User Reviews

Zen and the Art of the 2-D Shooter GameCube Ye Olde Infocomme Shoppe (1691)
Brilliant, but tough GameCube Jon Collins (28)
A dieing genre... GameCube Exeox (45)
This is the evolution of the scrolling shooter to perfection. GameCube gametrader (233)
A challenging, original arcade shooter. Dreamcast big_brother (7)

Our Users Say

Platform Votes Score
Android Awaiting 5 votes...
Arcade Awaiting 5 votes...
Dreamcast 54 4.0
Fire OS Awaiting 5 votes...
GameCube 58 4.0
Nintendo Switch Awaiting 5 votes...
PlayStation 4 Awaiting 5 votes...
Windows Awaiting 5 votes...
Xbox 360 15 4.1
Combined User Score 127 4.0

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Xbox 360Destructoid (Apr 14, 2008)
After deliberating, I cannot, in good conscience, give this game anything but a perfect score. Whether you enjoy shooters or not, it is simply something that must be played. Treasure created a wonderful experience, and has delivered that very same experience to the 360, perfectly intact, accomplishing far more than it aspires to do, and offering much more than just a shmup.
GameCubeDiehard GameFan (Jun 04, 2003)
While the game itself is rather short, there are a lot of modes that will keep you busy for a long time. Aside from the main game mode, you have a practice mode, which allows you to hone your skills. Then there’s Conquest Mode, which is essentially an enhanced practice mode. In it, you will be able to see a demo of how a specific stage SHOULD be played in slow-motion, the option to play the stage in slow motion (to copy the demo), and finally, playing the stage normally. This can really speed up your mastery of the game. Finally, there’s Challenge Mode. This is where all your training pays off. You get three lives, and no continues whatsoever.
100 (GAF) (Apr 22, 2003)
Graphics, gameplay, music, replay...The only thing this game is missing is a fleshed-out story mode and maybe an exclusive boss or two. As it stands, Ikaruga should pride itself for being the spiritual sequel to Saturn's best shooter. And, just like the Saturn in '98, it's a great way to say goodbye to yet another Sega system in '02.
DreamcastThe Next Level (Sep 09, 2002)
With the difficulty and madness comes a weird zen-like trance focused completely around color; something different beyond the usual shooter zone that afflicts junkies of these games. This is more then mere bullet-dodging, which is quite a feat in and of itself. It is different enough that Ikaruga literally redefines the way the shooter game is perceived. Innovation at its best is displayed here, wonderfully enchanting, fine-tuned to perfection, and unlike anything else in its field.
GameCubeDiehard GameFan (Jun 04, 2003)
Bottom Line is this people. The US has been given a game that normally wouldn’t make it over here. An exceptional game that takes skill to play. A game that is beautiful to watch and a lot of fun to play. It’s reason alone to buy a Game Cube. I can’t stress enough how important it is that Ikaruga made it stateside and how important it is for you to support these localizations. Because if games like Ikaruga fail in the sales area, we’re going to be stuck with the same crappy platformers and churned out piles of crap from Electronic Arts that we’ve grown accustomed to. Supporting this game is telling distributors, HEY! We know that there’s lots of great games never leaving Japan, and we want some of them!’ So if you can, go buy this game. You won’t regret it for a second.
95 (Dec 13, 2002)
Sólo espero que ésta review os haga mirar al juego con otros ojos, y que no dudéis en haceros con él, ya que representa la esencia del videojuego llevada al límite. Es Treasure. Es Ikaruga.
Xbox 360Worth Playing (May 21, 2008)
If you're not sold on Ikaruga, then you probably aren't hardcore enough for it. Even if you are hardcore enough for it, you'll be chewed up, spit out, and left out to dry. Players who can beat this game are a very persistent, exceptionally skilled few, and those who have high scores and proper replays posted for it are even fewer. If you are ready for a game that you will play again and again, getting a teensy bit further each time and loving it more with each piece of perfection you land, then Ikaruga will be the best $10 you've spent on gaming in a long time. When a game's only weakness is its online multiplayer, and the game was essentially made to be two people next to each other anyway, you know that you did it right. Treasure certainly did, and then they outdid themselves again in porting it to the Xbox 360.
93 (Sep 06, 2006)
Pues no queda nada más por decir, Treasure ha hecho un trabajo excelente en todos los sentidos. Pocos títulos rebosan magia como hace este matamarcianos y encima pueden decir que exprimen el apartado gráfico de su plataforma tan bien. Lástima de la elevadísima dificultad y la poca duración del juego, porque el sistema de control basado en la bipolaridad y los chains es tan bueno que si no fuese por esos dos detalles no estaríamos ante una obra maestra, sino ante una opera magna.
