Let's not mince words. Tyrian 2000 was the best PC shoot-em-up of the 90s, and it still holds up remarkably well today. Originally developed as shareware by Eclipse Productions and published by Epic Games, Tyrian 2000 is now available as legit freeware, and every fan of space shooters should check it out. The amount of customization, the hilarious but loving prose, the gorgeous VGA graphics... all of them come together to make a true classic.
Retro shmup? More like Bullet Candy! An avalanche of colour and sound assaults you like a continuous rain of fireworks, but there's no time to stop and watch as 8 bosses, plus minions, are out to destroy your little spaceship. Or maybe you're out to destroy them. Score Rush requires registration before you can play, but shooter fans will find that behind the dazzling spectacle of the graphics there's a smooth, solid, and very playable game as well.
When you're trapped in a world filled with nightmares made flesh and are out for YOUR blood, your best bet is to... RUN FOR YOUR LIFE! Nightmare Runner puts you in the depths of hell in this run and jump shooting game built with a player level upgrade system and in-game pick ups to aid in your escape. With an ambient choir-meets-action movie soundtrack and an easy one button click interface, you get easily entranced into 2D world that flows smoothly with the music and the difficulty. You have an infinite clip of bullets and finite distance to travel for salvation so this evil can be trounced in a single, well-lit sitting.
An up-and-coming young housefly has a simple wish; He wants to make it to the big city and become the greatest stunt rider that Bugopolis has ever seen. To impress the masses with your skills, you have to drive through multiple trick-tastic levels, collect star balloons, and get money for your trip. There are plenty of other insects along the way to aid Buzz in his quest for glory and they want to show their stuff off to the world. Whether you are looking for a quick physics distraction or an addicting stunt racer, Stunt Bug has got you covered.
Fans of Metroidvania style games, rejoice, and put on your virtual sneakers! SubMu entertainment's latest release, Blockstachio, incorporates quirky, blocky graphics, and a soundtrack that solidly consolidates retro bleeps and bangs over the top of the heroic theme music that will drive you towards your goal, while also packing enough platform action to keep you happily satisfied, while running and jumping your way through each level, in your pursuit to save the world. The world needs saving, and it is up to you and your cubic hero to do it. Are you up to the challenge?
Why does negligent parenting get such a bad rap? If it wasn't for bum parents, we'd never have this lovely launch game, Billy The Pilot, from Erik Sombroek, about a little boy who just wants to fly, and who has a mom and dad that don't seem to mind their little boy building a launchpad in the backyard, right in the path of the family flower bed. The backgrounds and animations in Billy the Pilot are impossibly cute and the upgrades a lot of fun, especially the ability to build a pet dragon! But the gameplay is repetitive and the in-flight controls are clunky. It also isn't very hard. Really, Billy the Pilot is just an excuse to explore a beautifully drawn and colorful Never Never Land where kids are kings and parents nowhere to be found...as it should be.
Ever wanted to do something, found out how unbelievably overwhelming the task would be, then decided it'd be a better idea to stay home and have a sandwich? Our hapless knightly protagonist in Climb to the Top of the Castle knows that feeling all too well, only in his case, sandwiches probably haven't been invented yet, and he's got a king breathing down his neck pretty much forcing him to haul his armored rear to the top of the castle and save the princess. Did we say "castle"? Because really, it's pretty much a mountain!
Never trust blobby pink monstrosities! In this sequel to Nitrome's 2009 action platformer, guide your furry miner with speed but caution through crumbling caverns full of paths that fall away just as suddenly as they fly up before you. Packed full of new beasts, obstacles, power-ups, and now checkpoints, it's a difficult but worthy sequel.
In Sergio Alonso's shiny new bullet hell shooter, Boss Slayer, Ten alien starships have entered the solar system and you have 12 days to destroy these bad boys before they make their final approach to Earth. The game features an array of upgrades, of which each has a clear, immediate effect and it can be a lot of fun to watch your weak little ship transform so quickly into a beefy alien antagonizer. Boss Slayer isn't an innovative game by any means, but it understands the genre perfectly and serves up a smooth, streamlined gameplay experience.
Is your trigger-finger ready for a challenge? Then load up the beautiful but deadly Ludum Dare competition entry Kumiho. Pilot a ship with the ability to teleport against hordes of semi-organic monstrosities transformed by a vengeful Goddess. With striking visuals and simple but high-difficulty gameplay, it's a lovely little diversion if your reflexes are up to the task.
In the mood for some good, old-fashioned, retro arcade fun, without the need of a roll of quarters? Brandon Williamson's Forget-Me-Not, which was originally a popular mobile game, is now ported over to your browser! It takes the classic concept of Pac-Man, and adds a shooter to it. Quickly addictive, and perfectly frustrating, Forget-Me-Not is old-school fun at its finest.
