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Overview

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X-Bomber is a free vertical-scrolling shoot 'em up for Windows, based on the 1980s Japanese sci-fi TV show Star Fleet.
X-Bomber is the hero spacecraft; both in the show and in the game.

X-Bomber gets written in my spare time, with me being a big fan of Star Fleet and 2D space shooters.
Please share it with and mention it to everyone you can.

Let me know your comments and suggestions, and tell me as well, if you can use any of the game's materials: sprites, code etc. and I'll make sure that you get them.


Dai-X System

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The Dai-X system lets you change ship at any point in a level, allowing you to adapt your response to the game's continuously-changing challenges.

  • Fly the X-Bomber space battleship for firepower and durability.
  • Launch the three Dai-X fighters for mobility and strength of numbers.
  • Combine them to form the Dai-X for a balance of firepower, durability and mobility.

Meanwhile, your unselected ships re-arm and repair themselves in the background, ready for later use.

Replay with The Skull space sailer or WingBlade gunship.


Weapons

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Every space shooter needs weapons and X-Bomber has lots of them: some that are equipped at all times and others that need to be collected, including:

  • Every last weapon that ever featured in Star Fleet
  • Devastating secondary attacks, including X-Impulse
  • Two sets of 10 powerful and distinctive special weapons for X-Bomber and Dai-X
  • Upgrading Dai-X fighter special weapons

The game also makes it quick and easy to select any of your available weapons at any time.


Missions

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There are 17 story-driven missions: 3 chapters with 5 missions each, plus training mission and finale, featuring:

  • Progressive difficulty
  • A wide range of environments, objectives and gameplay types, including: attack, defend, escape and survive
  • Unique bosses and other enemies
  • Swarms of enemies, hazards and allies
  • Randomising level engine, environment engine and enemy behaviour, which mean that you never quite know what the game will throw at you next
  • Mission briefings and dynamic in-game dialogue from familiar and new characters

Enemies

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Star Fleet features many strange and menacing enemy spacecraft and vehicles, and these have been re-created to give X-Bomber vicious and relentless enemies.

Since variety of opposition is important for a space shooter, there are lots of new types of enemy, based on those in the show, ranging from fighters to capital ships; ground targets to giant bosses.
I remember that Go Nagai expressed disappointment that no giant robots featured in the show to counter Dai-X, and so the game introduces a number of these.

The game also includes enemies from comic book adaptations of the series, along with others, based on merchandise from the show and other items, as well as some created by other fans.

While the game has a wide variety of enemies, it also serves them up in huge, frantic swarms, to make gameplay hectic and challenging.

Star Fleet also featured interesting and powerful allies that are re-created in the game, alongside new ones, and which you can call upon at times for serious help.


Graphics

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I tried to give the game an attractive graphical style that emulates the pixel art of 90s shoot-em-ups, such as Raptor and Zone 66, but with smoother, more modern visual elements and effects:

  • Detailed sprites and animations
  • Clear and informative HUD/instruments
  • Dense, multi-layer randomising star fields and space environment engine
  • Rich, randomising, multi-layer, parallaxing planetary environments
  • The level engine has the ability to transition between space, nebula and planetary environments and back.
  • Alpha blending and alpha channels, lots of pixel shaders and blending effects
  • Dust and track marks for ground vehicles and soft shadow engine
  • Lots of particle effects
  • Camera shake

Audio

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  • 32-channel explosive sound, with hundreds of authentic and new effects
  • Music indexing: - the game's MP3 soundtrack can be expanded or replaced with any media files that you place in the game's MP3 folder.

Gameplay

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The game is designed to have fast, hectic and addictive gameplay by giving the player overwhelming action and frantic storms of enemies and on-screen hazards.
The player relies a great deal on a responsive, straightforward and customisable control system to attack and avoid them.

The game keeps the player busy with lots of decisions, in terms of weapon and ship selection.
The player has a lot of different resources to manage and conserve, and power-ups to collect in order to sustain their continued fight.

The game was balanced and its mechanics revised to make sure that the player has a wide view of their surroundings and range of movement, while also ensuring fast player, bullet and enemy movement across the screen.

Even with a huge amount of on-screen action and visual effects, the game should run smoothly on a wide range of Windows devices using hardware acceleration, thanks to Clickteam's Fusion runtime.


Features

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  • Double-up on the enemy with local co-operative 2-player.
  • Local and online high scores
  • Extensive configuration options, including full keyboard and controller mapping and variable difficulty
  • XMS2 game menu system
  • The game's unified level engine promotes simplicity, efficiency within the application, consistency across all the levels, as well as cutting down development and testing overhead.
  • Continuous updates
  • Obsessive coding, bug-fixing, playtesting and balancing
  • Portable application - no installation needed
  • No ads or bundled software - Ever

Planned Features

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  • v0.87 - Cutscenes
  • v0.88 - Mission editor
  • v0.89 - 3x secret missions

Reactions

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Features an extensive array of combat craft, lots of powerups, excellent graphics, good sound effects, and more

This is a terrific space shooter in a typically Japanese style. The action is fast and furious and you can grab powerups for things like shields.

It is quite stable and ran flawlessly on our test computer.

We loved playing X-Bomber. It is fast moving with lots of eye candy and good sound effects. If you like space shooters then this is one we highly recommend. Grab a copy and see for yourself!

5/5 - Completely Free Software

X-Bomber has all the charm and feel of the classic 2D games that created such a furor in the 1980s and 1990s.

Using the controls given to you, which allow fast, smooth gameplay, X-Bomber is much more than just a shoot 'em up. You have a large range of enemies, great sounds, well created environs and objectives and attractive, fun graphics.

So there you have it. If you want to relive those old retro moments from when you were younger, then you need a program like this. And best of all is that you can download it for free! What are you waiting for?

90% - Software & Games

A cracking fangame made to commemorate the show. Do give this a go. It's a great example of what a good Japanese-style shoot-em-up should look like and takes off many of the show's great and unique ideas ...

... very playable and has buckets of charm and variety. Swapping ships at the touch of a button or combining the Dai-X craft to make the mighty Dai-X robot is pretty cool! Not to mention the variety of enemies to chop down"

- Mark Radon, The Daily Click
  • "From the start of the game you get to see a very well made menu system which gets you in the mood. The next thing you notice are the AWESOME weapons and great effects. Switching between weapons is a breeze, and all of them look fantastic." ...
    "Sounds are perfect, from music to sound effects, this feels like you are in an arcade. Perfect" - Daily Click Member

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Star Fleet, X-Bomber et al. © Enoki Films.