GameCubeGameZone (Jul 09, 2003)
Overall, I would recommend Ikaruga to anyone. A lot of games these days would only appeal to certain audiences, but Ikaruga is the kind of game I think anyone could enjoy. Excellent graphics and sound mixed with challenging and intuitive gameplay is always a winner in my book for any game. Sadly not too many people will play Ikaruga. Games like Ikaruga usually don’t get a lot of attention, so the people that do play it need to tell everyone how cool it is. So that’s what I’m doing now…go play Ikaruga.
Xbox 360Cheat Code Central (Apr, 2008)
Ikaruga might sound like a short game, metering in at a paltry five levels. But trust me, this is not some flash in the pan game. It took me almost six hours just to get through the first three levels on easy with all the handicaps listed above. It is a truly challenging game, and is probably one of the best games out on Live Arcade. It challenges the notion that all the Live Arcade games are of the casual sect, and it definitely gives the hardcore crowd something to sink their teeth into. So if you're ready for a challenge and have 800 Microsoft points to burn, you simply can't go wrong with Ikaruga!
GameCubeDigital Entertainment News (den) (Sep 13, 2003)
Outstanding in every sense, Ikaruga is immensely difficult and just as enjoyable. Though it excels in all areas, the gameplay clearly forms the foundation. Taking a simple idea and expanding upon it in every conceivable direction, Treasure has created a refined and inventive shooter that challenges and rewards its players. It requires a great deal of investment and finesse to make sense of the on-screen chaos, but therein lies the fun. Old school is cool.
GameCube64 Power / big.N / N Games (Apr, 2003)
(PAL version)
Ohne das Spiel auf eine Stufe mit einem richtigen 3D-Spiel der neuesten Generation hieven zu wollen, kann man selbstbewusst verkünden, dass die Grafik zu gefallen weiß. Gegnerschaften, vor allem die Endgegner, sind liebevoll designt und stellen richtig kleine Kunstwerke dar. Die zweidimensionale Ballerei findet übrigens vor fotorealistischen Hintergründen statt. Explosionen und Animationen geben ebenfalls keinen Grund zum Mosern. Gleiches gilt für dne Sound des Spiels. Ohrwurmige Melodien und eine Robotstimme, die Boni oder Punktzahlen kommentiert, schaffen eine motivierende Akustik, um die nächste Punktegrenze zu überschreiben. Sicher muss man für diese Art des Spiels geboren sein, doch Ikaruga ist nun mal eines der besten Shoot'em-Ups überhaupt.
GameCube64 Power / big.N / N Games (Feb, 2003)
Dank des guten 2-Spieler-Modus und des genialen Leveldesigns lädt Ikaruga immer wieder zu einer kurzweiligen Runde zwischendurch ein. Wer mit Shoot‘em-Ups nichts anfangen kann, wird die kurze Spielzeit von rund einer halben Stunde kritisieren, alle anderen bekommen den besten Genrevertreter seit Jahren geboten, und das konsolenübergreifend.
Xbox 360Co-Optimus (Apr 14, 2008)
Additionally, the simple act of watching replays from the leaderboards is quite enjoyable. The game is very appealing, visually, and the patterns of bullets in some areas is almost hypnotic. Watching a replay a master player traveling through some of the toughest sections of the game while maintaining a perfect chain combo and not dying is awe-inspiring. Given the difficulty of the game, the immense replay factor, and the low price, and of course the awesome co-op play, I highly recommend Ikaruga. This is especially true for fans of the genre.
90 (Sep 20, 2009)
Ikaruga ist ein spielbares Kunstwerk. Dies bestätigt sich durch die Grafik, durch die Musik und durch das Gameplay. Wo andere Spiele mit komplexen Spielsystem daherkommen, beeindruckt Ikaruga mit einem genialen schwarz-weiß Prinzip. Wo sie mit photorealistischen Texturen versuchen, das Spielerauge zu beeindrucken, hypnotisiert einen Treasure´s Shooter mit einem eigenen, wundervollen Stil. Kritik üben will und kann man an diesem Titel nicht. Jeder Dreamcast Besitzer sollte im Besitz dieses nicht ganz günstigen Meisterwerks sein, wenn er auch nur etwas mit dieser Art Spiel anfangen kann. Danke, Treasure!
GameCubeOriginal Gamer (Jan 04, 2009)
Although the game is short, about an hour or so, this is an arcade shooter which isn't meant for long hours of play. The game is full of addictive fun and difficult levels making it a good game. Its innovative gameplay is what makes this game truly great.
Xbox (Jan 21, 2011)
Treasure nous offre là un excellent shoot'em up comme on aimerait en voir plus souvent ! Mélangeant un gameplay novateur, cinq niveaux magnifiques et une bande-son digne de celle de son prédécesseur Radiant Silvergun, Ikaruga vous promet des heures de plaisir à tenter d'avoir le plus gros score !
