Vlambeer’s Luftrausers Finally (Crash) Landing In March

By Nathan Grayson on March 4th, 2014 at 12:00 pm.

THOOM is the noise that gun would make. I just know it is.

In case you weren’t aware, Vlambeer makes games. Other developers make games, but they don’t make games. This is an important distinction, because it involves letters being slanted and slanted letters are sacred. For real, though, the two-headed fire bear of a developer churns out chunkily satisfying experiences at an almost alarming rate, so it’s kind of surprising that arcade-y airplaner Luftrausers isn’t already dive-bombing our machines. The bigger, better, even more a-rauser-ing edition was announced nearly two years ago, for goodness’ sake. That’s, like, three or three-and-a-half years in Vlambeer time (see: Nuclear Throne, Ridiculous Fishing, multiple free games, etc)! But now, finally, mercifully, Luftrausers is on the horizon.

It’s coming to Steam on March 18th for a measly $9.99. Your head is now surely spinning with questions. “Has it really been two years since 2012?” and “Am I actually happy? Am I really?” but mostly “Whoa dude hella rad how many rausers will there be?” This many Rausers there will be:

“The skies will be set aflame and the seas will overflow with wreckage in Vlambeer’s stylish arcade shooter LUFTRAUSERS! Select from over 125 combinations of weapons, bodies, and propulsion systems and take to the skies to battle enemy fighter planes, battleships, submarines, and rival aces for glory, honor, and high scores. Bravely volunteer for one of over 100 daring missions to unlock new Rauser combinations and vibrant color variations and become the most legendary Rauser pilot of all time!”

It’s been a while since I played Luftrausers (about a year ago, when the release date was “soon”), but even back then it already hummed with an airborne version of that sublime Vlambeer feel. Flipping and flopping and flying around was all at once in my control and just messy enough to create tension and technique. And of course, all the boom-booms and bang-bangs were in proper, respectable order. Vlambeer’s pretty darn obsessive about this stuff, doncha know.

Now go out there and luft some rauses. Make me proud.

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17 Comments »

  1. DatonKallandor says:

    This could have been an incredible modern take on Wings of Fury, but the trailer and description makes it look like a simple, incredibly polished twitch shooter/flash game.

  2. Fellhuhn says:

    So there are 5 different weapons, 5 different bodies and 5 different propulsion systems… Not that much to brag about.

    • SuddenSight says:

      Ssssshhh! Don’t you know that the unwashed mounds of humanity don’t understand this *math*?

      On a more serious note, it still cracks me up that games try to sell themselves using big numbers. 125? 6.Elephant / 10.

  3. Gap Gen says:

    Talking about the noise that gun makes, this video is pretty great for anyone interested in making games (basically a demo of what the last link in the article talks about): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJdEqssNZ-U

  4. TwoDaemon says:

    This was my game of the show at the last Rezzed, just the tightest, most entertaining air combat game around. Things that trailer doesn’t mention: The way each of the five types of each component (yes, “just” five) completely changes how you use the aircraft, so you have 125 real different craft instead of millions of identical ones. The way damage is indicated by the brighter circle pulling in towards your craft, focusing your gaze more and more on your own ship, encouraging you to focus on evasion rather than attack while you regenerate. The way the simple three-tone graphics still allow you to instantly and perfectly differentiate enemy, bullets, threats, movement.

    Yeah, it’s not a complicated game, but simple does not mean stupid. This is a game laser-focused on doing one thing and doing it well. Damn is it fun.

  5. Convolvulus says:

    Does “Luftrausers” translate to “aerial trousers”? Because I could play me some sky pants.

    • Shadow says:

      Unfortunately not, nothing nearly as amusing. “Raus” means “out” in German, so the construct “Luftrauser” would literally translate to something like “Airouters”.

      “Air trousers” would be Lufthosen.

      • Wurstwaffel says:

        I would guess that “rauser” is supposed to be a transliteration of “rouser”, which would make “Luftrauser” a play on “rabble-rouser” or something to that effect. A completely germanized version would be “Luftaufwiegler” or “Luftverhetzer”.

  6. Anthile says:

    Just in time to release my new game Flugrausers.

  7. Gap Gen says:

    “WARNING: This experimental pack includes 1 DRM-free download of LUFTRAUSERS and 100 Steam keys for LUFTRAUSERS for the exorbitant price of $749.99″

    What. I suppose that could legitimately be a SomethingAwful pack, where a large forum gets a small discount by buying in bulk. But still. Weird.

  8. AshEnke says:

    The game was delayed first because they wanted to do a PS3/Vita version following the success of Super Crate Box and a good relation with Sony.
    The trouble was when they promised a simultaneous release on all platforms, which proved very hard because the game has been bouncing back between Vlambeer and Sony certification for at least six month.

    It’s a shame but it seems they won’t make the mistake of underestimating the long process of certification again !

  9. somnolentsurfer says:

    Will almost certainly be getting this, but what I’d really love is a bug free version of Super Crate Box that runs on Windows 8 and OS X Mavericks, and has Steam achievements and controller support. And possibly local multiplayer. I’d play the hell out of that.

  10. duncanthrax says:

    Unsere Luftwaffel!

  11. RobF says:

    I love this game so much. Can’t wait.

  12. SuicideKing says:

    Oooh the soundtrack.

  13. Shadow says:

    This might sound pedantic of me, but if the trailer’s anything to go by, it depicts something much more akin to zero-g combat than air combat, with all the ludicrous sideways strafing, backwards “flying” and all that jazz. And I’d consider that a negative point, given how I’d expect a game about aerial dogfighting to make me feel like I am, you know, flying across the sky.

    I’m also against the three-tone design choice, which while aesthetically fine, from the practical standpoint may only add confusion to the mayhem: you’re constantly having to put conscious effort to keep track of which of all the same-colour airplanes is yours. Your plane is slightly darker, sure, but from my point of view not enough, especially considering all the explosions and drifting scores.

    Overall, it doesn’t look like a bad game, but I consider the aforementioned two major flaws.

    • Phendron says:

      1. It’s supposed to be a ‘Nazi” superplane with some kind of crazy near future tech. Vlambeer is generally light on story in their games and they want you to feel powerful and get crazy scores. There is gravity but your plane doesn’t stall or have any of the conventional issues of flight. I wouldn’t look too hard at the simulation angle in your sidescrolling arcade game.

      2. The player’s plane(s) has a silhouette very distinctly shaped relative to the enemy vehicles. I’ll admit I’m a bit of a Vlambeer fanboy, and this is chalking up to faith, but they generally take great pains to delineate all of the details on the screen.

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