The heartwarming tale of {{a boy and his|X}} [[TankGoodness tank.]]

'''''Blaster Master''''' is a series of action-adventure games created by Creator/{{Sunsoft}}. The first game, released on the NintendoEntertainmentSystem in 1988, is recognized as one of the classics for the system. It's originally known as ''Chou Wakusei Senki (Super Planetary War Chronicle) - Metafight'' when released for Famicom system in the same year, which had a totally different and [[ExcusePlot loosely put story]] that [[AllThereInTheManual existed only in the game's manual.]] ''Blaster Master'' was more popular, and most of the sequels were based on the NES version, and designed for Western fans.

The game (and the series) starts off with a young kid named Jason and his pet frog Fred. One day, Fred jumps out of his fishbowl and out of the house and onto a crate containing radioactive materials, which cause the frog to grow larger than Jason. When Fred and the crate fall into a large hole in the ground, Jason decides to jump in after him. Once down the hole, he finds a giant armored vehicle called SOPHIA THE 3RD, which was designed to fight radioactive mutants living BeneathTheEarth. He puts on a combat suit and gets inside the vehicle on his way to find his pet frog and to destroy the mutants' leader - the Plutonium Boss.

During the game, Jason will traverse the overworld in his vehicle, and will have to search for the boss of each area by exiting the vehicle and entering doors filled with traps, enemies, and power-ups. Defeating bosses will give his vehicle new abilities (such as the power to shoot down walls, hover, or swim quickly through water), which will become necessary to get to other areas.

This series is comprised of:
#''Blaster Master'' (NES, and Wii and 3DS VirtualConsole)
#''Blaster Master 2'' (UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis)
#''Blaster Master Boy'' (UsefulNotes/GameBoy)[[note]]This was actually a ''VideoGame/{{Bomberman}}'' spinoff game that was remarketed for international release.[[/note]]
#''Blaster Master: Enemy Below'' (UsefulNotes/GameBoyColor, and 3DS VirtualConsole)
#''Blaster Master: Blasting Again'' (UsefulNotes/PlayStation)
#''Blaster Master Overdrive'' (WiiWare)
#''Blaster Master Zero'' (UsefulNotes/Nintendo3DS and UsefulNotes/NintendoSwitch, [[ developed by Inti Creates]])

There was also a ''Literature/WorldsOfPower'' novelization of the first game, written by Peter Lerangis (under the pen name A. L. Singer). Elements from the novel were used in ''Blasting Again'' and ''Zero'', making it the only novel in the series to [[AscendedFanon become canon]].

''Blaster Master'' does ''not'', by the way, [[Film/MadMaxBeyondThunderdome run Bartertown.]]
!!''Blaster Master'' provides examples of:
* OneHundredPercentCompletion: In ''Zero'', it's how you get the GoldenEnding, which requires collecting all area maps, life ups, weapons, and maneuvers, and defeating all bosses.
* AdaptationExpansion: The ''Worlds of Power'' novel adds Eve, a girl from another planet, as the original owner of the SOPHIA III vehicle. These details would later become canon in ''Blasting Again''.
* AllThereInTheManual: The backstory of ''Blasting Again'', specifically the character of Eve and the origin of the Plutonium Boss, does not appear in any of the previous games. It does, however, appear in the ''Worlds of Power'' novelization of the original ''Blaster Master'', making it the only ''Worlds of Power'' novel to be canon.
* AwesomeButImpractical:
** The grenades in ''Blasting Again'' look great coming out, but they're nigh useless on {{mooks}} that aren't clustered together due to their triangular placement. ''Enemy Below'''s grenades also have a pathetically short range.
** In ''Zero'', there's the Acceleration Cannon. It's a powerful WaveMotionGun capable of even taking down bosses in one shot, but it requires all of SOPHIA III's weapon energy, takes a long time to charge, and getting hit will interupt the charge.
* BigCreepyCrawlies: The series has a lot of maggots crawling on the floor.
* BossWarningSiren: In the NES game, after entering a BossRoom, the screen begins to repeatedly flash as an alert siren stops the music, before fading out the screen completely and revealing the boss. Intrestingly, you can leave the room just before the screen fades out completely.
* BroadStrokes: ''Blaster Master Zero'' uses the ''Blaster Master'' title, character names, main plot, and so on, and has a backstory and feel more akin to ''Metafight.''
