There’s nothing better than a snazzy new shoot ’em up on my iOS device, and 10tons is fulfilling my wishes by bringing their hit shooter Xenoraid from Steam to iOS. 10tons had a very clear goal when making Xenoraid. They wanted to avoid making a hectic bullet hell-style game which required memorization and robot-like reflexes, and instead wanted to make something more akin to a classic arcade shooter. They do this by having Xenoraid’s levels be procedurally generated with a dynamic enemy AI. So, no level memorization needed as the levels are different every time. That’s not to mean this is just an endless game, though, as there’s still a mission-based campaign alongside endless survival modes.
The other big thing 10tons wanted to focus on in Xenoraid is the shooting itself. Here 10tons describes the two main ways they went about this: “Firstly, aiming is a big part of shooting, so we made the bold decision to make the player’s starfighters tilt slightly left and right when moving sideways. So you can shoot somewhat diagonally, but you also need to have a bit of pilot’s grasp of where your fighter’s nose is pointing, as that’s where your main weapon bullets will go. What’s more, you can’t spray and pray without a care in the world, as the main weapons will overheat and lock up eventually. So what you’ll be doing is lining up shots, squeezing out somewhat controlled bursts, and hopefully getting sweet “Nailed that one!" feelings when you see your bullets hit home."
Another neat aspect about Xenoraid is that your “lives" are actually 4 separate ships which you can switch between during play at any time. 10tons elaborates, “You can do useful stuff with fighter switching, such as preventing a damaged fighter from getting destroyed, bringing in another fighter with cool guns, bringing in another fighter with shots left in the secondary heavy weapon to take out some big enemies, and “dodge rolling" out of a hairy situation (both incoming and outgoing fighters are briefly immune to damage). The fighter switching ties into the metagame too, as the metagame is about managing your squadron with upgrades and repairs. You don’t want to end up using a lot of credits replacing lost fighters!"
The trailer is actually for the Steam version of Xenoraid, so the portions about co-op don’t apply to the iOS version. Still, it’s a very neat looking game and I think it’ll be a great fit for mobile. 10tons is currently looking for beta testers for the mobile version, and you can visit the forum thread to sign-up for that. Otherwise look for the iOS version of Xenoraid to arrive this December.