let the other one offload. Enemies are still 'active' hidden partially off screen (but they don't move or fire). Use this to kill enemies before they take a stance against you (the big tanks especially). Most vehicles can be killed with enough shots from your machine gun. If you don't feel you can reposition yourself in time to line up your rocket, pound away with bullets and hope you kill him first.


* Consoles :

Nintendo Famicom (1988)

Nintendo Famicom Disk System (1988, "Final Commando - Akai Yousai")

* Computers :

Commodore C64 (1987)

Sinclair ZX Spectrum (1988)

Amstrad CPC (1988)


F.A.Q. by Kevin Butler A.K.A. War Doc