There are only a few arcade games that are considered part of the golden age of video games.  Some think of Pac-Man, Defender, and Donkey Kong. There are a huge number of gamers out there who think Galaga.  Galaga is one of the most popular old school games ever.  The graphics, the sounds, the gameplay, all work to perfection and make the game a true classic.  Many have played and achieved high scores.   Some play a marathon of the game for 10 to 15 hours. Jordan Dorrington has broken two world records in 2020. The most points in Tournament Settings have been submitted by multiple gamers,  but only 19 people have reached the 1-million-point score. 3 people have achieved over 9 million points. In 2019 there was a battle between a few gamers to try and set the high score. In April of 2019, Armando Gonzalez achieved the high score of 9,525,700.    This was a big score and hard to beat, but on January 26th of 2020, Jordan broke the record with a score of 9,546,530.

The marathon high score of Galaga has been held by a small few.  Most of the highest scores were put up in the 1980’s, until Armando Gonzalez achieved the highest marathon score of 17,684,050 in 2018. Jordan also beat that record with a score of 20,980,450.

Marathon Rules: 3 Lives – Extra Ships at 20,000 then 70,000 then every 70,000 after – Difficulty Rank: D

Tournament Setting rules: 5 Lives – Extra Ships: None – Difficulty Rank: D

I talked with Jordan a little about his historic achievement and other gaming topics:

What was the date and time your started?

January 26th, 2020. 12:30pm

What were the final scores of your Galaga records and how long did it take?

My Galaga game was 14 hours long. During the run I was able to Achieve the Tournament world record of 9,546,530. I then went on to get the Marathon record as well ending with a score of 20,980,450. Finally, I was able to Achieve the longest run in Galaga without losing a life which ended up being a 7,609,650-point run.

Where did you grow up and what was your local arcade?

I grew up in Cedar Rapids Iowa. We had an Arcade at the mall called Tilt, but i had not spent much time there. I’m 34 years old, which means I was a 90’s kid, and around that time in my area most arcades were really falling apart. It was far more often that I would see a single arcade cabinet rather than an arcade.

When was the first time you played Galaga and where was it at?

Some of my first memories of playing Galaga was with my father. Though I don’t remember the very first time, I often remember my dad and I not being able to walk by a Galaga cab without playing it.

What was your first impression of the game?

I felt Galaga was amazing the first time I saw it.  When I was a kid, Galaga felt satisfying every time I passed a stage without dying or was able to kill every bug on a bonus stage. Sadly, I was not able to get more than 40 thousand points in the game.

What other games do you play?

I’m a huge fan of Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Jr., Galaxian, Popeye, Donkey Kong 3, Satan’s hollow, Moon patrol, Elevator action.

What is your goal of the Galaga Forum groups? 

I have started a club called Galaga Group where fans of Galaga can get together and share their love for such an amazing game. In the group people can post photos, tell stories, stream Galaga, and take part in fun mini challenges. Galaga Group is friends with the Galaga forum.

What tips do you have for other gamers who love Galaga?

When a Galaga boss is swarming you and you shoot it, all bugs on the screen will stop firing. This tip can greatly help when you have a bunch of bugs swarming you at one time. Also, it is not important to shoot the Galaga bosses right away, they don’t come down to swarm you until much later in the stage.

What is the secret of getting a perfect score on the bonus levels?

HAHA sadly my run happened to lack a bunch of perfect bonus stages, but I have been through 250 stages in Galaga with only missing 5 bonus stages in the past. The truth is, even the best in the world miss bonus stages and though it’s important to try and get them perfect all the time, you shouldn’t worry if you miss them.

Is the double ship a necessity on every level?

So, it’s clear that having a double ship is a much greater advantage than using a single ship, but I personally feel it’s important to take the time to learn how to play with a single ship, so you have another useful tool to get out of tricky situations. Example: right before obtaining the tournament settings world record, I had lost my double ship. Due to only being allowed to use 5 ships, I had to finish off passing the score using a single ship. Once I passed it, I then doubled up again.

What is your opinion on the other platforms that Galaga has been seen on?

Though it’s not the same feel as the original arcade, I love the fact that Galaga has been on so many different platforms.

Are you interested in the Galaxian World Record?

I honestly love the game Galaxian!! it would be a goal of mine to at least be top 5 in the world.

Are you looking to beat your high score one day?

Possibly, but it’s not something I’m focused on at the moment. There are a few other games I would like to dive into before going back to Galaga.

What other stories do you have to share about the Galaga game or a time you played it?

One of the best experiences I have been through in the arcade scene was going to Australia for a week and competing in the Galaga tournament. I also love going out to other arcades and being around different people that have the same love for some of the best games ever made.

For more Galaga scores and information go to:


Todd Friedman Todd Friedman (386 Posts)

Todd Friedman is heavily involved in the retro gaming community and has co-promoted the Video Game Summit in Chicago, IL for the past 16 years. He also has published 2 books and written for various different gaming magazines including Old School Gamer.