Climb into the pilot's seat of an otherworldly war machine and take down a genocidal alien race bent on eradicating humanity to preserve their own civilization.
User reviews:
Very Positive (871 reviews) - 90% of the 871 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: May 30, 2014

Sign in to add this item to your wishlist, follow it, or mark it as not interested

Buy Astebreed


Recent updates View all (11)

December 21, 2015

Playism Group

Stay up to date with the latest Playism and Indie Game News by joining the Playism Group!

Take part in the community discussions and tell us what you are most interested in.

We're looking forward to connecting with you and the world of Indie Games!

0 comments Read more


“This is one of my favorite shoot-'em-ups in years, and fellow STG enthusiasts would be remiss to overlook such a gem. Astebreed is a masterstroke. Spread the word.”
9.5 /10 – Destructoid

“If you’re looking for a game that has subtleties and intricacies often overlooked in modern games then Astebreed comes highly recommended.”
8/10 – Coffee Break Gaming

“...Astebreed is a game that, in terms of quality and design, puts many recent triple-A releases to shame...”
5/5 – USGamer

About This Game

You are Roy Becket, a young pilot with dreams of becoming as skilled as his adoptive father. When a galactic war with an ancient mechanical alien race reaches its boiling point, Roy is forced to spring into action and take control of an otherworldly bipedal war machine in hopes of saving what's left of humanity.

Joining Roy is a young girl who claims to have escaped the clutches of the nefarious aliens. Forever altered through horrible experimentation, she now possesses the very abilities humanity will need to push back the doomsday clock.

Together, they must battle an unrelenting army alone and reunite their shattered family.

The End of All Things is in sight. At the edge of eradication stands Astebreed.

Arcade Shooter Evolved

Astebreed takes the classic arcade shooter and breathes new life into it. Using lovingly crafted 3D models, cutting edge particle effects, and tried-and-true Japanese mecha designs, Astebreed delivers an unparalleled atmosphere of beautiful destruction.

A Full Arsenal

Roy has a considerable arsenal to combat his foes, as well. Armed with the mysterious Lucis device, Roy's mech can shoot from a distance, paint targets for precision homing attacks, and even get close for a killing blow with a powerful blade attack. No enemy shall escape your wrath, no matter where they hide.

Dynamically Changing Perspective

Your enemies are not always ahead of you. Your enemies swarm, fly and intercept, and Astebreed's dynamic perspective always keeps the action in view. Seamlessly switching between vertical, horizontal, and 3D shooter, Astebreed will keep you guessing what your next threat will be, without ever interrupting the action.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/8
    • Processor: Core 2 Duo or faster
    • Graphics: Shader Model 3.0 compatible, GeForce 8600GT (2007 model) or better
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Additional Notes: Controller recommended
Helpful customer reviews
60 of 67 people (90%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
7.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 20, 2015
One of the best things about indie games is that it’s actually possible to be surprised by them. As great as more mainstream games might be they’ve almost inevitability been preceded by a year or more’s worth of trailers, previews, interviews, and betas. But Astebreed has been out for over a year at this point and I've never had any idea it existed until a few days ago. Now that I do I can see it’s one of the best shoot ’em-ups of last year.

Astebreed isn’t a first person shooter though, and it certainly doesn’t have any cover mechanics. It is instead an old school 2D shooter, very much in the style of genre master Treasure and classics such as Radiant Silvergun and Ikaruga. I’ve never heard of Edelweiss before but they seem to be a Japanese indie developer with only a small string of other arcade style action games to their name (after this I'm certainly going to check out earlier game Ether Vapor).

But while their appreciation for Treasure’s more traditional 2D work is obvious in every second of gameplay it’s actually Nintendo-published franchise Sin And Punishment that this game most closely resembles. The similarities come in that although in gameplay terms Astebreed is always a 2D shooter the perspective constantly changes, so that sometime it’s a traditional side-on game, sometimes a vertical scroller, and other times essentially an on-the-rails third person shooter.

The story behind the action is, of course, pure nonsense (and detailed in subtitles you never have time to read) but the cinematic stylings are hugely impressively and amongst the most technically advanced I’ve seen in the genre. The viewpoint doesn’t just switch at random, but is used to punctuate the action with the reveal of a boss or to allow for a brief respite after a punishing set piece.