90 (Jan 21, 2011)
Treasure nous offre là un excellent shoot'em up comme on aimerait en voir plus souvent ! Mélangeant un gameplay novateur, cinq niveaux magnifiques et une bande-son digne de celle de son prédécesseur Radiant Silvergun, Ikaruga vous promet des heures de plaisir à tenter d'avoir le plus gros score !
DreamcastInsert Credit (Sep 24, 2002)
I’ve always preferred Treasure’s platform games. I like them for Silhouette Mirage, Gunstar Heroes, and games like these. So think of that while reading the following: Ikaruga is my favorite Treasure shooter thus far. I’ve probably already played Ikaruga more than I have Radiant Silvergun, and I’ve owned RS for nearly four years. It’s a hard game…but worth the effort. For the unlockable secrets, for the excellent character art, for the Treasure legacy, buy this game. Buy it before some jerk tries to sell it to you for $90 on ebay. No, it’s not my favorite shooter. But I got my money’s worth. It doesn’t matter really…you’re going to buy this anyway. Aren’t you?
GameCubeNintendo Life (Apr 02, 2009)
When it's all said and done, there's really nothing more to say except that if you're a shooter fan, you absolutely must own at least one version of this masterpiece. There aren't many shooters on the planet that can stand toe to toe with the mighty Ikaruga and even at the $80+ the Gamecube version of the game sells for on many auction sites nowadays, it's still more than worth the price of admission. One word of advice, though. If you're going to succeed at Ikaruga, you'd better bring your "A" game for this one or you'll get your butt handed to you on a silver platter. Of course, that's what ultimately makes the game so much fun to play. It's very easy to pick up and play, but nearly impossible to master. Just ask anyone that's played it and actually lived to tell about it.
Xbox 360Gamestyle (Jul 23, 2009)
With only five levels one could argue that there isn’t much to Ikaruga. Yet what it lacks in size it more than up for in terms of playability and challenge. Games seem intent on becoming ever more complex and often lose sight of what makes them fun to play. For just 400 points Ikaruga is a bargain and remains one of the best shooters of all time.
90 (Nov 16, 2003)
With a very clever game design and a difficulty curve destined to keep you playing the game until you’re one of the worldwide best players at it, Ikaruga is highly recommended for players who have ever enjoyed a space-shooter in the past, and want something that won’t disappoint. Sure there were plenty of space shooter copycats, if you will, during the early days of the video-game craze. However, we challenge ourselves to pick out the shooter games. Ikaruga, pronounced 'EE-KAH-rue-gah' for the GameCube, will really change our views on the space-shooter genre.
Xbox 360Good Game (Apr 21, 2008)
Nowadays good games are veering away from this sort of 100% scripted experience and player punishment. But the unique gameplay and cool levels are WAY more than enough to ignore that. 9/10 rubber chickeney finch things from me.
Xbox 360Good Game (Apr 21, 2008)
It's an old favourite from the Dreamcast, and one of the hardest games you'll ever play. Its playlength is shamelessly due to its difficulty, but that’s ok, that’s the type of game it’s supposed to be! Some will find it too hard, but luckily you can download a trial version to try out the first level. 9/10 native rubber finches...
Xbox 360TeamXbox (Apr 09, 2008)
Without a doubt, Ikaruga has earned a spot as one of the top 2D arcade shooters of all time, right alongside such classics as Galaga, R-Type, and other well known hits. The game’s unique spin on a classic formula, coupled with a difficulty level sure to challenge even the most hardcore gamers, make the game an experience just waiting to scratch your itchy trigger finger. Ikaruga easily earns its wings as one of the truly elite “must have” titles to hit the Xbox LIVE Arcade.
Xbox 360GamePro (US) (May 28, 2008)
There are so many shooters on the Xbox 360 that you'd think it was originally designed to be a training device for the military. Name the type of shooter you want and it can be found but if gamers aren't careful they end up with something a little too hardcore. The recently released Ikaruga falls into this category. Unless you're a diehard shooter fan it'll give you a beating worse than the one Shane Falco took in the '96 Sugar Bowl, but if you have the skills and are up to the challenge this is a must own.
Xbox 360IGN (Apr 07, 2008)
There may not ever be a better 2D shooter on Xbox Live Arcade. Ikaruga is that good. The only downside to the game is exactly what makes it so compelling for most; the challenge. Casual gamers may find themselves overwhelmed and unable to scratch the surface of this classic. That would be a shame, though, as this is easily one of the best titles on the Live Arcade.
GameCubeMaXoE Games (2003)
En Conclusion, Ikaruga est donc un hit, un shoot'em up incroyable, et une fois que le jeu est lancé, il est difficile de lacher la manette! Cependant, Atari a stoppé la distribution du jeu en Europe... Vous le trouverez peut-etre en occasion.
GameCubeGame Informer Magazine (May, 2003)
Nevertheless, Ikaruga remains one of the best shooters to date. Let's hope it sells well enough to warrant this genre's continued existence.
