Category Archives: Shooter

Last week Capcom announced a handful of new mobile ports of their classic arcade franchises, and today one of those has gone live. 1942 Mobile [$1.99] is a touchscreen-centric port of the 1984 arcade shoot 'em up which many consider the godfather of vertical scrolling shooters. Following Capcom's fairly disastrous ports of the 8-bit Mega Man games, it's understandable one might be wary of the quality of 1942 Mobile. Well, I'm happy to report that it's… actually pretty good? The game runs smoothly and seems authentic to the arcade original, and the simple fact that it's a shooter that can be controlled with one thumb as opposed to Mega Man which requires plenty of precision button inputs makes 1942 a game that would be hard to screw up on the touchscreen. Hard, but not impossible. ..

Geometry Wars almost spawned a  new genre of shoot 'em up when it arrived in 2003, as a Trojan horse of sorts inside of Project Gotham Racing. While developer Bizarre Creations thought it would be a throwaway extra that would be relegated to a behind-the-scenes lifespan, it became wildly popular and was eventually remade into its own release, and eventually, its own franchise. Characterized by a confined grid-like arena and its endless supply of cell-like enemies, the idea wasn't wholly new, but the neon art style conjoined with that setup was unique at the time. Hyperlight EX [$1.99] replicates that same experience, albeit with slightly less bravado...




Bandai Namco and Paladin Studio's Galaga Wars [Free] is a great modern remake of Namco's classic arcade shoot 'em up Galaga. Utilizing modern 3D graphics and new features like multiple playable ships, Galaga Wars does a great job at retaining the essence of the original, which isn't always the case when older classics get the modern treatment. We really enjoyed Galaga Wars in our review, and this week a new update has arrived which features another of Namco's classic gaming icons: Pac-Man. ..

If you like the highly-entertaining bullet hell shmup Phoenix 2 [Free], prepare to enjoy even more content. The upcoming update will add three new extra hard leagues - because apparently the game wasn't hard enough for some of you. The SS, SSS, and SSSS Leagues will ratchet up the difficulty and provide a challenge for even the best of you. We also getting improvements for those who like speedruns. Specifically, now you'll be able to see the time differential from your previous time after each wave of defeated enemies. That way, you'll know if it's still worth going for it or just quitting and starting all over again...

'Xenoraid' Review - The 'Marvel vs. Capcom' of Shmups

I like playing games that may exist in a particular genre, but are willing to defy the conventions of that genre to create something different. That's exactly what 10tons has done with Xenoraid [Free], their entry into the shoot 'em up genre. It does things differently from other games, and maybe you won't like it! Western shmups are already so different from Eastern ones, due to cultural differences. Xenoraid manages to even transcend that difference, and feels like its own unique shoot 'em up. But you might just enjoy what this heterodox title has to bring to the table...

Dial the clocks back to early December of 2015 and developer Art in Games released AirAttack 2 [$0.99], a sequel to their incredibly well-recieved 2010 vertical shoot 'em up. There was little warning of AirAttack 2's arrival, and as such it took both our community and our staff by storm as it proved to be one of the most visually impressive and refreshing shooters available on mobile. We awarded it 5 stars in our review as well as Game of the Week honors. And, despite releasing so close to the end of the year, AirAttack 2 made enough of an impression on us that we included it in our Best Games of 2015 as well. In short, AirAttack 2 is really, really good!..

Sky Force Reloaded [Free] left a particularly strong impression on both gamers and critics over the course of 2016, and for good reason. Regardless of whether you were a fan of the shoot-em-up genre, Sky Force Reloaded excelled with its presentation and attention to detail, but most of all with its undeniably commitment to consistent content updates. While the base game in Sky Force Reloaded was already essential, and even received a glowing five star review back in June of last year, these frequent updates only solidified infinite Dreams's futuristic shooter as the pinnacle of the genre on mobile devices, and the level of commitment from the developer to their considerable community of fans is almost unparalleled, even on the App Store. Sadly, there was always going to be a point when the update well would run dry, and it seems today we have reached this milestone. The 1.80 patch, dubbed the 'Missile Update', marks the end of the content updates for the game, but if the additions included are anything to go by, Infinite Dreams are determined to finish their perpetual support of Sky Force Reloaded with a bang...

