Author Topic: Shmups  (Read 6445 times)

Shmups
« on: May 19, 2021, 09:20:15 AM »
Shmups then.

If you're a gamer, you'll end up here once you've become jaded and everything else has inevitably lost it's sheen.

It's gaming distilled to it's purest form. All the chaff chucked out so that only the essential elements remain.

Shmups are a raw, unfiltered test of skill and endurance.
No waiting around in lobbies.
No huge updates to download.
No cunts to babysit.
They are ultra respectful of your time.

You sit down, you turn them on, they give you a concentrated gaming fix for 20 to 30 blissful, adrenaline fuelled minutes, and then they roll over, have a cig and let you get on with the rest of your day.

At first you'll be playing for survival, trying to get the 1cc (1 credit complete. Beat the game without continuing) and then you'll be trying to exploit the scoring systems to blitz your personal best and creep further up the leaderboard.

As the old saying goes "the more you fail, the closer you get to success"
They're all about teaching yourself through play and failure and pushing yourself to become a better player.

They're all the fucking same, which is fantastic because every minute spent playing a shmup, you are building up your shmup muscle.
You are learning from every mistake. Every lesson learned will translate to all other games in the genre.

They're simple, which is great.
Precise 8 way digital movement. On/off, no fucking inertia or acceleration, it's the same on all games so you are instantly in control, no bedding in period.

The hitboxes are tiny, you'd have more chance getting run over than running into a bullet in one of these games!

Just a couple of buttons so it's not confusing, you normally have shoot, focus (slow your ship speed to make more precise dodging possible) hyper (usually some sort of "let's fuck shit up now that the gauge has been filled" period of overpowered madness) and bomb for getting out of trouble.

Mame or shmupmame is a great place to start to play some old arcade games, or you could jump into one of the more forgiving free indie games such as "Blue Wish Resurrection Plus" - https://www.vector.co.jp/download/file/winnt/game/fh452584.html

That does a great job of letting you teach yourself all the fundamentals through play.
Autobomb (instead of dying when you get hit, you just lose a bomb instead) is on by default and the game is very generous with the amount of bombs and lives it gives you.

Lots of games have novice modes or arrange modes that are designed to ease people in gently so I don't really have to recommend a place to start. Just dive in, the waters lovely!

Shmups are bright and colourful, the music is always banging, they're exciting and action packed. YOU should get into playing them.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2021, 01:04:05 PM »
Of the many things I like about you, your indefatigable enthusiasm and optimism is right up there.

I love shmups, and agree with everything you've said. Mad to think that I will get far more than a lifetime's play out of Dodonpachi Daioujou alone but I will keep going back and back until my central nervous system is incapable. And then I'll play Dodonpachi Daioujou X.


madhair60

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Re: Shmups
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2021, 01:19:12 PM »
I like the ones with worlds, like Gradius/Parodius and R-Type. Obstacles that aren't just bullet curtains. Set pieces.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2021, 01:37:40 PM »
Of the many things I like about you

Oh, you absolute darling! I can't think there are too many other things, but I'm just gonna bask in that for a while!
This was just a very cautious, long-winded way of finding out whether or not you had me on ignore, to be honest :D

I like the ones with worlds, like Gradius/Parodius and R-Type. Obstacles that aren't just bullet curtains. Set pieces.

Natsuki Chronicles is a recent game by qute that I think you'll really get a kick out of!
My favourite game of the year so far.

https://store.steampowered.com/app/1175190/Natsuki_Chronicles/
https://store.playstation.com/en-gb/product/EP4034-CUSA26074_00-NATSUKICHRON00EU
https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/p/natsuki-chronicles/9n7jx1rb5tjz

It came out on christmas day 2019 technically, but came to ps4 and pc this year so I'm counting it as this year.

Feel free to talk about why you like shmups or maybe add pictures and videos if they're handy.
I didn't think of that, the opening post just being a big chunk of text is probably not gonna win any new converts :S

Re: Shmups
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2021, 01:47:35 PM »
I'm still waiting for my copy of Cotton Reboot to arrive😭😭😭😿

I'm currently playing R-Type Final 2 and it's a real twat, if one milli-pixel even entertains the idea of touching the scenery, it's death.

madhair60

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Re: Shmups
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2021, 03:20:13 PM »
I'm currently playing R-Type Final 2 and it's a real twat, if one milli-pixel even entertains the idea of touching the scenery, it's death.

