Space Giraffe is an abstract action arcade style game that takes place in a succession of beautiful environments generated by an advanced graphics synthesizer. It presents itself as a shooter but the more you play the more you discover the hidden depths and strategies that make the gameplay satisfyingly rich and rewarding.
User reviews:
Overall:
Mixed (43 reviews) - 69% of the 43 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Mar 19, 2009

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About This Game

Space Giraffe is an abstract action arcade style game that takes place in a succession of beautiful environments generated by an advanced graphics synthesizer. It presents itself as a shooter but the more you play the more you discover the hidden depths and strategies that make the gameplay satisfyingly rich and rewarding. This is the boldest evolution of the trance-shooter, created by the company that helped to define the genre with the groundbreaking “Tempest 2000”.

  • 200 levels of trancetastic action.
  • Beautiful abstract graphics that respond to audio input.
  • Deep gameplay that rewards strategic and thoughtful play.
  • Accessible enough to entertain a novice player, but deep enough to satisfy the arcade expert.
  • Intense, satisfying, synaesthesiac shooting action that you'll return to again and again in search of ever higher scores.

System Requirements

    • OS: Microsoft Windows® XP SP2 / Windows Vista ™
    • Processor: Intel® or AMD™ Processor 1.9 Ghz or higher
    • Memory: 256MB
    • Graphics: DirectX 9.0c compliant video card with 256MB RAM ( Shader Model 2.0 )
    • DirectX®: DirectX 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 80MB of free space
    • Sound: 100% DirectX 9.0c compliant sound card
    • Controller Support: Generic HID controller DirectX compatible, XBOX 360 for Windows Controller, keyboard
Customer reviews
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Overall:
Mixed (43 reviews)
Recently Posted
merry marx
( 2.5 hrs on record )
Posted: May 28
Probably the best shoot 'em up on Steam.

Probably the best shoot 'em up released in the last decade.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Jakebob-Smegheneghan
( 1.1 hrs on record )
Posted: April 26
I don't recall when I got this game, in all honesty. I think it was in a bundle of some kind. But I got reminded of its existence through a weird set of events and wanted to give it another go.

The tutorial is alright - it tells you how things work, which is quite essential for something like this, and the playing field on which you experience things lets you mess around with things for the sake of practice. I came away from the tutorial with a vague sense of how to play - run into basic enemies, shoot flowers and bullets. The gameplay is rather interesting, with a neat premise that can prove rewarding if you can put the time into it.

The main issue I have is that the entire game's aesthetic is a god damn mess. Visuals are psychedelic, which might be some folks' cup of tea, but I found myself dying more often than not due to one of the things I was meant to shoot getting lost in the overwhelming visuals. And this is coming from someone who can play Beat Hazard on Suicidal. The audio makes me think I'm shooting up some bizarre children's toy that communicates in barnyard animal calls, random phone noises, and the occasional phrase repeated to the point of annoyance. Not to mention the weird kid at the start screen reading out numbers in Welsh. The text of the game is just as "wacky" and "random", with references to older games dotted around, intentional misspellings, and the word "goat" being shoved into other words for seemingly no reason.

There's certainly a good game to be had from this, but the nonsensical art direction and reliance on random humour can easily grate if you aren't into that sort of thing. After ten levels (which I understand is less than a tenth of the actual game) I had to turn the game off for fear of giving myself a migraine. It's got a niche appeal, and unfortunately it's not for me.
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[feastly faction] Steven Lunch
( 1.9 hrs on record )
Posted: April 14
Another good game for people with good taste. If you don't own a PS Vita and can't enjoy the glory of Jeff Minter's TxK, then this is as close as you'll get on PC. It's a great time.
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The Quill Guy
( 0.1 hrs on record )
Pre-Release Review
Posted: February 1
Deliberately weird, and not really much fun (I found). Perhaps more suitable to play if you want to blast your eyes with colour. Nice enough for a play through, but I didn't really see much here to play beyond a few forays into the weird light mechanics of this slightly awkward shoot-em-up.