* BrokenBridge: The layout of the game is nonlinear, but various obstacles railroad you through the levels in a specific order, eg. {{locked door}}s (between Stage 4 and 5), {{gravity barrier}}s, (need Hover, Dive, or Wall powers), {{insurmountable waist height fence}}s (some barriers are indestructible until you're powered up), and {{beef gate}}s (the MiniBoss between Stages 1 and 2 is unbeatable until you get the Hyper upgrade).
* BubbleGun: The crab boss from the original game spits bubbles, and fires more as it gets low on health.
* ChainReactionDestruction: Bosses in the series have more explosive components than common sense would assume.
* CoOpMultiplayer: In ''Zero''[='=]s Nintendo Switch version, Player 2 has an "Assist" role, moving a target cursor around the screen to provide cover fire, use an exclusive sub-weapon, and drop recovery items for Player 1.
* ContinuityReboot: ''Overdrive'' was billed as a "re-imagining" when announced, but certain details within the game suggest that it's a {{prequel}}.
* ConvectionSchmonvection: 7th area, 1st game; and the third area of ''Blaster Master 2''.
* CoolCar: The S.O.P.H.I.A., in all of its incarnations.
* CoresAndTurretsBoss: Photophage, the third boss of the first game.
* CutscenePowerToTheMax: [[spoiler:The final boss of ''Blasting Again'' is defeated in this way, using a superweapon that the player is never told about beforehand and that cannot be used in game.]]
* DownerEnding: If you defeat the final boss in ''Zero'' without having defeated every other boss and obtained all area maps, life ups, weapons, and maneuvers, the ending scene after the credits roll shows [[spoiler:Eve inside of SOPHIA III, about to sacrifice herself to destroy the Mutant Core. Which you find out in the GoldenEnding wouldn't have worked.]]
* DownTheDrain: Stage 4 in the first game and in ''Enemy Below''.
* DrillTank: An upgrade turns the S.O.P.H.I.A. into one in both ''Blaster Master 2'' and ''Overdrive''. Also, the second boss of stage 2 in ''Blaster Master 2''.
* EldritchAbomination: The BigBad of ''Enemy Below'', a towering amoeba that's about half of the GB's screen.
* EnergyBeings / ShapeShifting: The Lightning Beings from ''Blaster Master 2'' and ''Blasting Again''. ''Blasting Again'' reveals that they're [[spoiler:Eve's species; survivors from when the Plutonium Boss destroyed their world.]]
* EternalEngine: Area 3 of the first game and in ''Enemy Below''.
* EvolvingWeapon: Jason's gun, and the S.O.P.H.I.A.'s main cannon with the Hyper and Crusher upgrades.
* ExcusePlot: The first game: Jason is simply out to catch his irradiated mutant pet frog and stumbles upon a mobile tank, which he uses to defeat demons from the underground.
* EyelessFace: The frog bosses in the first game have mouths, but no eyes.
* FallingIntoTheCockpit: In ''Blaster Master'' (NES), a boy finds an armored tank lying around and is able to drive it.
* FlashOfPain: Enemies which take multiple hits to kill, tend to briefly change color when damaged.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: One of the very first enemies you come across in Area 1 in the first game will provide you with a power-up to fuel your Hover gauge. This would be a mystery to new players, since Sophia doesn't even have a Hover gauge at this time, and won't get one until the end of Area 3. Remembering this fact can help players find the entrance to Area 4 [[{{Metroidvania}} on the cliff above the place they started the game]].
* GaidenGame: ''Blaster Master Boy'', a DolledUpInstallment of ''[[VideoGame/{{Robowarrior}} Bomber King 2]]''.
* GiantEnemyCrab: The fifth boss of the first game, the 3rd and 6th bosses of the 2nd game, and the 1st and 3rd bosses of ''Overdrive''.
* GiantSpaceFleaFromNowhere: The FinalBoss battle in the first game. After you defeat the Plutonium Boss, your true final opponent is...some armored knight with a [[WhipItGood plasma whip]].
* GoldenEnding: ''Zero'' has a true ending which can be achieved after the player has collected all area maps, life ups, weapons, and maneuvers, and defeated all bosses. [[spoiler:[[ButNowIMustGo Eve leaves]] Jason and Fred to destroy the Mutant Core all by herself, using SOPHIA III's self-destruct function to achieve this. Things don't go as planned, however, since the Mutant Core possesses SOPHIA III and turns it into Invem SOPHIA, while also restraining Eve inside. Jason, with the aid of Fred, comes to her rescue and destroys the Invem SOPHIA with the SOPHIA Zero, ending the mutant threat for good.]]
