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logo of Jamestown+

JT+ vertical cover

Developer: Final Form Games
Music: Francisco "Foco" Cerda
Program: Timothy Ambrogi (engine)
Hallie Larsson (gameplay)
Art: Michael Ambrogi
Release date: Steam: 08 Jun 2011
PS4 (JT+): 17 Mar 2015
Steam (JT+): 12 Dec 2019
NS (JT+): 12 Dec 2019


Jamestown is a vertically scrolling shoot'em up designed around being played by up to 4 players in co-op. Its original version was released in 2011 on Steam but Jamestown+, the definitive version with additional content, was later released for the Playstation 4 in 2015. In 2019 Jamestown+ was released for the Nintendo Switch and as a new article on Steam.

Gameplay Overview


Players and the controls they desire are set before every run. Up to 4 players can participate at once.

  • Fire: Fires your primary vulcan cannon.
  • Special: Activate your ship's special weapon.
  • Vaunt: Activates vaunt mode (when charged).
  • Pause: Pauses the game.

On PC, a player is registered by holding any button with their input device of choice. These devices may be:

  • Keyboard: Requires binding directional keys, fire, special and vaunt. The Escape button is used to pause the game.
  • Controller: Requires binding fire, special, vaunt and pause. Analog controls are supported.
  • Mouse: Requires no binding. Left button is shot, right button is special, mouse wheel press is vaunt. Movement occurs by pointing on the screen. The ship will move towards that point on the screen at its regular speed.




  • Vulcan Cannon: The main shot/attack of each ship.
  • Special: Each ship has a unique Special mechanic and may either affect/replace the ship's primary attack or be a completely separate attack which can be used in addition.
  • Vaunt: The Vaunt is a survival and scoring mechanic that is charged by golden items. Upon activating the Vaunt, the player can absorb bullets (except for green rings in Judgement) and is immune to enemy collision for 2.5 seconds. The Vaunt will deactivate if the Vaunt gauge depletes. However, it can also be manually cancelled which will make the player invincible again (including green rings this time) for 1.25 seconds but also half the points acquired from the Vaunt. If the Vaunt was manually cancelled, items will not charge it for 3.5 seconds. If the player dies, the Vaunt gauge is empty again.


  • Gold items: These items increase the player's or the party's score and charge the Vaunt gauge of the player that picks them up. If the player's Vaunt is active, it will only be charged by half the amount.
Type Description Base score value Vaunt charge
JamestownSmallCog.png Small cogs. 10 2.5%
JamestownMediumCog.png Medium cogs. 100 10%
JamestownLargeCog.png Large cogs. 1000 20%
JamestownBonusCog.png Bonus cogs are the same size as medium cogs but more valuable and more lightly colored. 200 16.7%
JamestownBonusGear.png Gears are the most valuable gold items dropped by enemies. 2000 50.1%
JamestownGroundedGear.png Grounded gears look like regular gears but there's only six of them available, all grounded on fixed spots in the lost temple of Croatoa. 10000 201.1%
  • Revive items: These are exclusive to co-op mode and allow the party to recover dead members immediately upon picking them up. On Normal and Difficult, a revive item revives the entire party. On Legendary, Divine and Judgement, a revive item revives only one member. They're dropped by a variety of stronger enemy types and bosses during their fights.



