Aero Fighters

Aero Fighters

Also known as Sonic Wings, Aero Fighters is a vertical-scrolling shoot-'em-up with a variety of real-life military aircraft to choose from, each of which are piloted by a distinct cast of pilots.


Aero Fighters (known in Japan as Sonic Wings) is a vertical-scrolling shoot-'em-up developed by Video System and released by Tecmo (McO'River in North America) for arcades in 1992.

The first in a series of shoot-'em-ups by Video System, and a spiritual successor to the 1991 game Turbo Force, Aero Fighters puts players in one of eight real-life military aircraft from four countries (U.S.A., Japan, Sweden, and U.K.), each with their own unique weaponry, as they battle numerous threats throughout the world.

Along with its multiple aircraft to choose from, the game is known for its various cast of pilots, some of which are comical (such as a viking and a robot) and their own unique endings and interactions (with special endings and pre-stage dialogue for different multiplayer combinations). It also features a randomized stage loadout, in which the first three stages are randomized based on the nation the players did not choose.

The game later received a home console port for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, first released by Video System in Japan (on June 30, 1993), then by McO'River in North America (on November 1994). It changes the game to run on a horizontal resolution (despite its vertical scrolling, a system they used in the game's sequels), replaced the soundtrack, and includes bonus hidden content (including the protagonists from Rabbit Punch as playable characters).

The development staff of Aero Fighters broke off soon after release to form Psikyo, believed to be due to Video System's plans to start developing on Neo Geo hardware (which uses a horizontal resolution, rather than the traditional vertical one). Their first game, Samurai Aces, is often seen as a spiritual successor to Aero Fighters and uses a similar multi-character system.

The game later received a Japan-exclusive PlayStation 2 port in 2005 as part of the Oretachi Ge-sen Zoku series.

Aircraft & Characters

The game includes eight different aircraft (with two additional hidden ones in the SNES version), each with their own weaponry and firepower.






The SNES version of the game has a hidden squad, which are the playable protagonists from Video System's earlier shoot-'em-up Rabbit Punch. Both of them are rabbit-shaped robots who pilot themselves. Rabio appears in all versions in Mao-Mao's ending.