Category Archives: Shooter

'1949 EndWar' Is an Upcoming Spiritual Sequel to Capcom's '1942', and Has a Plane Awesome Teaser Trailer

While it may be something of an unknown quality to some of the younger readers here, the 194x series by Capcom is beloved by many for being home of some classic 80s shoot-em-up titles. However, its reputation on iOS is far from stellar - even those with the strongest rose-tinted glasses found it difficult to look past the dated graphics and apocalyptic controls of the now defunct 1942: First Strike and the original 1942 on the Capcom Arcade. Smallthing Games obviously noticed this dearth of quality of a series that really should be perfectly suited to mobile devices, and have flown in to attempt to fix its legacy - enter 1949 EndWar. Being a spiritual sequel to 1942, the developers have stuck closely to the aesthetic design of the original while attempting to bring the game into 2016 with responsive controls and substantial gameplay elements which, from the official teaser trailer, look mightily impressive in action...

When I woke up this morning, I was greeted with an extremely unusual - for an early October day in London, at least - beautiful sunny day. Does this mean I'm going to go outside and enjoy this surprisingly positive turn of fortune in regards to the weather? Of course not, because it's not any old Monday - it's Bullet Hell Monday. Fittingly, Masayuki Ito, the developer of shoot-em-up App Store classic .Decluster Zero - Bullet Nocturne [$4.99], has today released his newest game Bullet Hell Monday [Free] which, while a major graphical step away from his past titles, looks to possess the same exhilarating shooter action which resulted in .Decluster Zero receiving a well deserved five star rating in our review last year...




Infinite Dreams, the developers of the excellent shoot 'em up Sky Force Reloaded [Free], should probably change their name to 'Infinite Updates'. Whether it's laser raptors, as we saw in the latest 'D Update', or brand new tournament modes, the game has been supported impressively since launch, which even by App Store standards has been incredibly impressive. It will therefore come as no surprise that the hardworking development team have released yet another update that, while serving as a stopgap until the big addition of the new Level 13, adds a lot of interesting features that will only further cement Sky Force Reloaded as one of the most essential games within the shmup genre on iOS...

'GunBird 2' Review - Classic Cute 'em Up

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September 13th, 2016 11:42 AM EDT by Chris Carter in 3.5 stars, Free, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Shooter
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Shoot 'em ups have a rich, long history, perhaps one of the longest in all of gaming. While Pong and Pac-Man were the first for many, Galaga was right in the mix as well, and with the advent of easy to manage digital marketplaces we're seeing a resurgence of some of those classic games right here in the mobile space. Cave pretty much opened the shmup floodgates after some stragglers at the start of the Android and iOS movement, but there's plenty of other competitors vying for attention as well. That includes Psikyo, who developed the Gunbird series way back in 1998 on arcades (and eventually the Dreamcast). And here we are 18 years later with a mobile edition. Flaws and all, it's a pretty fantastic series of events...

Infinite Dreams are continuing their rapid expansion of their excellent shoot 'em up Sky Force Reloaded [Free] with yet another new update dropping today. As with previous updates, this one comes with a code name, which is "The D Update." What's that "D" stand for? Dinosaurs! But not just any dinosaurs, but raptors with lasers attached to their head. Yes, laser raptors. Ahem. Perhaps you didn't hear me, I said LASER RAPTORS. Here are a couple of screens from this new Level 12...

'Space Marshals 2' Review - It's 'Space Marshals', Too

Pixelbite got a lot right with the first Space Marshals [$3.99]. They eschewed much of what is common in dual-stick shooters on mobile, going with a slower, more thoughtful, stealth-based game. With an array of interesting weaponry and tactics at your disposal, such as using noisemakers to distract enemies to take them out away from the prying eyes of other enemies, it was a cool concept and a fun game. The controls were great for mobile, with MFi controller support, and iCloud to boot. It was not a perfect game, but a great example of how to make an original, stylish title for mobile. Plus, they updated the game with 2 new episodes months after launch. Space Marshals 2 [$4.99] returns and basically is the same game, streamlined with a couple new features, and skipping on the whole episodic aspect to give you 20 beefy levels of tactical stealth action in a space wild-west setting. And like any sequel where iteration is the key difference, it's not bad – this is the superior game – but the lack of surprise can be a bit disappointing...

