Raiden Legacy Review

By , on January 8, 2013

Raiden Legacy
  • Publisher: DotEmu
  • Genre: Action
  • Released: 4 Dec, 2012
  • Size: 167.0 MB
  • Price: $4.99
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5


  • Super smooth touch controls.
  • Multiple games in one.
  • Fast paced SHMUP mayhem.


  • Emulation problems (most likely on older iOS devices).


If you enjoy the Raiden games or shoot em ups in general, this is a solid investment as you get four games with multiple modes for your purchase.

  • Full Review
  • App Store Info

If you're at all a fan of the shoot-em-up genre (which are affectionately referred to as SHMUPs), you are probably familiar with Raiden. Alongside such canonical luminaries as Xevious, and R-Type, Raiden is a heavy hitter in a genre known for crazy weapons and having the screen littered with bullets. This release though is something of a compilation, farming together all three titles of the offshoot Raiden Fighters series that developer Seibu Kaihatsu released in the mid to late nineties, while including the game that started it all alongside it. Even with the hefty App Store price, you certainly get a lot of bang for your buck. Is the content worth is of course the question.

Now other developers have had great success with the SHMUP genre on the iPhone platform, and after playing through these Raiden games using only a finger, a bold statement is about to be made. This genre was made for a touch screen. Weaving through chaotic fire has never been simpler. With the arcade joystick or a gamepad, there was always a danger of overshooting your evasion and while you missed getting hit by the projectile you were hoping to avoid, you found yourself crashing into its neighbor. With your finger, you can stop and start on a dime, tracing a path through enemy fire that is almost elegant. Auto-fire is on by default but can be turned off, and all buttons can be re-configured in the options (as well as the game speed switched from the faster touch mode to the traditional arcade speed).

Now the gameplay is classic SHMUP. Each level consists of a gauntlet of ever increasing difficulty punctuated by a gigantic boss battle. Along the way you collect all manner of weapon and drone upgrades until your fire matches the spewing forth of bullets the enemy traditionally engages in. Each game follows the same formula, but the main difference between them is the selection of fighters you have at the start of the game. Now these games are obviously emulated from their arcade code, as the two player score flashes in the top right corner, and there is the occasional emulation hiccup with plummeting frame rates. The visuals have a classic nineties arcade look to them and through impressive weapon effects and boss design, are a delight to look at. The music helps the experience but has not made the emulated transition well.

If you like SHMUPs and are a fan of Raiden, this is four competently emulated games from the series in one on-the-go experience. The games control beautifully and spamming the screen with multiple weapons while fighting a mechanical monstrosity that engulfs your viewing area never really gets old.


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