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News The Amazing Playdate Exclusive 'Gun Trails' Is Coming To Other Platforms


The incredible Playdate shoot-em-up Gun Trails is coming to other platforms, according to its lead developer Josh "Superfunc" Filstrup.

As Filstrup claimed last month on Twitter, this new version of the game, which is being nicknamed Gun Trails HD (to distinguish it from the original), won't be a simple "port" but is instead being thought of as "a big HD reimagining of the title for PC/Console". It will feature colourful new visuals, a rearranged soundtrack, and design tweaks across the board to address some areas that the developers are hoping to improve.

We reached out to Filstrup to ask about the project and he told us the following, "Because of the Playdate's screen dimensions along with it being a vertical shmup, the design was influenced to embrace that claustrophobic feeling, really pushing on speed as a primary element. My preference is towards CAVE titles which typically have slower bullet speed relative to something like Gun Trails, with more intricate patterns. So the new version will be closer in line with that style of bullet hell.

"The boss designs also weren't as fleshed out as I would have liked [...] and the scoring system in the original Gun Trails is flawed in ways I'd also like to correct. It doesn't do a good enough job rewarding high-level play, in that its big bonuses are centered around no-missing the game, which doesn't give much granularity for players doing well but not perfectly. So I'm spending a lot of time, thinking about that.

"In summary, it will have a different design philosophy on stage layout, bullet patterns, as well as bosses. Beyond that, it will be a full-sized (5-stage) shmup, with various modes (arcade, boss rush, challenge mode), difficulties as well as extensive training options & tools for superplayers to push the scoring system."

Over the last year, Filstrup and other members of the development team have been sharing bits of the new version on Twitter, including character animations, music, and more, and it is looking like this will be an impressive update that won't just satisfy newcomers (who don't own a Playdate) but old fans of the game in search of a new experience.

Filstrup told us he anticipates it will be released sometime next year, but is unable to give any further information on the specific platforms he's targeting for the time being.

Interestingly, despite being hard at work on Gun Trails HD, Filstrup and his studio Yoyogi Games aren't giving up on Playdate development.

They are currently also working on a few smaller titles as well, which they are aiming to release before the end of the year for Panic's handheld. These include a puzzle/rhythm mixup, a top-down action boss rush, and another bullet hell game with "a focus on a greater variety of modes, more difficulty granularity, and tools for players to improve & learn".

He has also been spending some time getting his engine working across all PC platforms (macOS, Linux, and Windows) as well as Playdate, which means that he may be able to port some of these projects to other places in the future.

We'll try to keep you updated as we find out more.

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