Aug 29, 2012
Mobile shmups generally come in two flavors: there’s usually the remakes/ports of classic games that are absurdly difficult. Hardly accessible, but also extremely pure. Then, there’s the modern games made to support modern touch screen devices. these are usually a lot easier to control, but aren’t as pure in difficulty. Shogun: Rise of the Renegade bucks the trend! This is bullet hell as it was meant to be. There’s lots of bullets to dodge, and giant ships to destroy. Players do have a shield bar, that serves as a way to soften the blows that bullet hell games dole out in spades, but also works as a way to introduce players to bullet grazing. Flying near bullets without hitting them refills the shield bar. Keeping it high is handy, as additional shield units can be used to clear out the screen or upgrade one’s weapon. Better weapons mean more dead enemies.
The control scheme is effective, making it easy to move the ship around the screen. When lifting the finger off the screen, the game slows down and weapons can be switched, along with the buttons to upgrade weapons and deploy the EMP. The game has 4 main levels to play initially, and they can be played in any order, though going in order is recommended. Level 1 is a lot easier than level 4. There are plenty of options for game settings. Want to see the tiny hit box that the ship is actually affected by? Do it! The dark ship color can make it easier to see bullets as well. Scrolling sensitivity is extremely handy for offset controls.
The game is still extremely challenging, and while it’s plenty of fun to effortlessly weave through bullets…occasionally…the controls are still a problem. I seem to wind up with my finger going off the edge and having to reposition my thumb extremely often, even on the Nexus 7. Also, the difficulty of the game is such that beating a level is extremely hard; perhaps some checkpoints would be a welcome addition?
For fans of the shoot ’em up, Shogun is a great choice. It’s set up to be friendly for mobile devices, while providing the challenge that modern entries into the genre are expected to provide. Check this out.