Gradius IV

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GIV logo.gif

Gradius IV
GIV title screen.jpeg

Title screen

Developer: Konami
Publisher: Konami
Director: Hiroyuki Ashida
Music: Harumi Ueko
Yoshihiko Koezuka
Program: Ken Midorikawa
Yasuyuki Nagatomo
Naoki Niihama
Takeshi Asaki
Ken Inagaki
Art: Daisuke Yoro
Daisuke Chiba
Ayumu Hasegawa
Jun Omoto
Naoki Morita
Hiroyuki Ashida
Hiromichi Iwashita
Release date: Arcade JP: February 4, 1999
PS2: April 13, 2000
PSP: February 9, 2006
Previous game: Gradius Gaiden
Next game: Otomedius

Gradius IV: Fukkatsu (JP: "グラディウスIV 復活", "Gradius IV: Resurrection") is a horizontal scrolling shoot em' up developed and published by Konami in the year 1999. It is the sequel to Gradius III.

The game is notable for being the last mainline Gradius released in arcades, and has only been ported via Gradius III and IV on PlayStation 2 and Gradius Collection on PlayStation Portable.

For replay videos, visit the Video Index.

Gameplay Overview


Gradius IV is a 3 button game with 9 stages. Finishing all of them will start the 2nd loop.

  • A button: Equips the slot highlighted in the Power Meter.
  • B button: Fires the player's main weapon.
  • C button: Fires the player's missiles.

Power Meter

GIV power meter.png

Gradius IV reuses the Power Meter to handle the power up system. Collecting Power Capsules highlights one slot going from left to right. Grabbing a Power Capsule when the last slot is highlighted makes it go back to the Speed Up. Dying with a Power Capsule not utilized will highlight the Speed Up slot regardless of where it originally was.

Each slot does the following:

Slot Effect
Speed Up
Increases the player's speed. Can be equipped up to 5 times.
Adds a ground-based projectile.
Adds a secondary shot giving more coverage. Equipping Double replaces Laser in case the player was using it.
Upgrades the main shot. Higher damaging than both the regular shot and Double. Equipping Laser replaces Double in case the player was using it.
Adds an orange orb that mimics the player's movement and weapons. Can be equipped up to 4 times.
Activates a shield that grants protection against bullets and enemies.


Preset configurations

Type A
GIV type a.png
  • Missile: Fired downwards and travels across the ground.
  • Normal Double: Secondary shot fired at a 45° angle.
  • Normal Laser: Thin beam that can pierce through enemies.
Type B
GIV type b.png
  • Spread Bomb: Explodes upon impact dealing heavy damage.
  • Tail Gun: Secondary shot fired backwards.
Type C
GIV type c.png
  • Photon Torpedo: Fired downwards and travels across the ground faster than the regular Missile, can pierce through enemies.
  • Ripple: Becomes wider as it travels across the screen, cannot pierce through enemies.
Type D
GIV type d.png
  • 2-Way: Two missiles fired up and down, they can't travel through the ground.
Type E
GIV type e.png
  • Vertical Mine: Mines that are thrown based on velocity and direction of the ship, explodes upon impact.
  • Armor Piercing: Piercing bullets. Has higher speed, but lower damage.
Type F
GIV type f.png
  • Flying Torpedo: Fired forwards in a set of two missiles, holding down the B button spreads them apart vertically.
  • Twin Laser: A set of two thin small lasers.


GIV shield.png

  • Grants frontal protection against bullets, can withstand several hits.

GIV force field.png

  • Grants protection from all sides against bullets, can withstand up to 6 hits.

Power Capsules

GIV power capsule.png Red Power Capsule
Appears upon defeating enemy formations and orange colored enemies. Advances the Power Meter by one slot.
GIV blue power cupsule.png Blue Power Capsule
Appears after 12 Red Power Capsules. Clears the screen from small enemies and bullets. Does not advance the Power Meter.


Gradius IV loops infinitely. There's little to no slowdown, allowing for higher loops to spawn much more bullets than usual. The loops have a few stage changes.

Stage 1

The melting dragons spawn more often, Chimera's fireballs release suicide bullets when shot at.


For general tips, walkthroughs and boss descriptions, see: Gradius IV/Strategy

Development History



  • In the game`s opening, a scene of the Gofer fight from Gradius II can be briefly seen.