iPhone developer h.grenade has recently released a lite version of their space shooter Circuit Strike.One [$0.99, Lite].

cs.one 2.0 screen

Circuit Strike.One is a 2.5D shooter that combines elements of Geometry Wars with those of the zero-gravity classic Asteroids to deliver a physics-heavy, top-down space combat experience.  The premise of the game is that you are flying a ship within an advanced computer network. To hack into the system, you must first destroy the shield generators and then destroy the Core itself. In the meanwhile, the system will defend itself by sending enemies to destroy you. The game is setup as a classic arcade shooter which always starts on level one and you aim for achieving the highest score possible.

The game made its debut while Touch Arcade was covering WWDC 2009 in San Francisco back in June but was noted to have some performance issues. Many of these issues where addressed in an update that finally went live in early July.

circuit_strike_one_prerelease_03 exclusiveSince then, while a vocal segment of readers have been loving the game, some (including myself) have never quite gotten comfortable with the original control mechanisms offered in the title or the pace of the game as a whole. 

Developer Shay Casey indicated to us earlier that, once you get used to the controls, there's a great payoff, "allowing maneuvers like strafing, 180 degree j-turn style attacks and more. .... Once you get the hang of it and the controls 'click' for you it opens up a world of possibilities."  That may be, but there may be those for which the controls never quite clicked. For those CS.One players, however, the last update from late July did add a more familiar control mechanism: a dual stick controller.

Now, with a generous Lite version newly available and a $0.99 sale of the full version of the game, there's no better chance to try out this unique space shooter to see if it's for you. We do suggest you try the game as it was originally intended, however, using the "basic" control mechanism first. The developer said of the game, "The real key can't be said enough - it is a zero-g physics game just like Asteroids so do not try and keep your thumb on the thrust."

App Store Link: Circuit Strike.One, $0.99, Circuit Strike.One Lite, Free

  • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

    Thanks for mentioning my personal favorite iPhone game. To me, this is still the best game in the entire App Store. Put your headphones on and it's like a little rush, like in the best moments of REZ. And both controls work perfectly. Just, that the dual stick system is way more easy and intuitive. The art style is fantastic and especially on a 3GS, this game is silky smooth.

  • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

    Thanks for mentioning my personal favorite iPhone game. To me, this is still the best game in the entire App Store. Put your headphones on and it's like a little rush, like in the best moments of REZ. And both controls work perfectly. Just, that the dual stick system is way more easy and intuitive. The art style is fantastic and especially on a 3GS, this game is silky smooth.

  • david

    I got this lite version some days ago and the steering was not that cool... somehow I wasnt even able to shoot? Is it really only the fine line (almost not visible) coming out of my spaceship? Anyways, isotope then came out with a sale and I tested the lite version and directly bought the full one. To me: much easier and nicer steering of the ship. Any other isotope fans here? :-)

    • http://www.blakespot.com Blake Patterson

      Indeed, one of my gripes of the game is the faint laser visual and the feel of it as it pans. At first I did not realize the ship was actually shooting.

      • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

        Strange, I think, that is crystal clear.
        You see the laser line, you HEAR your shooting and you see the enemies burst. What more do you need?

      • DavidD.

        Big enough that it doesn't require 20/20 vision or better or your face right up to the device.

  • david

    I got this lite version some days ago and the steering was not that cool... somehow I wasnt even able to shoot? Is it really only the fine line (almost not visible) coming out of my spaceship? Anyways, isotope then came out with a sale and I tested the lite version and directly bought the full one. To me: much easier and nicer steering of the ship. Any other isotope fans here? :-)

    • http://www.blakespot.com Blake Patterson

      Indeed, one of my gripes of the game is the faint laser visual and the feel of it as it pans. At first I did not realize the ship was actually shooting.

      • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

        Strange, I think, that is crystal clear.
        You see the laser line, you HEAR your shooting and you see the enemies burst. What more do you need?

