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Cart #astrox-0 | 2024-06-13 | Code ▽ | Embed ▽ | License: CC4-BY-NC-SA

Astrox is a thrilling pico-8 shoot-'em-up (shmup) game inspired by the classic Galaga. Players navigate their ship through waves of diverse spaceship enemies, engaging in intense firefights and dodging enemy fire. With retro aesthetics and fast-paced gameplay, Astrox offers an exhilarating arcade experience.


Astrox comprises 15 enemy waves you need to clear to win the game. Kill them before they respawn back at their location, as they will restore their health. Enemies will shoot and move towards you. Avoid colliding with enemies or comets and don't get hit without a shield or you'll lose 1 life. If you lose all your lives, you lose the game.


Killing moving enemies will grant additional points. Comets cannot be destroyed by normal player bullets unless you collected "Rapid Fire" from pickups. Also, destroyed comets gives you additional points.


  • D-pad/Arrow keys - Moves the ship up, down, left, or right.
  • "x"/(x) - Shoot
  • "z"/(o) - Bomb


Pickups will be occassionally dropped by destroyed enemies. Collect them up to support you fighting the enemies or to increase your score. These are the following pickups you can collect:

  • Rapid Fire- Increases the fire rate of the player. This will be depleted overtime, so use it wisely. (See the meter on your HUD).
  • Shield- Player can endure up to 5 enemy bullets (See the meter on your HUD or the revolving circle around the player's ship as a visual cue). You have free shield at the very start of the game. Collecting shields on full meter will be converted to 100 pts. instead.
  • Bomb- This will clear all the current enemy bullets and comets on the screen upon activation. This also shoots bullets in all directions and damages enemies upon contact. You have all 3 bombs at the very start of the game. Collecting bombs in full will be converted to 100 pts. instead.
  • Life- Adds 1 life. You have all 3 lives at the very start of the game. Collecting lives in full will be converted to 100 pts. instead.


First of all, I would like to thank @Krystman for creating an excellent tutorial. It really motivates me a lot to make my own game. I hope you will continue making tutorials like this. I would also like to thank the wonderful Pico-8 community for keeping each other inspired by sharing their work and demonstrating their creativity.

If you found similarities from other games (especially with the design) before this was published, I would also like to credit them (I forgot most of them since I played a lot of pico-8 shmup games). The notable games I got design inspiration from are "They Started It" by @joeyspacerocks, "Kalikan" by @LouieChapm, and @Gruber for the music side of things.

P#149887 2024-06-13 13:05 ( Edited 2024-06-13 13:13)


They chewed through all my shields and all but one of my lives, but I survived, barely. It was a nice touch to start flashing the screen red on the last life. Gold star.

P#149890 2024-06-13 13:35

Thanks @Cowirrie! Congrats on completing the game :)

P#149894 2024-06-13 13:43 ( Edited 2024-06-13 13:46)

Really cool!
Much better than mine, https://www.lexaloffle.com/bbs/?pid=147997

P#149905 2024-06-13 21:00

Thank you @Andrew967!

P#149923 2024-06-14 07:48

Nice, I love it.

P#149931 2024-06-14 11:36

Looks bad ass! I'll check it out later on my handheld emu. (òÓ,)_\,,/

P#149945 2024-06-14 16:28

Thank you @RubyParker!

Hope you enjoy it @Nighted :)

P#149959 2024-06-15 01:07

This is a great game! I really enjoy it. The gameplay is fantastic, the graphics is perfect. Music and sound is also creates exactly the mood you want in this kind of game.

First I tried to play it with on screen controls on my phone, it’s really hard. So I digged around at home for my old 8bitdo Bluetooth controller, but the d-pad won’t work for the web player here. So I had to look even harder for an old SteelSeries controller and that worked!

My goal is to beat the 15 waves. When you die and see the score it would be really nice to see which wave you reached too.

P#150387 2024-06-25 09:13

Hi @Offler! Thank you so much for your wonderful feedback! I'm thrilled to hear that you enjoyed my very first game.

Sure I'll definitely add your suggestion on my to do list :) as I plan on making some minor changes to this game also.

Good luck with your goal of beating the 15 waves!

P#150397 2024-06-25 12:34

For a Cherry Bomb inspired game, this is definitely on the top group. Great presentation and I really like that you pushed the formula even further. Amazing work!

P#150653 2024-07-01 01:43

Thank you so much @LokiStriker! I also admire all of your work. My favorites are "Steel Surge" and "Beckon the Hellspawn". I hope someday I can build such amazing games as you did.

P#150668 2024-07-01 07:41

Good work, I love it.

P#151117 2024-07-10 11:27

Thank you @BrooklynWard!

P#151119 2024-07-10 12:36

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