UPDATE: It has been brought to our attention that KAMUI is of the Shoot ’em Up genre and not considered bullet hell.

I’m not exactly one to pick up and play any sort of Shoot ’em up game. But I can respect and appreciate the amount of sheer concentration and precision maneuvering that goes into playing them. While the shoot ’em up genre isn’t exactly known for creating bounds of varied and unique gameplay, its generally how the game presents itself that really sells you on what you’re playing. They usually are very brief stints of actual play, but the key is to get you hooked enough to get a high score or unlock hidden items. While KAMUI does nothing to improve upon its genre or anything truly unique, it’s still a very entertaining experience to quickly kill some time.


For all intents and purposes KAMUI is a shoot ’em up game in the purest of forms. You’ll dive right into a game with little to no detail in the way of story, because that would simply get in the way, and start firing away at anything that gets in your path. It’s a pretty simple concept, and there’s not really much else to go on. The game is played in a classic 16-bit fashion, and the real kicker of the game is trying to balance between your flight path and enemies that are either above or below you. It kept the pacing of the game actually fun switching between different firing modes. There have been many other shoot ’em ups that I’ve played that really only featured one firing mode, which made for a dull experience. But KAMUI had me frantically firing between three modes to simply stay alive.

A bit of the Lightning Katana in action

A bit of the Lightning Katana in action

I talk about three firing modes, and despite my lack of experience in the Shoot ’em Up genre, the three different types of weapons are utilized in varying situations in smart ways. You have your standard gun, which gets a boost in strength with power ups. This doesn’t do much else except shoot in a straight line and doesn’t affect anything below you. Then there is the Lightning Target system which is utilized in attacking enemies that your normal gun cannot reach. Lastly, but most importantly for those tight situations, you have a focused beam attack. This attack will destroy any incoming bullets, giving you a brief moment of breathing room to dodge the next wave of attacks. You cycle through all of these with a different button combination, so you don’t have to panic and switch out to a certain weapon.

These special attacks, Lightning Target and the Lightning Katana, are all capped by the Lightning Meter. Using the Lightning Target uses the entire bar, however the bar recharges and when it does it allows you to utilize yet another attack. The more meter you have the longer your Lightning Katana will last. You can fire off a special attack before you’re fully charged. I would use my Lightning Katana in bursts to wipe a few bullets out of the way for an easy dodge. Plus you can rapid fire the Lightning Target, but at the sacrifice of not having enough meter to utilize your Lightning Katana. So there is strategy and thought to this game, those that can think quickly on their feet and plan ahead all at the same time will do well here.


Now KAMUI only lasts about twenty minutes to complete. So it isn’t exactly a long game, and nor should it be. However, I would’ve appreciated a slew of levels to complete at my own leisure each presenting a different challenge. While the game is a good but brief break, it can become redundant to play through the same levels repeatedly, thus restricting you to master the six levels in the game. Understand though, playing through these six levels is one thing, but mastering them is another entirely! Another thing to note is the game’s soundtrack is extremely fitting and entertaining to what you’re playing. Again my otaku Mecha roots shine here, but boy did I feel awesome playing through this game!

In short, KAMUI may have been an extremely brief soiree; it’s still a pretty engaging and entertaining experience. I find myself pulling it up from time to time awaiting a FATE to show up in Final Fantasy XIV. It’s addicting enough that you’ll come back to try to beat a high score, or try to master dodging all the projectiles that riddle the screen. KAMUI isn’t really a game that will win awards, but it is indeed a nice distraction to have.

KAMUI - Review
The Good
  • Quick to pick up and play
  • Very active gameplay on two planes
  • Varying difficulty depending upon skill
The Bad
  • Only six levels of play
  • 20 minutes worth of gameplay
  • Nothing to unlock/discover
7Overall Score
Reader Rating: (2 Votes)

About The Author

Broadcast Team Lead

Alex enjoys long walks on the beach, mountain biking, and spending time in his extensive library reading novels from authors of yore. His hobbies include traveling the world putting small critters into ball shaped capsules, slaying Flying Wyverns, and mastering his wake-up Heavy Shoryuken!