Since R-Type Delta you can touch the scenery and even grind against it without damage, unless this isn't the case on a higher difficulty or something? Either way, fake fan, obvs

Re: Shmups
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2021, 03:36:00 PM »
Since R-Type Delta you can touch the scenery and even grind against it without damage, unless this isn't the case on a higher difficulty or something? Either way, fake fan, obvs

I always felt the R-type sequels pushed a bit too much towards the "learn em up" aspect, the original did have some of that but besides level 6 I think it gave you a bit more freedom, was more fun to just blast though with the benefit of a bit of fore knowledge.

Games more like that I would say Pulstar on the Neo Geo and Axelay on the SNES, the former supposidly developed by the same team as the original R-type.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2021, 03:42:39 PM »
R-Type Final is completely learn the levels off by heart because everything other than your own weapon will insta kill you. A panel in the ceiling that you don't know is a hazard, will suddenly open and an orb cruises at you, the reflexes required are not the same as those for your usual shooter.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2021, 08:49:58 PM »
I always felt the R-type sequels pushed a bit too much towards the "learn em up" aspect

Yeah, loads of gotcha moments in this new one from what I've heard. Very memo heavy, lots of dead air as well.
Not a fan of those sorts of games at all.

madhair60

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Re: Shmups
« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2021, 10:36:03 AM »
I'll take games with actual art design over brrrr pink bullet diarrhoea brrrrrrr every time

Re: Shmups
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2021, 11:16:29 AM »
'actual art design'

Re: Shmups
« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2021, 11:18:13 AM »
Sorry, wasn't trying to start an argument.

I love all types of shmups, I just mean that I don't personally care for the sort that rely far too heavily on memorisation for their "difficulty".
The games which think that that's what old school shooters were all about.

Just some fun vacuum "rick dangerous" style death-trap roller coaster you have to keep riding, chipping away at it, learning all the tricks, learning the script off by heart so you can run through it in one go and feel like a god.

I understand what you're getting at with your comment, but bullet hell and good art design aren't mutually exclusive.
Do you mean that the pink bullets covering the screen take the players attention away from the pretty art underneath?

I like the ones with worlds, like Gradius/Parodius and R-Type. Obstacles that aren't just bullet curtains. Set pieces.

Have you played Zeroranger, madhair? I think you'd be all over that!

I'm also wondering if eschatos would get you going.
It's excellent and feels to me like it has a foot planted firmly in both camps. It feels like an adventure, like you're starring in a sci-fi b-movie. Feels like a string of set pieces, one after the other.
It looks like gawdy shit though, I'm not gonna lie. There's a demo to try there.

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Re: Shmups
« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2021, 11:55:07 AM »
'actual art design'

got em

Yeah, I've tried ZeroRanger, I dug it. I need to go back to it. There are tons of shmups I want to try out. I recently picked up Psyvariar Complete from the Japanese PSN store, ditto Donpachi and Dodonpachi. I've also been playing Gradius V a lot lately.

Stuff with spectacle, set pieces, that's what I think I like. That covers quite a lot of ground really. I got a lot out of Jamestown, Satazius (the Astro Port games recently got a little collection on Switch that's absolutely indispensable imo). In fact some fat, useless cunt reviewed that one: https://www.nintendolife.com/reviews/nintendo-switch/shmup_collection

Re: Shmups
« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2021, 11:57:07 AM »
Yeah, loads of gotcha moments in this new one from what I've heard. Very memo heavy, lots of dead air as well.
Not a fan of those sorts of games at all.

Again I don't think the original R-type is really that kind of game, you have one level that is with your big machine block things were you need to memorised patterns but most of it is really just learning tactics. Again I think Pulstar actually feels more like the spiritual successor to me, mostly still a shooting game rather than a memory maze.

I would say really the best examples of those kinds of games for me are more ones in which your needing to manage your fire power, you don't have enough of it to just keep your finger down and avoid the bullets, more about letting lose at the right moment against the right target.

I admit I'v never really taken much to bullet hell games beyond Ikaruga, I preffer the style of stuff like Twin Cobra or Raiden were the focus was more on tactics and movement rather than just being able to avoid absolutely everything thats aimed at you with a tiny hit box.

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Re: Shmups
« Reply #14 on: May 20, 2021, 12:09:35 PM »
Shmups then.

That's you on the ignore list

Re: Shmups
« Reply #15 on: May 20, 2021, 12:52:37 PM »

Re: Shmups
« Reply #16 on: May 20, 2021, 01:11:04 PM »
As I've no doubt said before about billion times, the classic style of R-Type, Gradius et al don't really do very much for me. That's the genre as I grew up with it and I find those games quite frustrating and very slow.

The genre barely existed for me before I played Dodonpachi Daioujou at Arcade Club, and then Armed Police Batrider and then Ketsui, and I went full clit out for Harambe. I was completely blown away, never played anything so exhilarating in my whole life. Then I started watching STG Weekly, saw the Mushihimesama Futari Ultra ep with GUS and I simply had to have that game.

