Shougi no Hoshi (SMD)

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Shougi no Hoshi
Shougi no Hoshi - SMD - Japan.jpg
Platform: Sega Mega Drive
Year: 1991
Developer: Home Data

Shougi no Hoshi (lit. The Star of Shougi) is a shogi simulation game developed and published by Home Data. It was one of their two games released for the Mega Drive, the other being Dragon's Eye Plus: Shanghai III (SMD). The game was inspired by the baseball-themed anime Kyojin no Hoshi, but is not related to the anime. In addition, this game was the only Shogi game for the Mega Drive, as well as anything related to Chess, although an unlicensed Chess game from Russia was made for the Genesis.

The game has two modes; Adventure Mode (アドベンチャーモード) and True Shogi Mode (本将棋). In Adventure Mode, you play as Kinta Hoshi (星 金太). His name refers to the Gold General piece in shogi (金) and his surname is a play on the game's title. His father worked for the Underground Shogi Syndicate, and after attempting to leave to raise his son, he was assassinated by the organization as a result. Kinta's mother trains him to become a strong shogi player. Kinta is smart and is good at sports, but must master the game of shogi to beat the opponents. His mother gives him a shogi ring from his late father which guides Kinta to the people who know who his father's murderer is. The first is Hida Takayama (飛田 高山) who runs the Shogi Bar. The second is Keima Ittou (桂馬 一刀), a shogi piece-maker who is trying to get on a quiz show. The third opponent is, oddly enough, a blind nun in a church named Sister Okyou (シスター お香). The fourth opponent is Ryuukaku-san (竜角さん) who runs the Shogi Disco. He wants to be a shogi singer and dancer as well. After all these opponents are defeated in a game of shogi, Kinta faces the Great King (大王), also known as the "Boss". Kinta must defeat him twice to uncover his true identity.

Opponents in the Adventure Mode have a certain skill they can use against Kinta. These usually are the way they play, but a couple opponents (like Sister Okyou) have a move that lets them make two moves in a row. To counter this, Kinta also has powerups he can earn on his own. There are six different powerups; The Perfect Sense (まったけセンス) lets you go back one move if you think you've made a mistake. Babanba Banban (ババンバ バンバン) flips the Shogi board so that you and the opponent's pieces are swapped; a great move to use if you are about to lose, though captured pieces aren't switched. You! Piece Stand (こまれ!コマ台) switches Kinta's and the opponent's piece stands (captured pieces). The Very Bleak Glasses (お先まっくらメガネ) will allow you to see the next move the computer makes. The Cat (ネコ) will throw every piece off the board and start the game over. Finally, there's the Secret Move (必殺技), but this powerup doesn't seem to do anything at all.

Since there is no save feature, the player must beat the entire game in one sitting. The only upside to this is there's no game over screen, though you are punished with solving a Tsume Shogi problem until you beat it to continue. Also, the CPU doesn't take as long to think as a previous Home Data shogi game.

In the True Shogi mode, the player can play a standard round of shogi with six different selectable levels; 5-kyu, 4-kyu, 3-kyu, 2-kyu, 1-kyu, and Shodan. While these AI opponents don't have characters, they are associated with slightly humorous text to describe their difficulty. For example, 5-kyu's is "If you want to bully someone weak!". Shougi no Hoshi would be the last shogi game made by Home Data.


Shougi no Hoshi - SMD - Title Screen.png

The title screen.

Shougi no Hoshi - SMD - Hida Takayama.png

One of the cutscenes.

Shougi no Hoshi - SMD - Stage 2.png

Playing against Keima Ittou (Stage 2).

Shougi no Hoshi - SMD - Tsume Shougi.png

Solving a Tsume Shogi problem.

Shougi no Hoshi - SMD - Ittetsuko Hoshi 1.png

Another cutscene, this one with Kinta's mother.

Shougi no Hoshi - SMD - Victory.png

I win!


Shougi no Hoshi contains a soundtrack mostly by Novko Hasebe. She was assigned to compose numerous shogi and board game titles for the company. The genre of music varies from song to song. For example, Sister Okyou's theme is an ominous theme played on a pipe organ to fit in with the church theme, Keima Ittou's theme is reminiscent of The Beach Boys, and Honshougi BGM 1 sounds like a traditional Japanese folk song. The Adventure Mode has only one stage theme, so after listening for a long time, it can get annoying. However, it has an "otherwordly" feel to it, which is nice. The True Shogi mode has three different songs that can be chosen anytime during the player's turn. One of them is unique to this mode, while the other two are cutscene themes from the Adventure Mode.

To create the game's soundtrack, Novko wrote her music on her Kawai Q-80 MIDI sequencer. She then sent her compositions via sheet music to Home Data. According to the game's credits, Junichi Ueda arranged her music into Sega's sound engine. Since Sega wrote their music on a PC-9801, Ueda most likely did the same. Novko said she does not know Ueda and did not work with him. Ueda is also known for his spot-on arrangements of Marble Madness (X68).

Something interesting to note is that the title music is actually an arrangement of the opening theme to Kyojin no Hoshi, an anime not related to the game. According to Novko, she was not responsible for this track. There is also a fanfare that plays throughout the cutscenes in the game which are the first few notes from Beethoven's Symphony No. 5.

This game and Shougi: Shodan Icchokusen (PCE) would be the only games Novko received credit in, although she did more titles for the company.


# Title ComposerArranger Length Listen Download
01 Title Screen Takeo WatanabeJunichi Ueda 1:43
02 Hida Takayama's Theme Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 1:26
03 Adventure Mode Main Theme Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 1:26
04 Ittetsuko Hoshi's Theme 1, Honshougi BGM 3 Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 1:52
05 Ittetsuko Hoshi's Theme 2 Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 0:38
06 Keima Ittou's Theme Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 1:01
07 Sister Okyou's Theme Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 1:20
08 Ryuukaku-san's Theme, Honshougi BGM 2 Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 1:01
09 Daiou Jai's Theme Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 1:14
10 Honshougi BGM 1 Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 1:26
11 Defeat Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 0:04
12 Victory Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 0:04
13 Fanfare Ludwig van BeethovenJunichi Ueda 0:01
14 Unknown Novko HasebeJunichi Ueda 0:43



The staff roll can only be viewed by clearing the Adventure Mode. Unlike their other title for the Mega Drive, the game's instruction manual does not have credits.

Game Rip




Audio Devices

The game uses the YM2612 for music and sound effects, but the DAC channel is not used. The game uses the Z80 version of Sega's SMPS sound driver.

The channels are all assigned to a certain channel on the YM2612; Channel 1 is the bass, Channel 3 is the drums/percussion, and Channel 6 is for reverb/delay. Only the tracks Title Screen and Adventure Mode Main Theme use the PSG.


  Japan.svg   Japan
Shougi no Hoshi - SMD - Japan.jpg
Title: 将棋の星 (The Star of Shogi)
Platform: Mega Drive
Released: 1991-10-31
Publisher: Home Data