Steel Empire is a horizontal shooter for the Sega Genesis. It's one of the consoles first successful shooters. The game takes place in a war torn world, where flying aerial fortresses and zeppelin battleships, control the skies and the world. You are part of the resistance fighting to over throw an evil military empire, known as the "Steel Empire". While invading enemy territory with a giant airship, you take control of two aerial fighters. You pick between a small, compact fighter. The compact fighter is good for destroying land enemies. You also can pick a zeppelin fighter. The zeppelin is a big, easy, target, but it's massive fire power is good for fighting air enemies.
The gameplay is different than most shooters. In Steel Empire, your ships have health meters, and the game has a level up system, where you collect
experience icons to level up your ships fire power. You can also use massive electro-bombs that do full screen damage. Each stage has a mid-boss battle and a end boss battle. The game contains lives and continues, but the amount you get depends on the difficulty setting you chose.
The game has a 1940s World War II type of theme. The game begins with a classic movie reel count down, and the non-gameplay screens are done in a classic movie reel flicker. Keeping with the theme, is a decent soundtrack that mirrors the classic war movies of the 1940s.
Years later the classic shooter would get re-released for the Game Boy Advance.