Defender II

Categories: 5 minute, Arcade, Free, Games, Online, Shockwave

Defender IIDefender IIDefender is a horizontally scrolling shoot’em up arcade game created in 1980 by Williams Electronics. Designed by Eugene Jarvis, Larry DeMar, Sam Dicker and Paul Dussault, this game was a hit when it was released and remained popular for several years after its launch.

Defender II is similar to the original Defender, but with more bonuses and more deadly enemies.

Here is what you can read in the very well documented help section of the game: “You are in control of the ship, Defender. Your mission is to protect the defenseless astronauts on the planet’s surface from the alien menace invading your world. The world is small; it takes about five seconds to fly completely around it. On the top of the screen, you will see a map showing the entire world, your position, and the position of all enemies and astronauts”.

Tap the arrow keys to move and press space bar to fire. Hold the left or right key to accelerate. Press ‘B’ to launch a smart bomb which, when fired, will destroy all enemies on the screen (but not their bullets or mines!). Press and hold the ‘V’ key to make your ship invisible and invulnerable for as long as you hold it or until the power runs out (shown below your number of reserve ships). In case of emergency, press the ‘N’ key to go randomly to hyperspace but be warned, hyperspace will make you jump to a completely different part of the world, one that may be more lethal than the one you left!

That being said, that’s a lot of controls, maybe too complex for occasional gamers and you will need time to get used to them.

Defender II is fast, addictive and very fun to play. Thanks to Digital Eclipse Software and its arcade emulator applet that drives this Shockwave game (and several others available on MidwayArcade website, but unfortunately less interesting), you won’t have to spend money anymore (like I did a long time ago!) to enjoy this one: just insert (virtual spinning) quarters in the upper right corner of the game window (click the quarter to do so) and then click either the one or two player start button. You’re ready to play with a 25 years old game: have fun!

Note: the game has a local High Score system, which tracks only the highest scores on your computer.

By Eric

current rating 3.75


2 Comments to Defender II

  1. Pierre says:

    WOW ! That brings me back to a time when I was much younger and use to go to the “La Bonne Patate” arcade in Quebec city (Hi to Mario, Luc and Michel if you guys ever read this hehe). We were listening to Styx, Rush, Genesis, Led Zeppelin and Supertramp back then and spending a lot of money in the arcades.

    I’ve been looking for years to find this game. It was also called Stargate Defender and was much more fun and addictive than the original Defender. William’s had a couple of nices arcade games back then (Joust, Robotron, Defender) and some even nicer pinball machines.But Stargate was the best of all.

    This online version is visualy identical to the original and all the cool sounds are the same. But the configuration of the buttons and controls is not as smooth. It was easier to control the ship on the arcade game. Anyway, maybe with some practice I’ll be able to get over 1,000,000 pts, as I did over 20 years or so ago.

    Long live Stargate Defender.

    • Alan says:

      Better than the original Defender? Nope, just different and ‘newer’ but the original remains the classic.

      I’d regularly hit scores of 3 to 500K, occasionally clocking the thing. One of those games you ever practised like crazy and got seriously good at it, or you’d be blown away before ending the first level. Either way it was a blast! However I cannot stand by while you slander the original. Extra gimmicks for the newer version alters nothing; the original remains the ultimate.