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A brief history of the top down shooter genre, it's core values, and how the upcoming title "400x" fits into the picture.
Posted by binarycocoa on Nov 4th, 2012
Have you ever sat down to play a game and couldn't get up for hours? Have you ever been so much into the game, that all you do is day-dream about playing it? When it comes to the top down shooter genre, you know that could happen.
Over the years, Top-Down Shooter games have given players a sense of action, and accomplishmentthrough fast-paced game-play and versatile themes. It has been a big Indie Game Developer choice,because it has the same high-action characteristics as the popular First Person Shooter games, buton a far more achievable level. Most Indie Game Developers do not have the funds, orteam to develop such high-end games, but the top down shooters change that.
One of the first top down games was called Asteroids. It was very influential over the genre and to this day is still enjoyed by gamers worldwide. It was released in November of 1979, and featured one small ship in an asteroid field. Occasionally a spaceship would show up, and would try to kill the player. The game has inspired plenty of clones, but none ever had the same popularity. Galaga, a more in depth Space Shoot-Em Up, was made in the same year. The space themed Shoot-em Up's were born. Asteroids and Galaga are known for starting the genre. Despite the genre being simplistic in nature, it had addictive game-play, and a simple story to keep the player playing. Many action games can thank their grandparents for giving people a taste of action, and freedom.
Hundreds of top down games were made for the upcoming systems of the 80's and 90's. Anyone who had a SNES, Dreamcast, Atari *, and beyond loved the genre! Even after the turn of the century we still treasured the genre, and hoped to expand upon it. We understand the feeling of getting a higher score then last time, and we understand destroying countless foes in a epic journey through space. The real beauty of the game isn't the graphics (that's not to say that 400x isn't shaping up to be a beautiful game). The real beauty of this wonderful genre is the feeling you get while experiencing it.
That is our goal. We want to give new life to the genre while holding its values at the core. We know that if you enjoyed the top down shooters that held the market back in the day, you will love 400x. If you are completely new to the genre, it's still worth a look. We also hope to bring the community together by allowing the games to be easily modifiable. We'll be posting frequently to keep the community up to date on how we're embracing this genre and how 400X is progressing.