Creating a top quality 2D shooter is rarely about big new ideas but instead is more like designing a good roller coaster, with the appearance and design of each wave of new enemies requiring skilled choreography that often goes unappreciated – until you play a game that gets it wrong.
Although it’s a truism that the Japanese do not use PCs to play video games that’s only generally true in terms of mainstream Western titles. The PC has always been home to a thriving market of visual novels and other low budget titles intended solely for a Japanese audience, and there’s also an active indie scene – know in Japan as dōjin soft.

Even so the graphics here are still well above the level you’d expect, with rock solid 60 frames per second action and higher than 1080p resolution. But of course it’s the gameplay that is most vital and here Astebreed also excels. You’re piloting a Gundam-ish flying robot, which has three main forms of attack: a short range sword, a focused stream of bullets, and a wider spread shot attack.

Both shooting styles can use a lock-on mechanic, with the spread shot allowing you to target enemies in a circle around you, while the focused shots can only be used for objects directly in front of you. There are some additional complications, with different attacks being used to cancel different kinds of enemy bullets and a variable use special ‘EX Attack’, but the basics are relatively simple and much more accommodating for a novice player than something like Radiant Silvergun.

In fact the game goes out of its way to try to welcome those new to the genre, with an in-depth tutorial, reasonably fair checkpoints, and three different difficulty modes. The opening prologue is also purposefully easy, which not only helps not to scare of potential players but is also extremely useful for experimenting with the game’s various systems.

As genre fans would expect there’s a complex scoring system for when you’ve got the hang of the action, although delving into that side of the game is entirely optional. The score multiplier is based around your robot’s shields, and as long as they’re still up your combos will continue to rack up whenever you make a kill using either of the two normal shot attacks. When you use a sword you bank the points but the multiplayer drops.

And again the game goes above and beyond by including a full suit of online leaderboards and achievements. There are even graphs to show the ebb and flow of your multiplier over the course of each level. Compared to other shooters, and other Japanese-dominated genres like fighting games, it’s a remarkably complete package that doesn’t use its niche status as an excuse not to include basic functions.

In strictest terms Astebreed doesn’t do anything new in the genre, but within that context this is one of the best examples of its breed in years. It’s especially good for newcomers and although it certainly gets very hard towards the end the game’s not spiteful about its difficultly level, and it does its best to help you succeed. I wouldn’t even really call it a bullet hell game, for although the screen certainly does get bus it doesn’t require rote learning or supernatural arcade skills to progress.

Regardless of genre Astebreed is simply an excellent video game, with well balanced gameplay, great graphics and art design, and an interesting and varied challenge despite the short running time. That all this should be the work of an unknown indie developer just makes it all the more impressive, and all the more worthy of your time and money.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
17 of 19 people (89%) found this review helpful
5.5 hrs on record
Posted: January 24
Astebreed is a Japanese bullet hell game made by Edelweiss (you might have know their previous bullet hell game, Ether Vapor Remaster, or platformer Fairy Bloom Freesia). It has great presentation and visual effects but has flaws typical for Japanese bullet hells - short length, harder difficulty (though there's easy difficulty) and silly story.

I'd recommend this game but only to people who know what to expect from this subgenre of shoot 'em ups, with all upsides and downsides, others, if not attracted by the visuals, should rather try other shoot 'em ups (check Steredenn).

- Great presentation. Oh, it looks gorgeous! The game will shift camera angles pretty often so you can see all the hard work developers made there - environment, enemies and all effects look simply great.
- Rapid combat that doesn't leave you much time to get rest. Anyway, most levels are three minutes of mob killing and three minutes of bossfight, the rest goes for cutscenes.
- Controller support. Played on Xbox 360 controller without any problems.
- Steam achievements that aren't gained just for beating levels - There are actually challenges in them that require to play in specific style.

- Short length. If you want to play it only once (on normal or easy difficulty), don't expect more than 2 hours of playtime.
- There's only Japanese dubbing and most dialogues happen in battles where you won't get opportunity to read the English subtitles. Anyway, you don't lose much since it's mostly space brother-sisters drama packed into mecha action.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
11 of 11 people (100%) found this review helpful
44.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 16
First: ignore the "TOO EASY" reviews. They are jokes. None of them took note of score, 1CCed Hard mode or even COMPLETED it.