* GraphicsInducedSuperDeformed: In the first game at least. The protagonist is in rather normal proportions in cutscenes but in game he looks like a toy.
* GrapplingHookPistol: An early upgrade for SOPHIA in ''Overdrive''.
* GrimyWater: Present in ''Blaster Master 2''. Droplets and small pools of water will damage not only Jason but SOPHIA as well. As an immediate subversion, Stage 5 is a [[SuperNotDrowningSkills completely submerged level that's harmless]], but all encounters with water after this level are of the grimy variety again.
** The water in the overhead areas of Stage 4 also counts.
* GuestFighter: [[VideoGame/AzureStrikerGunvolt Gunvolt]] appears in ''Zero'' as a DLC character.
* HubcapHovercraft: The Sophia 3rd is a prime example.
* IndieGame: ''Zero'' is both developed and published by Creator/IntiCreates.
* InVehicleInvulnerability: The protagonists and their vehicles have separate health bars. In some of the games (notably the original) it's possible for the driver to restore his health by exiting and re-entering the vehicle.
* LavaIsBoilingKoolAid: Both in ''Blaster Master'' and in ''Enemy Below''. Area 7's overhead stages use recoloured water from the first ''Blaster Master'' game as lava. Touching it deals two points of health damage.
* LethalLavaLand:
** Area 7 in the first game.
** And in ''Enemy Below'', with [[LavaIsBoilingKoolAid recolored water as lava]].
* LoadsAndLoadsOfLoading: A recurring theme in ''Blasting Again''.
* TheLostWoods: Stage 1, first game.
* MalevolentArchitecture: Spiked pillars in the overhead stages in ''Enemy Below''.
* {{Metroidvania}}: It was this type of game before the subgenre became popular.
* MinimalistCast: ''Zero'' has Jason, Eve, and Fred as the only named major characters.
* MissionPackSequel: ''Enemy Below'' has new maps, weapons, gameplay and bosses, but similar graphics and music to the NES game.
* {{Mirror Match}}es: A BossBattle in ''Overdrive'', which ends in a shout out to the GaidenGame in a MakeMyMonsterGrow moment.
* MythologyGag: Kane Gardner, the protagonist of ''Metafight'', gets mentioned by name [[spoiler:in the true ending of ''Zero'']].
* NewGamePlus: After achieving the true ending in ''Zero'', you can replay the game in Ultimate Mode, which starts you out with [[spoiler:SOPHIA Zero]] and all area maps and upgrades unlocked, and lets you freely explore the game.
* NintendoHard: The ''Blaster Master'' games are quite challenging, even if you've gotten used to playing them and can get to the later levels with ease. One difference between ''Blaster Master'' and ''Meta Fight'': The end of level 4 in ''BM'' was a platforming segment to unlock a door. The end of level 4 in ''MF'' required you to jump off a cliff and catch yourself on a single tile of ladder to unlock a door! Alternately, you could aim for the lock on the way down but this kills you in the process.
* NotTheFallThatKillsYou: If Jason falls his own jumping distance, he takes no damage. One block more than that deals one point of damage (and adds a hilarious 'bounce'), and one block more than that is fatal.
* {{Novelization}}: Scholastic Publishing wrote a book based on the game as part of its ''Literature/WorldsOfPower'' series. While it takes several liberties with the plot of the first game, parts of it were [[AscendedFanon elevated into canon]] for ''Blasting Again'', particularly the character of Eve (who becomes Jason's wife and the mother of his children, Roddy and Elfie).
* OneWingedAngel: In ''Zero'', [[spoiler:the Mutant Lord transforms into a flaming elemental being, the Multidimensional Overlord, after the first phase of the fight.]]
* PaletteSwap: Bosses two and six in the first game are similar in appearance, as are bosses four and seven (which may explain why the [[GoodBadBugs grenade glitch]] (see PauseScumming below) only seems to work on them.
* PauseScumming: In the first game, it's possible to beat some of the bosses by hitting them with grenades and pausing at the right moment. If you do it right, the boss will keep taking damage while paused.
* PowerupLetdown:
** The upgrades for Jason's gun in ''Enemy Below''. He can only collect three, but good luck collecting more than one due to losing them quickly to enemy attacks.