Xbox 360GamingExcellence (May 12, 2008)
With the addition of local and online co-op modes you can easily play through the game with a friend, something you might find to be a necessity as you try to master the game. If you’re willing to invest the time and energy to learn how to play the game and master its unique combat mechanics then you are in for a quite enjoyable time. For just 800 Microsoft points you get what is possibly one of the best games released on the Xbox Live Arcade and the single best top-down shoot ‘em up of all time.
Xbox 360Thunderbolt Games (Apr 13, 2008)
You can get Ikaruga for 800 space bucks (that's MS points), which is quite a reasonable price. It’s frustrating but satisfying at the same time, and I can’t think of any other game that represents the genre so well.
Xbox 360DarkZero (Apr 16, 2008)
To end, Ikaruga is well worth the 800 points, and like Rez before it, even if you have owned the previous version it deserves to be seen in HD. Replay modes are included and the Xbox 360 analogue stick works a treat. I just hope Treasure see fit to release more shumps and see XBLA as a home for their stunning games.
DreamcastDigital Press - Classic Video Games (Dec 26, 2003)
The big question, of course, is should you go out and get this game? Yes. Absolutely yes. If you liked Radiant Silvergun or you love a good shooter, then definitely find a way to get this game - if you're like me, then it will become one of the crown jewels of your Dreamcast collection. For those of you that want to play Ikaruga but don't have a Dreamcast, take heart - Infogrames has released the game for the Nintendo GameCube in the U.S., and it's just as good as the Dreamcast version.
One of the best aspects of Ikaruga, at least in my opinion is that once you’re accustomed to the controls and gameplay mechanics, it’s a blast just to pick up and play. The most fulfilling aspect of Ikaruga isn’t beating the game necessarily, but playing for high scores (think arcade games like Crazy Taxi or Robotron). A two player mode, an online ranking system and some time or score-based unlockables add to the replay value of Ikaruga, although the regular game is plenty enough to keep you coming back for years to come. While Ikaruga is certainly one of my favorite GameCube games, it’s definitely not for everyone. A high difficulty level will alienate a larger audience from appreciating the game, but it’s just right for those that miss the challenges and sheer fun of yesteryear. For old school shooter fans and twitch-action fans, however, this is a must-buy.
DreamcastDefunct Games (Feb 06, 2005)
Ten years ago the market was filled with hundreds of 2D shooting games, but now gamers are less interested in space ships, and are more into the whole first person shooter craze. But there's enough room for a game like Ikaruga, a game that isn't the more revolutionary game you'll ever play, but does manage to remind you why you loved arcade shooters in the first place.
Xbox (Apr 21, 2008)
Es ist wirklich, wirklich schwer; so schwer, dass Spieler, die schon mit Omega Five ihre Schwierigkeiten hatten, hier besser die Finger davon lassen. Ja, es wirkt anfangs unfair, und ja, es erfordert dauernde Wiederholung der wenigen Levels, bis man den Aufbau, die Angriffsmuster der Gegner sowie -ganz wichtig- die richtigen Stellen für den Polaritätswechsel im Blut hat. Aber genau das ist die Faszination Ikaruga, die Fans dazu bringt, für die Dreamcast-Version unverschämte Preise zu zahlen. In sich ist die 360-Version eine perfekte Umsetzung: Sie bietet all die Vorteile des Originals und erweitert sie noch. Das macht sie zu einem Pflichtkauf für alle Arcade-Spartaner, die kein Problem mit Frustwochen und ständigen Wiederholungen haben.
GameCubeQuebec Gamers (Sep 10, 2004)
Si de bons réflexes sont nécessaires ne serait-ce simplement que pour survivre, il vous faudra analyser et mémoriser les séquences de jeux pour vous en tirer avec des pointages dignifiants. Cette façon compétitive de jouer que peu de joueurs risquent de côtoyer, est ce qui fait en vérité tout le charme d'Ikaruga, c'est ce qui en fait un véritable chef d'ouvre. L'engouement pour le jeu devient alors maladif, et ceux qui aiment chasser des montagnes de points seront plus que satisfaits. Parcourir le jeu en tentant d'optimiser son pointage via le système de chaînes est un vrai régal. Ikaruga prend à ce moment des allures de puzzle et tenter de détruire les différentes vagues d'ennemis le plus efficacement possible fera grandement appel à votre sens logique. Il faudra au joueur sérieux entrer dans un état de transe pour obtenir les résultats optimums.
GameCubeGameSpot (Apr 14, 2003)
Fans of space shooters owe it to themselves to play Ikaruga, a game that was designed both to impress their sensibilities and to challenge every ounce of their being. Yet anyone who appreciates what makes a truly great game should be able to recognize Ikaruga for its elegant design, aesthetic beauty, and sheer challenge. Make no mistake--it's not nostalgia for a bygone era of gaming that makes Ikaruga so appealing. Rather, it's that Ikaruga takes 20 years of great ideas in game design and somehow manages to put an entirely new spin on them, not for novelty's sake, but for the sake of making a game that's both familiar and utterly unique.
