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The Intruder is a dragon-like creature and recurring boss in the Gradius series. It has made several appearances and set the tradition of fire elemental creatures appearing as bosses, such as Phoenix and Volleone. It is also one of the few bosses in the series to get its own theme music, a piece called "Fire Dragon" which plays during its reappearance in the Gradius II’s boss rush stage.

In the Japanese version of Life Force, the Intruder, like the stage it's in, has been recolored blue.

Attack pattern

The Intruder will attempt to wrap himself around the player, occasionally breathing fire. In the original game, the Intruder's movements are fairly jerky and stiff, owing to limited programming of the era, but later games refined the programming to give it more fluid snakelike movement. In some games, the Intruder can physically crush the player with its body. Since it has relatively low health, however, this is somewhat unlikely.

In the NES version of Life Force, only its head ever appears. Here he has a very simplistic attack pattern, which consists of breathing fire in the player's general area. It moves its neck up and down to try and match the player's vertical position. Although its fireballs are quite large, the Intruder's health is very low and it will usually go down without being much of an issue.

In Gradius II, it gains the ability of splitting into three at low health. This naturally greatly increases the difficulty of the boss, each head needing to be eliminated on their own.

Finally, in Gradius Gaiden, O.V.U.M. uses the image of the Intruder as a scare tactic against the player.

Anime

The Intruder appears in the first episode of the Salamander anime series. Its appearance is constantly teased throughout the episode, as it's shown freely moving around the Salamander planet and activating the Sharp Cross traps on its narrow tunnels. It finally makes a proper appearance at the end of the episode, protecting the Zelos Force and serving as the final enemy the heroes face. It proves to be a very strong foe, being impervious to all weapons, so Eddie Evans pulls a heroic sacrifice to destroy it from the inside.

Similar lifeforms

  • There are smaller fire dragons that reside in other stars, suggesting several stages in the life cycle of this creature. These range from the smaller, weaker Fire Dragons that reside in small scale suns, to the multi-headed Vulture Dragon.
  • Similar looking creatures are used as living weapons in the Core Warship Deltatry, perhaps even being the same species. These particular dragons turn on their master upon his defeat, suggesting cruel treatment.

Trivia

Gallery

Salamander
Characters and Ships Vic ViperLord British (Lord British)• Sabel Tiger and Thrasher (Iggy Rock and Zowie Scott) • Van Landroth FrehleyLars XVIIISuper CobraGalaxyPurple EmperorRed Devil
Salamander stages Bionic GermMeteorite SpaceBurning ChaosVolcano AreaSalamander Planetoid
Salamander (MSX) stages Top Flight Speed to LatisConduct to Space Station ZotSet the Crush Blow System - Planet EioneusSet the Crush Blow System - Planet LaviniaSet the Crush Blow System - Planet KierkeWrath of VenomCrush Salamander
Life Force-only stages Organic Speed ZoneTemple Zone
Salamander 2 stages Sub-life SpaceProminence FortressBio HazardHuge BattleshipAsteroidDoom Fortress
Salamander bosses GolemTetranIntruderFortress ValisDeathBig Core X3Jumping MoaiZelos Force
Port exclusive bosses ZylomGawGigaTutankhamonDead EndEnigmaTrue VenomMetal SlaveZelos Barrier
Salamander 2 bosses BiterHydraAbadonTenny RopPlate CoreCerberusDoom
Gradius II: GOFER no Yabou
Ships Vic Viper
Stages (Arcade) Artificial SunAlienCrystalVolcanoRevenge of MoaiHigh Speed ZoneBoss RushGofer Ship Interior
Port-Exclusive Stages 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
Solar Assault
Ships Vic ViperLord BritishAlpinia
Stages (Arcade) The River StyxFierce BlazeCurseAbyssal ForestSpeed DemonSolar Assault
Bosses Big Core MK IIntruderTutankhamonDinosaurBig Core MK IICrab
Organic Bosses
Space Entities NucleusIntruderPhoenix (Geezer Butler)GoliathBubble EyeWyvernVulture DragonBlizzard CrawlerChimeraGilladorVolleoneDoomLynyrd SkynyrdTriumph KicksGawGigaKiller Dwarf
Body Horror AbadonGolemZylomBig EyeGregolMad SkinBrachion EyeBiterBerialHuge HeartCrawler (X) • Infected Statue
Plant Life Choking WeedStinger KidHunter FangGiga's RoseDendrodiumHans Naughty
Salamander (OVA)
Episodes Episode 1: SalamanderEpisode 2: Paula's MeditationEpisode 3: Gofer's Ambition
Characters Ike Lord BritishDanStephanie McBainEddie EvansDoromoMinistersLee McBainPaulaGofer
Enemies RugalSharp CrossGolemGigaZelos ForceIntruderTentacleBig Core MK IMoaiXaerous BrainFire DragonDeath HandBig EyeDee-01Phoenix
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