Posts Tagged ‘shmup’

SHMUP: It’s A Shmup

This looks like my kind of thing. My kind of thing being “games that make me feel like I’m incredibly good at games, even though I’m not.” IGF China finalist S.H.M.U.P. is, as the name suggests, a side-scrolling shooter. But! Rather than being a precision game of exhausting bullet-dodging, it’s one in which you unleash a sustained torrent of improbable explodey-death, with your avatar eventually consisting of a fleet of up to 15 ships. In other words, Press Button, Watch Everything Explode. Yay!
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SPACE WEEK: Fuck Space!

Yeah! In the cosmos!

How very rude.

Thank goodness for this game. Fuelled by a cold, and Morgan’s Spiced Rum, my rage was complete upon discovering Space Tripper doesn’t bloody work on my machine. It’s too good or something, meaning the game grinds to an unplayable halt after a couple of minutes. Well bang goes the idea of writing about that for Space Week then. But then what should swoop to the rescue but Cactus’ Fuck Space!, a vertically scrolling shmup of maximum greatitude.

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Monday Synapse Overload

Monday afternoon almost gone and your brain isn’t quite up to speed? Emergency measures must be prescribed. The Doctor insists you imbibe a hyperbright modern Shmup to restore vigour. Ah – just what the Doctor ordered…

I wish that I could fire hyper-bright plasma beams. That I can't is a sad part of life. Sad, sad, sad. :( :( :(

Uppity Developer Comments-thread chap Schizoslayer lobbed me Exception last week, but I hadn’t had a chance to play it until now – as a good thing to do when avoiding transcribing an interview like I ought to be. It’s a physics-heavy cross between Robotron, Asteroids, Boulderdash and R-type. Neat elements include enemies being constructed of individual bricks, so if you take off an section, the rest continues – so, for example, if you can blow off a thruster off a brick-ship, it spins out of control. The second included level, where the Boulderdash stuff really comes into play, features some surprisingly cute bits where you’re using large enemy ships as cover as you descend.

It’s not particularly stressful, except on your eyeballs, which is exactly what you need. Worth a shot, or several thousand and some dastardly bricks.

Crapplestar Craptacular, More Like

The Battlestar Galactica remake is just made for games, with its compelling jump-cutty, eerily quiet space combat and signature ships. Fortunately, people have done so, for free and very well indeed. There’s the Homeworld 2 mod here, and the Freespace 2 mod here.

And today the official game’s been released, available exclusively online. It’s $20 (or £13), which doesn’t sound like much, but every penny spent will feel like a knife in the kidney if you do splash out. Fortunately the demo’s enough to make that pretty obvious. Forlorn impressions follow. Read the rest of this entry »

Protoganda

Via Indygamer, I see that Cactus Software have a new game out. It’s a scrolling shooter, and a little less imaginative than some of their previous games, but it nevertheless errs on the side of excellent esoterica. The visuals mix retro-polygonal abstract techno shooter stuff with, well, Cyrillic text and celluloid film-grain processing. I also like that you can turn the subtitles to the (presumably Russian?) text on and off. There’s a direct download link here.

Press enter during the game for instructions – and you’ll need to read them as the mixture of charge shot and shield controls make this a tricky but focusing shmup. Having ignored the instructions and guessed at the keys, it took me maybe four goes to clear the first couple of sections. But who ever reads those things, eh?

Teewars

During this drought of online multiplayer games, we were grateful for a tip-off from reader Aleksander Kiin, linking us to Teewars.

FEEL MY HAMMER

Despite appearances, it’s nothing like Worms, so no need to worry there. It is in fact a super-cutesy 2D shmup, with four standard weapons, one very cool bonus samurai sword, and a grappling-hook-chain-thing on the right mouse button for making those awkward leaps.

Once the chain is mastered moving around the maps is lots of fun, making it all the more satisfying when a rocket lands smack-bang in your opponent’s chirpy face. And then you realise you can fire the chain at other players. It’s free, and there are a people playing on the servers even first thing in the morning. Certainly worth checking out.

Typhoon 2001

I just picked up the latest version of this Tempest clone via Retro Remakes. Every time I play one of these it reminds me just how perfect the original Tempest was, and this time Typhoon actually works, thanks to new Vista compatibility.

