Shooters Both Vertical and Sidescrolling (but NOT first-person or cover) - aka SHMUPs (or STGs I guess)

I read somewhere that the Xbox version plays kind of choppy, so I’m going to wait and see if some patches clear things up. I’m definitely interested in playing though.

The beautiful (but very choppy) demo reminded me the R-type sub genre was too hard for me.

I’ll stick to learning all my Dariuses for now!

I finally caved and bought Zer0Ranger. It’s very good. I also picked this one up:

It’s pretty easy on normal, at least the first couple levels, but has a great look to it. Even has some voice acting!

Another EX, over on, that looks incredible, although I have no idea how it may play.

Yeah I saw that over the weekend and couldn’t believe how the only video on that stuffed-to-the-gills store page was for… the music. All those capitalised words, garish colours, backer rewards and images and they forgot to include a trailer, or even some GIFs showing the game in motion. It was a no from me!

You can play the free game it is based on actually:

That little game is mostly Galaga (as the logo gives out), but rotated to be played horizontally. As a lefty and a strong advocate of vertical shmupping, it’s an heresy!

(Warning: the game is super loud)

What is EX anyway?

Extra, Plus, Special (see SSS ranks). Also probably evokes SEX in Japan!

Extra speXial


I’ve been thinking about making a separate thread for run’n’guns, since the consensus seems to be that they deserve to be separate from STGs, even though in my mind they occupy adjacent spaces (and some are kinda both, like Thexder).

I’ve been playing a lot of Gigantic Army lately.

Did you ever get around to playing Sky Force? I can strongly recommend it, it’s bloody good.

Not yet. I must have passed on it the last time it went on sale. I’ll grab it next time! I have 15 shmups and 4 run’n’guns installed on Steam right now, plus a handful of more of both from ages past waiting to be emulated.

skyforce games are kinda sweet, but more grind action than real shmups. They don’t have real ending as far as i know too, score is based on number of upgrades, so it’s a very different flavour of game to me.

Sky Force Anniversary is definitely my favorite game of this genre. Sky Force Reloaded is second.

I thought it would be a gateway into me liking other games of the genre too, but it hasn’t really happened yet.

Though I bought Habroxia 2 yesterday, and I’m having a good time with it so far. It’s a sidescrolling one where you travel from left to right. Though one of the bosses has already subverted expectations by attacking me from the top once he took enough damage on the right side of the screen.

You’re way too nice. :)

Reporting back on Habroxia 2, I played it a LOT this weekend, and I’m really enjoying it. The main thing that makes it different from the shoot em ups that I played back in the Amstrad days and even Raptor in the 90s and the Skyforce games from the 2000s, is that Habroxia 2 allows you to fire using the right thumbstick. So instead of pressing X to fire straight, you can use the right thumbstick to fire all around you.

This is huuuuuuuge. That’s one of the main things that made those other games so difficult is that you had to line up with the enemy and get in their line of fire in order to fire at them yourself, but in Habroxia 2, I can fire at them without getting in their line of fire, if I’m careful.

I kind of love it. So even though the graphics are very retro, the gameplay feels very fresh and different than any shoot em up in my admittedly very limited experience with the genre.

Are there other games in this genre that let you fire in any direction you want? Or is it something unique to this game?

To be fair, many modern shmups have so wide firing patterns that you don’t have to think about aiming almost at all.

Heh. Ooooohhhh boy. You might want to look up “twin stick shooter”. It’s a whole genre of its own. :)

I don’t play them much but I can strongly recommend Helldivers, one of the best examples I’ve ever seen. Also a good friend of mine says Jydge is his favourite twin stick shooter. But there are many more. Have fun!

If your still looking for scrolling games like that. Forgotten Worlds was the big one. Omega Five was pretty good on 360 but I think got delisted due to publisher going under which is a bummer

Heh. Yes, I’ve played plenty of twin stick shooters, starting with what’s still the best one, Geometry Wars. But I don’t think of those as vertical or side-scrolling shooters like the ones covered in this thread. I didn’t like Helldivers, but I’ll have to give Jydge a try, I haven’t heard of that one before.

Oh my bad, I forgot what this thread was about. :D