I tried to fill the hole with Danmaku Unlimited 3 and the Psikyo stuff and then Rolling Gunner and a very intense, almost cathartic penance with Ikaruga, anything to scratch that very particular itch, and they're all great, but there isn't a thing on Earth which plugs directly into my lizard id like CAVE.

I have played literally hundreds and hundreds of hours of Futari, DOJ and Ketsui, mostly just on the first stage of the first two. I've got back into DOJ recently and somehow I'm now working towards a clear. Managed to no miss to stage 4 the other day. Definite progress. But a clear isn't the real shit. The most exquisite dopamine geyser for me is going deeeeep on the scoring systems and squeezing every last medal or chain out of something I know so intricately and instinctively, I don't even think about what I'm doing. It's just a feeling and a connection. Even now, I will play DOJ and the rush of maintaining a chain across the whole of the first stage is better than pretty much anything else I will have ever played. It feels like riding an incredibly intense wave. Pure euphoria and intense focus and lightness. And nine times out of ten, I will crash in despair and turn it off. And then once in a while, I'll hit that surge and feel the blissful flow. I love a lot of games in a lot of different ways but nothing else does quite that for me.

It's meaningless. It's absurd. It's the pure fuck off ecstasy of bullet hell.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #17 on: May 20, 2021, 02:35:12 PM »
https://www.nintendolife.com/reviews/nintendo-switch/shmup_collection

Thanks man. I'll read that later.
Armed Seven is fab! I really enjoyed that one!

As much as I like playing the old classics, I think I like checking out new indie games the best.

I really like where the genre is right now, in the safe capable hands of people who love playing the games, small teams making games out of pure passion.
Of course, I'd like them to get paid more money, but as a player, I love that there are so many great games coming out all the time.

Team Grybanser Fox makes some fantastic games, I 1cc'ed Zenohell the other day so I've got the set now, a normal clear in all their games.
There's not a shiter amongst them.

I'm always constantly surprised and excited by what indie devs come up with. The quality of the good games is insane!
They might not have the lavish budgets of the old classics from the big hitters, but the gameplay and everything that counts is all there.

have you heard of Black Bird? The art design in that is amazing! It's not bullet hell and it really feels like a strange new world they've created.

What's that crappy doj phone port like, Honks?
G-mode have said they're bringing some of those things to pc so I hope that one makes it.
It looks really cute, I love owt lo-fi like that. It looks like a nice comfy clear too which is always fun!

Re: Shmups
« Reply #18 on: May 21, 2021, 06:34:10 AM »
It's actually well worth the fiver or whatever. I didn't realise it's not just dinky, it's also got truncated stages which is a bit disorienting but fundamentally, it's still great fun. If you use a cheat code on the title screen you can unlock a much harder mode which is like the second loop patterns. Put it this way, the only game I want to play more at the moment than this DOJ DX flip phone port is actual DOJ.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #19 on: May 21, 2021, 09:08:46 AM »
Beyond more obviously tactical/landscape games I do think there is a fundamental difference between bullet hell and something like Raiden in the way the enemies fire at you, the former is slower moving mass patterns, the latter is faster individual shots with a larger hitbox. A big part of the latter tends to be keeping an eye on enemies, knowing when there going to fire and avoiding certain spots plus timing movement up the screen to collect powerups.

Skill at one of those kinds of games I don't think feeds as easily into the other.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #20 on: May 21, 2021, 09:22:36 AM »
Yeah, the Moss stuff is very different shit in practice, like Psikyo games. I find it them fun enough but they've got nothing on CAVE for me.

I think bullet cancelling is the most satisfying mechanic in all of gaming. The screen filling up with these cascading spirals and spurts and you're getting squoze into some tiny corner and then at the last moment BBBOOOOFFFFFFFFFFFFFF and you slurp up a shitload of medals as the slowdown kicks in. It just feels so fucking good.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #21 on: May 21, 2021, 11:04:46 AM »
Yeah, some of the old school style games, especially psikyo, like honks says, the bullet speed can be purposefully faster than any non-cyborgs reaction speed, so it's all about knowing what's coming, knowing which patterns different enemies shoot and whether they're aimed or not and the player moving pre-emptively before the bullets are shot.

"sniper tanks" is the meme. You're playing some old school style game and then all of a sudden a tank will appear out of nowhere and one shot you with this ultra fast aimed shot.