One of the best, most underrated indie games out there, made doubly impressive by the development company's obscurity & status as part-time devs. Despite classic arcade-like design principles, it's not a "nostalgia game"; it can hardly be described as "X meets Y". Maybe Sin & Punishment's cinematic on-rails presentation + a shmup's bullet dodging + Alien Soldier's sheer variety of stuff to do... but that wouldn't really do it justice.

Before going more in-depth: Astebreed is NOT a bullet-hell/bullet-curtain game. It simply has bullet-hell ELEMENTS. You'll be dodging stuff and the last two bosses can get pretty manic, but you'll be destroying enemy shots in mid-air with your sword (or projectiles) just as much, if not more. It's less of a bullet hell or even a shmup as much as... an anime mecha game. If you find games like Dodonpachi to not be your thing, give this a try anyway; if you're into bullet-hells then chances are you're into arcadey games in general, so also go ahead and play this; just don't expect bullet-hell.

I will outline the attacks here, but make sure you go through the entire tutorial to get a better feel for just how they work in the middle of battle:

You control a robot while locking-on, shooting, sword-slashing and comboing your way through various perspective-shifting stages. You have two normal shots (activated by tapping their respective buttons) & two lock-ons (holding down their respective button). The lock-ons are a forward & spread shot respectively, either targeting around you in a circle or in a straight line. Your slash is more than it seems at first glance; sure, you can quickly tap the attack button to do a fast combo, but this can often leave you open; sometimes, AVOIDING the longer combo attack by timing your presses just right is the better way to go. You can also hold on to the sword button along with whatever direction you want to dash towards, sword-first. Lastly you have a variety of context-sensitive special attacks; if you press the special attack button while locked on to nothing, you will damage whatever is near you (the range of this effect increases once you unlock the second mech) and creates a short aura of invincibility around you, which adds a nice element of strategy. While locked on to a large group of enemies, your mecha will automatically home in on them and slash them up at a crazy speed; meanwhile, while only locked on to a single enemy, you will pull off a very anime-esque move on it taking out a significant chunk of its health. The scoring system is easy to understand and hard to master and involves plenty of practice of all the aforementioned skills (once again, refer to the tutorial on scoring). Many will feel that the game will completely destroy your fingers, but if you find yourself mindlessly mashing the normal shots chances are you're not playing it right; the lock-on is very useful throughout most of the game and balances out the button-mashing quite well. The on-rails camera-shifting (from side-scrolling to vertical shooter to behind-the-back third-person) is truly impressive; it helps add to the game's variety while also making for interestingly-composed cinematography.

My gameplay gripes are balance issues, occasional lack of proper (yet not game-breaking) attack telegraphing and the lack of a DEFAULT option to set the movement keys to WASD. The latter, however, is easily fixed by googling "Astebreed WASD" and getting the Astebreed tweaker from the Steam forums (however note that sometimes it might create a strange delay for the directional keys; if this happens, just restore the defaults and set your own controls again). The former might just be a result if my (crappy) play style, but it feels like an area in stage 3 along with the last boss are both a bit too much of a difficulty spike. Even then it's nothing as big as, say, the contrast in difficulty between Ikaruga's first and second stages. Beyond that we have the occasional bizarre crash when using the "restart game" feature, but this can't actually destroy one of your runs, so I can look past it (also my computer is an ancient piece of garbage that was old even when I got it in 2008 and I can't even properly play this on max settings)

My own technical issues aside, the presentation's great. The art direction gives everything a cohesive space-y feeling while still being varied and making good contrasting use of color, the robots look so cool they even won over an old-school Japanese cartoon robot purist like me (I'll always prefer stuff like Go Nagai's Mazinger Z, Osamu Tezuka's Pluto and Mitsuteru Yokoyama's Black Ox to the more detailed "real robot" types that this game took influence from), the music is fitting, the animations and sound effects work... everything just comes together to make you feel like a mecha-piloting badass.