Xbox 360GamingHeaven / DriverHeaven (Apr 14, 2008)
Ikagura is the cream of the crop of arcade shooters on Xbox live, it is extremely challenging and will bring back many memories for fans of the original title. It is extremely difficult, so gamers just out for a quick adrenaline rush may be overwhelmed, however with a little perseverance the rewards are there to be reapt.
Nintendo SwitchSwitch Era (Jun 01, 2018)
Ikaruga is hardcore shmups dream. At least if you are a massive shmup fan you most likely already know about it and decided to purchase it the minute it hits eShop. It is a title that offers a challenge to just simply beat and then to get the high scores demands speed, precision, memory and patience. Oh…so much patience. It succeeds in most areas, but it should be worth noting that it’s difficulty is unforgiving and more importantly a couple more levels would be appreciated.
GameCubeNintendo Difference (Jun 08, 2003)
Le top en matière de shoot’em up , un pur régal pour les fans d’arcade et de jeux soignés. De plus vous pourrez vous entraîner avec un ami pour élaborer des stratégies de survie en vous répartissant les 2 couleurs. Vendu à un prix plus faible que la plupart des jeux Gamecube (environ 50€) , il serait dommage de vous priver de ce petit bijou (attention cependant aux joueurs manquant de patience et se décourageant rapidement).
85 (2004)
Ikaruga est une fois de plus un grand jeu signé Treasure. Il reprend les fondations du shoot'em up mais on renovant le système et s'impose sans aucun problème comme LE shoot'em up sur GameCube. Un jeu incontournable pour tous joueurs qui se respectent.
85 (Jun 04, 2003)
Wie bewertet man ein qualitativ hochwertiges Spiel, dass aber wahrscheinlich nur die Freaks über Wochen fesseln wird können? Otto-Normal-Spieler wird sich relativ schnell frustriert von Icaruga abwenden, weil selbst auf easy ein Durchspielen unmöglich erscheint. Wir meinen: Wer sich hier festbeißen möchte, der soll dies bitte mit Hochgenuss tun, aber nicht hinterher beschweren, dass euch das Spiel zu schwer ist.
GameCubeNetjak (Apr 15, 2003)
Ikaruga isn't for anyone. I should have made that disclaimer at the beginning of the review; but it's not. Ikaruga is for that special breed of gamer, who knows gameplay is more important than graphics; and skill is more important than power-up's. Believe me when I say "misery never felt so good". The game is tough. Not just, "I gotta go to" tough; but "toss yer controller across the room and cuss" tough. I can't tell you how many times I shut the Cube off and gave the screen my patented "double middle finger" technique. Rent the game before you buy it, especially if you aren't familiar with the genre. But, if you are a shooter gamer at heart and miss the scene; you won't be sorry.
GameCubeGame Freaks 365 (2003)
Ikaruga is a game that hasn't gotten near the credit it deserves. If you are a fan of games like this, you owe it to yourself to give Ikaruga a try. Despite its difficulty, you will not regret doing so.
Xbox 360Game Over Online (May 05, 2008)
I'm surprised to see Ikaruga on Xbox Live Arcade, because it's really not what I would've thought as a casual game. It's a hardcore game by a developer that targets a hardcore audience. I recommend it to those who grew up in arcades, those who enjoy a challenge, and casual gamers looking for something they can pick up and play. Becoming actually good at it requires a substantial time investment, though, so for all the elegance and style of its design, it can be remarkably frustrating.
85 (May 28, 2003)
Ikaruga signe un retour magistral sur la console de Nintendo. Le jeu a beau être similaire à la version Dreamcast (quelques modes supplémentaires sur GameCube), on ne se lasse pas de ce shoot'em up à la difficulté obsédante.
Xbox 360Gaming Target (Apr 11, 2008)
At 800 points or 10 dollars, the XBLA version of Ikaruga is the cheapest version. The GameCube version runs for around $30 and the Dreamcast version goes for around $50 to $60. Add in that these two versions do not have the HD graphics, leaderboards, or those achievements you know you want, and those ten dollars for the XBLA version starts to look a lot more satisfying. Bottom line, if you are a fan of shoot 'em ups or just do not feel like dragging out the Dreamcast, you will not be disappointed in this updated version of a classic game.
DreamcastNetjak (Apr 08, 2004)
Ikaruga lacks the variety of other shooters (GunBird, for example) where power-ups let you destroy robots and beasts with a nice variety of missiles, lasers, flying purple birds and beam-shots that look like the holy cross. Setting that aside, Treasure's last Dreamcast offering is highly original and tops even its last game (Bangai-O) in graphics and playability. It is also difficult even when set to easy, assuring that even those with little confidence in their gaming skill will find no self-esteem boost here. Although the GameCube version is already out, I would recommend Treasure's Dreamcast version. With Radiant Silvergun going for 200 bucks on eBay and the Dreamcast progressively fading off into the annals of gaming history, Ikaruga has every chance of becoming a valuable rarity.
