12 Best Bullet Hell Games for Xbox Series X / S
Most of us like a good shooting game. Even those who are not usually fans of the genre often like to play something once in a while to vent some steam. However, there are some of us who truly like to take things to the extreme.
This is where bullet hell games come in. To be fair, this is not a term that every gamer understands, so let us explain it to you. Bullet hell games have you face a literal onslaught of bullets to the point where avoiding them is almost impossible.
Most bullet hell games also have projectiles that vary in nature and size. This creates a dynamic where the player is not only responsible for shooting the enemies but also taking evasive action to avoid their bullets.
Those who haven’t played this particular niche of the shooter genre may think that Call of Duty is bullet hell, but they have absolutely no idea what they are in for if they are to try one of the games on this list.
Due to the games of this type being somewhat niche, most bullet hell games are made by indie developers. That means that there are a lot of hidden gems here. So, here is our list of the 12 best bullet hell games for the Xbox Series X / S.
Archvale is the first bullet hell game on our list. There is nothing particularly special about the game. What makes it fun to play is the fact that it adheres to the basics of the bullet hell genre and does them very well.
The story revolves around an ancient king who cursed a lot of people with immortality. These entities now roam the world terrorizing anyone who stands in their path. It is up to you to kill all of them and put a stop to the terror once and for all.
Archvale truly is a game that can only be described by the word ‘mayhem’. You face a never-ending horde of enemies that refuse to rest until every single one of them has been destroyed.
The game also has the option of local multiplayer, allowing you to play with one other person. However, the option of online multiplayer is not present. That is the only negative in an otherwise great game.
Rogue Star Rescue
The developers of Rogue Star Rescue classify it as a bullet hell roguelite shooter. That perfectly encapsulates what the game is about, as you have to face enemy after enemy to get through to the next level.
What we love about Rogue Star Rescue is that it also mixes in other genres. While the primary focus of the game is shooting lots of enemies, there are also tower-defense and strategy elements in the game. This means that shooting everything you see is not simply an option.
There is also a story here where you have to stop a rogue star. With a lot of dialogue (part funny and part cringe), the game keeps you entertained and does not get boring at any point. The developers claim that there is enough content here to keep the player occupied for 50 hours or so, and we have to agree.
Lastly, there is the option of both local and online multiplayer. It is possible to play the story with one other player locally and three other players online.
Although the name of the next game on our list of the best bullet hell games for Xbox is definitely on point, you would be surprised to learn what the game is actually about.
At its core, Demon’s Tilt is a pinball game. However, this is not the pinball that you would play all those years ago on your Windows XP computer. This is what pinball would be like if Marilyn Manson had created the game.
There are a lot of enemies that charge at you, and you need to make use of your paddles to take them out. All sorts of things are possible here, including the use of combos and multipliers. The basic premise of the game is to score as many points as possible, but there are numerous boss fights and demons that will try to prevent you from doing so.
Nuclear Throne is the second game on our list that feels like a roguelite shooter. Just like Archvale, it is one of those games that does a good job of executing the basics of game development correctly.
The story has you playing as one of the last surviving humans in a post-apocalyptic world. Saving the world is no longer your concern as it has already been destroyed. All you want to do is to get to the nuclear throne and rule over the ashes.
With thousands of mutants and beasts standing in your way, you will need to harness your weapons and the power of radiation (radiation is a good thing here) to defeat all of them and get to your rightful place. The game is designed to be extremely difficult, and you should be prepared to fail numerous times along the way.
Unfortunately, online multiplayer is not a part of the game. You can still play with one other player locally. It seems that due to the low budget of the indie developers, bullet hell games often have to cut back on certain key features.
NieR: Automata is a Japenese game unlike anything else in its genre. When we included it on our list of the best Xbox JRPGs, we mentioned how it combined the story and themes of Japanese games with Western action combat.
Well, what we meant by the action combat was that you will be charged at by enemies in a relentless manner. It will require all of your skills to take them down (at least at higher difficulties), and you will only get a little bit of downtime before you have to do it all over again.
One of the biggest problems with bullet hell games is the fact that they usually do not focus on the story. That is not the case with NieR: Automata, and we can safely say that this is the bullet hell game with the best story on Xbox Series X and S.
When we talk about Gungeon, we are actually talking about two different games. Enter the Gungeon has you enter a dungeon where you have to fight a lot of enemies for loot.
