9 reasons why PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate on PS4 and PS Vita deserves its title

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9 reasons why PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate on PS4 and PS Vita deserves its title

Two classic games in one new-and-improved package, due out this summer

All of us here at Double Eleven are excited that PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita has been officially announced, and we can finally start to talk about the game!
PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate is a twin stick shooter that is as much about blasting things as it is about exploration, puzzle solving and collecting things. Within Shooter Ultimate, players interact with environments that run an advanced fluid dynamics simulation. These interactions are needed to solve puzzles, overcome enemies, and progress through the levels.
For those who remember the original PixelJunk Shooter games, Ultimate combines the campaigns of Shooter 1 and 2 into a single experience. It certainly doesn’t stop there as we have done a ton of work on top of that to make this the third game in the series!
So here’s our list of nine things that hopefully make our PixelJunk Shooter worthy of the title ‘Ultimate’:

1. A full visual make-over for PS4

When we were trying to decide what a PS4 version of Shooter should look like, we knew that it needed to remain true to that classic razor sharp vector-based 2D aesthetic, which continually threw new ideas to the player while still being able to stand beside PS4 titles of today. Furthermore, from a gameplay perspective we wanted to make combat more intense, engaging and overall provide for a more rewarding experience.
So, we decided to introduce real time environment lighting, a host of new visual FX for things like projectiles, explosions, thrusters and more. And it didn’t stop there – we’ve also worked on making the fluids look even better by increasing the resolution of the particles, improving shaders and adding anti-aliasing to the edges of the fluids. We have also revisited the colour palette, and colour grading has been added to every scene, which hopefully makes it look and feel more immersive.

2. A redesigned ship for PS4

Something that a lot of people loved about the ship in Shooter 1 and 2 was the way it managed the relationship between momentum and resistance to changes in motion. This is not something we wanted to mess with, but we did want to improve the visual feedback to the player, to make that relationship more accessible.
To achieve this, we decided to introduce a 3D ship allowing us to add animations for aeronautical manoeuvring that give better visual feedback. The ship is also treated to the newly introduced real-time lighting, as well as the other visual improvements.

3. 60 FPS on PS4 FTW

For the uninitiated, higher frame rates capture much more of the action every second, so there’s much less opportunity for action to blur when you’re in the middle of some heavy action. Behind the scenes, our physics and fluid dynamics simulations also run at 60fps, meaning that the game is more responsive to how the player interacts with the various environments. It also improves on the control feedback and responsiveness. All of this was really meant to make the combat feel more intense, and we feel we have achieved that.

4. Awesome environmental interactions on PS Vita

One of the most understated aspects of the Shooter series of games was the highly complex fluid simulation. Most of the puzzles in the game require the manipulation of various fluids (water, lava, magnetic fluid, acid), each of which are made from several thousand particles to get the simulation looking perfect. The computational power to run this has given some quad core PC processors issues, so bringing this game to a portable handheld was always going to be a major challenge. This has all been made possible thanks to some excellent research and development by our team, and we are really excited that we can bring this experience to PS Vita.

5. Everything you loved about Shooter 1 and 2 in one seamless experience

PixelJunk Shooter: The Depths of Disaster introduced us to the Yellow Dart, and its mission to save trapped scientists. PixelJunk Shooter 2: Belly of the Beast picks up exactly where the first left off. In PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate, you can enjoy an uninterrupted and complete experience, with all the new features introduced in Shooter 2, such as the super spin, across all chapters.

6. A new-look HUD

Ultimately, we wanted the HUD (heads-up display) to be more intuitive and informative. After evaluating the original HUD elements, we also realised that too much screen real estate was being used up, that was particularly problematic on PS Vita.
The newly designed minimalist elements have a level of opacity, which allows for more action to be seen, especially before it’s too late. More so, we thought about what other information the player should know and we’ve added new elements to show things such as how much treasure is still to be found in a level and enemy health bars were made more clear. The end result is a clean and sharp HUD, which looks more relevant and efficient.