Over the past few years, developer Shelly Alon has released two quirky and enjoyable puzzle games for iOS in 2014's Partyrs [$1.99] and 2015's Sputnik Eyes [$1.99]. So when we learned earlier this week that his next game would be a vertical shoot 'em up, a genre that's notorious for the type of frantic action not seen in Alon's previous puzzle games, I wasn't quite sure how it would turn out. This new game is called Glitchskier [$1.99] and now that it's finally available I can answer my own sense of curiosity: It turned out brilliantly!..

'Z-Exemplar' Review - My R-Type of Game

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January 31st, 2017 10:59 AM EDT by Chris Carter in $3.99, 4.5 stars, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Shooter, Universal
$1.99 Buy Now

I've been gaming for a very long time, but I can say without hesitation that I was late to the ZX Spectrum train. Given that it was an 8-bit computer released in the UK in 1983 that's understandable, but strangely enough, various other bits of tech history that allowed me to experience it. My first ZX Spectrum game was Manic Miner on the now defunct Microsoft Zune, which drew me into a whole new world that I didn't know know existed. Soon enough I was learning about the MSX and diving into a rabbit hole of gaming that I could never escape from. If you've ever wikipedia-ed something for hours on end until you end up wasting the entire day away, you know what I mean...

If you're looking for another mobile FPS to scratch that itch, check out Squad Wars: Death Division [Free], which has just released globally. The game has you playing a participant in the largest squad-based tournament in human history, organized by the mysterious billionaire Barakiel. There's a huge prize, of course, and you're one of those trying to get their hands on that sweet, sweet money. The game features an ELO rating, a league system, and skill-based matchmaking with up to 6 players per match. Talk of ELOs is nice, but hopefully Squad Wars will actually get matchmaking to work well...

Neon Chrome [$9.99] is one of those rare games that got a five-star review from our very own Carter, so it's worth checking out just for that. And now, you can get it for half the price. Neon Chrome is a dual-stick roguelike that's accessible enough to be welcoming to the less hardcore crowd while still offering a long-term challenge to keep you engaged. It's no accident the game won the highly-coveted title of TouchArcade game of the week when it first released. What's so great about the game? It's partly how well it combines a very well made dual-stick shooter with roguelike and RPG elements...

Way back in June of 2015, Suminell Studios announced their throwback horizontal shoot 'em up Z-Exemplar. They used the classic 8-bit gaming computer ZX Spectrum as their inspiration for how the game should look and play, and appeared to be nailing the authenticity to an incredible degree. Updates on the game's progress were fairly frequent through the rest of 2015, but then things went oddly silent until this past August when the developers posted an update saying they had been quietly toiling away on the game and that it was finally feature complete. The game finally launched on Steam in November, and then on Android about a week ago, and at long last Z-Exemplar [$1.99] has also arrived on iOS as of this morning. Here's a look at the launch trailer from the Steam release...

I've played my share of Chillingo's Warfriends [Free] while the game was in soft launch and had quite a fun time with it, and now everyone can join the fun as the game has finally gone global. If you haven't played the game yet, Warfriends is a smart blend of cover-based shooter and card game where you get to deploy all kinds of units against your opponent. It's a pretty smart concept, and every time I've played the game on our Mobcrush stream, people seemed to love it. You level your support units as you go along and also have to decide which cards to bring to a battle and which ones to save. There are also plenty of cosmetic and non-cosmetic upgrades for your guy (mine has a Spartan helmet and a cigar) that add a layer of fun to the game...

10tons have had an impressive run on the App Store as of late, with their mobile adaption of the excellent dual stick shooter and roguelike amalgamation Neon Chrome [$9.99] receiving a hat-trick of accolades, with a glowing five star review, a Game of the Week award, and featuring in our 100 Best Mobile Games list. Xenoraid [Free] is looking to continue this trend - having launched previously on consoles back in October to critical acclaim, 10tons' interesting approach of merging old and new elements of the typical vertical shoot-em-up title resulted in a truly unique take on a relatively tired genre. Having just avoided the typical Wednesday evening rush of releases, Xenoraid has finally launched on the App Store today for free (with a discounted $4.99 in-app purchase to unlock the full game), so be sure to give 10tons newest release a try if you want some thrilling shooter action to liven up your Thursday...

