Bullet hell (danmaku, lit. "bullet curtain") is a sub-genre of shoot 'em up video games in which the entire screen is often almost completely filled with enemy bullets.

The genre is also occasionally known as curtain fire or as manic shooters. This style of game originated in the mid-1990s, and is an offshoot of Scrolling Shooters. Most of the well-known commercial games of this type are developed by the Japanese video game company Cave. The genre is also very popular in Dōjin Soft, particularly via the Touhou Series.

Common TraitsEdit

This style mostly is a updated Vertically Scrolling Shooters and focuses more on the bullets and makes them very important to play. Many times the Bullets will fall at the player in a artistic way and many fans of the sub-genre like this factor.

Sometimes depending on which game, some games have a feature where the bullets will turn to points after a boss is beat.

Another trait is that the Hitbox commonly is a lot small than the ship and the ship may only have a four pixel hit-box area while the ship is thirty pixels. This makes it appear sometimes that a ship is being hit but not blowing up.

Games (order by date game was released)Edit

  • Batsugun Released in February 1993 for Arcade, and October 25, 1996 for the Sega Saturn, by the now defunct company Toaplan.
  • Touhou 's First true Bullet Hell entry in the series (TH 2: the Story of Eastern Wonderland) released for the PC-98 in August 15, 1997 by the developer Zun. The first PC release (TH 6: the Embodiment of Scarlet Devil) was in August 11, 2002. The latest main-series release (TH 16: Hidden Star in Four Seasons) was in August 11, 2017.
  • Ikaruga Released in December 20, 2001 for Arcade,  September 5, 2002 for Dreamcast,  January 16, 2003 for GameCube,  April 9, 2008 for Xbox Live, and February 18, 2014 for Microsoft Windows/PC, by the company Treasure.
  • Espgaluda First released in 2003 for Arcade, PS2 by the company Cave. Espgaluda II released November 25, 2005 for Arcade, 2006 for mobile, February 25, 2010 for XBOX 360, and April 10, 2010  for IOS and Android. The latest release is Espgaluda II HD for IOS in 2011.