My favorite game of all time is Galaga. While it’s not technically what we now call a bullet hell game, an argument could be made that in its later levels, it is the ur-bullet hell game, the granddaddy of every Xevious, Ikaruga, Raiden 4, and R-Type out there. Super Galaxy Squadron EX Turbo, in addition to its simultaneously-amusing-and-eye-roll-inducing name is 100% bullet hell with late-80’s magentas and teals, weapons so over the top they're Stallone-esque, and a tendency to require me to take ibuprofen and use eye drops after a couple of games from being afraid to blink in intense focus.

There’s a competent storyline in a genre that historically tends Voltron. In addition, as opposed to the throw-your-controller frustration when you pick up a crappy pew-pew "power-up" that replaces your awesome constant-beam-laser-shooter, SGSEXT lets you pick and choose between ships with dedicated weapons. It's a small thing, but it's a quality of life improvement that encourages experimentation. A bullet hell that balances difficulty well and gets me to come back to it repeatedly for a solid whuppin’ isn’t something I run into every day. Thanks for kicking the snot out of me and making me like it, Super Galaxy Squadron EX Turbo.

Games of 2017

Throughout January, the Games of 2017 will lead the way towards The 2017 Grimmys - Horrible Night's Games of the Year Awards.

Previous years