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Review: LUFTRAUSERS – Intense Stylish 2D Shooter

Written by Barry Villatoro

From the same publisher Hotline Miami came to us from, Devolver Digital, comes LUFTRAUSERS. Similarly, like Hotline Miami, LUFTRAUSERS is a modern-retro style game. Using music and graphics that seemingly could’ve been done on an 8bit or 16bit platform, however, LUFTRAUSERS has been caked up for modern gamers.

luftrausers-screen-02LUFTRAUSERS is an intense stylish 2D shooter that aims to give you one of the most intense 2D shooter experiences out there. The name of the game is simple, high-score chase. Do everything you can to keep your score multiplier at max, shred everything you see and stay alive. Each level begins with a small contingent of easily disposed fighters. The difficulty and cannon fire filling the screen are increased exponentially in moments. Fighters, turn into Ace pilots and jet fighters. Ships become battleships and then the dreaded Blimp, a massive screen filling juggernaut of cannon fire enters the fray.

LUFTRAUSERS won’t leave you handicapped while taking on the world. You’ll unlock multiple mods for your weaponry, body of your fighter and the engine. There’s over 125 combinations available and I’ve made a list of my favorites here. You also unlock new color schemes to try out something other than the sepia, although that seems to be least rough on my eyes.

LUFTRAUSERS removes itself from the other 2D shooters with its flying mechanics. Pressing up will accelerate your fighter and pressing left or right will spin your fighter clockwise or counter-clockwise. You won’t bank or turn while moving forward, you can, but you’ll be dead. Stalling is where it’s at with LUFTRAUSERS and what brings this whole game together. Blast away from enemy fighers, stall, spin 180 degrees, shred them then take off in an entirely different direction.

luftrausers-screen-03LUFTRAUSERS has two modes, normal and SFMT, which stands for whatever you want. SFMT is a mode in which you’re a winner if you last 30 seconds, seriously. Even the jet fighters jet stream leave behind gunfire. Last passed the beginning air raid siren and get yourself a trophy, it lasts about 15 seconds. My score on normal is about 22k, my score on SFMT is 3k, that should give you an idea, it’s freaking ridiculous. There’s also about 100 ‘missions’ for you to complete in LUFTRAUSERS, these are essentially challenges you’d see in any number of games.

I was able to try out LUFTRAUSERS on the Vita and on Steam. My preferred experience was easily the Vita. LUFTRAUSERS is excellent for those quick gaming opportunities and I could actually understand the controls. I also couldn’t get my controller to work on my PC cause I’m an idiot, maybe that had something to do with it.

While LUFTRAUSERS is kind of bare bones in terms of variety, it makes up for that gameplay experience. You have two modes and a ton of variations of loadouts but not much more than that and it doesn’t need much more. The incredible presentation coupled with it’s excellent gameplay is all any score chaser needs.

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LUFTRAUSERS is one of those games that’s a one-trick pony, but that one trick is awesome.

LUFTRAUSERS on the PSN and Steam was provided for us to review. Review scale here.

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About the author

Barry Villatoro

Twitter : @IamWeapon | Former citizen of Azeroth and Atreia | Favorite fighting game - DefJam: Fight for New York | Favorite RPG - FF6 | MMA | Sushi | ATV's |

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