Legacy of the Elder Star is a shoot 'em up inspired by classics like Gradius and R-Type. You play as the Cosmonaut, an eternal cosmic hero who must shatter the robotic Infinite Legion and rekindle a dying star!

There are times where you find little gems hidden among the smorgasbord of games... and when you do it’s great. Meet Legacy of the Elder Star.
— DigiSpun
This colorful shoot-em-up demo offers a glimpse of what could be a hit in the coming year.
— Fast Paced Reviews

Features and gameplay

  • Direct mouse control turns movement itself into a weapon.
  • Procedurally-composed gameplay sequences change up the enemy patterns every time you play.
  • Mix and match your favorite weapons and special abilities to create the ultimate build.
  • Pit your best score against the world on the online leaderboard.
  • Share your greatest moments with built-in animated GIF capture.
  • Feast your eyes on vibrant, hand-painted graphics in gorgeous 1080p at 60 FPS.
  • Coming soon to Steam for PC, Mac, and Linux!
Instantly feels familiar and intuitive... I’m eager to see more.
— TechRaptor

The most unique feature in Legacy of the Elder Star is its direct mouse control: moving your mouse moves the Cosmonaut with 1:1 precision, just like your OS mouse cursor. And that's not just a gimmick: we use it for unique movement-based attacks like the star dash, where you click and drag through enemy patterns to quickly and gracefully destroy them all. You've never played a shmup that moves like this.

[The dash is] a great mechanic, that allows for a fresh new take on an age old genre and makes for an intense and thoroughly enjoyable shmup experience.
— Alpha Beta Gamer

The art style

We noticed a while back that an overwhelming majority of shmups feature either anime or pixel art styles. Those are both really cool, but we wanted to create something with a higher-fidelity illustrative style influenced by American cartoons, comic books, and pop art that felt, to us, both more familiar and more modern.

To that end, principal artist Erik Exeter brings over a decade of digital illustration experience to Legacy of the Elder Star. The result is a beautifully vibrant world expressed in confident brush strokes and an eye-popping, high-energy color palette fit for all the explosive action you expect from a shmup, without sacrificing readability.

The hand-painted graphics fill this game with so much color…it’s an absolute joy to look at, as well as play.
— Gamers Haven

Design philosophy

Legacy of the Elder Star takes inspiration from classic side-scrollers like Gradius and R-Type, but rather than simply imitating those styles, we've reinterpreted and remixed them into something new. Legacy of the Elder Star is less about dodging bullets (although that's important!) and more about efficient offense.

For beginners: You'll find basic survival easier here than in most shmups. You have unlimited continues, and we randomize enemy patterns for each run so you don't get stuck in that tedious loop of repeating the exact. same. actions. every time you replay a level. All the controls are on the mouse – movement, plus two buttons – so you can learn the game in seconds and play with just one hand. We've designed Legacy of the Elder Star to be a "gateway" shmup: a game that comfortably welcomes you into this genre we love. <3

For veterans: You'll find 1cc runs much more accessible here. No-miss runs will still prove a stiff challenge, but the real tests of skill are the speed and precision with which you clear patterns and defeat bosses, how frequently (and safely!) you're able to graze and capture enemy bullets, and how well you manage the timing and placement of your special abilities. This isn't a dodge-em-up: to excel, you must play aggressive offense, anticipate your enemies' moves, and dominate them with extreme prejudice.

The demo I played already shows a lot of promise... Fans of the genre should definitely be checking this game out.
— True PC Gaming