Last year, one of my favorite games was released on iOS. Its name is Danmaku Unlimited 2, a bullet-filled shoot ’em up that captivated me right from the beginning. And now, here we are a year later with the game making its way onto Steam. Yay!
The excitement in Danmaku Unlimited 2 is experienced immediately as the opening music of stage 1 begins to play. It’s a nice rockin’ sound that pumps up the player, preparing them for an onslaught of colorful beauty in the form of bullets. The game’s great soundtrack is present throughout and mixes well with the intense and mesmerizing bullet patterns that are vibrant and striking, overloading the screen with their presence. It’s almost overwhelming when first visualizing the amount of bullets that appear on the screen, but players will settle down once they familiarize themselves with the game.
There are five stages for players to make their way through, and this can be done in a Classic and Burst mode. There are also four difficulty levels for players to master and leaderboards for them to compare their scores to.
In my highest scoring session ever (video below), I had probably one of the best starts that players can achieve. I hit nearly 2 billion points, finishing 17th overall on Burst mode, Normal. This is typical when it comes to me with shooters; I always seem to make the silliest of mistakes towards the end after having one of the best starts ever. This stopped me from achieving an even higher score. My fantastic start ended up coming to an end on silly little mistakes that were filled with fatigue. However, I can’t wait to get right back at it again. The game calls out to the player to play it again and again. Replayability is great, and I can’t imagine anyone ever getting tired of what’s happening on-screen.
Even with a screen full of colorful chaos that can seem very difficult to deal with at first, the game does eventually settle down for a player who is patient enough. And even though things become more familiar, it’s always a challenge. But the entire time, whether someone plays this game a hundred times or a thousand, it’s always entertaining and engaging. Plus, leaderboards! Who’s ready to compete for a top spot?
Enemies are fantastic (and difficult) to deal with, each with unique patterns of bullets. Towards the end, some of the mid-difficulty enemies start to feel just as tough as one of the first two bosses. Throughout the game, the difficulty and the amount of bullets and patterns seen on screen does increase. It’s a good thing players are given different types of weapons that they can equip to deal with these foes. As players progress, they’ll rank up and earn points that can be used to purchase three different types of shots (direct, wide, seeking). Players also have the ability to use the points on additional lives and continues as well.
Danmaku Unlimited 2 features a great scoring system for players to learn. The closer one gets to the bullets, the more items they’ll collect to launch a laser-type of attack. Hitting enemies with this laser increases the multiplier. At the same time, players also fill a ‘Trance’ gauge that – when used -significantly increases the multiplier attack. This earns the player a great amount of points. Of course, the hard part throughout a session is to not get hit which decreases the multiplier and puts you on the edge of game over.
Danmaku Unlimited 2 is a fantastic and electrifying shooter that all shmup fans need to get their hands on. It’s beautiful on the eyes, especially as players slide their ship through exciting patterns of bullets. It’s a must own. Just remember, don’t get overwhelmed by the intensity that the game offers during the first ten to twenty sessions. Eventually, patterns will become recognizable and the game begins to slow down. Well, kinda…