Summary:

Take a step back in time this weekend with these four classic arcade shooters for your Mac, iPhone or iPad.

Raiden Legacy

Games for the Weekend is a weekly feature aimed at helping you avoid doing something constructive with your downtime. Each Friday we’ll be recommending a game for Mac, iPhone or iPad that we think is awesome. Here is one cool enough to keep you busy during this weekend.

Raiden LegacyRaiden Legacy ($1.99 Universal, $9.99 Mac) is not just another top-down shooter built in the classic arcade style that created the genre, it is actually four classic top-down shooter arcade games.

When playing an action-packed shooter like Raiden, you must concentrate on each little movement on the screen. Avoiding every stream of enemy fire is not just difficult, it is downright impossible sometimes. There are hidden tanks, squadrons of fighters, rotating gun turrets and helicopters to contend with. The best chance you have is to keep firing as you navigate your way through all of the bullets and missiles. As you maneuver to stay alive, your only hope for victory is that the path you take will do enough damage to the enemy to wipe them out. This makes learning the navigation controls an important part of winning the game.

Raiden Legacy

There are five sensitivity settings that control your flight path: Arcade Touch, Fast Touch, Fast Touch 120, Fast Touch 150 and Fast Touch 200. Each changes how fast the plane moves around the screen. On the slow end, Arcade Touch simulates a feel similar to when the game was first introduced in arcades; the plane for the most part remains under your finger as you slide your finger around the screen. As the plane moves faster and faster with each of the four different Fast Touch settings, you will find that you do not have to move your finger very much to gain access to the entire screen. Being able to move quickly is important at times when there is a break in the fighting. That is when you try to make your way towards the in-game power ups.

Raiden Legacy

As you fly through enemy territory, there are floating medallions that will make your plane more powerful when you fly over them.  There are many styles of guns, additional fighter planes that fly along side you, massive bombs, intelligent missiles and bonus points that you can collect. The bombs and missiles can be fired by two on-screen buttons and the points will help you achieve a higher ranking on the leader boards when the game is over. How often you can reach each of these power ups depends on which of the three different difficulty settings you choose. Each setting affects how aggressively the enemy will fight. The less aggressive the enemy fights, the more often you will be able to navigate your way to the power ups. The easier settings also give you more lives per game, and allow you to continue play up to nine times when you do run out of lives. Even on the easiest settings, you will be hard-pressed to get through all of the game’s content in a single weekend.

Raiden Legacy

Raiden Legacy comes with all four of the original arcade titles, Raiden, Raiden Fighters, Raiden Fighters 2 and Raiden Fighters Jet. Each of these titles can be played in arcade, mission or training mode.  Game play remains consistent throughout all of the titles.  Each level starts out easy and ultimately leads up to a boss battle.  Bosses have multiple weapons that fire in various patterns that you need to learn in order to defeat them.  Think of navigating the fire patterns as a sort of moving maze that you need to get through in order to win.

Raiden Legacy

The iOS version of the game supports iCade, which is a series of external game controllers and cabinets that you can attach to your device to give it more of a nostalgic arcade feel. The OS X version of the game supports external gamepad controllers.  It will even allow you to play the game in portrait mode, if your external screen happens to be able to rotate. So take a step back in time this weekend and get totally hypnotized by this classic shooter.  You may even consider turning your original iPad into a dedicated arcade game with an iCade cabinet if you do.

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