I imagine more effort would unlock what this game really could do - I didn't want to give that effort. X-Type is my heritage!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
DOOMJESUS
( 2.0 hrs on record )
Posted: January 4
great psychedelic retro arcade action. if you are waiting for it to go on sale, don't hold your breath because i have owned this game on steam for six years and not once in that time do i ever recall seeing this game sold at a discounted price.

also i think they ditched the leaderboards like five years ago so don't expect that part of the game to work if you buy it today.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Joy
( 0.2 hrs on record )
Posted: December 24, 2015
Jeff Minter's a genius and it saddens me we'll never get to experience TxK on the PC.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
JoeSpar89
( 4.6 hrs on record )
Posted: November 8, 2015
It's Giraffetastic!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
II8JD
( 1.3 hrs on record )
Posted: October 25, 2015
The visual style of this game is amazing (I can still see it when I blink... like its reprogrammed my mind... I might be writing this review under hypnosis).

I found it difficult to begin with because I dont like reading instructions, but when I got used to the bull and jump mechanics I found it to be a great twitch game with a nice risk/reward system which lets you get into the zone.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
txster
( 0.3 hrs on record )
Posted: September 3, 2015
I do like Tempest. And it has to be weird when the first thing I read opening this is THIS IS NOT TEMPEST.

Darn right, cuz in Tempest you could actually see what you were doing.

Too much neon too much particules, too much EVERYTHING. But the game area takes a relatively small part of the screen, increasing the problem or not seeing crap.

Pass.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
OLDr! Tabloids
( 0.6 hrs on record )
Posted: August 10, 2015
This game deserves to be remembered for the incredible classic it is.

Its old school shooter ramped up to the ridiculous by one of the greats of the genre.

The only problem with this game, and probably the reason for the mixed scores, is that the game doesn't do a great job of explaining how to play it well. Sure you can blitz through the levels and enjoy the insanity, but you need to master 'bulling' (ramming enemies) if you want to be top of your leaderboard.

This is a game I so desperately want to see re-discovered and become the success it deserves.

If you know what Tempest 2000 is, if you played Centipede and enjoyed it. Heck if you ever wanted a more psychedelic space invaders or Galaga then buy this game. You will love it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
25 of 25 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
6.9 hrs on record
Posted: May 22, 2015
This is the greatest game that Jeff Minter ever made. And hardly anyone realises this because they don't know how to play it, because they try to play it like some other game.

Let me tell you how to play Space Giraffe, and let that explain why this game is so good.

You need to relax, and pay attention to the game. Give it your full focus. What you do in this game is you don't shoot the basic enemies much, just enough to keep the power zone going, and then ram into the side of them as they reach the rim of the grid. That's the basic idea.

When you ram into enemies like this, it's called "bulling". Try to ram through as many as you can at once. It builds up your score, the multiplier, gives you extra lives... it's the main thing you want to try to do.

The power bar is the horizontal line that keeps coming towards you. You want to keep it away from you, otherwise you can't ram into enemies side-on and they kill you instead. The space between the power bar and you is called the power zone. You can also briefly make the power zone get big by collecting a "pod" power-up and jumping.

You can use the right stick of your joypad to aim your bullets through the power zone - just wiggle it a little and you'll probably hit a few enemies, enough to keep the power bar going. In later levels, you'll be specifically trying to aim for flowers, or spheres, or the other annoying enemies.

Now, this game throws a lot at you. So much that you can hardly see. But the thing is - that is what makes this game so amazing and different. This is a shooter that you don't play by shooting, and this is a game with visuals so intense that you need to play it by ear. Turn the volume up if you need to! Wear headphones if it helps!

Each enemy, each bullet, each power up, each collision has a different and distinct audio sound. Pay attention, listen to the game. Record the sound of each one in your brain.

Turn down the music and turn up the SFX if the music's getting in the way. You can't play this game without sound effects.

