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 enough to keep you busy until Monday, at least.
Some games just have a knack for getting your heart racing. Fast-paced, simple action games where success is measured by hand-eye coordination are a perfect example. That’s certainly an apt description of Stay Alive. Drummer Games’s recent release is a universal side-scrolling space game available in the App Store(s aapl) for just $0.99.
The object of the game is to navigate your space ship through an obstacle course of space debris. Along the way you need to recover the multi-colored orbs that litter your path. Collecting these orbs is important since they allow you to upgrade your ship, hull, weapons and shields. The more powerful your ship, the longer you can stay in the game, and the more orbs you can collect. There are no and, no bosses, just one simple objective: stay alive.
Game play is simple. Swipe the touch screen on the left to move the ship up and down as it moves through space, and tap the four corners to fire your weapons in the corresponding directions. You’ll encounter enemy ships you need to gun down, but don’t get too trigger-happy, as you have a limited supply of ammunition. Sometimes you’ll need to choose between shooting enemies and clearing your path, since both are equally as deadly if you’re hit. It all depends on how much health, shields and amp you have left to spare.
The game only supports OpenFeint and not Apple’s Game Center. It’s also available on Android, for free. With game play as simple as it is in Stay Alive, the achievements are better indicators of your success than anything else. With hundreds of hours invested in development, developer and Reddit user Vole85 seems rightly pleased with the overwhelming praise that the game has been receiving. You may find that you spend just as much time playing this addicting fast pace game as Vole85 spent developing it.