Xbox 360XBox Front (Apr 09, 2008)
Auf der Dreamcast habe ich Ikaruga bis zur Ektase gezockt, auf Xbox Live Arcade hat mich die süchtig machende Japano-Droge erneut infiziert. Der Vertikal-Shooter ist keine bloße 1:1-Portierung, das Spiel setzt zwar auf die altbekannte Form, garniert diese aber mit dem Zuckerguss einer ausgefeilten Xbox Live-Komponente sowie einer Replay-Funktion. Der 2-Spieler-Koop-Modus ist eine echte Bereicherung, leider plagen einige Verzögerungen die Online-Schlachten. Hoffentlich wird der kleine Fehler noch ausgemerzt.
GameCubeIGN (Apr 09, 2003)
I do have to mention that Ikaruga is a shooter and it's a shooter-fan's shooter. If you don't like intense, mind-numbing shooting action, then you're going to hate Ikaruga. However, if you grew up on heavy doses of Ikari Warriors and Graduis, then you'll probably feel right at home with this one-of-a-kind blast-a-thon. Five more stages would have been nice, but that's nothing a sequel can't cure.
Nintendo SwitchVideo Chums (May 26, 2018)
Ikaruga is a classic shoot 'em up in every sense of the word and I'm happy to say that it holds up beautifully after over 15 years. Its polarity mechanic and breathtaking atmosphere certainly put it head and shoulders above many other entries in the genre.
82 (Jun 17, 2003)
Some people might say that Ikaruga is not for everyone but I have to disagree. It is the same circular argument that assumes certain games aren’t suited to a European/mass market so they won’t release it, or if they do they think it will never be a huge hit so little effort is put into the publicity. The brilliant ICO and Rez on the PS2 are good examples of this. Hopefully the release of Ikaruga will be a great success, it deserves nothing less. In turn it may also provide impetus for more diverse titles to make their way here. With any luck it may also spur on a few more games in the genre to be produced. Granted if you’ve never played a vertically scrolling shoot ‘em up before it is a trial by fire and that may put some people off. But Ikaruga is a damn good game plain and simple. Even though the genre is very old, Ikaruga is original, unique and a welcome breath of fresh air.
GameCubeneXGam (2003)
Mit Sicherheit ein Freaks-only Spiel. Die haben dann auch das Sitzfleisch um sich mit dem wirklich fordernden Schwierigkeitsgrad abzugeben. Alle anderen überlegen sich eine Investition gründlich und spielen am besten vorher mal an. Allerdings - hat euch erstmal das Fieber gepackt, kommt ihr nicht mehr so schnell von der Konsole weg!
Xbox 360Xboxdynasty (XD) (Apr 08, 2008)
Action-Scroll-Shooter gibt es wie Sand am Meer, aber wirklich gute Ballerspiele dieser Art sind da schon schwerer auszumachen. Ikaruga gehört mit Sicherheit zu den oberen Dutzend und kann sich dank toller neuer Features mit Sicherheit in viele neue Spielerherzen schießen. Fans der Dreamcast Version oder des Gamecube Ablegers schlagen hier sowieso blind zu und fühlen sich in alte Zeiten zurückversetzt. Dank Replay-Speicherfunktion und Xbox LIVE Co-op Modus gibt es für jeden etwas Neues zu entdecken und die 5 Level machen wirklich sehr viel Spaß. Doch immer mehr Spieler stellen sich die Frage, ob 800 Microsoft Points, also knapp 10,- Euro für so ein Spiel wirklich angemessen sind. Sicher ist ein günstigerer Preis immer besser, aber bei Ikaruga sind die 800 Punkte auf jeden Fall gerechtfertig.
Xbox 360Giant Bomb (Apr 21, 2008)
The only serious obstacle, however, lies with you and your own personal taste for top-down shooters. Just because it's great doesn't mean it's accessible. So keep that in mind as you weigh your options for this $10 XBLA download.
Xbox (UK) (Apr 09, 2008)
That said, there are scant few extras here, as if the four-man development team knew that the extraordinary challenge of making it through the game's five stages in a single credit while also vying for a high score would be content enough. There is no dead weight to the game, either in terms of presentation, design or content. You either fall for this Spartan approach or find its undiluted focus too much to bear. In Ikaruga there is no refuge, and there's honesty to this black and white approach that demands respect. But will that respect will turn to adoration? Well, that very much depends on how hard you'll work to make your own memories herein.