A Long Way Home is an arcade physics puzzle game from Jonathan Mulcahy. Stranded 100 light years from Earth, you play an astronaut whose only companion is a wrist-mounted computer who offers bits of advice. Using a sharp eye and impeccable timing, trot around asteroids and planets and jump from their surface across the screen, the goal being to collect dark matter so you can open successive worm holes that get you closer to home. Along the way, you'll encounter exploding asteroids, comets, teleporting dark matter, and more. Not exactly a leisurely walk in space.
Oh no! The king of the realm needs you to save the princess from the evil clutches of the Dark Knight! Go figure, right? Wind-up Knight is a mobile run and jump adventure very similar to Canabalt HD except you get a fancy sword and armor to fight enemies while dodging traps to make your way to the princess. Convenient items in adventuring, yes, but it won't save you when the Dark Knight starts getting really serious about stopping you. A knight's mettle will never be more tested and neither shall your timing skills as pits, enemies, and environmental dangers stand in your way.
Become a mare of action in this crazy but colourful homage to the classic bullet-hell shooter series. Playing as Fluttershy or Rainbow Dash, blast your way through fields of bizarre enemies, mini-bosses, and more with frantic action you'll need to be at least 20% cooler than most to pull off. This free download might be simple, but it's an excellent source of shooter gameplay to make you feel like a boss and get your heart pounding.
Help Johnny through a level filled with hazards by buying upgrades for.... everything! From run speed to the game timer to double jumping, it's in the store. Collect coins, buy upgrades, and repeat until you're strong enough to take on the final boss. Simple but engaging, Johnny Upgrade is a little treat for platforming fans, or anyone who really likes upgrades.
Fly through a beautiful forest as Pixle, a mysterious multi form Shade. Along the way, collect power-ups and evolve into bigger, faster forms, while staying clear of shadow tunnels. Pixle is a short game with a beautiful sense of style and easy to learn gameplay.
Jonathan Whiting is here with another wonderfully vague Ludum Dare entry, arcade puzzler, Niña Nueve. Taking place in a nine-by-nine room (or does it?), Niña Nueve leaves it to the player to determine its mechanics, even as they grow ever more complex. Niña Nueve is a short game that will be run through pretty quickly. Still, it is a heck of a ride.
A good story is great, but sometimes you just want to blow stuff up. In DN8: Pulse, a new shooter game from Squize, you are the commander of a puny little fighter who has to fight off swarms of enemy vessels if you want to survive. If you make it past the initial waves, you'll have the chance to upgrade your ship with extra shields, weapons, and even support pods and there are two upgrade paths, defensive and offensive. The clear selling point of DN8: Pulse are the graphics, done in Stage3D, which are unlike most anything you've seen in a flash game. The visuals are in a word, stunning. And it's a lot of fun to play a shoot-em-up that leaves the conventional retro pixelated setting and dares to take it to the farthest reaches of the universe for a truly immersive experience.
Orbital Defender is a great looking planetary defense game from Addictive Zone that has been acutely tuned for ease of use on mobile devices. As a lone satellite orbiting a single planet, it's your job to keep the rock safe from asteroids, comets, UFOs, and more nefarious dangers as you orbit over and over again. You can't move, only shoot, and since firing at your planet is a very bad idea, you have to play a little game of strategy as you blast foes each time you swing by.
From Munsie Games comes an impressive collection of mobile arcade games packaged together in one robust release: Twitch Arcade! Featuring a dozen games for the price of a single app, Twitch Arcade has everything from avoidance games to puzzle, defense, and shooting games, all playable from a single interface with easy to learn controls. No matter when you buy this tablet-optimized app, you get every new game added in future updates for free. And what better feeling is there than getting tons of games for one tiny price?
As a white neon ghost creature, you guide Spirit through waves and waves of abstract style enemies. Easy to use touch movement, but difficult mastery of avoiding and capturing your foes in the next dimension. With three different modes to try out and the need to outscore yourself or gaming friends, your fingers will swiping and sliding across the screen for hours to come.
With gameplay inspired by the classic Rampage series, take control of a huge, angry dinosaur and smash your way through a fully destructive city. Punch through buildings and swat missiles out of the air as the army tries to stop you reuniting with your lost son in this epic 8bit arcade game.
It was once the dream of man to fly through the sky as the birds. Now, a cat is dreaming of it too. David Ngo and Don-Doung Quach, rocket scientist turned game designer and a programmer respectively, decided to bring some of their nerdiness to the iOS marketplace in the form of an action adventure game. Cannon Cat follows the story of Meo in his quest to save all the skyfish from the clutches of Evil Emu and his flightless bird army. A determined cat has never looked so cute being fired from a cannon, and it will fly straight in to your heart, free of charge. After eight months at the scratching post, a high-flying adventure is born that 'haz mad skillz' to go with the fantastic visuals and wonderful story for all ages.