  • Vaunting: Using the Vaunt mechanic contributes to scoring in multiple ways:
    • The score multiplier in the bottom left is applied to all score acquired during the stage. Its value is determined by the amount of players currently in the Vaunt state. (0 players: x1, 1 player: x2, 2 players: x4, 3 players: 8x, 4 players: x16). The Stage and Gauntlet end bonus is not affected by it.
    • Once the Vaunt gauge depletes, score will be added based on the duration of that vaunt. The formula for this is (timeInSeconds * 600) ^ exponent. The exponent depends on the difficulty (Normal: 1.00, Difficult: 1.05, Legendary: 1.10, Divine: 1.15, Judgement 1.20). The player whose Vaunt just ended is still factored in the score multiplier at that time. This means that in solo play, the Vaunt bonus is always multiplied by 2. A manually cancelled Vaunt is only worth half a depleted Vaunt that lasted the same amount of time. If the player dies during a Vaunt, no points are awarded.
    • Upon activating or manually cancelling a Vaunt, a shield appears around the player which can cancel bullets (except green ring bullets). Bullets cancelled that way are worth a base amount of 100pts each.
  • Special Kills: Many enemy types are worth more points and drop more gold items if a Special requirement is fulfilled as they're killed. In the original Jamestown, the word SPECIAL would explicitly indicate that the requirement was fulfilled. However, due to a bug this indication does not happen in Jamestown+. A page with a list of enemies, their Special requirements and values will be created in the future.
  • Enemy Cancels: Destroying certain large enemies or beating a boss's phase cancels all bullets on the screen for a base amount of 25pts each.
  • Stage Boss Bonus: Awarded at the end of each stage. This bonus always increases the score by 100,000 points.
  • Stage Credit Bonus: Awarded at the end of each stage. This bonus depends on the amount of continues used during the stage.
  • Gauntlet survival bonus: Awarded at the end of Gauntlet mode. This bonus increases the score by an additional fraction of itself. The percentage depends on the amount of continues used during the entire run. (0 continues: 20%, 1 continue: 10%, 2 continues: 5%, 3 continues: 2%)


See (Template Page)/Strategy for stage maps, enemy and boss descriptions, walkthroughs, and advanced play strategies.

This section details some particular strategic information about the game and its gameplay, such as hidden 1UPs and some basic scoring tricks. For anything particularly deep or highly complex, you can probably leave it in the Strategy page.

(Currently evaluating whether or not this specific section should even include information outside of the separated Strategy pages. Worth thinking about as a community.)


The story takes place in an alternate history setting in the 17th century where the British and Spanish have colonized Mars. It features multiple historical figures as playable characters: Walter Raleigh (Beam), John Smith (Gunner), Virginia Dare (Charge) and Joachim Gaunz (Bomber). Additional historical figures are featured in the Treason collection. However, they do not play any role in the plot.

Chapter I: War upon the East Frontier

After escaping execution by his British king in 1619, Walter Raleigh hopes to clear his name by solving the tragic mystery of the Lost Colony of Roanoke and travels to the British colony of Jamestown on Mars. However, a settlement in the East Frontier is attacked by Martians allied with the Spanish forces. After the tides of the battle have been turned, John Smith finally arrives at the front of the battle. Over a feast, Smith gives Raleigh directions to "The Dark Sector" which may hold the answers he seeks.

Chapter II: Journey through the Dark Sector

Raleigh forces his way through the Spanish Border Guard and finds Roanoke, ruined beyond recognition, as barely anything but a swamp filled with murderous creatures remains. Nevertheless, his search was not in vain as he encounters Virginia Dare, the first child to be born in the colonies. Raleigh intends to bring her back to England, hoping to be pardoned by the king. However, she refuses since her father Joachim Gaunz is still held in prison by the Conquistador, leader of the Spanish armada.

Chapter III: Prisoner of the Badlands

Raleigh and Dare attack the prison of the Badlands, guarded by robots, in broad daylight. They destroy the Dread Sentry which turns out to have been Gaunz's cage as he emerges from its wreckage, barely holding on to his life. Raleigh intends to escape with him and Dare back to Jamestown but Gaunz insists on fighting the Conquistador instead, claiming that his project poses a threat to all of Mars.

Chapter IV: Secret Mines of New Madrid

Their mission leads them to New Madrid, secret mines of the Spanish, where they first encounter the Conquistador in a gigantic drill-train which he uses to break into a hidden temple. Raleigh is now convinced that the Conquistador has evil intentions and may use ancient Martian weapons to destroy Jamestown, his last refuge, just like Roanoke. Realizing this, Raleigh is determined to stop the Conquistador.

