What exactly is The Death Ray Manta on iOS? It’s a psychedelic, psychotic, fast-paced dual-stick shooter available on iOS by PsychicParrot Games. The game was originally developed by Rob Fearon. It might look a little insane at first, but there is intricate design and reason that give it true charm.

At the heart, it’s a very traditional shooter that relies on two sticks. Your left thumb controls the character while the right thumb focuses on the gunfire direction. You only have a single life to see how far you can progress through levels that become more and more racked with dangerous neon enemies.

Death Ray Manta’s influence is quite evident when you play the game. It’s a hyperactive sort of game with vivid colors on speed. It doesn’t give you a lot of room to breathe or even try to figure out what’s going on since the levels are done in a flash and everything is so vibrant in organized chaos. Even the initial menu screen that requires you to tap the screen to begin playing is a sign of the games true message: here it comes, whether you’re ready or not.

It should come as no surprise that the game isn’t one to take itself too seriously. The levels have some weird dialogue in between, the protagonist is a Manta ray with anime eyes, and your power ups are known as Space Tiffins. You control the Manta with the left floating joystick, firing colorful shots with the right stick. Levels only last a few seconds and require you to kill all of the enemies that appear on screen.

Other obstacles exist in the game too, such as triangles that destroy you on contact, as well as ships that will travel around the arena and fire energy to destroy you as well. Each level offers a Space Tiffin to boost your weapons and give you a point; you earn another point when you finish the level. Upon dying, you are shown the final score and are sent back to the main menu.

There’s no support for Game Center, so there are no leaderboards; it’s just your score to beat. With a staccato type of rhythm in the levels, there’s no real way to find a groove to score higher.

It’s a strange game that’s singular in its appearance and execution. As intense as it seems, the one-track gameplay can make it difficult to enjoy and get used to. This is unfortunate since the game oozes with imagination and great wit — just not enough to make you play more than ten minutes at a time.

The brilliance behind Death Manta Ray is that it’s straightforward and starts seconds after launching the app. There is nothing excess to deal with and is significantly different from other games in the App Store. With that in mind, it’s worth picking up if you need to fill in your extra free time with a colorfully intense pick up and play game with a mild learning curve to deal with.

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