PostBeta invites you to a Tron-like slotcar race, where traffic and obstacles are more of a hindrance than the other racers. Across 6 tracks, race to set the best times possible on densely populated courses that only allow lane changes, rather than traditional steering.
Want a solid retro arcade shooter? ASCII and you'll receive Battle for Asciion, by Relevo Video Games. Designed with a lot of love for its textual aesthetic, Battle for Asciion is a solid and challenging shoot-em-up, though hampered by its required button-mashing.
In Tiny Wizard, an inventive new arcade shooter by Hannes Rahm, your lovely castle has been invaded by all manner of ghosts and ghouls and if you want to see peace again, you'll need to conjure up all your best magical powers (and your snazziest wizard hats) to beat them back.
One of the early hits on the iTunes App Store and a strong leader in Android game sales, the Doodle Jump games quickly turned into the definition of a successful mobile game. As of the end of 2011, over 15 million copies of the arcade game have been sold across various marketplaces, and it has remained one of the best-selling iOS games since its launch. With such a simple premise and creative visuals, it's no wonder Doodle Jump has gained such enormous popularity. Now, with mobile markets still growing, Doodle Jump's various incarnations have spread to include NOOK and Kindle Fire!
Based a decade-plus old arcade game called XKobo by Akira Higuchi, KoboDeluxe is an updated and enhanced version of the original arcade shooter, porting the concept and gameplay over to modern platforms while introducing better animations, high resolution visuals, additional control options, a difficulty selector, and more. Whether you want a nostalgic arcade fix or are looking for a sturdy action challenge, KoboDeluxe will absolutely satisfy your craving.
Bitter Sam is... well, bitter, and justifiably so. His grades are failing, he was stood up at the altar, he still lives with his mother, and now some mad scientist has kidnapped him and is lowering him down some sort of hole through the levels underneath his lab. Sam's only lifeline to the surface a thin thread that is easily snapped, forcing him to dodge dangerous obstacles as he drops deeper into the Earth. Thus is the premise of Bitter Sam, an amusing physics drop/avoidance tilt puzzler from Moon Active, which charts poor Sam's progress as he falls farther away from the sunny skies above.
Have you ever watched an Indiana Jones movie and thought "I could totally do all of that stuff. Easy!"? Well, thanks to Imangi Studios, creators of Temple Run, you can give it a shot! Just don't expect hundreds of thousands of adulating fans, actual fortunes gained, or a fine battle-worn fedora to suddenly appear on your melon.
The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, right? Or, perhaps more accurately, the needs of the upper classes outweigh the needs of the plebs. No matter how you dice the words, the point is it's ok to sacrifice a few little guys so the bigger, more important ones can survive. The mobile port of the browser game Dibbles: For the Greater Good illustrates just that, providing a charming and intelligent Lemmings-like game that just might make you rethink this whole "needs of the many" business.
If you mixed Robot Unicorn Attack with a great big helping of Jetpack Joyride and threw it all into the ocean, this incredibly colorful arcade game would jump up and smack you with a rainbow. Sea Stars gets your finger tapping to help these cute undersea creatures swim and jump past obstacles that would otherwise ruin their good time. Hothead Games made sure you wouldn't miss out on the fun by putting the app in every mobile marketplace. Just dive right into their vast ocean home so you can begin a journey that ends only when you put the app down.
Drawing a page from the classic arcade game Snake and mixing it with a little modern knowhow, Hard Lines aims to be the end-all nom-fest for lines that collect things to grow larger and more windey. It will easily replace similar arcade games you could find for your mobile device, as its got enough content, creativity, and attitude to keep you entertained for hours.
Zaga-33 is a minimalist roguelike created by Michael Brough in one week but later refined into a more polished product for Windows, Mac, and iOS devices. It ditches almost all of the traditional roguelike customs in favor of focusing on just a few gameplay elements for an ultra-refined experience. No stats to track, enemy lists to memorize, or equipment to manage, just pure and simple power-ups and combat!
Ages ago, a mighty wizard built a castle to guard his secret treasures. Then... he vanished, leaving all that booty just sitting around. Monsters noticed the unguarded treasure, too, and started out to nab it. If only they knew of the force they would have to reckon with when they got there: your fingers. Treasure Swipe is a frantic mobile arcade game laced with unlockables and coated in a slick presentation worthy of your best touch screen device!
As gas prices continue to rise, preserving fuel is an issue that's on almost everyone's mind. In response, YoAmbulante has created Traffic Wonder, a game built around the concept of finding the most efficient routes possible to save that precious flammable liquid we all depend on!
