Galaxians title screen shot.

Space Invaders was one of the most popular bottom of the screen shooters ever, where players’ laser bases faced formations of invaders that they had to destroy while avoiding their fire in return. A high scoring U. F. O. would also appear overhead several times during a wave.

Galaxian was an arcade game (along with being ported to various home platforms later) where players faced a horde of aliens in a formation above their Galaxip ship. Aliens would start peeling away from the formation and dive-bomb the player; if an alien wasn't shot or didn't collide with the Galaxip, then the alien would reappear at the top of the formation again. Being rammed by an alien or getting hit by one of its bombs would result in the player losing a reserve ship and the game would end if all ships were depleted.

Galaxians by Hairy Bullet Games is an online flash game that plays like Space Invaders, but the graphics are from Galaxian, having the same enemy sprites (minus the flagships), as well as the player’s cannon being the same. The sound effects and opening brief tune at the beginning of a game are also the same as Galaxian’s.


At the beginning of every level, a formation of "intergalactic bugs" will swarm in over the player’s laser base. The formation then starts moving to the side, and once it reaches a screen edge the formation will drop down a notch. With the fewer bugs that are left onscreen as the player starts shooting them the faster they will move. Occasionally a bug will drop a bomb that will destroy the laser base if it makes contact. If a bug reaches the bottom of the screen that will also cost the player a cannon (see Trivia below) and the game will end when the player has run out of reserve cannons.

If the player is able to clear out a wave of bugs, then a new horde will take their place, although at a higher level of difficulty.


  • Move cannon–arrow keys (left/right only)
  • Fire–spacebar


  • Unlike with most Space Invaders games where, if an invader were to reach the bottom of the screen, that would count as the player being “invaded”, which would immediately end the game. With Galaxians, however, the player will just lose a reserve base, but they will start that round over.
  • The bugs hardly ever fire, unlike with most Invaders games in general, although their bombs travel very quickly. With the more levels the player clears out, however, the more often they will begin firing. The last remaining bug also doesn’t move at breakneck speed unlike with most Invaders games, as the player’s laser base can still keep up with it.
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