** And in ''Blasting Again'', where the max weapon upgrade transforms your gun into a largely useless short-range flamethrower.
* PurposefullyOverpowered: Compared to SOPHIA III, [[spoiler: SOPHIA Zero is most definitely this: it starts with all of SOPHIA III's upgrades and all of them are vastly superior to III's weaponry. To list a few examples, it can shoot 5 regular shots at a time instead of 3, none of its weapons other than Acceleration Cannon need to be charged up first, all of its weapons and abilities other than AC consume less SP to use and most of its weapons are superior in some way in ways other than the lack of need to charge them first, such as Cannon Shot's lack of FriendlyFire and a much larger explosion, Laser acting like an actual piercing beam with hitscan properties, Thunder Breaker having a much larger area of effect below Zero and Shield Mine functioning more like an actual shield instead of DeployableCover.]]
* RealIsBrown: In ''Overdrive''.
* RescueArc: The premise of the GoldenEnding in ''Zero'', where [[spoiler:Jason, with Fred and SOPHIA Zero's aid, goes to save Eve after she leaves him to take out the Mutant Core by herself]].
* {{Retraux}}: ''Zero'' is an 8-bit rehash of the original NES game.
* ShieldedCoreBoss: The Area 6 boss in ''Overdrive''. Damaging the boss's feet eventually disables it, leaving its core vulnerable to attack for a short time.
* ShoutOut:
** The protagonist and his frog are named [[Franchise/FridayThe13th Jason]] and [[Franchise/ANightmareOnElmStreet Fred]]...
** In ''Zero'', the weapon obtained for reaching Gun Level 6 is [[VideoGame/AzureStrikerGunvolt the "Striker", which fires azure lightning at enemies.]]
* SlippySlideyIceWorld: The sixth areas of the first game and ''Overdrive''.
* SoftWater: Normally, Jason is subjected to FallDamage when outside [=SOPHIA III=]. That said, he's perfectly save at terminal heights if he lands in water.
* SoundOfNoDamage: Hit an invulnerable (part of) enemy? That sound is heard in that case.
* SpikesOfDoom: Everywhere in the last area in the original and in ''Enemy Below''.
* StationaryBoss: The Plutonium Boss of the first game. Only its head moves around.
* SuperNotDrowningSkills: In the "overworld" sections, Jason has no problem swimming through water -- much more so than S.O.P.H.I.A. until it gets the "Dive" upgrade. [[SuperDrowningSkills Inverted]] in the "on-foot" sections of Areas 4 and 7, where falling into water/lava means instant death.
* TempleOfDoom: Stage 2 of the original.
* TrueFinalBoss: [[spoiler:The Invem SOPHIA in ''Zero''.]]
* TurnsRed: The crab boss from the first game fires more and more bullets at you as you damage it, and the Photophage's turrets move faster as more are destroyed.
* UnderTheSea: The fifth areas in the first and second games, as well as the 'Water' area in ''Blasting Again''.
* UnderwaterRuins: 5th area, 1st game. Some turquoise pillars.
* UnwinnableByMistake: You get a weapon upgrade for your tank which allows you to blow away certain walls, which will respawn after a couple of seconds. However, should you get out of your tank and walk through the passage, once it respawns you have no way to get back to your tank. Also, since you can't shoot downward, you won't be able to go back in any case when blocks respawn below you. There are a number of places where you also can't kill yourself, leaving you totally trapped, forcing you to reset.
* WakeUpCallBoss:
** The first boss of ''Overdrive''. Only Alex's grenade launcher can reliably strike its weak point, and it has ''barely'' enough range to avoid [[CollisionDamage touching the boss]] in the process.
** ''Enemy Below'''s second boss teaches you why dodging is useful.
** Same for the first boss of the original.
* WallCrawl:
** In the first game, you can get two "Wall" upgrades - one that lets you cling to and drive up walls, and another that lets you transfer from walls to ceilings. This makes the Hover powerup almost useless outside of very specific situations where there are no walls nearby to climb.
** The two upgrades have been merged into a single upgrade in ''Zero''.
* WombLevel: The final stage of the first game, may appear in others.
* YellowLightningBlueLightning: The lightning attack in ''Blaster Master'' is definitely the yellow variety. Subsequent games have moved directly to blue lightning.
* ZergRush: The FinalBoss of ''Overdrive''.