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In case that title is in any way unclear, A Space Shooter for Two Bucks a PlayStation Minis game that is a shoot ‘em up, set in space, and it will cost you $1.99. That is, unless you are a member of Sony’s elite, in which case the game is free. So if you’re a PlayStation Plus subscriber, pick up that PSP or DualShock 3, go to the PlayStation Store and hit download. The rest of us plebeians will have to cough up the two dollars.

The real question is “Is it worth your money?” Find out after the break.

Well, let’s just get this out of the way. Do not buy this game expecting it to be Ikraruga. You will be disappointed. Look at this the game’s title and you know what to expect: a fun little game that will provide you with a few hours of entertainment for less than the price of a cup of coffee.

A Space Shooter for Two Bucks doesn’t do anything new or fancy; it’s a vertical scrolling shooter, in which you’ll be dodging and blasting several varieties of aliens into oblivion across sixteen levels. If you’re a fan of shmups you’ve done it before countless times across dozens of games. Hell, even if you aren’t a fan you probably know the drill.

Something that is a little different about the game is how you upgrade your ship. Picking up the remains of defeated enemies will net you the cash you need to buy upgrades and transform your ship into a weapon of death. Unfortunately, the game’s difficulty varies a lot from level to level.

That means eventually you will have to replay old levels to acquire the cash necessary to afford upgrades in order to finish new levels- particularly boss battles. Maybe I spoke too soon when I said this was a typical shmup. It’s actually quite progressive; taking a que from JRPGs, A Space Shooter for Two Bucks has grinding!

Now that everyone who enjoys performing monotonous, repetitive tasks has rejoiced, let’s talk about what really counts – the graphics! It looks like Frima Studio was going for a 32-bit aesthetic with this one. While, I really enjoy the retro-renaissance that is going on right now, this was a really odd choice. While it’s an older style, its not one that people are going to get terribly nostalgic about. It’s okay to look at, but that’s about all you can say for it. However, the art seen in the menus and story sequences is absolutely fantastic.

The voice acting is tongue-in-cheek, but not in a good way. Kids might find this funny.  Maybe. It’s what you might expect from a bad Saturday morning cartoon.  The lowest common denominator humor quickly becomes grating…especially since it is present in both story sequences and throughout levels.  There were only so many times I could stand getting criticized for getting hit by oncoming fire or hearing “now that was worth two bucks” after making something explode. After a few missions I turned off the sound effects so I could enjoy the game’s soundtrack. I really appreciated that option.

Again, it’s not a great shmup. It’s no Deathsmiles or  Sin and Punishment 2. It’s not going to wow anyone. However, if you weigh any problems A Space Shooter for Two Bucks has against the price, taking into account how easily we all spend a couple of dollars everyday without batting an eye (I’m looking at you midnight burrito runs), this is a really solid game.

Whether you are a shmup fan who is waiting for the next big Treasure or Cave release, or just looking to blast some aliens you could certainly do a lot worse. It’s nice to see someone finally charging appropriate prices for a downloadable on on console. The PlayStation Network, and particularly PSP Minis is a weird place to see it happen, but let’s hope Sony’s turning over a new leaf. For two bucks this one is a bargain.

Rating Category
6.0 Presentation
The game looks passable but is trying way too hard to be funny.
How does our scoring system work?
7.0 Gameplay
It's a decent enough shooter and is pretty fun if played in short bursts.
6.0 Sound
Decent soundtrack, but annoying voice work. Thank God for the option to turn off the SFX.
10.0 Longevity
A perfectly priced PlayStation Minis title. Finally! Two bucks nets you hours of gameplay. This game is value for money.
7.0 Overall
Problems notwithstanding, if you're a shmup fan who is waiting for the next big Treasure or Cave release, or just looking to blast some aliens, for $1.99, you could certainly do a lot worse.

  1. Burrito shmup game, FTW.

    32 bit aesthetic? So like Playstation 1 era-ish? I dunno if I’d pick this up. I’m not a huge fan of shmups, buuuut it is only 2 bucks. Tough call. If only I wasn’t an average plebe! Then it would be free!

    Thanks for the good review.

  2. I got for free with Playstation Plus, and it’s been pretty fun!

  3. avatar Miriam Hamiss

    Hey amiga!!! I love the dress but… I think the top is SO YOU!! So colorful and free flowing- that is my choice for you. You’ll create a splash in either. I love the Limited but haven’t shopped there within a while- many thanks for your reminder. Hugs!!

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