The Antarctica Research Lab (南極研究所) is the third stage in Strider 2, a stage similar to the second stage in the original Strider, Siberia, with references to other stages mixed in, like the Flying Battleship Balrog's gravity section. The stage's official full name is "Infiltrate the Research Facility" (極点研究所潜入, lit. Infiltrate the Summit Research Facility).
The Antarctica Research Lab is a secret supranational research institute built in the antarctic continent, created and funded by Light Sword Cypher. Also called the "Summit Lab" and the "Fourth Laboratory", the facility is hidden within the upper half of a mountain located in a region of Antarctica known as the Ross Ice Shelf. The lab is run by Kraken Chemical, who conducts bio-engineering experiments on soldiers and other organisms, giving life to monstrous creations like the half-mechanical Frozen Mammoth and the Kraken. The staff was also responsible for the research and construction of the Gravity Core computer system.
Having discovered its existence following the fall of Fortress Wahnen, Hiryu takes on destroying it to halt all the research conducted there, expecting such an act would force the shadowy organization behind it to reveal themselves. Infiltrating through the Bay of Whales iceport, Hiryu eventually enters the complex, murders the head researchers and destroys their experiments, including the Gravity Core and the Kraken. After taking care of the latter, he leaves the ruined and burning building behind.
Bay of Whales Security Zone (ホエールズ湾警備域)
Known as "The Antartica Ross Ice Shelf" in the English script.
An exterior area found in the "Bay of Whales" iceport. The area starts with a set of small islands and ice chunks next to an icy hill, protected by several Rascals. Right after crossing through Hiryu runs up the hill and is ambushed on its top by the Hockey Soldiers. Running down the side of the hill, Hiryu reaches a large icy cliff which curves outwards. Climbing all the way to the top of the cliff, Hiryu finally confronts the Missile Mobile in front of a group of penguins.
Olaf Wall Base (オラフ壁面基地)
A defense base located mostly at the side of a mountain facing a crevice, which Hiryu must climb upwards. Hiryu starts the area standing in a pipe just below a large concrete platform in front of a hangar door. Above this platform stands a second platform in-between parts of the rocky wall, and then a large tower-like energy generator with electricity running around it. At this point, Hiryu is attacked by the Beluga F chopper while climbing.
Ascending through the generator while avoiding the electric shock, Hiryu reaches a rocky area of the wall leading into a small cliff. Climbing all the way to the top, Hiryu prepares to fight the Beluga F. Upon crashing, the helicopter releases a chain of explosions that follows Hiryu down the side of the mountain, reminiscent of the original game's "Big Run" section. The trail will puruse Hiryu, and restart in the place he's standing if he tries to jump over it. The end of the trail is over a long chasm with a platform at the other side, which Hiryu reaches by jumping.
Summit Lab Delivery Entrance (極点ラボ搬入口)
Known as "The entrance to the lab" in the English script.
A small snowy area with a metal structure in front of the delivery entrance to the lab. Upon arriving, the large metal door from the lab opens up, and a horde of Hockey Soldiers come out to attack. After Hiryu destroys all enemies in the area, the gate opens again and the Frozen Mammoth is set loose on him. Once the mammoth is defeated, the gate opens one last time and Hiryu continues ahead.
"The Fourth Laboratory" (第四研究室) can be seen written in the metal gate in both English and Japanese, implying they may have existed (or still exist) three other laboratories before this one.
Summit Lab Research Section (極点ラボ研究セクション)
Known as "The research section of the lab" in the English script.
The interior of the laboratory, hidden within a large mountain. The area starts in a small, cavernous corridor leading into a freezing room with several container tubes standing "above" Hiryu. From this point onwards, all areas are affected by a reverse-gravity effect, making Hiryu move "upside-down" on the ceilings.
The freezing room has no "ceiling", forcing Hiryu to cling to a metal grate to avoid falling "up". Hiryu fights the Gorilla Guard here, then proceeds into a long ventilation shaft. The shaft continues upwards, but Hiryu first enters a small research room right before the curve. As soon as he enters, a large metal door closes behind him and he's forced to fight the Researchers.
Once they are finished, the door opens and Hiryu advances further to the end of the shaft, where he must destroy a large Ventilator in order to proceed.
Summit Lab Gravity Experimental Unit (極点ラボ重力実験装置)
Known as "The gravity testing section of the lab" in the English script.