Chapter V: The Lost Temple of Croatoa

Raleigh and company fight the Conquistador again in the hidden temple built by a forgotten Martian culture. As the Conquistador is cornered, he awakens The Heart of Mars. However, its powers aren't enough to take down the heroes but end up burning the Conquistador upon his defeat and eradicating his ashes instead. Though victorious, Raleigh decides not to return to England and stays in Jamestown instead, where he doesn't need to be pardoned.

Development History

If available, you can include information here about the hardware, the development of the game, and its general reception. Try to have as much information in this section cited as possible.

Version Differences

Differences between Jamestown+ and the original Jamestown

  • Jamestown+ contains all classic ships and DLC ships from the original game and adds a new selection of ships without requiring any DLC.
  • Adds two entirely new stages: Phobos and Deimos, the moons of Mars. The Gauntlet Mode also adds the Super Gauntlet which includes them.
  • The text indicator for fulfilling the Special requirement when destroying an enemy is missing (bug).
  • Some bugs from the original are fixed. Some new bugs were introduced. Check Bugs section for details.
  • The second life extend in Gauntlet mode is replaced with a credit extend.
  • The width of cone patterns from popcorn enemies on Judgement difficulty is reduced significantly.
  • The Dark Sector stage is shortened and its last portion before the boss is revised entirely.
  • {There are more differences that have to be investigated in detail first.}


  • The Dark Sector stage was shortened in Jamestown+ due to a lot of feedback about it being too lengthy in the original game.
  • The track playing during the credits was originally supposed to be the track for the New Madrid stage.
  • The first two big crabs in Deimos have a 2 written on them while the big golden crab before the boss has a 3 written on it. The game files do contain a big crab with a 1 but it simply isn't used in the game.

Video References

If the game already has an existing entry in the Video Index, please link to the page here. If you want to link to smaller clips perhaps not included in the Index, you can also leave them here.


original Jamestown and Jamestown+

  • The Lady of the Lake drops gold items twice on the first and third phase. The requirement is dealing over 500 and over 1000 damage. Due to a coding error, if exactly 500 or exactly 1000 damage are being dealt, the corresponding items will not be dropped in that phase. With Treason this can be avoided by not shooting missiles that aren't fully charged outside of Vaunt.

original Jamestown

  • In the original Jamestown holding down any direction with a dpad during the text at the start of any stage would cause the ship to move in the opposite direction by default which effectively makes the stage unplayable until exiting or restarting it.
  • In the original Jamestown UFOs can still emerge from below the screen after getting past them. This is assumed to be unintentional as the UFOs can spontaneously despawn on screen after doing so and do not emerge in JT+.


  • In the original Jamestown the word SPECIAL would explicitly indicate that the special requirement when destroying an enemy was fulfilled. However, this does not happen in Jamestown+. This is confirmed by westquote to be an oversight.
  • In Jamestown+ many shot types have one additional frame of cooldown between shots. Since this is caused by the internal deltatime being slightly below 1/60 whereas it's slightly above 1/60 in the original, this is assumed to be an oversight.
  • In Jamestown+ only 2 UFOs appear before the boss of the Badlands. In the original game, it was 10. However, those UFOs still appear to exist. If either of the two UFOs before the boss gets destroyed, the remaining ones will appear from the top of the screen and chase the player over time during the boss fight.
  • In Deimos the game will consistently crash if the stage is exited or restarted while any small golden crabs are alive. This includes small golden crabs that have left the screen and will reappear before the boss. Small golden crabs that haven't been revealed yet will not cause the crash.
  • In Jamestown+ the achievement "Veni, Vidi, Vici" is only unlocked by clearing Super Gauntlet on Divine or higher, rather than Legendary or higher (continues allowed).

References & Contributors

  1. Jamestown+ reverse engineered by Olifante and AlvaLynsis
  2. additional insight from westquote (one of the developers) on the Jamestown Discord server