Shmups Are The Best Genre You Don’t Play

Arsic

Member
In the last 2ish years as I’ve really had less and less time for games this genre has taken over for me.

The quality of games even on indie titles is going down with too much shovel ware in perma early access, AAA is more miss than hit, and the departure of gameplay first in too many games somehow lead me here.

You know the drill : wife , kids, busy ass job, little time to play yardda yadda. Shmups are the only genre that respect my time more than anything. I can sit down and beat with continues generally a shmup in 30-45 minutes. I get to focus on gameplay the whole time, and the game rewards skill over anything else.

The euphoria you obtain after a 1CC of a game is only maybe equal to beating a very hard boss in a soulsborne game.

Part of me made this thread to ask/call out those players specifically. Soulsborne or in general “hardcore” gamers and why something like a DoDonPachi game scares them away ? I know a lot of folks have Cuphead a whirl and triumphed to add that notch on their belt, but why not shorter shmup games either vertical or side scrolling shooter ?

If you don’t mess with the genre at all why not ?

Anyone else finding this to be one of the last great bastions of gaming ? Attempting 1ccs on shmups. My big one day grand plan is to 1cc on normal Ikaruga which is my favorite but also the absolute hardest for me of the dozens I’ve played.
 

Deerock71

Member
Look Away Sonic The Hedgehog GIF by Mashed
 

Arsic

Member
It needs cute waifus



Not sure if serious ? A lot of titles if not most have you playing as cute anime women in ships or shooting as their actual self in game flying around.

If you are a total degen check out Deathsmiles. If you are less of one check out DoDonPachi resurrection lol.

On another note I wish more big time studios would give these games a Chance again for digital title releases . Capcom could absolutely crush if they allotted some investments towards this space for like a new ProGear or a title done ground up.

Platinum tried to do too much with Sol Cresta is the general consensus but I’m happy they went for it.

Imagine if from software made a shmup lmao. It’d be impossible.
 
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diffusionx

Member
shmups are great, with a huge variety of play styles, scoring systems, graphics, etc., but a lot of the most common/well-known/recommended are, in my opinion, not very good for newcomers and can actively turn them off. Especially as the bullet hell stuff has evolved.
 

BossLackey

Gold Member
Shmup thread!? Fuck yeah!

Working on my first 1CC with Gunvein. I've always been big into Beat 'em Ups and Run and Guns, but only in the last few years have I been getting hard into shmups (and it's becoming clear that of the 3, this might be the best genre (Metal Slug not withstanding)).
 

jufonuk

not tag worthy
Graceful explosion machine
Hyper sentinel

In my switch collection. Haven’t got time for pure bullet hell games no more.
Though I have a few more shmups.

For short play the names above are great.
 

Lasha

Member
Soulsborne games can be cheesed. You can abuse mechanics, make an OP build, or simply outlevel almost any challenge. The difficulty is mostly just paying attention in bossfights which most games don't ask players to do. The community is divided over Sekiro because Sekiro forces you to learn a certain playstyle. You either master the concept or you will never beat the game.

Shmups don't appeal to modern gamers. They require a level of focus that is completely absent in modern games. Gamers get upset if asked to do a single boss without a checkpoint. 30 min to an hour focused is too much.

They are just way too repetitive for me and I really don't like how all of the games are so crazy hard to "compensate" for how short they would have been otherwise.

The difficulty is intentional. The loop is to complete and improve with fewer deaths and a higher score.
 

anthony2690

Gold Member
Maybe in the minority, I hate the word shmup, it sounds more like an insult you throw at someone.
I do actively play these wonderful STG games though :)

I'm still hoping all the Xbox 360 cave games make a comeback, especially Mushihimesama Futari.

& This week I plan on grabbing dragon blaze and graze counter GM. :D
 
I like the genre a whole lot, but specifically the older games because they're more interesting, varied. I don't see stuff like Sexy Parodious, Radiant Silvergun, Battle Garrega, Thunderforce IV or Battle Mania: Daiginjō getting made, and for me those are where it's at. They don't traditionally age either, so you can pop them on and play them, and have an enjoyable experience.
 

Soltype

Member
Love the genre, I usually play them hard for a month, then take a break.Wish older titles would get rereleases, there's a ton of games stuck on older systems/ arcade.
 

cireza

Member
Also I don't like bullet hell, it is almost a different genre to be honest. I like my shmups "classic", just as they were on 8/16 bits consoles. Also have a soft spot for a few shmups on Dreamcast (Psyvariar 2, Castle of Shikigami 2 and a although bit different, I love Cannon Spike).
 
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GenericUser

Member
They are stressing me out and I don't like dying over and over again to learn enemy patterns. I am perfectly fine without them.

Shumps are like competitive fighting games. You have to do the same thing over and over to get good enough for a big payoff. Amazing genre, but certainly not for everyone.
I like fighting games and yes, it's very hard to get good at them. But there is a major difference between shmups and fighting games. In fighting games, you usually fight against real people and in shmups you only fight against the cpu. I can't be bothered fighting against a cpu, there is no satisfaction in beating a computer. But beating a real person in a 1on1 fight, that is exhillerating.
 
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nkarafo

Member
Ever since 3D came along, shmups became the worst looking genre there is.

I don't think there's a single good looking shmup with 3D graphics. They are blocky and ugly, artistically. 2D pixel art shmups still look far better.

The latest R-Type game has some very good looking light and shadow effects outside the Switch version. But again, the 3D modeling and texturing is bad.