Tempest, for the Martians in the audience, was the classic 3D space invaders (only different) by David Theurer. The game was apparently inspired by a dream in which Theurer witnessed monsters crawling out of the ground – a pulsing, neon ground, presumably. Tempest has been remade constantly since 1980 and just doesn’t seem to get old. Anyway, here’s the direct link to Typhoon 2001. Go play.

Iwanaga

Saturday nights are alright for sitting alone in your pants browsing indy game blogs. Yes, I found bizarre semi-scrolling blaster Iwanaga over on Independent Gaming (which is an absolute corker of a blog run by “Tim W”, incidentally). Having figured out that the game doesn’t work on Vista, I’m now hunched in front of my XP machine, and have descended into a kind of shmup-trance. I’m blasting stuff over and over via Iwanaga’s strangely disconnected cursor/character method. You hold down Z to shoot, and can’t really move as you do it, and instead control a cursor independent of your 2D character. Stop firing and you can move and jump your weird troll thing to avoid incoming hazards. Mmm, weird pixel-death…


I pinched this image from TIGSource because my grabs were all corrupted. I am a pro, yes.

The main Iwanaga website is all in foreign, so here’s a direct link to the game files. The game is beautifully drawn in retro-pixelated fashion, and has the most peculiar flat Japanese horror atmosphere. There’s also my favourite intro sequence in years. Brief, and to the point. I think you should take a look for yourself.

Gridblaster

So instead of finishing off the work I was supposed to do this afternoon I spent an hour attempt to make any kind of headway in Gridblaster. For some reason Gridblaster breaks the videogame-processing parts of my tiny brain. It seems no more complicated than your average retro-shooter, but for some reason there’s just too much going on for me to cope with.

It looks innocuous enough – it’s the Bomberman map with added shooty stuff – but it’s hurting me.

And I can’t deal with it. I have to stop. Perhaps it’ll be okay for you.

Found via the splendid Retro-Remakes.

Warning! Another!

This is probably the SHMUP! equivalent of Oasis and Blur releasing a single in the same week, but Hikware – of Warning Forever fame – have put out their latest enormo-blaster, Cyclops, while we were still recovering from ABA game’s latest blast. And it looks like this…

Eee..eee! Eee...eee!

Okay. I’m half-lying. They’ve been out for a few weeks now, but I wanted to wait until I had a chance to actually play Cyclops to actually put it into context. At least on my initial play, it’s not in the same league as Warning Forever (Which is the Shadow of the Colossus of the SHMUP! except with none of the tedious fucking around with the horse, and about as good as a freeware shooter gets), but it’s certainly its own creature. It’s primary mechanic is that you’re stationary, with enemies approaching from all side. Your weapon is an enormous beam-thing, which annihilates all and sundry. The “all and sundry” is the key bit – it also takes out incoming projects. Since after firing it needs to recharge and your turning speed is stictly limited, the game’s based around you priotising incoming vectors and all that. It takes a little long to get going for my liking – I’m of the Robotron-school of Arcade games, where if I’m not mentally exausted by level 5, it’s too weak for me – but I still think it’s worthy of a little attention.

Cyclops can be downloaded from here and if you haven’t actually played Warning Forever, for the sake of the eternal Arcade Fire, get it from here.

Bee Happy

I’m fairly certain that this is the greatest game I’ve played since the infinite pleasures of DEATH WORM. Behold:

It’s called HoneyBlaster, and in it you play a bumblebee with nothing to lose (except his hit-points) in a battle against a tyrannical swarm of insects (probably). A side-scrolling shooter of real pace, and splendid clunkiness, it has the best music I’ve ever heard. Seriously. It also has a (faked?) resolution of 160×100 pixels, which strikes me as just the thing for a Wednesday morning.

Get the three level demo here and pray to the God of black and white bee death-rays that the full game one day hatches.

Least Best Room (with an Overview)

Guess what this is? Click for a larger view, for extra help.

Sexy!

IT’S A VIDEOGAME!

Say what you like about Kenta “ABA Games” Cho, but you’re never in doubt what any of his work is, even at a glance. Which means it’s a cause for celebration that he’s gone and released another one, Least Best Room.

If you’re a watcher of anything indie or SHMUP!, you’ll almost certainly be aware of Kenta. In fact, his reputation’s risen to the level where he gets a degree of grief from people who consider him not all that. Which is unfair, and – putting aside the merit of much of his work – the secret of his success is plain.

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