You probably noticed by now that I've not mentioned anything to do with the story or human characters so far; depending on a variety of factors, those can be a bit of a mixed bag. If you're extremely bothered by otaku-centric modern anime (which I am not), you will absolutely not be able to stand them; but that's not an issue, because you can skip every cutscene and completely mute all the anime talking. I don't, though, because I AM an anime fan and I enjoy the way the game makes you feel like you're playing a dramatic, well-directed, bizarre Japanese cartoon. The in-game dialogue can also be an issue if you can't speak Japanese, because most of it is delivered through gameplay and it's VERY hard to pay attention to both the subtitles AND the crazy robot action simultaneously. If you really want to know the full story and character interaction, I recommend watching a Youtube longplay instead (which might also help with certain difficult parts in Hard mode). Lastly we have the character art, which I place more focus on than most people. Putting it simply, the game clearly has various artists with very different levels of skill. Some of the visual novel-like cutscenes and human character artwork look super-stylish, expressive and cool by visual novel standards (actually, they look more like a high-profile TV mecha anime show; the art on the upper-right of this very page is an example) while others are just about what you'd expect from a visual novel. If you're not an art elitist like me though and find a lot of commonly-praised VNs to look pretty, those occasional downgrades will not bother you & the particularly good parts will surprise you even more.

This is also a short game, but if you're into arcade games this should not be an issue; arcade design is not about artificially creating "pacing" by stopping the action to force you to solve physics "puzzles" or pushing a block over a switch, which can be an issue with otherwise-great games. There is no exploration and no grinding; the game's world is not your oyster. Good arcade design is about pure non-stop gameplay bliss, a barrage of creative enemy formations and set-pieces that will stay with you for years. It is not about offering the player the illusion that they are forging their own path, but about creating a pre-set obstacle course and then giving you a very wide variety of ways of making your way through it and grading them based on their inventiveness. Replayability comes in the form of beating all the modes with all the mechs, 1CCing hard more and improving your global score.

Given this is an obscure game, the art unlockables are actually a nice thing to have because you can't just find all of them online. Some of them, like the 2D mecha concept artwork and the aforementioned stylish human character pictures, are definitely a visual treat. You also get to view every model and effect, because why not.

This is not just just a mere "old school nostalgia" game; it is simply a good game.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
12 of 13 people (92%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 14, 2015
This is the best (scrolling) shooter I've played in years. If you liked Panzer Dragoon Orta, R-Type Final or Gradius V, then get this.
This is not, and I believe not designed to be, a bullet hell shooter. Just because there's lots of bullets, doesn't make it a bullet hell. Thunderforce 4 was not a bullet hell shooter and see all the bullets in that!
If you see negative reviews here on Steam saying this is a failed bullet hell type shooter, please do yourself a favour and ignore those ignoramuses as they cleary dont know what they're talking about.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
18 of 24 people (75%) found this review helpful
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 23, 2015
Review For Astebreed
Review by: DEHU

Pros :
- Good graphics
- Funny Dialogs
- Great Story
- Good voice actors
- Fantastic controls

Cons :
- The game a bit too short.

Review :
Astebreed is a Typical 2½D shoot 'em up Gundam style, with only 2 Gundams to choose from.
The game is quite fun to play with the characters in the game.

The story is that humans are at war with a mechanical Horde of Alien Locusts known as the Filune, which wreak havoc on entire worlds. On one distant world, Grato Nono engages with the alien forces, losing his squadmates and eventually his own mecha.

One of Grato's daughters, Fiona Nono, comes to save him in a mysterious legless mecha and quickly performs a Hyperspeed Escape, where they are picked up by a Federation-like fleet.

A long period later, Fiona is partnered with young pilot Roy Beckett to launch an offensive against the Filune, using the mecha Fiona saved her father in, now with a new pair of human-built legs. But allying with the hostiles is Estina Nono, Fiona's psychotic sister with a rivaling mecha.

Additional Infomation :
Developer: Edelweiss
Publisher: Playism and Edelweiss
Genre: Singleplayer, Shoot 'Em Up
Released on Playstation 4 in 2015
Released on Steam in 2014

Follow my Curator page :
This review is written for :
The Panda's Corner
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny