Shmups Beginner Advice Tips #2

So last time, I had three tips for beginners to shmups. Know your hit box. Small movements > Big Movements. When in Trouble Bomb.

This week, I have 3 new beginner tips for you. Along with three more shameless plugs for our own shmups!


Tip #4: Know Your Tools

This one may seem like common sense, but every time you start a new shmup, the most important thing is to learn your tools.

Sometimes, a game just has a couple of different types of fire and a bomb. This is pretty easy to pick up. But more complicated games, it is super easy to forget that you have some of the tricks up your sleeve.

RefRain ~prism memories~ has a very unique set of tools that feed into each other.

RefRain ~prism memories~ has a very unique set of tools that feed into each other.

I know when playing some games, I just completely forget in the heat of the moment to hit some buttons, because I forget they exist. Learn all the tools you are given, and drill them into your mind.


Tip #5: Focus on Survival First

At high level play, scoring is a big deal. But you are just starting. Don’t worry about your score. Just focus on getting through the game. Focus on getting a little bit farther. Survivalplay is much more straightforward and generally doesn’t require knowing a bunch of little tricks. Did that move keep me alive? Then good.

Deathsmiles is generally considered an easy game to 1cc.

Deathsmiles is generally considered an easy game to 1cc.

Try and get a 1cc (1 credit clear) on a game before you start trying to play it for score. Playing for score is more complicated of a goal, and it’s best to just keep it simple when starting.


Tip #6: Pick a Game and Stick to It.

Sometimes, I get impatient. Ok, most of the time I get impatient. I’m not a patient man. I get frustrated with a part and move on to something else.

But to get good at shmups, you HAVE to focus on one game until you know it back to front. You need to know the stage, the enemy patterns, the order they come out in, where the power ups are.

I probably have more hours in Shmups Skill Test than all the other shmups we have combined.

I probably have more hours in Shmups Skill Test than all the other shmups we have combined.

Getting good at shmups is practice and repetition. If you are jumping back and forth between different games, you never have the opportunity to get really good at any single game. You’ll just stagnate as “OK”. So pick one game, and stick with it for a while. Your survivability, and eventually score, will rise as a result.


And that is three more tips for the starting Shmupper (does anyone call themselves a shmupper? it doesn’t sound very complimentary does it.)

What do you think of these tips? What games do you think are good for a beginner to jump in on and learn? What games have tools that you have a bit of trouble remembering all the ins and outs of. Tell us in the comments below.

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