Dodge bullets and test your patience in this insanely difficult shooter.
Sky Thunder is a hardcore 2-D shooter that puts your bullet dodging skills to the test. Although your tiny ship packs lots of firepower, the game's developers do an excellent job clogging the iPhone's screen with enemies. Before long, you'll need to expertly weave around hundreds of bullets in a desperate attempt to avoid a nasty one-hit kill. You'll die several million times, but if you're an arcade fan, this is an essential purchase.
Before flying off to combat evil, you have the option of selecting one of three difficulty levels and two unique ships, fire and ice. From there, you choose between tilt and touch controls. Although we expected the touch controls to be superior, we actually got farther physically tilting our iPhones because our fingers didn't obscure the screen. No matter which method you pick, however, you'll need to survive the learning curve to make it past the first level.
Let that serve as the official warning, because unless you're super human, Sky Thunder will make you cry. Between all the bullets, enemies and bosses, you'll struggle to stay alive. Power-ups help a little, including screen clearing super weapons, but even on the easiest setting, this is a brutal game.
It's also wonderful to look at, thanks to well-drawn 2-D graphics that feature six unique environments, detailed ships and lots of explosions. There's even cool rock music that perfectly compliments the onscreen insanity.
For $1.99, you could do a lot worse than Sky Thunder. It probably won't launch a shooting revolution on the iPhone, but for what it is, we had fun blowing up bad guys and weaving around bullets.
What's Hot: Classic 2-D shooting action, six levels, two unique ships.
What's Not: Touch controls make the game even more difficult.