80 (May 23, 2003)
Für Arcade-Fans alter Schule ist Ikaruga ein echtes Juwel. Das Prinzip des Farbwechsels und die daraus resultierenden Anforderungen sind erfrischend neu und lassen schnell vergessen, dass es hier keine zusätzlichen Waffen wie beispielsweise bei der R-Type-Serie gibt. Aber wieso ist das Spiel nach fünf Abschnitten vorbei? Soll hier der teilweise exorbitante Schwierigkeitsgrad kaschiert werden, der allerdings bei echten Fans für die genau richtige Herausforderung sorgt? Wie dem auch sei: Ikaruga macht einen Heidenspaß und kann allen Anhängern dieses scheinbar ausgestorbenen Genres ans Herz gelegt werden, zumal die freispielbaren Gimmicks und Modi für zusätzliche Motivation sorgen. Auch Grafik und Sounduntermalung befinden sich auf einem hohen Niveau und sorgen so für ein kurzweiliges und hammerhartes, aber leider viel zu kurzes Vergnügen.
GameCubeAdrenaline Vault, The (AVault) (May 28, 2003)
While striking visuals and retro-themed music make up the game’s framework, Ikaruga‘s foundation is undoubtedly built on innovative, engaging and downright challenging gameplay. This title is a keeper for those of us who vividly remember all the meals we sacrificed so we could use our lunch money to feed our arcade addiction.
DreamcastEdge (Oct 10, 2002)
Such a simple mechanic brings about a strategy hitherto unseen in shooters of this ilk. Where Radiant Silvergun had three-way colour-coding, it was still possible to finish the game without bothering to ‘chain-up’ multiple hits of the same hue. Not so with Ikaruga: one is often caught in the crossfire of both colours and flicking back and forth between alignments is of paramount importance. The end of the third level is a mash that forces the player to negotiate tiny rotating gaps, constantly switching modes while avoiding physical barriers and opposing 360-degree fire. The fourth level is a Herculean task. Treasure has once again distilled a potent, unforgiving, stunning, dramatic and overall monstrous number that, while not completely innovative (having adopted the self-referential colour system), thrills and enrages in equal measure. A case for the cream of the crop? Undoubtedly.
Xbox 360UOL Jogos (Apr 15, 2008)
"Ikaruga" é aquele tipo de jogo que conquista pelo desafio proporcionado. Sua mecânica baseada em polaridade é tão sólida e singular que o diferencia de qualquer outro jogo do gênero, exigindo reflexos rápidos e habilidade nos controles. Não é um jogo para todos, pois a dificuldade elevada pode afastar os jogadores mais impacientes. Contudo, momentos intensos e batalhas marcantes compensam todo esforço feito pelo jogador.
GameCubeGames TM (Jan, 2003)
Ikaruga takes the vertical shooter formula back to its roots. In doing so, Treasure has added its own unique twist and proved beyond all doubt that less is certainly more.
GameCubeGame Informer Magazine (May, 2003)
I like what Treasure and Infogrames have do to innovate in a seemingly tapped genre. The shift between dark and light keeps you alert, and the environments are gorgeous. You'll either have to crook your neck or tilt your TV to play the intended perspective, but Ikaruga is worth the effort. I still prefer Mars Matrix on Dreamcast, though.
Xbox 360Totally Gaming Network (Apr 18, 2008)
The recommendation comes with a stark warning though, Ikaruga is a serious game, the highest benchmark by which all other arcade shooters are inevitably measured. It requires some serious skill so not everyone will be able to measure up and some players will swiftly become frustrated and annoyed. Perseverance does reap rewards and there's something incredibly satisfying about seeing your world rankings creep up into quadruple figures (if you get your ranking higher than that, I don't wanna know OK?)
Xbox 360MS Xbox World (Apr 24, 2008)
At first glance, or even first play, (as at first glance the game looks quite nice) you will say to yourself ‘not another ported arcade shooter’ but then when you give the game 30 minutes, you’ll beat yourself up. This is a decent & solid vertical arcade style shooter, it brings variety in the form of modes and options, and it offers a twist in gameplay features with the sophisticated ‘polarity’ mechanic, and to top it… it looks pretty.
Xbox (Apr 18, 2008)
Ikaruga is zonder twijfel één van de beste arcadeshooters ooit gemaakt. Hoewel de Xbox Live Arcade-versie niet veel veranderd is tegenover de eerdere versies op de Dreamcast en Gamecube, is dit spel absoluut de 800 punten waard. Mocht je snel gedemotiveerd worden door een zeer hoog moeilijkheidsniveau dan raad ik je echter aan om niet aan Ikaruga te beginnen. Mocht je geen probleem hebben met een uitdaging op zijn tijd, dan zul je vele uren zoet zijn met deze game.
80 (UK) (Jun 17, 2003)
Despite our woolly ineptitude, we enjoyed Ikaruga a great deal, and with a serious investment of time we're almost convinced we'd get good at it eventually. The limited number of chapters (five) makes the task slightly less daunting, and with so few gaming alternatives out there, this is somewhat unique in the next-gen marketplace these days.
