This content requires the base game Beat Hazard on Steam in order to play.

User reviews:
Mixed (46 reviews) - 69% of the 46 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Apr 17, 2014

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Downloadable Content

This content requires the base game Beat Hazard on Steam in order to play.

Buy Beat Hazard - Shadow Operations Unit

Packages that include this game

Buy Beat Hazard Mega Bundle

Includes 4 items: Beat Hazard, Beat Hazard - Shadow Operations Unit, Beat Hazard Ultra, Beat Hazard – iTunes & m4a file support


About This Content

Welcome To The Shadow Operations Unit

  • 9 Brand new ships, each with different handling, firing patterns and abilities
  • Steam Workshop support with easy to use in-game editor
  • Earn mission stars by completing 'Shadow Missions' assigned to each ship
  • Prove your worth, rank up to 'Shadow Force Elite'
  • Each ship has a separate leader board; Show your skill and compete for the top spot

Shadow Operations Briefing

The base fleet consists of 9 brand new ships, each with new handling, firing patterns and abilities

Demonstrate your design skills and create new ships for the Shadow Fleet

Download new ships created by other operatives and prove your skills by completing their missions

Complete Shadow Missions to gain promotions and gain access to more craft

Each ship in the fleet has its own set of leader boards
Prove you are the best of the best, get to the top of those boards

Classified Fleet Details

Highly focused firepower in a single tight beam.
This ship is like a scalpel, it delivers a massive amount of damage,
but requires speed and accuracy for that damage to be put to good use.

The most powerful ship in the hanger. It can deal more damage per second than any other ship.
However, this comes at a price as this ship is slow and heavy. Shoot first, move later!

Fast, small and nimble. Quick reactions and good flying skill will allow you to get out of difficult situations.

A very capable Auto-Aim ship with a good balance of firepower and manoeuvrability.

The smallest most agile ship in the game. If you can keep it under control you'll be able to punish the bad guys with its 3 beams of fire.

A large beast of a ship. Powerful engines make this ship fast, but its large mass makes it hard to change direction. High powered, but slow bullets, make an interesting combination.

An Auto-Aim ship the will hoover up all the pickups on screen. Large but reasonably agile, you should be able to clock up some big scores.

An Auto-Aim ship with a wide field of fire. An all-rounder good in most situations.

Hazards come from all directions, so this ship fires in all directions. If positioned well, you can safely get into the thick of the action and have no fear of incoming missiles.

Join the unit today!

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP/Vista/Win 7
    • Processor: 2.0GHz processor
    • Memory: 512+MB of RAM
    • Hard Drive: 40+MB of free hard drive space
    • Graphics: 256MB of video memory
    • Sound: DirectX-compatible sound
    • DirectX®: 9 or later
    • OS: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.3, or later.
    • Processor: Intel
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 250mb HD space
    • OS: Ubuntu Linux 12.04 LTS or equivalent
    • Processor: x86 1.5 GHz
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 250mb HD space
Helpful customer reviews
4 of 6 people (67%) found this review helpful
Posted: November 26, 2015
I don't see why this content has mixed reviews.

  • Adds a whole lot of new ships for different playstyles (eg small and fast, solid beam, slow but powerful, death machine)
  • Adds a secondary ranking system to unlock most of these ships by doing missions
  • Missions are optional and are not unlike TF2/ CS:GO contracts
  • Heaps of replayability, new ways to play and new levels of challenge
  • Although some modes are challenging, they are still thoroughly enjoyable
  • A lot of the missions are quite tough
  • Only 3 missions per ship (Although the above point almost counters that)


It's certainly worth the $5 if you enjoy the game and like the contracts idea. Definitely a steal on sale.
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Posted: April 24
This game is probably one of the best games if you are looking for something to play and just relax but along with that its also one of the hardest games out there 10/10 will play again
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77 of 97 people (79%) found this review helpful
Posted: October 11, 2014
Don't get me wrong. Beat Hazard is a great game and I had a lot of fun playing it again. So what's my problem? Shadow Operations doesn't add too much content.

9 brand new ships, each with different handling, firing patterns and abilities
Different handling means some ships handle like ♥♥♥♥ (The Juggernaut and The Collector in particular). Firing patterns are almost the same everywhere. What about abilities? Auto-aim is worse than when you aim yourself, because it doesn't always target most dangerous or closest objects. Also The Collector is able to hoover up pickups.

