Ikari Warriors – Nintendo – 1987

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This post is just a few tips and notes on the game plus what I went through to finally beat the game without the cheat code ABBA.




Here is the Complete Map. Other maps are incomplete so I had to make my own. It’s also one image file for all stages. Be warned, it’s 18.3 MB with a resolution of 1694 x 24734 pixels! In truth, it’s not fully complete but there isn’t much missing in it.


  • All powerups are mandatory to obtain (F, L, S, B, SS and Knife) but don’t get Triple Shot; you just need to take all of them once, they don’t stack
  • Hearts are mandatory too so that you keep your items for next stage; there is always one near the end of each stage; also they don’t stack so you just need one
  • Golden Heart gives you all powerups at once, very useful if you lose everything
  • Analyze the map and memorize everything
  • Play often; it’s no good if you play only once a week, you will forget the game
  • Save the game many many times at first to practice, finish the game with saved games a few times so you get better but only save with a perfect run when you have all the powerups and haven’t lost a life
  • Save the game less and less as you finish the game often; if you’re able to finish the game with only one save per level, you should be ready to finish the game without any save
  • Some elements are random (blue soldier placement, fuel powerups, tanks giving a tank), you have to be lucky to make a good run
  • Most elements like tanks, choppers, pink soldiers, kamikazes and more are not random, you have to remember all of their position and find the right angle to kill them before you even see them on the screen
  • Worst enemy of all are “drunken blue soldier”, just the regular blue soldier shooting bullets but randomly, they are the worst, you just have to be lucky
  • The explosion of your grenades or your tank’s missile cannot kill you
  • Randomly, the big tanks can shoot before you see them, so be careful and don’t be in their way; however, before you see them, if you hear them shoot and see no missile, then you’re fine
  • Playing the the D-Pad is really hard on the fingers, it helps to play with a joystick
  • If you keep blowing yourself in a tank or chopper when going out, it means your controller is bad, use another one
  • If you are not using the Chopper Glitch, you can do a really good speedrun if: 1) in stage 3, after you get the chopper, if you kill the next tank further down you can randomly have fuel and 2) in stage 4, when you get the chopper, you can randomly get fuel at this place. Both of those stage can be finished with the chopper up to the end
  • Watch video of people playing on speedrun.com, it really helps to see their strategy
  • Some blue guy kamikaze that go under water are actually on land and cannot be differentiated from regular blue guy, look at them in the map and memorize their locations
  • You can shoot in any direction with the chopper without moving, just press the direction and stop moving
  • Shoot at the feet of the blue soldier, else the bullet can pass through them, especially true if they are in the water
  • If you have the knife, the bees in Stage 2 cannot kill you
  • If you have the knife, the lasers from the Laser soldiers at the end of stage 4 cannot kill you, however, don’t let them touch you because they explode; same when you kill them, they explode so be careful even with the chopper
  • Stage 1 needs to be done perfectly: no life lost, else it’s better to start all over again
  • You can actually pass stairs in water with a tank (stage 3 and 4), just go at an 45 angle and you will move up but you will lose a lot of time since it moves so slowly
  • Use the walls in stage 2 or the pipes in stage 3 to hide and protect yourself from bullets of blue soldier
  • If you take a tank or chopper then the H powerup which give you 200 fuel, do not take a regular fuel powerup else you will drop to 100 fuel
  • Chopper Glitch: enter a chopper and don’t release the button, then press without releasing the other button, move forward and let go one button, you’ll be able to exit the chopper but continue just like you’re still in it; for stage 1 you can finish it but for stage 3 and 4, you need to do the trick at the same time as to die in the chopper so that when you get out of the chopper, you will die else you won’t be able to finish the stage
  • Chopper Glitch Stage 1: get in the Chopper, just go straight up and when in the water, press the Missile button, don’t let go, then press and release the bullets; doing it that way will make you teleport the last gate at the end
  • Chopper Glitch Stage 3: get in the Chopper, just go straight up while holding the Bullet button and just before the Blue Kamikaze, press and release the Missile button, you will see that the Blue Kamikaze will explode and destroy your Chopper so you’ll be safe when you exit the Chopper (meaning you will die)
  • Chopper Glitch Stage 4: a bit more hard than the others, you have to get to the water in the left near the floating mine and get out of the Chopper, hopefully either the mine or a Blue Kamikaze will make your Chopper explode
  • If you use the Chopper Glitch in Stage 1, wait until you are above the water to get out, that way, when you reach the end, you will teleport through the last gate saving you like one second


As of 2023-08-27, I hold both the record of ANY% (NO ABBA) and ANY% (ABBA ALLOWED).

My Complete Run


Best Run

The best run ever recorded was 25:46 by ktwo using TAS which is a Tool-Assisted Speedrun, it’s a software that you can script and play for you. Very interesting to watch, lots of good strategy in there to make the fastest run possible.

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