So, whales can't fly, right? Keep that in mind while playing Whale Trail, a colorful one button arcade "cave flying" game that has recently spread from iOS devices to include other mobile markets. Baron von Barry is chasing Willow the Whale, and in order to escape, she has to take to the skies, staying afloat by collecting bubbles scattered throughout the clouds. It's cute and colorful,
The title says it all: Canabalt HD is Canabalt in HD! The epically popular one button running game that originally appeared in browsers back in 2009 has made its way to the mobile scene before. There's even C64anabalt for the Commodore 64! Now, with bigger, more powerful mobile devices around, this high-definition version of the game comes along, featuring remade 3D backgrounds and smoother animation. Don't worry, though. It's still just as easy to leap out a window and smack into another building!
180 might not offer a lot in the way of innovation, but you'll be hard-pressed to put this casual arcade puzzler for your mobile device down! Match coins in colours to clear space for as long as you can, and tap coins to flip them over and set up big chains. Simple, colourful, and oh so addicting.
It might be a bit out of season to be topical, but Pixeljam's Snowball is a mammoth pinball game to behold. With well over a hundred targets to collect and multiple flippers and springs to control, this seasonal table has a lot of fun bells and whistles to keep you entertained until the next cold front sweeps through.
Theo's been working in the slave mines for years, and has finally saved up enough to buy a cruiser. Now, if he can just shoot his way through this orbiting traffic, he'll be ready to start his new life. Originally conceived by Christopher T. Rock, with later additional development by Bryson Whiteman, Rush Hour Plus is a short but solid arcade game. It's bifurcated development is apparent in the differing styles of cut-scenes and game action, but it has a nice dose of humor and is the perfect length for a coffee break.
More arcade avoidance action to be enjoyed in this sequel to the 2009 cat nomming adventure original. Considering how simple yet lovely the original was, it's impressive that Time 4 More Cat manages to improve on it without piling on so much that you lose the addictive ease and simplicity that made it popular to begin with. The art is beautiful, soft, and surreal, while the soundtrack only adds to the dreamlike atmosphere.
Sometimes a game doesn't need to reinvent a genre to be just as fun, addictive, and riddled with bullets as we want it to be. In this classic-styled top-down sci-fi shooter, pilot a tiny spaceship against increasingly impossible odds, bigger bosses, and catch coins to purchase upgrades to help your chances. It's familiar, but well polished, and just the right size for some explosive coffee-break arcade carnage.
Massagames brings a calm launch experience in I am Flying to the Moon. Control a little wooden spaceship (upgrades available, of course) as it makes attempt after attempt to propel itself beyond the wild blue yonder. Avoid other flying objects and collect the floating bonuses to most profit from each launch. It's not a game to get your blood pumping, but it'll sure entertain you for awhile.
It seems like this particular group of birds has been pretty upset with a particular group of pigs for quite some time. Now that they've taken their shenanigans to outer space, you can bet the madness isn't going to calm down anytime soon. Rovio Mobile has dropped its irate little friends into the role of space super heroes defending their egg-shaped homeland in Angry Birds Space. The physics/action game calls upon your mental fortitude to use gravitational forces to destroy all of evil-pig-kind. The angry birds are back and they need your help!
Slightly abstract, visually mesmerizing, easy to play, challenging to master. Waveform is just the sort of arcade experience you would expect from an indie developer. Eden Industries has created a captivating game using little more than a controllable waveform. As you weave through each level, your goal is to nab the highest score possible by manipulating a wave as it bounds through space, gathering light particles and growing stronger with each leg of the journey.
Think fast! Actually, when you're a developing neural cell, you've got no choice but to think fast and make as many neural connections as you can. That's the basis behind Axon, a science-based fast-paced action game from Preloaded. Click to grab the protein targets and watch out for other neurons trying to invade your space!
A physics-arcade game from Pastel Games, Mission to Uranus plays like a mouse-driven, one-button version of Lunar Lander. Touchy controls test the patience, but Mission to Uranus is a beautiful game. Just be sure to stock up on fuel in early levels, so you don't crash down the line. Uranus has enough debris as it is.
Starfish light, starfish bright, first starfish I see tonight, launch jellyfish I may, launch jellyfish I might, to get the high score I want tonight. The whimsical games of Orisinal should inspire poetry better than this, but we're just too relaxed after playing his latest arcade game, Constellations.
Games don't get much simpler than this; just hit a key to jump over an obstacle. Easy, right? Well, Chris Jeffrey's reflex-demanding one-button arcade game might just prove you wrong across twenty sadistic levels. With its snappy presentation and straight-forward gameplay, Space is Key 2 is hardly innovative, but it is a well polished little torture device for your reflexes. More than anything, it's a great illustration of how hard you can force players to push themselves at a simple concept just by implying it should be easy.