Earn mission stars by completing 'Shadow Missions' assigned to each ship
I was happy to get new challenges, but after a few of those missions I realized that I just had to play the game without doing anything out of ordinary. Here are some examples:
  • Kill x standard enemies / bosses / twin bosses. Just play the game and hope the right enemy will spawn. You have to kill everything anyway.
  • Get x pickups. Same as above. Play the game. You collect things anyway, right?
  • Amass 20/40/60 million points. Same ♥♥♥♥.
Getting x points in one track and finishing x tracks on hardcore/insane/suicidal can be hard if you're new to Beat Hazard. Unfortunately most players are veterans who maxed it a few years ago. Getting 100% wasn't hard for me, just time-consuming. If you don't feel up to challenge, don't worry, play on lower difficulties. You'll be able to finish most missions.

Steam Store also says something about "proving my worth", "separate leader boards for each ship" and "competing for the top spot", but it's just marketing babble.

To put it simply, we get 9 ships that aren't all that different and missions that aren't challenging or interesting. It was fun to play it again, but because Beat Hazard is good, not thanks to Shadow Operations. Don't pay the full prize. It's not worth it.
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23 of 28 people (82%) found this review helpful
Posted: December 4, 2014
There are a few things going on with the Shadow Operations Unit DLC. The first thing is the dozen new ships in game. Each ship has three missions to complete. These missions are things like destroy 100 scout ships, get 1 million points in a single track on a single life. Accumulate 10 million points using the ship, losing 1 million points every death. Complete a track on insane difficulty. It adds new depth and new goals for the game other than just stay alive. These missions are difficult, making the DLC geared more for the players that want the challenge.

For the most part they control the same as the original with some different weights and laser angles. The standard ship has always controlled perfectly fine with the ability to stop on a dime. When upgraded it has three narrow front lasers and one angled at each side. I won't go into every ship. A few need to be unlocked from the start of the DLC. These ships all have their pros and cons to make them balanced so no one dominates multiplayer or anything like that.

The Razorburn ship has a powerful single beam, but it is slippery. It doesn't stop on a dime like the original. The Dragon ship has three wide array beams to the front and one angled on each side. It controls slightly heavier. Dragon Fire has three powerful widely spaced forward lasers, but that's it. The downfall is that its a painfully slow compared to the others. The Slick ship has its lasers angled inward with two powerful beams and standard beams. With the inward angle it makes it more of a close range ship. To make things more interesting, you only pilot the ship. The computer has control over the guns. It makes me worry, even if it has better accuracy than I would and its very responsive. Star Runner is a similar ship when it comes to the laser design, two powerful inward angled lasers, but the angled beams point outward and inward. The computer controls the shooting with this ship, but it feels slower to react, as if its targeting where the ship was. Its fine when you get in front of enemies. The Speedy has three angled beams out of each side and three forward forward beams. The real downside is when your ship starts a level it only has two angled beams, no forward beams.

There is now workshop integration so you can play with other people's ships. If you want to pilot an anime maid, go for it. If you want to pilot Vic Viper from Gradius, its probably in the workshop. Each of these ships have their own missions too. Made by fans. I piloted the Heavy Weapons Guy in space who has a single wide angled spray on a mission to kill 200 scouts in a single life.

The new ships add a lot of variety the original game didn't have. The missions while different offer goals and objectives as difficult as they may be to achieve. Its just another reason to play an already great game that belongs in arcades. It all goes to your rank. Each ship has a leader board.
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15 of 16 people (94%) found this review helpful
Posted: June 21, 2015
First of all, there are a lot of people who make this look worse than it is, so please let me explain this!

+ this DLC comes with about 10 new ships
+ you can download really huge amount of ships from Workshop and almost all of them are usable and they also come with missions if those missions from native ships are not enough for you
+ you can make your own ship with certain restrictions

- you're kinda forced into doing those missions even though you'd prefer to go straight into the game and just play with any ship you choose
- some missions are really stupid or boring

Either pro or con, it depends on your point of view:
~ Shadow Operation missions.. You basically have to complete certain missions in order to unlock ships.. Someone likes this, someone hates this, it really depends.. (missions example: Kill 10 Twin Bosses; Kill 300 Scouts; etc.)

TL;DR: 7/10 - Awesome DLC if you want to play with different ships and if you have a bit of spare time to do missions.
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