Retro gaming fans will be pleased to hear that, at long last (after five weeks in the approval queue), Madgarden's Choplifter-inspired rescue action shooter Saucelifter [link] is now available in the App Store.

saucelifter screen

A peaceful interstellar mission-gone-wrong has left your crewmates stranded, and in the hands of an aggressive Earth military! Now, your mastery of superior flying-saucer technology is their only hope for survival.

Will you rescue the helpless captives and beam them home to safety.. or will Earth's mechanized military madness result in your total destruction?

Gameplay involves flying your saucer to the Earth prison barracks, blasting open the doors, picking up your captive crewmates, and dropping them off at the transporter where they're beamed safely back to your alien world.  This is made challenging by evil Earth forces, including tanks, laser turrets, and flying attack drones.  As can be seen in the demo video, the action can get pretty intense.

Features as listed by the developer:

  • Addictive, pick-up-and-play action (no annoying dialogs or interruptions)
  • Silky-smooth, crisp vector graphics
  • Dynamic stereo sound effects, and lots of 'em
  • Accelerometer-controlled flying saucer! (what else do you really need?)
  • Easy auto-calibration of tilt controls
  • Superior alien 3-way touch-firing technology
  • Easy-to-follow Tutorial Mode
  • Multiple difficulty levels
  • High scores
  • Listen to your music while you play

Author Paul Pridham indicates that a version 1.1 update adds skyline variation (night / day), new enemy superguns, and various graphics and sound updates and will be submitted next week.  And he assures us that the updates won't end there.  (There's even talk of extra secret sauce...)

Granted, I'm a rather die hard retro gaming fan, but I've had the release build of Saucelifter on my iPhone for a month and a half and, right now, it's in my personal top-five.  It is a retro title, but its solid action should appeal to many action gamers outside of the retro camp.

See our gameplay video and decide for yourself.


[ Full HD version | Low Bandwidth version ]

Thinking the game was on the verge of going live, we posted a review of this release version back in March.  Have a look.

App Store Link: Saucelifter, $1.99

  • menom

    superb - been waiting for this

    in fact I think I speed read the list of new apps as the title seems like something I saw recently

    so thanks for the info - might have missed this otherwise

  • menom

    superb - been waiting for this

    in fact I think I speed read the list of new apps as the title seems like something I saw recently

    so thanks for the info - might have missed this otherwise

  • Finch

    Finally, an iPhone game with a decent framerate. This game runs butery smooth and is a lot of fun.

  • Finch

    Finally, an iPhone game with a decent framerate. This game runs butery smooth and is a lot of fun.

  • http://www.silentrocco.com Rocco

    Like Chopper, just way more cool.
    Love the sounds and the zooming :)

  • http://www.silentrocco.com Rocco

    Like Chopper, just way more cool.
    Love the sounds and the zooming :)

  • Mikey PewPewPew

    Woohoo!

  • Mikey PewPewPew

    Woohoo!

  • jbletsch

    I have been waiting for this for weeks and saw it landed today in the app store. Been playing it for the last few hours and it is a superb retro gaming experience. Gameplay is challenging and fun and full of nice little touches that make for a game that makes try one more time to beat your last score. I also like the whole "save the aliens from the evil humans" backstory. Turnabout is fair play.

  • jbletsch

    I have been waiting for this for weeks and saw it landed today in the app store. Been playing it for the last few hours and it is a superb retro gaming experience. Gameplay is challenging and fun and full of nice little touches that make for a game that makes try one more time to beat your last score. I also like the whole "save the aliens from the evil humans" backstory. Turnabout is fair play.

  • mrWalrus

    Love the style on this! Reminds me of Out of this World.

    Sold!

  • mrWalrus

    Love the style on this! Reminds me of Out of this World.

    Sold!

  • Lenny

    It took me a while to get used to the controls, I am still not sure what I am doing, but I have a lot of fun while doing so.
    Note: The game calibrates itself when leaving a menu, so get into "gaming position" while in the menu, then press play :)

    Get this game if you're looking for a challenging experience with a cool retro feel.

  • Lenny

    It took me a while to get used to the controls, I am still not sure what I am doing, but I have a lot of fun while doing so.
    Note: The game calibrates itself when leaving a menu, so get into "gaming position" while in the menu, then press play :)

    Get this game if you're looking for a challenging experience with a cool retro feel.

  • Todd

    can anyone tell me if there are multiple environments like choplifter or is it all desert?

  • Todd

    can anyone tell me if there are multiple environments like choplifter or is it all desert?

  • JoshC.

    Just one environment.

  • JoshC.

    Just one environment.

  • Todd

    Thanks Josh! I just bought iron sights but I'm very tempted to pick up saucelifter, i'm a big time choplifter fan.

  • Todd

    Thanks Josh! I just bought iron sights but I'm very tempted to pick up saucelifter, i'm a big time choplifter fan.

  • JoshC.

    I have both games and I think Saucelifter is a lot more fun. Plus the developer promised updates with night mode and other cool little add-ons!

  • JoshC.

    I have both games and I think Saucelifter is a lot more fun. Plus the developer promised updates with night mode and other cool little add-ons!

  • Lenny

    It's an ideal time waster :)
    Had to wait around 5 mins, which were filled by some neat arcade action. Still need a good way to deal with these turrets... any suggestions? I also heard a rumor that there is a sandworm (like in dune) hidden in the levels - haven't found that one, though.

  • Lenny

    It's an ideal time waster :)
    Had to wait around 5 mins, which were filled by some neat arcade action. Still need a good way to deal with these turrets... any suggestions? I also heard a rumor that there is a sandworm (like in dune) hidden in the levels - haven't found that one, though.

  • http://www.saucelifter.com Madgarden

    Lenny: Set up a strafing run on the turrets... start at a safe distance, pick a medium altitude, and zoom forward while shooting. That will take them out most of the time. Just make sure you don't let the turrets keep piling up, or it gets hard fast. :)

  • http://www.saucelifter.com Madgarden

    Lenny: Set up a strafing run on the turrets... start at a safe distance, pick a medium altitude, and zoom forward while shooting. That will take them out most of the time. Just make sure you don't let the turrets keep piling up, or it gets hard fast. :)