An entertainingly spacey physics arcade golf game from Krang Games, with the distinguishing gimmick being that you can hit the ball again once it's in motion. Not quite a revolution, but a lot of fun.
Dodge bombs, grab balloons and keep the city safe in this multifaceted arcade shooter. Any of this game's three phases wouldn't be all that great individually. Putting them together, though, makes for a fantastic mix. You're not stuck doing one thing for long enough that it becomes stale. Variety is the spice of life, and Bomb Diver just might be your paprika, so all you daredevils out there owe it to yourselves to give it a shot!
Dys4ia is a retro arcade-y piece of interactive art by transsexual author Anna Anthropy about her six-month experience with hormonal therapy. Raw and emotional, but surprisingly humorous, for good or for bad, this is the kind of game that will get people thinking and talking.
A high-difficulty minimalist platformer by Noxious Hamster, Spikes Tend To Kill You 2 makes no bones about its brutal difficulty. However tough it is though, the challenges are mostly fair, and clever level design and dialogue will keep players interested, even after the 500th impalement.
An arcade game of raw survival! Standing on a cloud-piercing mountain, it's you versus evil alien robot things who really want to be kind of this here hill! Armed with a single-shot gun, you must lob shots at the foes to keep them away from the pinnacle. Two control schemes let you customize how you play, but beyond that, it's up to your skill with this simple weapon to see how long you can survive. Bonus 16-bit visuals give it an extra epic feel!
Most of us have been craving a game that pits skeletons against pizza. Obviously, pizza is going to be the winner, which is why this crazy hodgepodge sort of arcade game puts you in control of a giant, customizable pizza. Skeletons rise from the soil every thousand years, but a doughy arch nemesis arises this time around, and it's your job to roll, jump, and crush the boney bad guys with your supreme skills. Not only that, but you'll participate in over 100 neat-o levels with dozens of themes, including skiing down long snowy slopes, finding and rescuing puppies, balancing, swimming, taking out skulls in a very Crush the Castle sort of manner, and even customize your pizza with all sorts of accessories. You're a Renaissance pizza, that's for sure. A very creative game that's worth its weight in laughs and sheer awesomeness. Pizza vs. Skeletons Free is also available.
Playing a secret agent is always fun, even when it's pared down to a simple one-button game, like in Agent Turnright by Pencilkids. 16 levels of mini-games await you and your right pointer finger as you help Turnright work his way to defeating the boss and winning the girl. In how many clicks can you complete this adventure?
The middle of the first decade of the 2000s brought us an extremely well-made one button arcade browser game by the name of Twin Spin. The simple concept spawned two sequels shortly after, and then the series vanished for some time while the developers went on to other projects. Now, thanks to the lovely mobile iOS platform, TwinSpin is back, and it's just as fantastic as it ever was!
If you're the kind of person who spent many hours playing Pac-Man, then Evac is for you. You play as a square, attempting to escape from a maze-like prison. In order to unlock the door at the end of each level, you must collect all of the multi-colored dots. This isn't an easy task, however, as red squares will attempt to capture you. Luckily, you're not left defenseless. Many different power ups exist, such as the ability to turn invisible or the ability to shock your pursuers.
Aww, poor little armadillo. Too heavy to fly because of that thick armor on your back? Don't worry, you're great at rolling, and we're sure that if you get enough speed going, you can jump really really high, which is pretty similar to flying. In a way. The mobile release of the browser game of the same name, Dillo Hills is a charming and rather engrossing game of quick reflexes and gradual mastery!
Proke, a word game developed by Peter Hastings, is all about vocabulary building... literally! The goal of it is to build a mighty tower to the heavens, and your only tools are quick thinking and linguistic fortitude. While racing the clock, type a word that has the designated prefix or suffix, or for extra height, both. The faster you type, the higher you'll build. Extra points can be scored for typing the letters that appear in Bonus Bubbles, or doing combos of words with same prefix/suffix. Proke is a light kind of game, but it's very addictive.
A fun, and slightly insightful, collection of arcade mini-games from the London Science Museum and Preloaded, Futurecade is flashy neon-drenched action that's just a little educational. The quartet of games includes Bacto-Lab, Robo-Lobster, and Cloud Control, Space Junker, and while each isn't particularly deep, they're sure to get you thinking.
If you've ever dreamed of being a daredevil (even if it's in a stolen shopping cart), then try out Monkey Want Banana's latest installment in their launch game series, Shopping Cart Hero 3. Learn different stunts, add groupies and pimp your cart as you fly through three worlds with a few boss battles. Just remember to turn your cart upright after a trick... a dead groupie is no groupie at all.
