Which Came First Gradius R Type

Graphics and Design Software

When it comes to classic shoot ’em up games, two titles often come to mind: Gradius and R-Type. Both games have become iconic in the genre, known for their challenging gameplay and memorable boss battles. But which came first? In this article, I will delve into the history of these two games and determine which one was released first.

Gradius, developed and published by Konami, made its debut in the arcades in 1985. The game quickly gained popularity for its innovative power-up system, allowing players to customize their ship’s abilities as they progressed through the levels. With its vibrant graphics and catchy soundtrack, Gradius was a game that captured the attention of gamers around the world.

On the other hand, R-Type, developed by Irem and released in 1987, offered a different take on the shoot ’em up genre. Known for its atmospheric levels and challenging gameplay, R-Type stood out with its unique “force pod” mechanic. This device could be attached to the player’s ship, providing additional firepower and acting as a shield against enemy attacks.

Now, let’s answer the burning question: which game came first? Gradius was released in 1985, while R-Type came out in 1987. Therefore, Gradius holds the distinction of being the first game to hit the arcades between the two.

Having played both games extensively, I must say that they both have their merits. Gradius, with its customizable power-ups, offers a strategic element that allows players to adapt to different situations. On the other hand, R-Type’s challenging levels and unique gameplay mechanics provide a thrilling and intense experience.

While Gradius may have come first, it’s important to note that both games have had a significant impact on the shoot ’em up genre. They have inspired countless other games and have left a lasting legacy in the gaming community.


In conclusion, Gradius was released before R-Type, making it the first game in the series. Both games have their own unique features and gameplay mechanics that have made them beloved classics. Whether you prefer the strategic customization of Gradius or the intense challenge of R-Type, one thing is for certain: these games have earned their place in gaming history.