Infinite Dreams' latest shoot 'em up Sky Force Reloaded [Free] only just arrived in early June, but already it's been fleshed out with a few big updates, and today we're getting yet another one. While the previous update was dubbed the "Green Update" this new one continues that color theme and is called the "Scarlet Update" for its heavy use of red. It adds Stage 11 to the game which features several new types of turrets as well as a wicked new boss battle at the end. Here are a couple of screens from the new Stage 11...

One of the unique elements of mobile is that because people have their devices with them constantly, game design has taken on a new element of trying to fit into people's lives. Phoenix 2 [Free] feels like the idea was to provide an intense shoot 'em up experience that could be more than just an occasional distraction, but a game that could fit into someone's life. And in that regard, it succeeds: it's a unique experience that works best on mobile because it's built for the platform, while still being a fun bullet hell shmup experience...

'Angry Birds: Ace Fighter' Is a Soft Launched Shmup Spinoff, Not Developed by Rovio

In both an extremely surprising yet predictable attempt to wrestle the cultural zeitgeist back away from Pokemon GO [Free], a new Angry Birds title has soft launched today in Singapore - but not as you'd expect. Angry Birds: Ace Fighter is a departure from the typical aggravated avian slingshotting gameplay you know, loved and eventually found tedious - instead, Ace Fighter works as a shoot-em-up in the vein of the Sky Force series, as you shoot to eliminate pigs in UFOs, giant mechanical suits of armor and even riding dragons. While it's unlikely to have the same degree of depth and difficulty as shmups from developers such as Cave, Angry Birds: Ace Fighter boasts the slick cartoon aesthetic of the core games, and promises a whole roster of different planes, power ups and animal upgrades that will be a massive boon to any devoted fans of Rovio's other content...

If you've been enjoying Infinite Dreams' Sky Force Reloaded [Free], which just launched at the beginning of June, then today you have even more of it to enjoy as a brand new update has added a tenth level to the game as well as a new tournament level. This update has been dubbed the "Green Update" because, as you can see in the screen on the left below, the new level 10 has quite the green hue to it. The screen on the right shows the new Tournament stage, which has more of a Mayan or Aztec theme. In addition to these new levels there is also a new ship introduced which "modifies one of your weapons" according to Infinite Dreams...

In early June, we scoped out a wacky trailer for an upcoming third-person shooter from Flange Studio called Gun Glory: Anarchy [Free], and today the game has just gone live in the App Store. So what made the trailer so wacky? Two words: Bunny hats. Gun Glory goes beyond the tired modern military motif and features some more fantastical elements in terms of weaponry and, yes, even character outfits. It's this over-the-top element of Gun Glory that is really appealing to someone like me who has had his fill of the same old same old in shooters...

I've talked about shoot 'em ups ad nauseum, and for good reason -- they're one heck of a genre, and they're making a big comeback on mobile devices. They're just so fun to play and prey off of your ability to react to any given situation. I mean, who doesn't love blowing up aliens or some otherwise evil entity while dodging a hail of bullets on-screen? It's pretty much a universally beloved pastime. Frantic Shooter [Free], which hails more from the Robotron school of thought than anything, is just as fun even with touch controls...

Zombieville USA [$0.99 / Free] was one of those early iPhone hits that put developer Mika Mobile on the map. A side-scrolling shooter with a killer art style, Zombieville launched in early 2009 and quickly rose up the charts and maintained a position there for many months to come. Obviously its success led to a sequel a couple of years later, Zombieville 2 [$0.99] which launched in October of 2011. The sequel improved upon the original with a wider range of movement, tons of unlockable characters and weapons, a cool upgrade system, and most impressive of all co-op multiplayer both locally and over WiFi. Well, it's been a couple of years since Zombieville 2 has received any update love, and like any game on iOS it has developed a few issues over the years as new iOS hardware and software has rolled out. With the release of their latest game Lost Frontier [$2.99] now behind them, Mika Mobile took this time to fix those issues as well as bring the beloved Zombieville 2 to the Android platform for the first time...