Sleepy Jack is the tale of a young boy's dreams told via a graphically-lush arcade shooter. You play as Jack himself as he races through various landscapes, battling enemies in order to achieve the goal of getting a good night's rest. Throughout the levels you must collect "Zs", which ensure that you get a restful sleep. If your Z meter runs low, you wake up and lose the level!
Ever feel like a small fish in a big pond? Well, Grow can help you reconcile that feeling. You play as a small fish in a variety of habitats, ranging from a tiny jar to the less-than-tiny ocean. Your mission is simple: eat anything smaller than you so you can get bigger! In some levels you will have to eat a certain number of fish to progress, while in others you must simply survive for a certain amount of time.
Ms. Particle-Man! Ms. Particle-Man! Showing off things that Silverlight can! What's it like? Pretty good! Ms. Particle-Man! A fun little work from Picobots where the quest for the Higgs Boson particle takes on the guise of a 1980s arcade hit, Ms. Particle-Man is so aggressively science-geeky and displays such love for the games it emulates, that a nostalgia trip is almost inevitable.
When one alien is carted off by the government, it's up to the remaining one to save it. Which isn't nearly as impossible as it sounds, since these aliens are towering colossi with lasers, pincer feets, and a penchant for causing mass destruction wherever they go. A simple but extremely stylish little action game that allows you to indulge the stomping alien beast in you as you set out to rescue your companion while destroying all the buildings, people, and resistance in your way.
Captain Skyro is a classic "pull back and fling" game similar to the old browser series Sling, only instead of tossing around squishy gross things, now you get to control a pirate! Grappling up through the clouds, you'll encounter cargo holds full of crazy obstacles, clouds that you'll swear are out to get you, and score-based gameplay that will inspire you to go back and play again, just so you can nab that last coin!
Launch a bouncy robot into space in Last Robot 2, an action platform game by Karma Team. Dodge bombs, leap from clouds, and continue ever upward to stay alive. Along the way, you can collect coins and purchase up to 24 upgrades to make your robot better - faster - stronger! A handful of achievements and an easy learning curve make for an addictive adventure into the cosmos.
Somehow, we must have missed the episode of National Geographic where they explained how all fish float around frozen, just waiting for explosives to be dropped to free them, so they can then be gobbled up by an opportunistic octopus. It may sound grim, but this frantic, vivid, and colourful chain reaction arcade game packed with achievements and upgrades is anything but.
Daymare Invaders, an arcade shooter, isn't a particularly complicated game. Essentially, it's Space Invaders with a Daymare skin. But you know what? The hand-drawn art of the Daymare world is as hauntingly beautiful as it was when we first saw it. If you go in expecting anything more than a clone, you'll be disappointed. If, however, you approach it knowing what it is (a classic minigame and a tantalizing preview of installments to come), you'll find a very tasty piece of eye candy.
A fun, pretty and heart-racing forward-scrolling racing game from longanimals, Neon Race 2 is the kind of game you'd be happy to drop five dollars in quarters on at the old arcade. Expect pavement, police cars, turbo-boosts, ramps and random explosions aplenty.
It's tough to decide between two classics, so FonGeBooN has offered a unique solution: play both at the same time! That's what TETRISweeper is in a nutshell: a unique fusion of the tetromino-sorting gameplay of Tetris and the mine-avoiding tension of Minesweeper. TETRISweeper is an intense game to say the least, but surprisingly fun to fans of both its parent games.
Hot Tub Heist is a gloriously silly action arcade game from Beef Jack Studios. It stars a speedo-clad body-builder who must abandon his daily GTL routine, so that he may battle through a collapsing high rise, to reach the safety of the alien-proof subway below. Hot Tub Heist is goofy, but its constant race to the bottom is a compelling premise.
Nitrome's Rainbogeddon is a retro-riffic, Pacman-esque quarter-grabber updated for the twenty-first century. The addition of power-ups, destructible level, and more varied enemies makes for a surprisingly strategic twist on a familiar classic. Add a very '80s presentation and Nitrome's trademark charm, and you've got a fine modern take on vintage arcade gaming without ever having to go to the arcade.
It's a serious trip on Nostalgia Lane when you pick up Retro Racing, an arcade-style racer from the creator of QWAK. True to its roots, you focus on pure skill and coming in first place rather than crazy jumps or tweaking your car. Look for the most efficient path through each course, and pick up power-ups to increase your car's speed, acceleration, or tire stickiness to keep you in the game. Mistakes must be kept at a minimum, as this game doesn't coddle you just so you feel like a winner. Earn your rank and you will be rewarded! A neat local two player mode is also available.