7. Play multiplayer on your PS4 versus your friend on PS Vita

As gamers, we love it when consoles and handhelds work well with each other. We can all remember thinking when we were much younger, “Wouldn’t it be great if you could play on your handheld with your friend on a console”. As a result, adding cross play seemed like more of a cool thing that we would want for ourselves, so it was one of the first things we looked into. Now you and your friend can play together, without both of you needing the same device.

8. Progress on one platform, and continue on the other

Another thing we find useful as gamers is Cross Save functionality, and this is something we have added to Shooter Ultimate. With this, you can take your save game on the move on Vita, and then continue your experience at home, with all the new graphical effects on PS4.

9. A new and improved scoring system.

We’ve reviewed the entire scoring system, and without giving away too much we’ve hopefully balanced it to accommodate those who are just starting out, those that enjoy competitive play, and to those that would challenge their friends on the leaderboards.
We are really pleased with how PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate is taking shape, and we can’t wait for you to grab it on PS4 and PS Vita this summer.
PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate will have it’s first playable preview on 7th March at the upcoming BitSummit MMXIV in Kyoto at both Sony Computer Entertainment Japan Asia and Q-Games‘ booths. Be sure to follow @DoubleElevenLtd for future announcements and updates.

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  • Excellent news!

  • Nice looking forward to the cross play feature!

    • Hi courtz07,
      We are really looking forward to this too. As mentioned above, it’s something that the whole team is passionate about.

  • Very good news but Vita can’t do this 60FPS? Dam…

  • Looking good! Here are some questions I have:
    1. Is the Vita version native res + 60fps?
    2. Will Shooter 1 and 2 be seperated strictly within the game (like with the the Sly Collection, Jak & Daxter Collection, …), or not?
    3. Cross-play, cross-save… Also cross-buy?
    4. Are trophy sets shared between PS4 and Vita? Is there a platinum trophy to get, since the game will be this ‘big’?
    5. You mentioned a “redesigned ship for PS4”. Does this mean the Vita version will have the ‘old’ ship, from the PS3 version, a ship more similar to the PS4 version in design (fake 3D), …?
    Good luck on the project and I look forward to playing it soon!

    • Hi jorispelgrom,
      Thanks for your post. You have raised some good questions.
      1. We are amazed that we have managed to get Shooter 1 and 2 running on Vita at 30 FPS to begin with. The fluid simulation eats up most of the CPU power of the Vita, and this is one of the core elements of the game. It still plays great, and as it is in native resolution on Vita, looks great on the OLED screen.
      2. Shooter 1 and 2 have been integrated to seamlessly flow from one to the next. You cannot access any of the Shooter 2 levels until the Shooter 1 levels have been completed.
      3. We are currently looking into cross buy, but nothing is definite yet.
      4. Having trophies working across platform is another cool think we would love to have, but are still investigating the possibilities. As for a platinum trophy, we are in talks with the right people at Sony about what can be done about it.
      5. Again, getting the game running on Vita has been a huge challenge, and the 3D ship would probably be pushing it too far.
      We cant wait for you guys to be able to get your hands on this.

  • I’m not a fan of all this ps3 remakes for ps4. Give us a pixelshooter 3. I won’t new content.

    • Hi galeshbi,
      This is the first step to PixelJunk Shooter 3. We only have so much time to get a project like this turned around, and the main bulk of the work has been getting the game up to speed on Vita. Fingers crossed though.

  • Got this confused with sidescroller when it was mentioned the other day. If you port 4am and make it compatible with Move and DS4 and I’ll buy a camera :)

  • Has anything extra been added to the game (like extra dungeons/levels) or is it mostly an upgraded version of the original games?

    • Hi European_Gamer,
      We have not added an additional levels. However, we are pushing to get the best out of the PS4 to make the game look amazing.

  • playstation PORTable

  • Great great news!

  • Holy F****** S***
    I knew PJ Shooter would come to Vita one day, I got hints from the PJ Team on Facebook. But never did I think it would be remade and look this amazing! The visuals from those few screenshots are just pure epicness.

  • Fantastic news. Very nice to see that Double Eleven are handling the port.

