Dynamite Headdy is a platformer… with a difference. You control a little character whose main attack comes from his disembodied head. Yes, years before Rayman appeared, we already had a hero who used detachable appendages to attack his enemies.
The game follows a puppet named Headdy in his efforts to stop an evil puppet king from taking over his world. Headdy can throw his head at enemies to defeat them and use it to pull himself to various areas and move objects. The player can find a wide variety of “heads” which act as power-ups that provide different effects and alter gameplay.
During his adventure, Headdy will find power-ups which change the design and function of his head. These 17 power-ups range from increasing damage, such as spinning fireballs around his head, to providing invincibility, restoring health, increasing speed, etc. Some of these power-ups last for only a short time.
Other than heads, the player can also find health restoratives, extra points, and extra lives throughout the levels. By finding the Liberty Head, players can enter a Bonus Stage in which the player must shoot basketballs into the correct hoops.
Rather than the traditional power-ups, Dynamite Headdy enables you to swap your head for different kinds – such as heads that heal you or heads that stick on to walls. You use your head in order to climb up on platforms as well, as you can grab hold of things with it, and on certain stages of the Mega Drive/Genesis version it is used to turn the game into a side-scrolling shooter, as you gain a propeller, jet, or bird head. Basically, Dynamite Headdy is just a traditional platformer at heart.