Off the Leash (iPhone/iPod Touch) - The life of a dog is wrought is stress. Take, for example, running from the police, avoiding obstacles, staying away from stationary human folk, and gathering coins and power-ups, all while recruiting as many dogs as you can without stopping even for a moment. Off the Leash is just such a crazy game, utilizing motion controls for a mission-based arcade experience that's, well, completely off the leash. Control a pack of dogs running from the police while you work to go as far as you possibly can, increasing your pack size to gather more power-ups and switching your running formation to creep through difficult obstacles. It's an absolute riot of a game, and once you start completing and seeing new, crazier missions, you'll be absolutely hooked on this gorgeous game. From the same team that brought us the equally-awesome Land-a-Panda!
What a world we live in, where mankind can walk on the moon, salad can be purchased in cups, and falling block puzzles can be fused with word games. If you're ready for your brain to have a little run through the multitasking wringer, Puzzlejuice is without a doubt the best way to hurt your synapses. With a little Tetris-like block arranging and a little Spelltower-style word building, you, too, can drive yourself mad with delight!
Dustforce is a speed-centric acrobatic platform game from Hitbox Team. A demo first appeared back in 2010, showing off the concept and basic design. Since then, the game has undergone some silent but effective changes, improving upon the controls and adding loads of content to sweep through. It's a fast, combo-centric arcade experience that emphasizes speed and perfection, and thanks to the online highscore boards and per-level badges, you'll be strangely compelled to keep playing until everything is just right.
Rarely are there arcade shooters as epic, gorgeous, playable, and steeped in story as Jamestown. A release from Final Form, Jamestown combines stunning pixel art with a vertically-scrolling top-down shooter (shmup), all set in a 17th century colony on Mars where Spanish Conquistadors have teamed up with native Martians to keep the new settlers away. What you end up with is a superb arcade game that's easy for beginners to get into but still a challenge to master.
MoonMana offers up simple but undeniably lovely arcade playing with this hypnotic game about catching stars and... no, that's about it, really. While there isn't much to them, both Stellar Hunter games are beautiful and satisfying in that way you sometimes just want that feels specifically designed to make you relax with a smile on your face.
Should you have a yen for social studies trivia, Trip Alone The Globe, an arcade game by Symbio Digital, will more than satisfy that worldy desire. It's a simple challenge of collecting trivia questions, then driving a (somewhat difficult to maneuver) car to the proper location to score points. The graphics are pretty (if a little CPU-intensive), the questions are goofy, but clever, and while the game take only a couple of minutes to play, they'll be good minutes. All that's missing is Rockapella on the soundtrack.
Heaven is just beyond the city skyline! Or at least that's what the mechanical porker starring in this cute but simple launch game believes. Help our hero to fly out of the city to Pig Paradise by shooting him out of a cannon, causing massive property damage along the way, and purchase various upgrades to get you there faster. That'll do, pig.
Hey, Super Crate Box, the awesome arcade and shooting game released by Vlambeer way back in 2010. What are you doing on the iTunes App Store? What's that? Being as awesome as the PC/Mac downloadable version? Sounds great! With handfuls of unlockables, perfectly-tweaked touch controls, and a constant worldwide tally of crates collected, you'll be short on excuses not to play this lovely, crazy little game.
Raise your hand if you've heard this one before: The evil Dr. Mad has corrupted the programming of six thematic robots and has sent them out to do his bidding, each utilizing a weapon that would be suspiciously effectively against exactly of their evil kin. The only thing possibly standing in Mad's way is the new creation of the good Dr. Thane: the high-jumping, fast-dashing, laser-blasting, ability-stealing Rokko Chan! Okay, Japanese developer King admittedly isn't exactly trying to hide the inspirations for his retro platformer. But if Rokko Chan may look and play like a ROM hack, then it is a very lovingly crafted one of high quality.
Frozen Candy, a holiday match-3 puzzle game from Avox Games, looks a heck of a lot like Puzzle Bobble. In fact, if good ol' dinosaur Bub was on ball-firing duty instead of that Brian Poesehn look-alike of an elf, one could be fooled at a glance for thinking it to be a complete clone. Once you start playing, though, the unique feel of the mechanics allow Frozen Candy to shine as it's own creation, making for something that feels both familiar and innovative.
Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow... and snow... and then snow some more in Snow Tree, this charming little arcade physics game from Alexey Izvalov. Control the snowfall by clicking and dragging with the mouse to create invisible air currents, directing the flakes into a tidy pile to form a delicate, branching, and ever-growing tree (keeping the white stuff away from your front door and driveway in the process). Pile the snow as high and efficiently as you can to build your score, and snag some of those neatly wrapped presents floating high in the clouds to earn extra points and increase the maximum amount of snowflakes available to build with.