  • I really loved the first Shooter, second one not so much but but will definitely be picking this up. Are there any plans to bring Eden and its dlc Encore to the vita? Also are there any new music tracks from High Frequency Bandwidth?
    here’s a 10th reason – the music alone is enough to buy this game
    if the original soundtracks are included with new tracks by HBF then I think I just died a little death

  • Can! Not! Wait! for this on PS4

  • It already plays really well Rich on the version Lee sent me ;-)

  • Brilliant news! Shooter is my favourite PixelJunk title, so I’ll definitely be getting this for the Vita!!

  • Exactly what I wanted… another old PS3 game on my £400 PS4! Really push that console Sony!

  • That’s great news but can we get a Pixel Junk Monsters 2 on PS4 plz XD

  • Always wanted this on vita but I hope it’s cross buy cause I’m not buying again..

  • I’m so happy you are giving giving the vita some love. Played Shooter 1 to death on the ps3, never got round to buying number 2 (please don’t hunt me down). Tried to remote play the first one on the vita but it kept lagging so I’m glad you have made it a dedicated version :)

  • Great news, only thing PLEASE don’t make the trophy list “Shared” between the PS4 & Vita like Guacamelee! Give us 2 trophy lists like other Cross-Play/Cross-Save games and of course a PLATINUM trophy for each platform with Cross-Trophies like (Sound Shapes – Sly Cooper Thieves in Time)
    Day 1 all I can do ;)

  • Any trailer soon? The new visuals is interesting, but I need to see this in motion.

  • Not played either 1 or 2 and don’t have a ps4 or vita so how about a nice discount on the first two on ps3 or include them in plus ;)

  • Any love for those who bought the first 2 games?

  • Bought first one for PS3 and it’s pretty good to play.
    May think about getting it for PS4 someday. The games are starting to flow in for PS4 now.

  • I don’t like it when old games are sold as new on the PS4/Vita. Sure there is a graphical upgrade but it’s not that it’s a new game. It’s till the same old (fantastic) game as the PS3 one in an effort to make a quick buck. Nothing wrong with that but after the (ridicules) success of Tomb Raider I’m afraid we are going to see an avalanche of old games on the new system. If I was able to buy one I would want to play something new and wait until 2023 until PSNow was introduced in my country to play the old games.

  • This is by far one of the PS3’s greatest gems!! The multiplayer was so underrated. it was very competitive me and friends played it non stop for a month, at one point i was 5th in the world on the planet mercury for rank only 4 people had reached sun rank, but then my ps3 ylod’d :/ never did get round to playing the multiplayer on my slim. will this re-work have multiplayer like PJS2? and would our rank carry over ? i got so good at it, definitely should be a heavy focus in PJS3 :P

  • + what about PJ sidescroller? will it make an appearance? Would be really cool if it was part of the game and you had to unlock it by collecting lets say all the hidden survivors or all the of the gems. you guy should hire me, help me with uni fees :3

  • I already bought them on PS3…..
    will hold out for it to go into plus. as someone who owns the suite of sony systems cross buy is a must for me.

  • @Fred 7 Reasons why you should address the complains of ps+ Subscribers
    1. We are part of the people that pay your wages;
    2. Lying to fans is a not a good way to maintain them;
    3. Promises are to keep. A basic social rule;
    4. If two costumers pay for a service at the same price, they should receive the same quality of service, if one pays more, he/she should receive a better service and not the opposite (ps+ Eu 50€ = $68; ps+ NA $50=36€)
    5. Although SCEE has the “legal” right to change the conditions of ps+ at any given time, reducing service quality without reducing price and giving proper reason is not morally correct;
    6. PS+ is, by all facts, the only thing that’s keeping the PS vita alive, pausing the yearly cycle because you “feel is not the right time”, and after 2 months stating that “you don’t have any plans to replaces those games” is a good way to kill a great console;
    7. continuing from above, if you want to have people buying the ps vita, giving crap games on it’s IGC is not a very smart market strategy, give us games that will make ps3/ps4 only subscribers to go and buy a vita so they can play that game.

  • I hope we are getting to some one, but sincerely, SCEE attitude towards costumers that have a brain and complain when they are right is getting more similar to Microsoft attitude by the day.

  • Why no online co-op?

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