      • DavidD.

        Big enough that it doesn't require 20/20 vision or better or your face right up to the device.

  • Frog

    I like Isotope and cs.one very much, they're both very different. It took me a long time to get used to the advanced controls, but when you get the hang of it, it's fantastic. I also like the graphics very much. Everyone that likes top down shooters should try this game.

  • Frog

    I like Isotope and cs.one very much, they're both very different. It took me a long time to get used to the advanced controls, but when you get the hang of it, it's fantastic. I also like the graphics very much. Everyone that likes top down shooters should try this game.

  • lukeb

    I love top-down shooters but didn't like cs one at all. I can't get the hang of the controls and the game itself is bland with not much going on. I would name Cs One as among the most disappointing games I've purchased, though at a buck the fail is not too epic.

    • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

      And I'm quite sure, you never even tried the dual sticks ;) This opinion sound like one on version 1.0.

  • lukeb

    I love top-down shooters but didn't like cs one at all. I can't get the hang of the controls and the game itself is bland with not much going on. I would name Cs One as among the most disappointing games I've purchased, though at a buck the fail is not too epic.

    • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

      And I'm quite sure, you never even tried the dual sticks ;) This opinion sound like one on version 1.0.

  • lukeb

    One more thing: CSO is not "2.5D" as 100% of the action takes place on one plane. The only things that look somewhat3 D are the slighty raised shield generators and a pseudo 3D effect that you see as the game first zooms in at the beginning of each level.

    • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

      It's as much 2.5D als Rolando 2. You are controlling in a 2D sense, but the style is 3D-ish (walls, towers, different layers etc.). That's why it's called 2.5D!

  • lukeb

    One more thing: CSO is not "2.5D" as 100% of the action takes place on one plane. The only things that look somewhat3 D are the slighty raised shield generators and a pseudo 3D effect that you see as the game first zooms in at the beginning of each level.

    • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

      It's as much 2.5D als Rolando 2. You are controlling in a 2D sense, but the style is 3D-ish (walls, towers, different layers etc.). That's why it's called 2.5D!

  • lukeb

    @Your personal robot

    I tried the dual-stick option in the latest version and didn't like that either. What's really going on in CS One? You fly around in a tiny arena and shoot these red blocks which are the vulnerable spots on shield generators, then shoot the shield core and do the same thing every level. The weapon never upgrades, as far as I can tell, and all the little enemies look pretty much the same. That's just my opinion. There are obviously plenty of people who love the game and my one opinion won't sway any of them, nor is it meant to.

    • Titan-CC

      Ok, what's going on in Isotope? You're basically going around shooting endless hordes of enemies over and over and over again, on a smaller map than cs.one, every single level. They all look similar too, and there is little to no strategy killing them. And don't tell me that isotope has a campaign because that is so pathetically easy to beat, I don't even count it.

      Don't get me wrong, I love isotope, I just get a little pissed when people say there is no depth to cs.one. They obviously haven't tried playing enough. The elite difficulty has tons of enemies, random turret placement, and crazy moving walls on every stage, but nobody knows this because cs.one isn't super amazing in the first 2 minutes of playing...

      Ps. The basic controls are AMAZING. They are almost exactly like asteroids, how can it be that people are too stupid to figure them out??

      This is all my opinion as well, I just thought I should make it heard.

      • DavidD.

        Yeah, but how long does it take to get Elite mode unlocked for a casual player, I played this game for 2 days+ trying to unlock it until I put my hands up and said enough is enough. Elite mode sounds nice, but trying to play the game to unlock it blows my mind into boredom.

      • lukeb

        Here's what it is.The last time I check, I was #3 in Oort Storm, an updated asteroids clone that no one apparently plays. My score was still sick. IGN knocked Oort Storm for its control scheme, which uses accelerometer turning, but I beat the game on hard with the same scheme and earned 2.6 mill (global high is 3.0 mill). I'm also in the top 10 for a couple other app store shooters.

