Manufacturing Content today released Tractor Beam 1.0 for iPhone and iPod Touch. The retro arcade title is part of the wave of lo-fi games released for the high tech multitouch platform. Tractor Beam combines the popular “swinging games” style of gameplay with the look of Atari’s ‘Asteroids’, adding modern features like a dynamic ambient soundtrack. It is among the new wave of games embracing the latest technology but with a nod to the classic games of eras gone by.
The game itself could be said to be a part of the popular “Swinging Games” genre recently highlighted by Apple on the App Store, along with favorites like ‘Hook Champ.’ This gameplay is then transposed to the world of arcade games circa 1979, with the player instead swinging a spaceship through an increasingly dense asteroid field.
Inspired by endless nights playing Atari’s ‘Asteroids’ and a fascination with the latest in Apple technology, Tractor Beam’s developers aimed to create an intuitive game with broad appeal that would recapture some of the glory of classic arcade games while offering the benefits of Apple’s platform, not the least of which is the ability to choose your own background music from the iPod application. Its own evolving loop-based soundtrack is something that would not have been possible in the games it emulates while the music itself is reminescent of classic science fiction movies.