For levels where there's too much distortion on screen, you're going to feel your way through the level by sound. Listen for the announcement of each enemy, each bullet. You are endlessly auto-shooting, so you can hear when you've hit a flower, how far away it is, and when it "pings" off its stalk to come towards you.

The overall effect of playing this game with heightened sonic awareness, semi-blinded by the lights, racking up high scores, is that you end up with a feeling that is the nearest thing to "using the Force" you have ever, and possibly will ever feel. At least, that's how it is for me.

This is why this game is so good, so important. It is completely different, but it totally works. You just need to be receptive to the game and let it teach you how to play it, how to improve.

And good luck when you get to level 64. It's going to really mess your brain up and you're going to love it for that. :)
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21 of 29 people (72%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 15, 2014
It's Tempest 2000 on LSD. What's not to like?

11 ⅓ / 10
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11 of 13 people (85%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: April 4, 2014
A novel and innovative sequel of sorts to the legendary Tempest 2000 (T2K) that was a system seller on the Atari Jaguar and returned on the original PSX as Tempest X.

In Space Giraffe players are rewarded for getting into the zone and using not just visual cues but also the rich audio to survive.

Recommended.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
12 of 15 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
6.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 27, 2013
Space Giraffe is a game I've spent six years both loving and hating the hell out of.

On one hand, its iterative take on Tempest 2000/3000 is super engaging and satisfying. While it may invoke those older games on the surface, the bulling and Power Zone mechanics really make Space Giraffe feel like more of it's own game than the rehash it's often accused of being. The shooting and dodging are tight and satisfying and the risk vs reward elements make for some crazy intense shooty action. When all that comes together with the visuals and audio in the way that it's supposed to, Space Giraffe is simply astoudning to play and you can almost feel like you're in a trance when you're on a roll.

When it doesn't work however, the game just feels plain unfair and frustrating. Far too often, the emphasis on eye-searing visuals over gameplay can and will cause many unnecessary deaths due to how obscured the playfield can get. A large chunk of stages also to alter the game's rules subtly without telling the player, which just seems like a cheap and sloppy way to prohibit progress.

There will inevitably be frustration with this game, but I highly suggest at least trying the demo. It's something I've stuck with since its release and if you can manage to get over its initial quirks and don't mind some frustration later, Space Giraffe feels about as satisfying as Portal can be once you finally "get it."
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: March 22, 2015
Atari missed their chance to be mad at the TxK developer in 2009 with this, nearly identical, release.

Does it have some differences to Tempest? Sure. Significant ones? No, it is a psychedlic nightmare, sounds and all, just like the old days. Do not take drugs before playing this. Or take a lot. No middle ground.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 24, 2015
Jeff Minter's a genius and it saddens me we'll never get to experience TxK on the PC.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
8.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 30, 2015
I fought enemies spawning out of an anthropomorphic Fox's ♥♥♥♥♥♥ in a level called CUBE IS NOT FOR YIFFING

10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.6 hrs on record
Posted: August 10, 2015
This game deserves to be remembered for the incredible classic it is.

Its old school shooter ramped up to the ridiculous by one of the greats of the genre.

The only problem with this game, and probably the reason for the mixed scores, is that the game doesn't do a great job of explaining how to play it well. Sure you can blitz through the levels and enjoy the insanity, but you need to master 'bulling' (ramming enemies) if you want to be top of your leaderboard.

This is a game I so desperately want to see re-discovered and become the success it deserves.

If you know what Tempest 2000 is, if you played Centipede and enjoyed it. Heck if you ever wanted a more psychedelic space invaders or Galaga then buy this game. You will love it.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 21, 2014
literally what
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: January 4
great psychedelic retro arcade action. if you are waiting for it to go on sale, don't hold your breath because i have owned this game on steam for six years and not once in that time do i ever recall seeing this game sold at a discounted price.

also i think they ditched the leaderboards like five years ago so don't expect that part of the game to work if you buy it today.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny