Steambirds Alliance Shoots Into Open Beta

What’s better than flying through a free-roaming top-down bullet hell?  Doing it in semi-cooperation with dozens of people at once, of course.  Steambirds Alliance has been in closed beta for a while, but the gates are finally opened for anyone wanting a little free-to-play arcade shooting action.  For the weekend, at least.  While anyone can play and probably should, the open beta is still a weekend-only kind of thing.  The game is in active development during the week and then hundreds of players at once get to tear into it, at which point Monday rolls around and the weekend’s feedback is taken into account as updates and polish get applied.  The current plan is to rinse and repeat this process for an unknown number of weeks, although the possibility of weekday tests are coming up in the nebulous “soon”.

Steambird Alliance is basically a new Realm of the Mad God by one of its original developers, except with airplanes instead of magic users.  Grab a plane, shoot everything, power up enough to fly farther from the starting point, take one risk too many, blow up, and then harvest the experience from the run to hopefully level up and buy a new perk that will let you survive a little farther next time.  It’s a solid core gameplay loop, helped along by a ton of different enemies featuring a huge variety of bullet hell shot patterns.  While the base game is free to play, with no pay-to-win mechanics to be found, you can spend real-world money on gold to buy fancy new paint jobs for the planes, storage space so you can bank more rare goodies for later runs, hangar space to stash more planes, and other odds and ends.  For a more detailed preview check over here, but hands-on is better so head to Steambird Alliance’s Steam page to get playing.