GameCubeGamePro (US) (Apr 14, 2003)
Ikaruga is not for everyone. There's no point in being unrealistic here. It's for that rare breed of gamer who isn't afraid of inhuman challenge, who spends days practicing their routines, who will do anything to beat his last high score. If that describes you...well, chances are you've already imported the Dreamcast version. But no matter. Treasure's latest separates itself from other shooters with its odd color system your ship can flip between black and white hues, and all enemies and bullets are similarly monochrome.
GameCubeGameSpy (Apr 06, 2003)
All in all, even though the mechanics are so novel and beautiful, the bone-crushing difficulty (yes, even when it is set to easy) will alienate a lot of players who might otherwise get a lot of fun out of a game like this. But, at the very least, Ikaruga has established its place in video game history. These days, more and more games consume multimillion dollar budgets and boast development staffs of 30, 40, or more. With Ikaruga's original team of only three, Treasure has metaphorically slapped the entire industry in the face by proving that that great games and game ideas are not dependent on high technology, giant budgets, or giant staffs. That slap would resonate a lot more soundly if only they hadn't made the game so freaking hard.
78 (Mar, 2005)
As I said before, this game is really hard, and I would not recommend it to anyone who is not a big fan of shooters. It is not a game you can play while carrying on a conversation with anyone. It requires complete and utter devotion and will probably leave you with a headache. It is also addictive and gives a sense of extreme satisfaction when you clear an area you could not before. Definitely worth experiencing at least once.
GameCubeThe Video Game Critic (May 16, 2003)
The enemies aren't very interesting, and the backgrounds reminded me of Silpheed for the PS2. Another issue is the screen size. Being a direct arcade port, the game is played on a rather narrow strip running down the center of the screen. An alternate option is to play the horizontal mode, where you play the game like a side-scroller. A two-player simultaneous mode is also included. Ikaruga is a fascinating shooter and it's challenging as hell. Shooter fans in particular will have a field day with this one.
DreamcastThe Video Game Critic (Aug 10, 2008)
There are plenty of options including the ability to change screen orientation (horizontal or vertical) and automatically save high scores. Whether you play it on the Dreamcast or GameCube, Ikaruga is a fascinating title all serious shooter fans should have in their collections.
GameCubeThe Next Level (Jun 12, 2003)
To recap, Ikaruga is the most simplistic, and incredibly difficult game that's readily available. Don't let the challenge scare you away from trying it though. Too many gamers and game reviewers treat a challenging game like it had to have been some sort of mistake. We live in the day and age of infinite lives and continues, after all, so how could someone make a game purposely tough to finish? If you're bored with typical trial-and-error-ware, which is nearly every game of the past five years, you really need to give Ikaruga a shot. It's not often that a game comes along that's challenging enough to actually be rewarding, but Ikaruga nails it. Much In the same way that Super Monkey Ball and Stuntman proved that being a man wasn't always about killing the hooker, the challenge offered within Treasure's latest offerings will make you a man, and a proud one.
GameCubeLawrence (May 16, 2003)
But the bread and butter is the harcore shooting with a twist and a welcome challenge. This is truly a shooter for the shooter fan.
WindowsShoost (Apr 24, 2014)
In the end, Ikaruga is a very pretty and fun game with a series of faults that keep it from appealing to everyone. It is, however, a good place to start if you want to get into bullet-hell games and want to ease into it. Just hope that you don’t develop any bad habits from its polarity system!
GameCubeGameCell UK (2003)
Ikaruga is an essential purchase if you like games of this type, but if you're not a fan of the genre then just don't bother. The same applies if you're just a casual gamer, this a is very hardcore game, plenty of late nights can be spent on JUST trying to get to the next stage, or beat your latest high score. It can be a pretty hard game to start playing too, but it can easily suck you in.
GameCubeDeaf Gamers (2003)
The game is not perfect. There are only five rather short stages. Also, there is a distinct lack of variety in your ship's weapons; only the main and homing lasers, with no power ups or smart bombs to collect. Additionally, the chain combo scoring system doesn't really add to the game, just making it more difficult still if you try to follow it. Finally, the very hard difficulty level makes Ikaruga an acquired taste. Progress will only be gained after your ship is destroyed again and again, and learning the subsequent enemy attack patterns. For some gamers this will prove a challenge, but for others it will prove too frustrating.
Xbox (Apr 21, 2008)
This game is to die for. There is absolutely no other game on the XBLA I would recommend purchasing or spending your hard earned Microsoft points on than Ikaruga. This game is everything that can be right with games. Nice graphics, decent sound but most importantly a challenging game that does not insult the intelligence of the gamer. Any gaming skills you have built up prior to playing this game will be put to usage in Ikaruga. This is the game that separates the really talented gamers from the occasional Mario Party player. I just cannot speak highly enough of this game. If you ever take my word on anything, take it on Ikaruga. The game is the best thing to hit the XBLA yet.