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Genre: Scrolling shoot 'em up

Group Description

The genre commonly referred to as "shoot 'em up" (often abbreviated to shmup) has originated with the fixed-screen top-down shooter Space Invaders (1978). This group, however, includes only scrolling (horizontally, vertically, in an isometric or 3D fashion) shooters. In these games, the player controls a character (most commonly an aircraft) that must defend itself against large amounts of enemies by shooting at them. This style of game is generally agreed to have originated with Konami's Scramble (1981) and Namco's Xevious (1982). The player is able to control the character's movement in at least two (more commonly four) directions; however, the forward motion is also determined by the speed of the scrolling. Besides shooting at enemies, the player is also commonly engaged in collecting power-ups, which typically enhance the character's weapons or defense.

In order to be included in this group, the shooter should answer the two main conditions: scrolling environments and free movement in at least two directions: vertical in side-scrolling games, horizontal in top-down ones. Chase-view shooters and rail shooters should not be included in this group.

Fixed-screen shoot-'em-ups should not be included in this group either. In general, the distinction between scrolling shooters and fixed-screen shooters is this: in a classic scrolling shooter, barring unusual situations (such as boss battles) the player usually is allowed to avoid or bypass enemies instead of shooting them, and new enemies enter the screen consistently at specific moments regardless of the player's actions. In a fixed-screen shooter the player typically faces wave after wave of enemies, and the next wave will not show up until the previous one has been defeated. A fixed-screen shooter may have a background with a scrolling effect but this alone doesn't make it a scrolling shooter.

Side-scrolling shooters in which the playable character is restricted in his movements (i.e. is unable to sustain himself in the air for a prolonged period of time, having to jump over obstacles or platforms to proceed, etc.) should be excluded as well.

Related groups:
Viewing Page 1 of 44 (items 1-25 of 1092) Next
Game Titlesorted in ascending orderYearPlatformPublisherUser Score
Avenger1975ArcadeElectra Games, Inc....
Ozma Wars1979Arcade, PlayStation 3, PSP, PS VitaSNK Playmore USA Corp.1.65
Zero Hour1980ArcadeUniversal Co., Ltd....
Phantoms Five1980Apple IISirius Software, Inc....
Moon Cresta1980Amstrad CPC, Android, Arcade, BBC Micro, Commodore 64, Dragon 32/64, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PSP, PS Vita, Wii, ZX SpectrumHAMSTER Corporation2.89
Stargate1981Apple II, Arcade, Atari 2600, Browser, Commodore 64, Dedicated handheld, NES, Palm OS, PC BooterAtari Corporation3.41
Space Cruiser1981Arcade, FM-7, Nintendo Switch, PC-88, PlayStation 4, Sharp MZ-80B/2000/2500, Sharp X1HAMSTER Corporation...
Scramble1981Arcade, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Tomy Tutor, Vectrex, Windows, Xbox 360GCE3.37
Defender1981Adventure Vision, Apple II, Arcade, Atari 2600, Atari 5200, Atari 8-bit, Browser, ColecoVision, Commodore 64, Dedicated handheld, Intellivision, Macintosh, PC Booter, TI-99/4A, VIC-20, Xbox 360Atari, Inc.3.79
Vanguard1981Antstream, Arcade, Atari 2600, Atari 5200, PlayStation 3, PSP, PS VitaAtari, Inc.3.84
Cosmic Avenger1981Arcade, ColecoVisionColeco Industries, Inc.3.40
QS Defender1981ZX80, ZX81Quicksilva Ltd....
Super Cobra1981Adventure Vision, Arcade, Atari 2600, Atari 5200, Atari 8-bit, Casio PV-1000, ColecoVision, Dedicated handheld, Intellivision, MSX, Nintendo Switch, Odyssey 2, PC-6001, PlayStation 4, Sord M5, Windows, Xbox 360Entex Industries, Inc.3.35
Moon Patrol1982Atari 8-bitAvalon Hill Game Company, The...
Cosmic Fighter1982Commodore PET/CBM...
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back1982Atari 2600, IntellivisionParker Brothers3.61
Xevious1982Amstrad CPC, Apple II, Arcade, Atari 7800, Atari ST, BREW, Commodore 64, FM-7, Game Boy Advance, J2ME, NES, Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo Switch, PC-6001, PC-8000, PC-88, PC-98, PlayStation 4, SEGA Master System, Sharp MZ-80B/2000/2500, Sharp X1, Sharp Zaurus, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360, ZX SpectrumAtari Corporation4.09
Bomber Attack1982Apple II, Atari 8-bit, Commodore 64, Commodore PET/CBM, VIC-20Avalon Hill Game Company, The3.81
Tac/Scan1982Arcade, Atari 2600SEGA Enterprises, Inc.3.00
Parsec1982TI-99/4ATexas Instruments Incorporated4.25
Penetrator1982Commodore 64, Microbee, Timex Sinclair 2068, TRS-80, Windows, ZX SpectrumMelbourne House2.75
Space Jockey1982Atari 2600U.S. Games2.31
Annihilator1982Commodore 64, VIC-20Victory Software Corporation2.96
Worm War I1982Atari 2600, Atari 8-bitFox Video Games, Inc....
Freedom Fighters!1982Odyssey 2, Videopac+ G7400North American Philips Consumer Electronics Corp.2.60
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Selected Covers

Stargate Atari 2600 Front Cover
Front cover for Stargate
Defender Atari 2600 Front Cover
Front cover for Defender
Xevious Atari 7800 Front Cover
Front cover for Xevious
Worm War I Atari 2600 Front Cover
Front cover for Worm War I

Selected Screenshots

Title Screen
Screenshot from Stargate
Entering Highscore
Screenshot from Defender
Title screen
Screenshot from Cosmic Fighter
Title Screen
Screenshot from Xevious
Game group created by Unicorn Lynx (181445), additional games added to group by Cantillon (51330), PoliticallyCorrupt (2687), Ivan Bodhirarma (150), Rola (8277), Patrick Bregger (271282), POMAH (65677), piltdown_man (207773), GTramp (77634), S Olafsson (53678), 666gonzo666 (65884), Rik Hideto (461463), yenruoj_tsegnol_eht (!!ihsoy) (2625), H__L (5), Victor Vance (15283), Kam1Kaz3NL77 (459126), Jo ST (24055), chirinea (47006), is_that_rain_or_tears (664), Duncan Cross (2045), Infernos (36943), Flapco (45717), firefang9212 (76799), Sciere (780625), Kohler 86 (7958), Alaka (86772), Kabushi (257603), vileyn0id_8088 (21185), Zelon (10624), Lampbane (5329), lights out party (59802), Terok Nor (32358), Virgil (8604), Игги Друге (46314), JudgeDeadd (27647), Parf (7782), Ms. Tea (57082), Yearman (27088), Donatello (463), vedder (57628), 雷堂嬢太朗 -raido.jotaro- (60599) and jon marsh (52)
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