Of course, loot is not the only purpose of the game. The main objective is to get to the gun that has the ability to wipe out the past. Since it is being protected by literally a horde of enemies, you will need to fight and dodge your way through them to get to the treasure.
The next game is called Exit the Gungeon. As you might have guessed, this game is about exiting the dungeon instead. Once you get your hands on the gun, the dungeon begins to collapse and you need to get out in time.
The biggest problem with the game is that while Enter the Gungeon has local co-op, Exit the Gungeon is a single-player experience only. As such, we would advise you to play both of the games alone, as there is no point in going co-op through the first game and then finishing the story separately.
Anvil: Vault Breaker
Anvil: Vault Breaker is the first game on our list of the best Xbox bullet hell games that has a focus on multiplayer. It is supposed to be played with two other people, and while you can go at it alone, it is simply not as fun due to the difficulty of the levels.
Vault Breaker is a roguelike shooter that is played from a top-down perspective like most other games on this list. You have to enter various galaxies and search for Vaults, which are the remains of an ancient civilization.
To stop you, there are thousands of enemies and multiple bosses waiting. While defeating the enemies itself is not that difficult, the boss fights are difficult enough to be compared to Dark Souls. While there isn’t a lot of story here, there is a solid character progression system. Oh, and the graphics look absolutely gorgeous due to the game being optimized for the Series X.
The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth
The Binding of Isaac series has numerous games in it, all of which play similarly for the most part. While the games themselves are quite barebones and lack a lot of the depth found in other bullet hell games, the concept has led to the franchise developing a cult following.
The perfect example of this is The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth. It is an RPG with a randomly generated world. There are over four billion iterations of the world that can exist, so the chances of you entering the same level twice are pretty slim.
As for the game itself, it is a roguelike shooter with heavy RPG elements. Your character can slowly be customized to fit your playstyle, and the four-player local co-op makes this one of the few games where an entire group of people (rather than just two) can tackle a swarm of enemies.
Furi is perhaps the most unique game on this list. There are two different sides to the game, one where you have to fight enemies one on one and one where you have to deal with tons of enemies at the same time.
Needless to say, it is the latter part of the game that we are interested in. The dual-stick controls are very intuitive and some of the most well-optimized that we have seen. On top of that, the art style and soundtrack have to be commended.
Lastly, even if you are a diehard bullet hell fan, do not sleep on the fighting aspect of the game. While not fully fleshed out, the fights provide a welcome break from the intense action of the bullet hell mode and allow you to take a more thought-out approach to win as opposed to a reflexive one.
Hell Let loose
Hell Let Loose is a title that is not technically a bullet hell game, but considering the number of bullets and projectiles in the game, we just had to include it on the list.
Hell Let Loose is a World War Two shooter that is multiplayer-only. The battles have 50 players on each side, tanks, artillery, rocket launchers, and a hailstorm of bullets.
While it plays like any other realistic shooter, the amount of carnage that is caused on each map is the reason why it has made our list. On top of that, the shooting mechanics are on point, which is why it was on our list of the best action games for Xbox.
The one thing that you need to note here is that there is a sharp learning curve to the game. If you are not that experienced when it comes to realistic shooters (and please take note that Battlefield is not a realistic shooter), be ready to get stomped for the first few hours of the game.
Wildcat Gun Machine
Moving back to titles that are more traditional bullet hell games, we have Wildcat Gun Machine. The game identifies as a bullet hell game and tries its best to live up to its name.
With over 40 guns to choose from, you go from one level to the next destroying anything and everything in your path.
All of the guns are completely unique, and the character can be upgraded to make sure that it fits your playstyle. For a game meant to be all about guns, Wildcat Gun Machine certainly has enough content. However, the game does begin to feel very repetitive after a few hours, and the lack of multiplayer or co-op adds to this problem.
Calturin is the last game on our list of the best bullet hell games for Xbox Series X / S. While most games of this type resort to guns and futuristic settings, Calturin takes a fantasy approach and has you use your spells and abilities to fight whatever comes your way.
The story is extremely simple. You have been resurrected by a necromancer to who you are now a slave. In order to be set free, you must fight through various portals and defeat everyone in your path.
The boss fights in Calturin are a bit of a letdown. However, the overall structure of the game and the fact that it is played at a lightning-fast pace means that this is one of the best options for fans of both bullet hell and fantasy genres.