Guardian Heroes

From Sega Retro

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GuardianHeroes title.png
Guardian Heroes
Publisher: Sega
System(s): Sega Saturn, Xbox Live Arcade
Sound driver:
Sega Saturn
SCSP/CD-DA (23 tracks)
Peripherals supported:
Sega Saturn
Saturn 6 Player Adaptor
Genre: Action

Number of players: 1-6
Release Date RRP Code
Sega Saturn
¥5,800 GS-9031
Sega Saturn
$59.00 81035
Sega Saturn
£44.99[1] MK81035-50
Sega Saturn
?F MK81035-50
Sega Saturn
DM ? MK81035-50
Sega Saturn
?Ptas MK81035-50
Sega Saturn
$? ?

Xbox 360
JP (Download)
800 pts ?[[Category:JP Xbox 360 games]]
Xbox 360
US (Download)
800 pts ?[[Category:US Xbox 360 games]]
Xbox 360
EU (Download)
800 pts ?[[Category:EU Xbox 360 games]]
Xbox 360
AU (Download)
? pts ?[[Category:AU Xbox 360 games]]
Xbox 360
KR (Download)
? pts ?[[Category:KR Xbox 360 games]]

Guardian Heroes (ガーディアンヒーローズ) is a beat-'em-up game developed by Treasure and published by Sega exclusively for the Sega Saturn in 1996.

The game would be see a sequel eight years later with Advance Guardian Heroes which Sega was not involved with.


The game is largely a sidescrolling beat-'em-up with some elements of an RPG. Unlike games such as Golden Axe and Streets of Rage, players are unable to move "in and out" of the screen with the Up and Down buttons. Instead, they jump between three fixed planes using L and R, and as such the control scheme is more similar to fighting games like Street Fighter, wherein Up is jump and Down is duck.

Some aspects of the game are more RPG-like. At the end of each stage, the player is given options on the direction the story will take. There is a total of 30 levels[3] of which players will see fewer than 10 in a given playthrough, and five possible endings. Defeating enemies gives the players experience which can be spent at the end of each stage on the following: strength (damage done to enemies), vitality (player's health), intelligence (spell strength and radius), mentality (magic points and recovery rate), agility (speed) and luck (modifies damage dealt and received).

Versus mode has up to six players (some can be computer-controlled) fighting each other in an arena. Most characters from the story mode can be used in versus mode, although the player must have encountered them in the game (thereby encouraging multiple playthroughs).[4]


Main article: Guardian Heroes/Achievements.


Xbox Live Arcade version

A port of the game was released by Sega for Xbox Live Arcade in Autumn 2011. This version features online play that also allows drop in co-op. Multiplayer mode can go up to four players locally, or up to twelve players online. The gameplay was also rebalanced and retooled to take advantage of the Xbox 360 controller. The translation was also revised as well as featured restored content that was removed from non-Japanese versions of the game. Finally the game features a graphics filter that gives a stylized look to the original low-resolution art of the Sega Saturn original.

Production credits

Saturn version

  • Producer: Greg Becksted
  • Product Manager: Doria Sanchez
  • Lead Testers: Chris Lucich, Renato Alferez
  • Assistant Leads: Abe Navarro, Kenny Robinson, Jeff Junio, Joseph Damon
  • Game Testers: Ron Allen, Anthony Lynch, Chad Lowe, Steve Bourdet, Ward Farris, Donovan Soto, Mark Lerma, Lance Nelson, Annette Dancel, Rebecca Colbourn, Justin Acevedo, Jeff Loney, John Jansen, Jeremy Weat, Rolef Conlan, David Rudd, Jeff Hedges, Richard Krinock, Zenon Thornton, Eddie Ramirez, Marcus Montgomery, Tricia Gray
  • Special Thanks: Tim Dunley, Seth Gerson, Eric Smith, Clint Dyer, Terry Tang, Susannah Nukes, Frontline Marketing, Laura Schaldach
  • Manual: No.6 at The Village
Source: US manualMedia:Guardianheroes sat us manual.pdf[5]

Magazine articles

Main article: Guardian Heroes/Magazine articles.

Promotional material


SSM JP 19960209 1996-02.pdf

Print advert in
Sega Saturn Magazine (JP) #16: "1996-02 (1996-02-09)" (1996-01-26)


Physical scans

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
90 №2, p83[6]
93 №172, p22-29[7]
80 №31, p72/73
65 №372, p31
98 Vol 4, №4, p14/34/35/36/37/38/39
86 №86, p54-55
48 №41, p67
100 №5, p90[8]
100 №7, p125/126
93 №42, p68-71[9]
85 №64, p106/107
80 №78, p50/51
95 №8, p64/65[10]
80 №1996-01, p185[11]
86 №, p9Media:SnGwSISDRZK Book JP.pdf[12]
30 №17, p78/79
Sega Saturn
Based on
19 reviews

Saturn, US
GuardianHeroes Saturn US Box Back.jpgGuardianHeroes Saturn US Box Front.jpg
GuardianHeroes Saturn US Disc.jpg
Guardianheroes sat us manual.pdf
Saturn, EU
GuardianHeroes Saturn EU Box.jpg
GuardianHeroes Saturn EU Disc.jpg
Saturn, JP
GuardianHeroes Saturn JP Box Back.jpgGuardianHeroes Saturn JP Box Front.jpg
GuardianHeroes Saturn JP Spinecard.jpg
GuardianHeroes Saturn JP Disc.jpg

External links

  • Sega of Japan catalogue page (Japanese): Sega Saturn
  • Guardian Heroes on Xbox Marketplace: UK, US, JP, KR


  1. File:MeanMachinesSega47UK.pdf, page 90
  2. File:CVG UK 176.pdf, page 48
  3. File:CVG UK 175.pdf, page 92
  4. File:CVG UK 175.pdf, page 93
  5. File:Guardianheroes sat us manual.pdf, page 22
  6. File:ConsolesNews FR 02.pdf, page 83
  7. File:CVG UK 172.pdf, page 22
  8. File:GMR US 05.pdf, page 92
  9. File:MeanMachinesSega42UK.pdf, page 68
  10. File:SSM_UK_08.pdf, page 64
  11. File:SSM_JP_19960112_1996-01.pdf, page 189
  12. File:SnGwSISDRZK Book JP.pdf, page 11