Based on the movie of the same name, Moonwalker is a scrolling, isometric beat’ em up in which Michael Jackson (1958-2009), along with his chimp Bubbles, attempts to save children and defeat the evil ‘Mr. Big’. During each round, the player must defeat each and every one of Mr. Big’s henchmen and the deadly enemy machines that patrol the levels. This is achieved either by shooting them with Michael Jackson’s ‘magical energy’, or by using his Dance Magic – the game’s equivalent of a smart bomb. Some enemies take only one shot to defeat whereas others take several shots before they are destroyed. The longer the player holds down on the fire button, the greater the amount of magical energy Michael can inflict. At the start of each round, the player is given 2 dance magic smart bombs. Towards the end of each round, Michael’s pet chimpanzee, Bubbles, will be seen moving about. If Michael touches Bubbles, he will turn into a powerful robot (the ‘Moonwalker’ of the game’s title). After Michael has become Moonwalker, he will be able to shoot lasers and fire missiles. Michael must defeat every boss enemy at the end of each round in order to proceed to the next.
Each player’s Michael Jackson character looks identical but wears a different colour : white (left player), red (middle player), and black (right player).