Retro: Space Harrier’s 30th Anniversary – Happy Birthday to Space Harrier

SaraAB87 November 3, 2015 3
Retro: Space Harrier’s 30th Anniversary – Happy Birthday to Space Harrier

Happy Birthday to Space Harrier!

2015 marks the 30th Anniversary of the famous Sega arcade game, Space Harrier. This game is loved by many people and has become kind of a cult classic to some. While the exact release date is unknown for the arcade versions depending on where you live it is believed to have been released from October through December in 1985. The game was also released for several video game consoles throughout the years, most recently appearing as a Sega 3D classics title for the Nintendo 3DS.

There were 3 different versions of arcade cabinets released; A standard upright version, A sit down version with a small stationary seat and my favorite version the deluxe full motion version. While there were a few other more uncommon and unknown motion simulators released to the arcades before Space Harrier, it can be said that Space Harrier was one of the first games to be released in a motion based cabinet into the arcades that went into full scale production. It was definitely the most popular and most widely seen of the first motion based simulators.

Pictured below is the full motion Space Harrier cockpit that resides and can be played at the arcade in the Skyquest arcade located in the basement of the Skylon Tower in Ontario, Canada.

Space Harrier-03

Space Harrier-11

The game can also be played at Funspot in New Hampshire, where they also have a full motion version. I don’t know of any other Space Harrier machines anywhere, so if you have one on location near where you live anywhere in the world, feel free to drop me a line in the comments.





  1. neil brimelow November 3, 2015 at 9:17 pm - Reply

    Space Harrier was a literal paradigm shift in video game graphics. Released in 1985, it was one of the first 16 bit arcade games, and had graphics that looked like a Robotech cartoon come to life. Keep in mind that the competition at the time was at the Super Mario Bros. graphics level.

    Given how hard the arcade industry crashed in 1983 it was amazing that Sega was able to pull something as ground breaking as Space Harrier.

    Sega reigned king of the Arcade Graphics pretty much till the very end.

  2. HeavyElectricity November 4, 2015 at 11:08 am - Reply

    We just did the making of Space Harrier in Retro Gamer, with a Yu Suzuki interview – one of my favourite features to write, and a beautiful cover. There’s also a Space Harrier at Arcade Club in Bury, UK:

  3. Michel February 10, 2018 at 3:58 pm - Reply

    I have one in my attic but unfortunately the motors dont work no more
    Can anyone help me out if there are fuses for the engines and were they are located

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