Sky Force Reloaded [Free] is one of those games that is impressive in a variety of ways. In our review, we were blown away by what we called our 'favorite shoot 'em up in recent memory', and not without reason. It looks beautiful in motion, absolutely nails the core mechanics of a shooter and today it seems that active and receptive developers is another positive trait to add to the list. Infinite Dreams have announced that a new content update in response to forum feedback is due to land onto the App Store next Thursday, and appears to add a nice packet of features that is sure to help mix up the variety of an already essential game...

'Sky Force Reloaded' Review - Burning up the Skies

iDreams' Sky Force Reloaded [Free] is a great example of how to make a fun shoot 'em up that is traditional yet fresh. The situation isn't really surprising: you fly upward through levels, shooting both moving enemy formations and ground-based enemies, while trying to rescue humans that are on the ground. Those humans are a bit disappointed if you don't pick them up, but hey – sometimes dodging the plethora of enemy bullets is more important. It's not exactly a ground-breaking shmup, but it wins some points for variety. Levels occasionally throw some bullet-hell-esque hazards, and vary how the boss fights work. One level even takes your weapons away and forces you to dodge hazards and collect stars, the game's currency. There's a long-term progress objective here: you can upgrade your ship's health, weapons, and powerups. You can collect ship parts for new ships with different stats, with one ship unlockable if you played Sky Force 2014 [Free]. ..

Friends, there are an awful lot of twin-stick shooters on iOS. After a period of relative dormancy, the genre came back into fashion at almost the exact same time as mobile gaming went through the roof and the indie boom kicked off, so it was in a lot of ways inevitable. The competition is so fierce that even the series responsible for getting the genre going again, Geometry Wars, has to be at the top of its game to earn a spot on people's devices. Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions Evolved [$9.99] stepped up to that challenge, giving mobile players almost the same experience that could be found on consoles and PCs. If you haven't grabbed it yet, today is your lucky day, as the game has gone on sale for the nice price of $2.99...

Five Alarm Freebie Alert: 'Space Marshals' Goes Free for the First Time

We live in a world of constant sales and freebies. It happens so darn much that sometimes it's tough to even get excited about a sale. This is NOT one of those times. Pixelbite's stunning dual-stick shooter Space Marshals [$3.99] has just dropped to free for the first time ever. It's not known why exactly it's free at this point in time, but this isn't the time for questions, this is the time for action. That action is mashing the download button on your device...

Some of my favorite mobile games are ones that can be played with one hand in quick sessions. After all, if you have your phone always with you, then why not fill any empty gaps by playing a game? I love deeper experiences as well, but the ones I keep coming back to are the games that I can play for short bursts. It's what makes Clash Royale [Free] so compelling and replayable, and why I've sunk a lot more time in something like Boom Dots [Free] than you'd probably expect from such a simple game. So is the case with Super Arc Light [$1.99]. It's a minimalist high-score shooter that takes definite cues from Super Hexagon [$2.99]. It's a game I raise plenty of issues with, but I can't complain about it too much, since it scratches my one-handed pick-up-and-play itch quite well...

Gamevil's third-person multiplayer shooter Afterpulse [Free] launched worldwide last October following a short soft-launch period. It offered great visuals, but more importantly it streamlined the shooter experience to create something that felt satisfying but still highly playable on mobile touchscreen devices. We enjoyed it a lot in our original review, and although I was a bit late to the party, I also got hooked on Afterpulse late last year and it's become one of my very favorite games. The shooting is fun, the matchmaking works great, and the RPG-ish character and weapon leveling keeps me coming back time and time again. ..

'Hectic Space 2' Review - Bullet Pixel Hell

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March 22nd, 2016 11:45 AM EDT by Chris Carter in 4 stars, Free, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Shooter, Universal
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Shoot 'em ups will keep me company until the hour of my death. They were one of the first genres I ever played in the arcade, and it's one of my most played genres for pleasure to date. Whether it's a bullet hell Cave joint (which has become even more prolific on iOS) or a traditional, technical shooter, I'm always willing to turn my monitor on its side to play at any possible resolution. Less screen real estate on a mobile device seems like a problem, but touch controls almost always come through and deliver, and that's definitely the case with Hectic Space 2 [Free]...

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