Raging Blasters is a vertical-scrolling space game developed and published by TERARIN GAMES. Also, know as shmup or Shoot ’em ups It’s not a genre I’m familiar with, yet with the amount of time I played, I enjoyed every minute of it. Raging Blasters is available on both Windows PC and the Nintendo Switch.
What is Raging Blasters?
The premise is simple, you are a space cadet tasked with destroying the enemy. That is it, and it’s all the game needs. The action is constant and it never gives the player time to breathe. My eyes were darting across the screen so that I could predict the enemy’s every attack. You can control the speed of your spaceship and the direction you move on the screen. Big exclamation marks appear at the bottom when an enemy sneaks behind you which is helpful.
There are two game modes. One is the arcade mode, in which you defeat enemies and bosses to progress to the next round. Then there is the Caravan Mode. This gives you three minutes to progress as far as you can while scoring as many points as you can.
Raging Blasters’ Presentation
The pixel art style of the game suits the simplicity of the story. But, the black outlines of the main characters are ugly and could have been cleaner.
The enemies are many and varied. The bosses have interesting designs as you progress. This keeps you on your toes as well as makes it interesting to find out what the next boss will be. The only negative I have is that your ship can only take one hit. I admit I’m not the most experienced in this genre, but it does feel unfair. The difficulty is quite high on normal, and there is no easy option. But to counter the unfairness, it doesn’t take long to start a new game. You also have access to different power-ups from lasers to a ring shield that damages enemy spacecraft.
Where this game makes the most sense is on the Nintendo Switch. It is so easy to pick up and play. No long story to remember and with the caravan mode, you can have a quick three-minute round between tasks. Such as working from home. Even so, because of the low system requirements, it can run on almost any PC hardware. I used my laptop and it worked flawlessly.
The audio sounds like it comes from the 16-bit era. Fast-paced and with limited instruments which contribute to the arcade machine feel. For the majority of the time, it will play one track, but when you encounter bosses the music fades away, replaced with boss music. For an arcade game, this is all you need.
After playing a few hours I started to get the feel of the game and how to progress. It is rewarding when you progress further than before. Much like the Souls games. For gamers that love this genre, it would appear shallow even when expanded with co-op play. For the casual gamer, but, this is a great introduction to the genre and would be a great entry point to the world of Shmup. Due to this, I can only give Raging Blasters a 6/10. It’s too shallow to be a game you come back to, but at the same time introduces new players to the genre.