I really love fast games, speed gets me pumped, but throw a load of bullets in there as well. Why not?! zenohell gets pretty nippy at times and they're the most exciting bits.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #22 on: May 21, 2021, 01:05:46 PM »
I've been on a shmup binge lately, largely fuelled by this excellent YouTube channel Shmup Junkie: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCb6Y45xtdYojo2-x9LHI8mQ

Growing up I only really played R-Type on the Amiga. Loved it though being pretty rubbish at it but moving on to the SNES my focus was on platformers and that remains my favourite genre, I think. Buying a Switch was my first proper return to gaming since those days and as others have said I find myself more and more drawn to the pure gameplay experience that a good shmup offers. Over the last couple of months I've splurged on the following for Switch (managing to catch most when on sale though):

Danmaku Unlimited 3
Graceful Explosion Machine
Raiden V Director's Cut
Vasara Collection
Q-Yo Blaster
Steredenn Binary Stars
Ghost Blade HD
Habroxia
Null Drifter
Fantasy Zone
Shikhondo: Soul Eater
Task Force Kampas
Switch 'N' Shoot

Should keep me going for a while! So far I am completely hooked on the last two though, which are probably the simplest of the lot, particularly the last one. It's a vertical shooter that requires just one button input, which causes you to shoot and your craft to change direction at the same time. Sounds basic but there is so much more to it than that, I love how addicted I am to this game which just needs me to press one button. Great review (other than the mic quality) of it here, from another really good channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mq37n08K6ks highly recommended!

Re: Shmups
« Reply #23 on: May 21, 2021, 01:42:35 PM »
I just recently discovered him myself! Yeah, he does some great videos.

When you're next on a shopping spree, get Neko Navy, Black Bird, and Barrage Fantasia. They're fab!
Oh, and keep an eye out for the Mecha Ritz port when that comes! That's a great game.

Just got a blind clear on this free doujin game today!

Sengoku Youkai Daikassen

I had a big grin on my face all the way through.
It's a pretty shameless akai katana rip off, but done like a cute 'em up.

Also officially better than guwange since it has two spidercats, not just one.



My new favourite thing. Gonna try and blitz my score later.

Chollis

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Re: Shmups
« Reply #24 on: May 21, 2021, 03:54:11 PM »
never played any but quite like watching them even though they make my eyes hurt, absolutely bonkers

Futari 1.01 by gusto in 44:11

"For people not familiar with games like this: the player's hitbox is a single pixel and the bullets' hitboxes are very small, much smaller than their sprites"

often looks like he's getting hit until I realised the hitbox is that small. stirring victory speech too

Re: Shmups
« Reply #25 on: May 21, 2021, 05:04:19 PM »
Haha, yeah, I remember that. He's gone full shmup, blokes been grinding futari for the longest time.
I think/hope he's having fun and it's not just some obsession.
Everyone was telling him to do the Bukowski quote at the end :D
Guy plays with a 360 d-pad. Can you believe that? I don't even trust that thing to navigate through menus!

There are some shmups I find really fun to watch other people play and others I find dull.
Futari is definitely one of the fun ones!

Re: Shmups
« Reply #26 on: May 21, 2021, 06:05:50 PM »
I've been on a shmup binge lately, largely fuelled by this excellent YouTube channel Shmup Junkie: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCb6Y45xtdYojo2-x9LHI8mQ

Danmaku Unlimited 3
Graceful Explosion Machine
Raiden V Director's Cut
Vasara Collection
Q-Yo Blaster
Steredenn Binary Stars
Ghost Blade HD
Habroxia
Null Drifter
Fantasy Zone
Shikhondo: Soul Eater
Task Force Kampas
Switch 'N' Shoot

Should keep me going for a while! So far I am completely hooked on the last two though, which are probably the simplest of the lot, particularly the last one. It's a vertical shooter that requires just one button input, which causes you to shoot and your craft to change direction at the same time. Sounds basic but there is so much more to it than that, I love how addicted I am to this game which just needs me to press one button. Great review (other than the mic quality) of it here, from another really good channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mq37n08K6ks highly recommended!

Switch 'N' Shoot fucks me up, probably why I can't play any instruments, no rhythm.

Smhup Junkie is such a passionate guy, really good stuff from him.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #27 on: May 21, 2021, 06:10:55 PM »



Shoot 1UP DX is a fun little release that as of this year is on all current systems.  The set up is you have to try and acrue as many ships as possible, great whacky art style.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #28 on: May 21, 2021, 07:50:03 PM »
Into the Raidens a lot lately.

Any recommendations for a Bangai-O fan who doesn't have an XBox? Never found anything that scratched that exact itch.

Re: Shmups
« Reply #29 on: May 22, 2021, 09:19:19 AM »
Downloaded the demo of Graceful Explosion Machine last night after reading this.

I'm so shit at these but think I'll buy it and get addicted.

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