        My point, besides bragging a little? If the controls of CS One seem amazingly difficult to me, then possibly the controls are simply too hard for even most hardcore gamers? I don't doubt that a few people have gotten used to them after dozens and dozens of hours playing.

        My CS One games end too quickly, despite much tweaking the controls. The game is a bit bland besides, and the portions are not big enough.

        If Elite mode was already unlocked upon installing CS One, then maybe I would have seen what kind of action was on offer. As it now stands, CSO is very difficult to sustain interest in. Which is to say it's not much fun.

  • lukeb

    @Your personal robot

    I tried the dual-stick option in the latest version and didn't like that either. What's really going on in CS One? You fly around in a tiny arena and shoot these red blocks which are the vulnerable spots on shield generators, then shoot the shield core and do the same thing every level. The weapon never upgrades, as far as I can tell, and all the little enemies look pretty much the same. That's just my opinion. There are obviously plenty of people who love the game and my one opinion won't sway any of them, nor is it meant to.

    • Titan-CC

      Ok, what's going on in Isotope? You're basically going around shooting endless hordes of enemies over and over and over again, on a smaller map than cs.one, every single level. They all look similar too, and there is little to no strategy killing them. And don't tell me that isotope has a campaign because that is so pathetically easy to beat, I don't even count it.

      Don't get me wrong, I love isotope, I just get a little pissed when people say there is no depth to cs.one. They obviously haven't tried playing enough. The elite difficulty has tons of enemies, random turret placement, and crazy moving walls on every stage, but nobody knows this because cs.one isn't super amazing in the first 2 minutes of playing...

      Ps. The basic controls are AMAZING. They are almost exactly like asteroids, how can it be that people are too stupid to figure them out??

      This is all my opinion as well, I just thought I should make it heard.

      • DavidD.

        Yeah, but how long does it take to get Elite mode unlocked for a casual player, I played this game for 2 days+ trying to unlock it until I put my hands up and said enough is enough. Elite mode sounds nice, but trying to play the game to unlock it blows my mind into boredom.

      • lukeb

        Here's what it is.The last time I check, I was #3 in Oort Storm, an updated asteroids clone that no one apparently plays. My score was still sick. IGN knocked Oort Storm for its control scheme, which uses accelerometer turning, but I beat the game on hard with the same scheme and earned 2.6 mill (global high is 3.0 mill). I'm also in the top 10 for a couple other app store shooters.

        My point, besides bragging a little? If the controls of CS One seem amazingly difficult to me, then possibly the controls are simply too hard for even most hardcore gamers? I don't doubt that a few people have gotten used to them after dozens and dozens of hours playing.

        My CS One games end too quickly, despite much tweaking the controls. The game is a bit bland besides, and the portions are not big enough.

        If Elite mode was already unlocked upon installing CS One, then maybe I would have seen what kind of action was on offer. As it now stands, CSO is very difficult to sustain interest in. Which is to say it's not much fun.

  • lukeb

    I don't like Isotope either. The vast number of ships and upgrade options takes it too far outfield of the retroish top-down shooter genre for my taste. The controls for that game are excellent, however, and are not passed off in the descriptions as a "hardcore" game element. The only reason I knock both of those games is that there are so many posts to the effect of "everything other than [those two games] is complete crap" even though the ain appeal of Iso and CSO is a superficial one (e.g. "oozing theme," etc.).

  • lukeb

    I don't like Isotope either. The vast number of ships and upgrade options takes it too far outfield of the retroish top-down shooter genre for my taste. The controls for that game are excellent, however, and are not passed off in the descriptions as a "hardcore" game element. The only reason I knock both of those games is that there are so many posts to the effect of "everything other than [those two games] is complete crap" even though the ain appeal of Iso and CSO is a superficial one (e.g. "oozing theme," etc.).