I don't think shmups even need to be 3D. The camera is always placed far away from the action so everything always looks small and it's not like you can freely explore at any direction or rotate the camera. 99% of the time there's auto-scrolling at a single direction. The only thing you gain from being 3D is some interesting camera angles during transitions.
 
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Impotaku

Member
I love how the genre has become more popular again with consoles like switch fully embracing the genre with it been able to do tate mode by default in handheld mode it's great bonus. For a long time shmups were few & far between but devs seem to have cottoned on that people still want them so there have been a lot of releases of older titles from past consoles which is great as a lot of them now have stupid price tags attached to the original releases but there's also been some brand new titles too. Have a hell of a lot of them in my library but crimzon clover takes the top spot for me it's just pure insanity & so damn fun to play.
 

NeoIkaruGAF

Gold Member
Preach, brother. When you have less and less time for gaming and even what used to be simple is overflowing with skill trees and complex strategies, shmups are so comfy to come back to. It’s the one genre when I rarely give a shit about how bad I am at it. Sometimes I just want to enjoy the onscreen show and I’ll use infinite continues. Sometimes I want to test my limits a bit and I’ll play legit. Even bullet hell ain’t so bad when you accept that only an elect few can really get anywhere with it.
 

Rykan

Gold Member
Play the older games, before the bullet hell took over the genre.

Bullet hell can fuck the fuck off.

R-Type is where it's at.
My thoughts exactly.

It's actually a super fun genre, sadly the vast majority of them have gone completely overboard with the difficulty were like 80 ~ 90% of the screen is a bullet and you somehow have to navigate along the 3 pixels that are not. It just removes all the fun.
 

Naked Lunch

Member
In middle school I used to disregard shmups - things like Gradius, Musha, Axelay - I didnt get it for some reason. Didnt put much time into them.
Years later - after exploring Genesis, PCE, Saturn, 360, and arcade offerings, reading the crazed passionate shmup rants in gamefan magazine - I realized it really is the best genre in videogames. The most pure example in the medium of just playing a game with eye hand coordination skill.

Also, piss on raytracing or whatever new graphic buzzword is out there - there is something truly beautiful about seeing a screen filled with hundreds of colorful bullet patterns at once - and somehow being able to dodge thru all that chaos. I could stare at the endgame boss patterns of the Psyvariar games all day - now that is eye candy.

I love bullethell just as much as the classics that started it all. Recently really diving into Toaplan's library - but im a Cave and Raizing junkie as well. My biggest feats are 1ccing Radiant Silvergun (arcade mode), DDP 1, and Battle Garegga somehow. Im getting close on Batsugun.

I play my shmups on an HDTV, PC (with a rotatable monitor), and also have a small CRT TATE setup. Seeing something like the Dreamcast's Under Defeat on that Tate CRT is really something...
 
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SmokedMeat

Gamer™
I’ve been playing them since they became a thing.

Problem is it’s mostly anime bullet hell stuff these days, which just isn’t my thing. Plus my interest in the genre has waned, since nothing’s changed.

If I could eradicate thirty cookie cutter anime bullet hells to bring back one Gradius or Ray Crisis, I’d do it in a heart beat!
 
I want a new resogun and geometry wars
A pity we hardly get such smaller titles from the big studios anymore. Made by devs that know how to make games for average people and not some freaks making hellish games for freaks.

Maybe I forget another title but those were the ones I also liked. Probably not actually good at them either, but the majority of the genre is not really enjoyable to me.

Waves 1 + the unfinished 2 (free on PC since the dev made that his last will) are also great.
 
Preach, brother. When you have less and less time for gaming and even what used to be simple is overflowing with skill trees and complex strategies, shmups are so comfy to come back to. It’s the one genre when I rarely give a shit about how bad I am at it. Sometimes I just want to enjoy the onscreen show and I’ll use infinite continues. Sometimes I want to test my limits a bit and I’ll play legit. Even bullet hell ain’t so bad when you accept that only an elect few can really get anywhere with it.

Exactly. I've been playing exactly one - let's call it AAA mainstream - game for the last three months, and that's Elden Ring. I have no time to waste and play around with, so i am ridiculously careful about the video games i choose to enjoy myself.

And shmups are a favorite to play in short bursts. I get why people find them difficult, they are a test of reflex and learning patterns, and i get how that doesn't gel well with others. There are games that i don't intent to invest time in either for various reasons. But i could never get stressed over it. I suck hard at them, and i don't intent on getting good immediately. What i find incredibly gratifying is that i gradually get good. Like, there's one level i suck at and die immediately. Eventually, i progress further, and further.

And i can play them infrequent. Like 20 - 30 minutes every 3 days or so? I don't know, that's how i've been playing Layer Section (Sega Saturn), and it's been fun.
 

nush

Member
My thoughts exactly.

It's actually a super fun genre, sadly the vast majority of them have gone completely overboard with the difficulty were like 80 ~ 90% of the screen is a bullet and you somehow have to navigate along the 3 pixels that are not. It just removes all the fun.

Yeah, the problem is the developers are chasing that hardcore technical audience so hard they cut out all the casual players. Same as happened to fighting games. Fortunately there are so many shumps from the past you've probably not played that you'll never run out of games that are not bullet hell.
 

Needlecrash

Member
Sega is sitting on a treasure trove of IPs. Technosoft is gone and all IPs are under Sega now. Hyper Duel, Thunder Force 5 and 6, and games can be re-released....if they can get off their ass.
 
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