Skyblazer, released in Japan as Karuraou (迦楼羅王), is a platform video game published by Sony Imagesoft, released in early 1994 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. It involves the Skyblazer hero, Sky, searching for Ashura, the Lord of War, who had kidnapped the sorceress Ariana.
Before the dawn of history, in an age when great sorcerers walked the lands and mystic creatures abounded, the world existed in a constant state of turmoil and war. The evil Ashura and his powerful warlords waged an eternal war to crush the Mystic Pantheon and stamp out the light of reason once and for all. Eventually a great sorcerer, Sky-Lord, arose and defeated Ashura, banishing him from the realm forever. Centuries passed, cities rose and fell and eventually even the great deeds of the Mystic Pantheon and the evil Ashura passed into legend. Until one day, a gifted apprentice sorcerer inadvertently freed Ashura from imprisonment. One by one Ashura began to capture and irrevocably transform the descendants of the Mystic Pantheon, making them his evil warlords. As the last free descendant, you are Sky, set upon a quest to free the young sorceress Arianna and face Ashura in mortal combat to end his tyrannical rule once and for all.
There are a total of 17 levels (with a few more stops on the map where the elder gives passwords to the player) and ten bosses (including the final boss, Raglan; the other nine bosses must each be fought twice, since they reappear immediately before Raglan). An overhead map allows for movement between levels, including back to ones already completed, and its slight non-linearity allows one to skip some levels (at the cost of the magic spells and other powerups obtainable in them).
Most of the levels are side-scrolling, but there are some levels involving flight, either automatically scrolling or in Mode 7, where the player can grab crystals towards extra lives but will exit the level upon touching a spike and falling. Also, some levels expand on the usual platform structure by including waterways whose paths can be varied with switches, and there are areas with rotating towers. Many of the bosses also use extensive Mode 7, expanding and rotating around the screen or coming in the form of rotating walls.
- Game Design — Kenshi Naruse
- Programming — Tadakatsu Makiuchi, Norihiro Tokeshi
- Character Design — Teruo Nagato
- Graphics — Midori Nasu, Michiyo Komura, Sadaki Matsumoto
- Music — Harumi Fujita (who used a similar style, but militaristic as opposed to Indian in tone, in Bionic Commando)