Gameplay in Pinata Hunter is simple and distinctive, as you swing your mouse Wii-mote style to bludgeon your quarry for tasty treats. After a few upgrades it's immensely satisfying (and addicting). Like squeezey stress toys, or inflatable punching bags, no one can accuse relentlessly beating on a colorful elephant sculpture for candy to be a deep experience, but you'll hardly care once you can fill the screen with flying candy.
Slip and slide around with Lockehorn, the hero of Nitrome's wintry arcade avoidance game! Your fellow tribesmen have been imprisoned in blocks of ice by evil snow spirits, and it's up to you to save them while trying to avoid the same fate. Push your frozen pals across the temple floor and try to crush all enemies against the wall to open a pit of flame that'll thaw your friends. A seasonal treat that requires a lot of patience, but also offers a lot of charm.
Alien war rages upon the surface of the moon. But would Santa dare forget those space marines that made it onto the "nice" list? By Kringle's beard, I say thee nay! Even it if means strapping a rocket to his back and launching himself to space, ol' Saint Nick will deliver those gifts if its the last thing he does! Berzerk Studios brings you Santa Rocket, and while not particularly innovative for the arcade launch genre, it is a solid holiday work.
In Dibbles 2: Winter Woes, simply place commands on a field to order the little dibbles to create a path for their king... by killing themselves. Sound gruesome? Shhh. Look at the softly falling snow. All is right with the world. Just repeat "it's for the greater good" until it feels right.
An arcadey combination of mouse avoidance and WarioWare-style mini-games, Mouse Quest by Oilold takes two love-em-or-hate-em genres of casual gameplay and fuses them into something quite likeable. The plot is nothing too special: the mysterious Shapemaster has transported you to his dimension and presents your cursor with various fast-paced challenges so that you may prove your worth before facing him. Overall, the presentation has the minimalism of someone new to game development, but it's very enjoyable work all the same.
New from Yoshio Ishii of NekoGames, TOUKA is a short and simple game of darting your mouse all over the place. It follows closely in style and basic format as the previously-released KIKKA and OUKA, only this time around, there's less puzzle and more action.
Swift Stitch, from Sophie Houlden, author of some fan-favorite browser games like Linear RPG and BOXGAME, is a one button (almost) arcade game that's all about speed, direction, and crashing into walls because you got confused as to which way your ship was going to go when you pressed the "switch" button. Smart decisions and quick reflexes get you through this game, and if the 20 odd levels in the free browser demo get you excited, there's more than twice that content awaiting you in the full version!
You've got to appreciate those evil overlords who go out of their way to spend that extra buck for solid dungeon construction. Now, if only they didn't leave their door keys lying around, their treasure would be safe from the local green-hooded retro hero contingents. Oh well. Dangerous Dungeons, an arcade platformer developed by Adventure Islands for a month-long game jam, has an old-school style and old-school difficulty to match.
After Star Wars: Episode II and that whole Spider-man fiasco, one cannot help but be a little wary of clones. However, leave it to Roman Gecerov and Yuriy Kurenkov to show us that just because something's a little familiar doesn't mean it has to be bad. Shameless Clone doesn't rip off anything... it rips off everything! A pitch-perfect recreation of every mid-90s arcade space shooter ever, filled to the brim with skewered references and memes, Shameless Clone is a bullet hell whose authors have nothing to be ashamed of.
What time is it? Tasty Planet: Dinotime! Mathematical! The popular action series from Dingo Games is back, and this time things have gotten prehistoric. Like always, gameplay is one part Fishy and two parts Katamari as the ancient world faces the cutest darn grey goo scenario you ever did see, and you have the starring role as the goo! It's eat or be eaten as you grow from pebble-size to apatosaurus-size... and maybe just manage to do something about that huge asteroid in the sky.
There's plenty of hubbub about saving the whales, but we've really got to be worrying about our own hides. Whales are dangerous, you see., and you'll find out why in this arcade action sequel about causing chaos to ships and upgrading your whale. Moby Dick 2 makes for a great half-hour of destruction. It's also a great example of what will happen if we don't develop anti-whale countermeasures immediately.
Bouncy Fire Fighters is a remake of an obscure 1989 Japan-only Famicom title, about a firefighter who rescues people from a burning building via an extremely bouncy form of the classic arcade game Breakout. Of course, the Nintendo one featured tiny 8-bit pixel art, whereas in this one the female fire victims put the bouncy in the title, if you know what I mean. Time marches on.
So, you're in the middle of a road trip, and it looks like there's some construction up ahead. The sign clearly says that cars need to merge to the left lane, but it seems like some geniuses are going to speed past the line forming and try to cut in at the last minute.Doesn't it make you judge want to climb on your roof, commandeer whatever vehicles come along, and carve a swath of explodey destruction across the interstate? Freeway Fury 2, an arcade racer new from Serius Games, lets you fulfill your wildest road rage fantasies in the comfort of your own home.