Rapid Reload Game Cover


Gunner's Heaven Game Cover

  • Genre: Action
  • Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
  • Released (Japan): April 28, 1995
  • Released (EU): September 1995
  • Developer/Co-Developer: Media.Vision / SCE Studios Japan

Rapid Reload, (Japanese title: "ガンナーズヘヴン" "Gunners Heaven"), is a "run and gun" video game in the vein of the classic Metal Slug. It was among the first game of its genre (or any others) available for the Sony PlayStation. It was released to wide acclaim in Japan, though it didn't reach the United States due to the emphasis Sony of America was placing on 3-D titles.


Upon hearing the legend of the treasure known as the Valkiry, treasure hunters Axel Sonics and Rita Hetfield embark on an adventurous quest to find the legendary stone. However, unknown to Axel and Rita at the start, there is also a terrorist organization known as the Pumpkin Heads searching for the Valkiry, determined to use the stone for World Domination.

Can Axel and Rita beat the Pumpkin Heads (and their bosses Weikath, Ash, Burrows, and Raquel) to the Valkiry and save the world from an Age of Darkness?


Gunners Haven

Rita in the Industrial Zone

The player can select either Axel or Rita to play. With the chosen character, the player will fight their way through six levels of progressing difficulty. Most levels contain two sub-bosses and a final "Guardian" boss. In level three, however, there is one Area Boss and a Guardian. In level 5, there is just a Guardian.

  • Level 1: a Cargo Ship. Two Area Bosses, one Guardian.
  • Level 2: a Jungle. Two Area Bosses, one Guardian.
  • Level 3: a Military Train. One Area Boss, one Guardian.
  • Level 4: an Arms Factory. Two Area Bosses, one Guardian.
  • Level 5: the Airship. One Guardian.
  • Level 6: the Pumpkin Heads Hideout. One Guardian.

Game Credits (Japanese)

  • Voice: Axel Sonics - Kazuki Yao
  • Voice: Ruka Hetfield - Noriko Hidaka
  • Voice: Weikath - Shinichiro Miki
  • Voice: Ash - Michie Tomizawa
  • Voice: Burrows - Issei Futamata
  • Voice: Raquel - Minami Takayama
  • Production - Shigeo Maruyama
  • Production - Teruhisa Tokunaka
  • Planning - Akira Sato
  • Planning - Toshiyuki Miyata

Wild Arms Homages

  • "Gunner's Heaven" is the name of a bar in the town of Damzen. It is owned and operated by Axel Sonics with Rita Hetfield working as an 'guard' of sorts. She'll very lightly flirt with the male party members if they're up front. Axel provides some information about the Odd Headquarters.
  • "Gunner's Heaven" is also given an homage in Wild Arms 3 as a special tournament arena.


  • Oddly, the European release of the game skirts any voice acting (though the handful of dialog screens are translated) and doesn't bother translating the majority of the credits into any European language.
  • Though the game was released in Europe and Japan, Sony of America nixed this (and quite a few other) games for a United States release due to the game being '2-d only'. Even Mortal Kombat had difficulty getting released under this doctrine.
  • Rapid Reload is available on PSN through both Japan and Europe, but again the United States hasn't seen a domestic release of this game.
  • Nearly all of the special weapons and equipment show up either as tools or special in the Wild Arms games. Marivel Armitage's Electel isn't quite as lethal as it is in Axel Sonics' hands, though...

External links