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Hero Core - Official game guide

Introduction - Basics - Enemies - Bosses - Trivia
Normal - Hard - Annihilation - Boss Rush - Hero Forever


On Normal and Hard difficulties, each zone of the asteroid holds a boss machine, while the Eliminator roams the entire asteroid in its search for you. On Annihilation difficulty, the final boss is the Living Warmachine instead of Tetron.

Rock Smasher - Boss of Natural Caves
32 HP per core
256 HP total
Although it's the boss of the first area, you usually won't meet it until later in the game. The battle begins when you move inside the Rock Smasher, and there's no point trying to escape it. The easiest way to destroy the cores is to mash the left and right Fire buttons simultaneously, while moving along the center of the boss. Each destroyed core means less bullets to dodge, so focus on a few at a time.
Trivia: Named after Rock Crusher from Starfox.

Silencer - Boss of Army Storage
32 HP
Moves in circles while spawning Drones and Spew, stopping every now and then to fire a burst of bullets. Try to defeat the smaller enemies while it's moving around, then when it stops, line yourself up with the core and start firing. The walls surrounding the core each have 2 hit points. If you're a real button masher, it's possible to defeat the Silencer the first time it stops.
Trivia: Inspired by Big Core from Gradius and Zamuza from Section Z.

Plasma Hydra - Boss of Control
Bullet head: 16 HP
Bomb head: 16 HP
Laser head (Hard): 8 HP
96 HP total (Normal), 168 HP total (Hard)
On Normal difficulty, the boss has 3 Bullet heads and 3 Bomb heads, while on Hard there are 3 bullet heads, 6 Bomb heads and 3 laser heads. Each set of heads only appear when a previous head has been destroyed. While the heads are only vulnerable while the mouth is open, it's easier to just activate autofire and concentrate on dodging the bullets - the bouncing bombs in particular can be tricky. On Hard mode, make sure to take out the Laser heads as soon as they appear.
Trivia: Inspired by Gleeok from The Legend of Zelda, named after Plasma Hydra from Starfox.

Reaper Drone - Boss of Light Factory
64 HP
It flies around spawning sets of Drones, trying to ram you with them. On Hard mode, it won't destroy its own underlings as often, so try to shoot your way through them as you avoid the Reaper Drone itself. Also try to lure the boss close to the walls, as any underlings caught in a wall when the Reaper Drone stops moving will be instantly destroyed. The fourth attack pattern is a small number of Drones and Reavers - this is your chance to attack, just keep firing to remove the underlings, and focus on the Reaper Drone while it's sitting still.

Liquid Metal Processor - Boss of New Caves
32 HP per core
128 HP total
A fairly straightforward boss; destroy the Lurks accompanying it, and the spheres protecting the Processor's body will explode. Destroy the outer wall and enter the Processor, then try to destroy one core at a time. The outside spheres will soon return though, so escape before you get crushed and repeat the process.
Trivia: Inspired by Balaba from Section Z.

Grand Mother - Boss of War Factory
32 HP per core
64 HP total
The Grand Mother spawns two Mothers, who in turn will spawn their own lesser machines. Each time a Mother is destroyed, one of the four walls on the Grand Mother is removed, and it will start firing bullets in all directions for a while. You need to focus on one Mother at a time until four of them are destroyed, then aim at the cores at the center of the Grand Mother.
Trivia: Inspired by Intruder from Life Force.

Guardian - Boss of Guardian Zone
192 HP
Aim at the core in the center of its stomach, which is the only weak point, and try to keep track of the three firing modes that the boss cycles through. After suffering enough damage, the Guardian will be accompanied by the Soldiers in the room. Destroy them before getting back to the Guardian, because after taking some more damage, it'll also wake up the Hunters in the room. Eventually the roof will also crack, letting in liquid metal that floods the floor. When the Guardian finally explodes, it splits into three parts and enters its second form - the core is still the only vulnerable point, so try to keep up with its movements. Take your time and don't be greedy here.

Star Splitter - Boss of Annihilator Factory
32 HP per core
256 HP total (Normal), 384 HP total (Hard)
The cores on the outside of the Star Splitter's body need to be destroyed first. Take your time, avoiding the spiked feet, until you've whittled it down. The boss then enters its second form, at which point its entire body is vulnerable. The trick to this fight is that each foot will usually try to reach the opposite side of the screen when it moves, and a flashing foot will bounce on the walls before it settles down. On Hard mode, there are three feet instead of two - try to keep track of which feet will start moving next, and which one will stay put.
Trivia: Inspired by Manhandla from The Legend of Zelda and several bosses from Sonic the Hedgehog 3.

Elite - Boss of Old Base
128 HP
Mostly a battle of attrition. On the Normal and Hard difficulties you face two Elites, both flying around and firing at random, though they do try to corner you. When they stop firing and move up, down, left and right, they are about to fire an Expel blast - hide behind something or reflect the bullets with your Blade when this happens. If you fly into an Elite, you both suffer 4 damage, but it's not worth doing on purpose.
Trivia: Is the same type of machine as Flip Hero, and one of the most intelligent in the base, hence their lack of a real pattern.

64 HP
A relentless hunter dispatched to find and destroy Flip Hero on the Normal and Hard difficulties. It can fly through walls, and after a while of fighting it'll retreat back towards the Core zone to recover. However, once you reach level 9 it will never stop attacking until one of you is destroyed. The Eliminator appears at complete random whenever you enter a room, as long as certain conditions are met - you need to be level 1 or above, and the room must not contain any of the following: Eyespies, Annihilators, doors, Battle doors, savepoints, generators, moving obstacles, special pickups or bosses. Upon defeating the Eliminator, your level increases by 1 but you gain no other abilities.

Cruiser Tetron - Boss of Core
256 HP
Far tougher than his previous incarnation. Only the head is vulnerable, and he turns invincible when he turns towards the screen. Tetron has three patterns, and changes pattern after sustaining enough damage. The first pattern includes a circle of giant spinning spikeballs - these are indestructible, so just avoid them. In his second pattern, which is identical to his only pattern from the first game, he also floods the room in liquid metal to temporarily overheat your systems unless you have Suit level 2 or better. In his third pattern, Tetron is no longer able to move and fires every last weapon he's got - but he can only protect his head for a little while at a time. You can actually fly behind his arm here and keep firing at his head, but this is much harder to do on Hard mode. Also on Hard mode, Tetron will be more aggressive about ramming you throughout the fight, so always keep a good distance.
Trivia: Inspired by Shredder from TMNT, named after Cruiser Tetron from Life Force.

Living Warmachine
256 HP
Only appears as the end boss of Annihilation mode. Only the head is vulnerable to damage, and the Warmachine loses 16 HP every time its ultimate weapon is fired. It has only two patterns, and they're most easily avoided by hugging the left wall of the room, shifting up and down to avoid the bullets. Once the Warmachine stops firing, backs up and starts charging its ultimate weapon, try to get up to its head and start firing, but get ready to soon retreat back to the bottom left corner of the room.
Trivia: This is the remains of the Komato Annihilator that went rogue on the Tasen spaceship Ciretako in my previous game, Iji, in order to increase its kill counter. It wields the Massacre, a weapon that also damages its user in Iji. Hero Core and Iji weren't meant to have their stories connected, it's more of a reference.

64 HP
Only appears when your level is 0 as you enter its room. It flies towards your general direction, making it hard to circle without getting hit. See the Normal and Hard difficulties for details.