iOS Retro Gaming: Parsec

A friend of mine recommended this latest iPad game to me knowing that I was a fan of vector based arcade games and the MB Vectrex console.

His email simply read –

Aliens waves coming at you thick n fast, bullets flying everywhere all in stunningly lit neon vector graphics. Can’t put it down, need sleep, one more go!

The name of the game is called Parsec (not to be confused with th TI99a classic) and is available for both iPad and iPhone (with an Android version to follow soon).

My friend wasn’t wrong, this is one hellava good old school shooter that looks and sounds absolutely brilliant.

Here’s where it all starts, a simple menu giving you access to high scores and various game options including the ability to play your own tunes whilst in game – I’m thinking Xenon II ‘Megablast’ here. 🙂


The designers of this game have got the retro homage to classic vector games absolutely spot on. I’d hazard a guess that they are fans of so many Atari classics. It made me smile at the subtle additions like the 80’s high score counter sound FX and pixelised text font that’s been used.

Here’s the first of the 20 odd action packed levels.


Control of your ship is via touchscreen by moving your finger left or right. Your weapons fire automatically so there’s no need to mash the screen. It works really well for this type of game and your ships responds perfectly to your movement including those (frequent) times that you need to be quick to get the hell out of tight spots.


As you shoot down the alien craft, items such as point multipliers are dropped and if collected can increase your score x2 and x3. Likewise, many weapon upgrades, shields and other power ups can be collected too. Some of these including rapid fire, decrease/increase ship size, double and triple shot…plus combinations of these.

Picking up a glowing blue icon freezes the aliens craft for a brief moment allowing you to unleash hell….or take a breather.


For fans of the sub-genre, Parsec also contains lots of ‘bullet hell’ moments, although it’s very difficult to illustrate with a screenshot as i get shot to quickly before i’ve taken one.

A nod to Atari.


Level 10 and up against the first end of level boss. Can’t admire the neon lines for too long, need to keep moving…a lot!


Like many Apple app store games, you can see how your scores fair against local players around you as well as top scores from the day, week or all time.

Although I got top for the day, I’m nowhere worldwide 🙂


My thanks to GazT.


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