Solar Jetman: Hunt for the Golden Warpship - Action(NES)
Rare / Tradewest, Inc.
I've focused entirely too much on RPGs and SNES games, so let's get back to the basics.
Apparently this game has a plot, but it's not especially important (and a bit odd). The basics are that you are hunting for the "Golden Warpship", or, more specifically, for pieces of it to put together. They're split up among several planets throughout the galaxy, and it's your task to find them.
The game is divided into a dozen or so levels, each of which is built sort of like a maze. You go out in a small pod-ship (controlled similar to asteroids, only with gravity included) to explore the planet. You have to find a certain amount of fuel as well as the warpship piece to advance to the next level.
You can also find some other items, such as gems, which you bring back to your ship for money to spend on parts between levels. Gems, as well as other objects, are latched onto with a tow-rope, and you will have to overcome extra gravity to actually pull the item all the way back to your ship.
The gravity (and difficulty) varies by level, and you will find some helper items to make your life easier (or make exploration possible) such as boosters (move faster, but use more fuel) or shields (hold a button down to bring up deflector shields).
Although you would think that the ship is the only way to travel, if your ship is destroyed or runs out of fuel, you go into astronaut mode. It's easier to control, but you are more vulnerable and it's impossible to tow items. This is primarily so you can get back to your ship and get a new pod; you can buy new pods, but you'll have to continue to get more lives.
Solar Jetman contains far more variation than is usually found in NES games, as well as a high amount of difficulty in the later stages. Controls are easy-to-use, but some techniques are hard to master.