Blaster Master is a 1988 run-and-gun platformer developed and published by Sunsoft. It was released in Japan and North America as a NES exclusive, but it was three years before it was eventually released in Europe in 1991.
Upon release, Blaster Master was widely praised by critics for its ability to combine two different genres to create a brand-new experience. However, the lack of passwords meant the game had to be completed all at once, creating a difficulty curve that made it extremely tough to complete. In terms of sales, it isn’t clear how it performed, but its multiple sequels suggest it didn’t do too badly.
Blaster Master Premise
Blaster Master has two types of gameplay sections. The first is the side-scrolling sections, played on foot and in the SOPHIA tank. Then, there are the top-down perspective levels, which pit you in a maze and have you fight waves of enemies to find your way out. The game makes it necessary to track back through some of these levels to progress further, with eight in total across the entirety of Blaster Master.
The SOPHIA tank is the star of the show. While playing the side-scroller levels, you will mostly control Jason in a tank, which has several different weapons you can use to defeat the underground mutants. However, you only have limited ammunition for some of your weapons, so the game does make you think about resource management at times. You can leave the tank at any time, which is how you get to the top-down levels.
The bosses in Blaster Master are defeated outside of the SOPHIA tank. However, their main purpose is to give you upgrades for the tank, which improves that section of the gameplay even further.
Blaster Master Main Characters
The story of Blaster Master doesn’t take itself too seriously, and that much is clear from the very first cutscene. Ultimately, the gameplay is the star of this particular title, with the story being a necessary vehicle to move the game from one level to another.
With that said, here are the main characters in Blaster Master.
- Jason: Jason is the protagonist of the game. After his pet frog, Fred, falls into a hole in the garden, Jason follows, where he finds a tank named SOPHIA THE 3RD. He takes the vehicle and sets off into the Earth’s core to find his pet.
- Fred: Fred is Jason’s frog. After escaping from his fish bowl, he falls into a hole in the garden, where he accidentally touches a radioactive chest, growing massively. He disappears after falling into the hole, and Jason must head out to look for his pet.
- Plutonium Boss: The Plutonium Boss is the main antagonist of the game. A mutant living underground, he leads an army that is standing in Jason’s way while he looks for his friend.
Blaster Master Titles in the Series
The history of the Blaster Master series stretches back to 1988, when the original game was released. That’s almost four decades of history, with only nine games released in that time. It’s a series that keeps being revived, no matter how long it has been dormant for prior.
The most recent subseries, Zero, was developed by Inti Creates, taking over the driver’s seat from Sunsoft. It was a solid effort at reviving the series for good. Now, with a trilogy of games complete, it isn’t clear if we’ll be seeing more Blaster Master in the future. No plans are currently announced, so hopefully, we will get something more concrete at some point soon.
- Blaster Master (1988)
- Blaster Master Jr. (1991)
- Blaster Master 2 (1993)
- Blaster Master: Enemy Below (2000)
- Blaster Master: Blasting Again (2000)
- Blaster Master: Overdrive (2010)
- Blaster Master Zero (2017)
- Blaster Master Zero 2 (2019)
- Blaster Master Zero 3 (2021)
Blaster Master Cheat Codes
Blaster Master, unfortunately, has no cheat codes that you can enter. It doesn’t even have any level passwords, making it extremely difficult to complete the game. This was actually a big point of contention among critics, with many feeling it made it too hard.
However, if you play the game on an NES emulator, there are a bunch of amazing third-party Game Genie codes you can use to change lots of the game’s content. Most are a big help in completing Blaster Master much easier.
If you’re playing Blaster Master on an NES emulator like Mesen, you need to use these codes by locating the Cheats section of your emulator (for Mesen, this is Tools > Cheats).
Here are the full selection of Game Genie cheats for Blaster Master:
Blaster Master Game Genie Cheats
|Cheat Code Effect
|Allows you to climb ladders anywhere.
|Allows you to climb ladders four times as quickly as normal.
|Allows you to climb ladders twice as quickly as normal.
|You’re able to fight bosses when fully upgrade.
|All enemies or bosses die in one or two hits with any weapon.
|You always have the super gun.
|Dangerous surfaces are like ice on the top-down levels in the game.
|When you die, you see the ending of the game.
|You don’t lose your gun when taking damage.
|Drops don’t kill you.
|Enables level select.
|Your bullets now fire faster.
|You now gain four times the energy from POW powerups.
|You now gain maximum energy from POW powerups.
|You now gain two times the energy from POW powerups.
|Gives you infinite car energy.
|Gives you infinite continues.
|Gives you infinite health.
|Gives you infinite homing missiles.
|Gives you infinite hover.
|Gives you infinite lightning.
|Gives you infinite multi-warheads.
|Gives you infinite thunderbreaks.
|Gives you invincibility against everything in the game.
|Gives you invincibility, but only from direct enemy attacks.
|Gives you invincibility, but only from spikes.
|Allows you to jump while in mid-air.
|Kills all enemies when they appear. Be careful with this cheat, as it makes the second boss invincible as well.
|Gives you moon jump on the vehicle sections.
|Kills most bosses instantly.
|You will no longer lose your gun.
|Poison grass can no longer hurt you.
|You now shoot missiles instead of regular shots.
|Allows you to skip the intro screen to the game.
|Allows you to start a new game with Sofia fully upgraded.
|Allows you to start from World 2.
|Allows you to start with one life.
|Allows you to start with six lives.
|Allows you to start with nine lives.
|Allows you to start with five of each weapon.
|Allows you to start with 10 of each weapon.
|Allows you to start with 15 of each weapon.
|Allows you to start with 99 of each weapon.
|Allows you to start with 99 of each weapon as well as max hover.
|Allows you to walk through walls.
Blaster Master Cheat Code FAQ
What is the Invincibility Cheat in Blaster Master?
To get invincibility in Blaster Master, you should enter the cheat “XVUIGNEO YYVSTZAE AEUEPZTA.” This will make you invincible against everything in the game.
There are several other cheats that make you invincible against particular elements of the game too, and they can be found in the table above.
What is the Level Select Cheat in Blaster Master?
In the absence of an actual level select or password feature in Blaster Master, you can use the Game Genie code “XTVYGGAV AOXGYZEY YOXKAZLP SXKGLZAX.” This will allow you to choose from any level to play in the game.
Does Blaster Master Have Achievements?
No. The game was an NES exclusive, a platform released far before in-game integrated achievements were ever a thing.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Screenshot from Blaster Master..