'The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth' Review - Good Things Come to Those Who Wait

At last! The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth [$14.99] has finally released on iOS, and it was well worth the wait. Perhaps the most popular dual-stick shooter roguelike out there, rumors, Apple approvals drama, and a constantly-shifting release date led to this being the white whale for many iOS gamers. As the release date narrowed down to a general range, every day saw one question surely asked: "When's Isaac coming?" Well, thanks to a surprise Tuesday night release on January 10th US time, The Binding of Isaac is finally here, and well worth the wait. The scatological, challenging roguelike dual-stick shooter promises challenging gameplay with mountains of secrets to discover...

Shoot 'em ups are quite popular on iOS, though not all of them bring new ideas to the table. High Space [$1.99], which is one of the first games to emerge out of the iTunes freeze, is hoping the ability to bend space and time will help it stand out from the crowd, and it might just do that. As you can see in the video below, this side-scrolling shooter lets you slow down time and create wormholes as you try to survive the hordes of space alien coming your way. The constant slowdowns break up the usual frantic pace of shoot 'em ups and should please those players whose reflexes are as slow as mine...

As promised last month, developer Firi Games have released a huge version 2.0 update to their fantastic vertical shooter Phoenix II [Free]. The biggest change in this update is a new League system which will move players up and down in various levels of leagues based on how they perform in each day's mission. So, if you found the game pretty difficult you'll likely stick around in the lower leagues and get daily missions that are a bit easier. If you're quite proficient at the game, you'll rise up the league ranks and get daily missions that are increasingly harder. It's a smart system that should hopefully cater to a wider level of gamers than the original release...

'Cover Fire' Is an Upcoming Shooter With 3D Touch Controls, and Is Looking for Beta Testers

The 3D Touch feature that made its debut with the iPhone 6S has been criminally underused in both App Store games and iOS as a whole. With only a very limited use that is normally restricted to navigational shortcuts as we've seen in both Alto's Adventure [$4.99] and Fallout Shelter [Free] over the past few months, a feature that has potential to offer a whole new spectrum of control within games has been sorely neglected. That's why Cover Fire, an upcoming on rails first person shooter from One Man Band, has me particularly excited. As well as a whole host of interesting features and some truly stunning graphics, the developers have included an option for 3D Touch aiming, whereby soft swipes are used to move the aiming reticle and harder presses shoot your weapon. This sounds like an incredibly intuitive control system and I can't wait to try it out - if you're similarly minded, the developers are looking for beta testers on our forum, where you can sign up and give Cover Fire a shot (no pun intended)...

If you've enjoyed playing the visually-impressive Warhammer 40,000: Freeblade [Free] but haven't played it in a bit, now might be a good time to jump back into the seat of your huge Imperial Knight. In celebration of its one-year anniversary, the game has just received update 2.3, Chaos Gods. The new update brings along new Chaos knights, which let you get a taste of the dark gods and the evil lurking in the Warhammer 40K universe, Chaos relics, which you need to earn in order to unlock your Chaos Knight, the new Daemon event that has you battling the Bloodthirster in the depths of Ford Drakkus, and a new Dredmire Multiplayer Arena that lets you battle both Imperial and Chaos Knights. Plenty of chaos and darkness in this update...

'Neon Chrome' Review - The Roguelike That's Just Right

I can't get enough of dual-stick shooter roguelikes, but often the time and effort requirement is too much. I'm more of a gaming tourist – I want to enjoy a lot of different experiences in gaming rather than having to decdicate tons of hours to get the joy out of a single game. Thankfully, Neon Chrome [$9.99] from 10tons, adapted for mobile from PC and console, scratches that itch. It's not easy by any stretch of the imagination, and it can be punishing, but it tones down some of the harsher parts of the roguelike-inspired genre to be more accessible up front for players who just want to enjoy a game of this type. This is a game where you can extract genuine rewards from it in the early hours, while still getting long-term challenge and satisfaction. ..

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