BLAZING STAR review (iOS / Universal)

July 26, 2012

“Astrophysics you’ll never be my closest friend”

10 word description: NEOGEO scrolling shooter. 6 different ships. Bluetooth multiplayer. Game Center.

6 ships to choose from. Don’t automatically pick the one with the prettiest pilot

10 word review: It’s not Last Resort, but get it while you’re waiting!

You will like this if you enjoy: Arcade shoot-em-ups. Playing old NEOGEO games on your iPhone / iPad.

The good news: It was already a good game (although Last Resort is better, at least as far as I’m concerned) and this port is very good. Performs well on my 4th gen Touch and 1st gen iPad. Mission mode is a nice addition, as it was in the recent Metal Slug 3 release for iOS. Not too hard, although limited continues mean you’re probably not going to breeze through it in your first session. Controls are completely customisable, so you can put the buttons wherever you like. Relative touch, as always, is the best way to go with this kind of game and it works well here.

The bad news: No autofire. I don’t miss it, but I know other players will. While they’re adding that, maybe stick a casual mode in with infinite continues. Again, I don’t personally want that but it might open the game up to people who aren’t shoot-em-up experts but fancy a go anyway.

Arcadelife verdict: Let’s get all the essential but still second-best NEOGEO shooters out of the way and port Last Resort to iOS. Please! Sure, Blazing Star is very pretty and has a lot going on, six ships to choose right from the start and some impressive effects, but Last Resort is (in my opinion, obviously, but I’m right) easily SNK’s best attempt at ripping off and improving on the R-Type formula, even though it preceded Pulstar and Blazing Star by quite a few years. Last Resort is harder, more satisfying and the bosses have more character and individuality… great soundtrack too.

Still, this review is supposed to be for Blazing Star, not a rant about Last Resort. What can I say? Blazing Star is fun, solid, runs really well (on my test devices), has configurable controls and is as addictive as it always was. No negative points from me apart from the lack of autofire which could put some people off. Did I mention I prefer Last Resort? Maybe that will be out next month…

Arcadelife rating

Visuals – 8.5/10
Audio – 9/10
Controls – 9/10
Content – 9/10
Fun – 8.5/10
Final rating – 88/100

Rating categories explained here.
Version reviewed by Arcadelife is 1.00
iTunes link

website link

Arcadelife played and reviewed this game on:
4th gen iPod Touch (iOS 5.1.1)
iPad (iOS 5.1.1)

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