A large room which houses the experimental Gravity Core unit. The unit stands in the center of a big gyroscope-like structure that spins continously around it. Hiryu stands in this structure, and can run around it without falling thanks to the Gravity Core's effect.
Over the Antarctic Ocean (南極海上)
Known as "The experimental area of the South Pole" in the English script.
A snowy area outside the laboratory where Hiryu faces the Kraken. The area is bare save for a small cliff in the east end, and a large broken containment tube in the background. The Kraken stands in the center of the area.
Enemies present in this stage include:
- Rascal (Scene 1)
- Fat-enhanced Antarctic Guard (Scenes 1* and 2)
- Cold Weather Model (Scenes 1, 2 and 3)
- Hockey Soldier (Scenes 1 and 3)
- Penguin Bomb (Scene 1)
- Missile Mobile (Scene 1 Boss)
- Muscle-enhanced Antarctic Guard (Scene 2, red & blue*)
- Ice Gear (Scenes 2 and 4)
- Beluga F (Scene 2 Boss)
- Frozen Mammoth (Scene 3 Boss)
- Ice Looper (Scene 4)
- Antarctic Guard (Scene 4 Mid-Boss)
- Researchers (Scene 4 Boss)
- Ventilator (Scene 4 Boss)
- Gravity Core (Scene 5 Boss)
- Kraken (Scene 6 Boss)
Note: Scenes marked with an asterisk indicate the enemy only appears during the harder stage layouts, only accessed if the stage is not played first.
A listing of locations for all known hidden Score Up items in this stage.
|Scene 1 Locations|
|#1||Climb the left side of the icicle Hiryu starts on and strike at the left side to reveal the item.|
|#2||In the small crevice at the left side of the slanted iceberg.|
|#3||Floating near the end of the stage, at the left side of the large ice wall Hiryu must climb to reach the boss. Climb to the left-most peak of the wall and strike left, it should reach the item easily.|
|Scene 2 Locations|
|#1||Climb down the pipe at the left of the starting point and position yourself above the Item Box floating there, then perform a Hassou Jump and strike at the empty area.|
|#2||Slightly above the base of the electrified wall. Jump from the ground and strike at the wall to reveal it.|
|#3||In the 2nd division of the electrified wall, above the part that appears to have white text written on it.|
|#4||At the very top of the electrified wall.|
|#5||In the small opening on the rock wall above the electrified wall, next to an Item Box.|
|#6||From #5 there's a small rock ledge right above where Hiryu can stand on. Strike at the rock wall to reveal the item.|
|#7||Right above the item located on #6.|
|#8||Floating at the left side of the wall, some distance below the end of the wall where the Beluga F is fought. Strike around the left area before reaching the top to find it.|
|#9||There are three hidden score items in the path of the big run section where Hiryu has to outrun a chain of explosions. These are found near the beginning, at the middle point and right at the tip of the crevice at the end. The best way to get them is to constantly slash while running, revealing and picking them up automatically.|
|Scene 3 Locations|
|#1||Stand in the right-most side of the metal structure, jump upwards and strike the area.|
|Scene 4 Locations|
|#1||At the top-left corner from the starting position.|
|#2-3||Defeat the Antarctic Guard sub-boss and reach the last freezing container at the right side of the room, then climb it "up". Strike the area "above" it to reveal the item. Then do the same for all other 4 freezing units in the room.
There's a chance one or more items don't appear when striking the area. The cause for this happening is currently unknown.
|Scene 6 Locations|
|#1||Strike the right side of the area at the base of the hill.|
- Although the Bay of Whales is a real location from the Antarctica, it was actually eliminated from the Ross Ice Shelf when a large iceberg broke off it in 1987.
- Capcom (February 2000, PlayStation). Strider Hiryû 1&2 (Japanese). Mission 3: Infiltrate the Research Facility; Scene 1: Antarctica Ross Ice Shelf. Bay of Whales Security Zone.
- Capcom (September 1999). JAMMA AM Show Game Flyer (English).
- Capcom (February 22, 2014). Strider Hiryu Visual Chronicle (Japanese). Pg. 39
- Capcom (December 1999; Arcade). Strider Hiryu 2 (Japanese). Stage 3 Briefing
- Capcom (1999). Strider Hiryu 2 Pamphlet (Japanese)