Alien Swarm :

Install the game :

Download the game from here. Unzip it onto your computer. Double click either the jar file or the bat file. If you like the game then create a shortcut and put it on your desktop. The game should play fine on any hardware including netbooks as long as Java is installed. It should also play in fullscreen mode. You can discuss the game here or you can also contact me through my web page.

Hope you enjoy playing!

Background story :

The swarm have invaded our solar system and now control every planet. You are our last defence. You have a base on each of the artificial moons. You are armed with a mobile canon, limitless ammo and limitless bravery. Can you defeat them?

Control your ship :

  • Space to fire
  • Cursor or A to go left
  • Cursor or D to go right
  • P to pause the game
  • N for nukes*
  • Any other key turns on your shields*
                    (* assuming you have them)

You have limited time to destroy each wave and a time bar ticks down in the top right hand corner. If you're quick then you can earn a bonus. If you're too slow then you get a fine. The fines get heavier each time they're given.

Hold the fire button down for continuous fire but be careful not to overheat your weapon. There's a weapon temp gauge under the time bar in the top right. If this starts to turn red then it's best to stop firing and let everything cool down.

Know your enemey :

These are alien cannon fodder. Shoot them up and earn 100 credits each. There is one variety that permanently changes colour. Be aware that these little critters will split into 5 separate aliens when hit. None of the aliens like to shoot near the bottom of the screen.

Green meanies are worth 5000 credits but they take a lot of hitting and they fight back to. These get harder to kill as the game progresses.

Hit these to earn power ups. The choice of power ups appear at the top of the screen. Be careful which power up you choose as some are more useful than others. Every 100k you'll get 3 bonus ships on screen at once. Every 200k (if you ever get that far) you'll get the chance to pick super weapons. You can tell when motherships are going to appear as a little tiny mothership will appear near your time bar.

These are very bad ass. They fight like blazes and they're almost impossible to kill. Best to avoid them like the plague but, if you really like a challenge, you'll earn 10k for killing one.

These whiz around after you all the time. Either kill them immediately or avoid them - it's your choice. You earn 3K points for a kill.

These are alien shields and they don't shoot back so relax. Instead they stop your shots while allowing alien shots to pass through which is probably worse. Their shields will regularly drop for a moment which gives you the chance to destroy them. You earn 2000 credits if you hit one.

These are space stations, satellites and rockets and they belong to you. Do not shoot them or you will be fined. The fines get heavier each time they're given.

Then bask in the glory :

There's a hall of fame for anyone getting a good score. A good score depends more on thinking clearly and staying calm rather than on lightening reflexes. Don't worry if you don't get a good score on your first attempt as your scores will get better with practice.

Various levels:

There are also multiple levels to the game.
  • The campaign mode is the first level where you need to eara nmore powerful guns and shields and progress your way through ever more dangerous waves of enemy.
  • The hard mode just starts off with difficult oponents and quickly gets insane. Your given a powerful cannon to fight with though.
  • Boss mode means your just playing the boss screens which normally show every 100K. Sometimes the aim is to simply destroy everything while othertimes you'll have to complete a special mission like destroy 10 bio turrets - obviously you have to stay alive for long enough to complete your mission.
  • After each normal level is an optional extreme level which only gives you one life and no chances of obtaining extra lives. Only true heros need apply here.
You need to get a high enough score in one level to start playing the next level. Your told when you've reached a promotion. At the end of each game it will also show you how close you are to a promotion as a percentage. You can change the level by moving left or right when the trophy screen is shown to you.

Settings :

Press pause (P) while in the game to bring up the pause/settings screen. You can change the controls to MAME standard, alter the graphics, sounds etc etc. If you're putting the game into your MAME cabinet then you'll want to :
  • change the controls to MAME
  • change the mode from freeplay to simulated coins
  • store the high scores locally if your cab isn't connected to the net
  • send me a picture of your cab playing the game!
The program is free for personal use but it would make my day if you made a small donation ($5). If you're selling arcade cabinets and want to use the program then you must make a donation for each installation.

Mike Robinson
images by Johannes Bade
installer Launch4J by Mike Eagle