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Gradius Wiki

Covered Core (カバードコア Kabādo Koa?) is a recurring boss in the Gradius series, generally encountered in the "Boss Rush" section.


Covered Core MK I is one of the most defensive bosses in the Gradius series. It has a rotating shield that protects the center core area. The shield looks like a nuclear symbol and it spins at a medium rate. It was the final boss of the Gradius II boss rush, 5th and last boss of the Gradius II Boss Rush and is also 2nd boss (4th in the SNES version) in the Gradius III boss rush.

It was also featured as one of the junked cores in Gradius Gaiden stage 2. It has 5 barriers in Gradius II NES, 4 barriers in Gradius II and Gradius III and none in Gradius Gaiden, it also has a Blue core in Gradius II and Gradius III, a Blue core which turns orange when it is nearly destroyed and a flashing green core in Gradius Gaiden.

Attack patterns

Besides the rotating shield, it shoots missiles; 8 red, dark green and gold that randomly fall down and come up around the player in Gradius II and III, 5 blue and white missiles in Gradius II and 6 dark green, light green and red homing downwards in Gradius Gaiden. The missiles are indestructible but move slow. Careful weaving will ensure success against this attack.



  • Covered Core actually fires four lasers, same as the Big Core. Due to its massive size, these lasers can't be fired (in some loops he fires four lasers) and he can fire homing missiles (quite rare) after firing lasers.

See also

Gradius II: GOFER no Yabō
Ships Vic Viper
Stages (arcade) Artificial SunAlienCrystalVolcanoRevenge of MoaiHigh Speed MazeBoss RushGofer Ship Interior
Port-exclusive stages Gradius II NES Stage 2 (NES) • Volcano - Crystal (NES) • Enemy Base (NES) • Gofer's Lair (NES) • Temple (PC-E)
Bosses PhoenixBig EyeGiga (NES) • Crystal CoreDeath MK IIJumping MoaiBig MoaiDesert Core (PC Engine) • Big Core MK IIZub RushBig CoreGolemTetranGawIntruderZelos Force (NES) • Covered CoreDemosCrabGofer
Gradius III
Ships Vic Viper
Stages DesertBubble ZoneVolcanic PlanetHigh Speed DimensionMoai ZoneCell PlanetProminence PlanetPlant PlanetCrystal ZoneBoss RushMechanical Base
SNES exclusive stages High Speed ZoneFortressCell
Bosses GoliathBubble EyeGodreiBig Core MK IIIDogasVaifTwin Vaif (SNES) • GregolWyvernVulture DragonChoking WeedLizard CoreBeacon (SNES) • TetranCovered CoreBig Core MK IICrystal CoreDeath MK IIDellinger CoreDisruptShadow GearShadow Gear MK II (SNES) • Big CoreGolemBacterian
Core Warships
Big Cores Big Core MK IBig Core CustomBig Core MK-I Rev.2Big Core MK IIBig Core MK II KaiBig Core MK IIIBig Core MK IV
Big Core variants BeaconBig Core DuoBlaster Cannon CoreBubble CoreCircle CoreCoreshipCrater CoreCrystal CoreDellinger CoreDesert CoreHeaven's GateJuggler CoreLaser CoreLizard CoreNeo Big CorePerla MeraldaRexion CoreRolling CoreShining CoreSuper Big CoreTerra CoreVanishing CoreGenocide CoreOdin Core
Core-style bosses Abaddon WarshipCovered CoreCovered Core MK IIDead EndKrakenMayhem WarshipMetal SlaveMisfit WarshipQueensrÿcheRiot WarshipPlate Core
Pseudo-Cores DeathDeath MK II (DeathDouble) • Death MK IIIBeta CoreNobilTriple CoreCrash Bam
Tetran variants Tetran (Zylom) • Covered TetranCrystal Core D-X02Laser TetranTenny Rop
Parody Cores Candy CoreDecoration CoreDecoration Core MK IIViva Core