This is Portabliss, a column about downloadable games that can be played on the go.Velocity Ultra. The finished product effectively blends its core shoot-'em-up mechanics with puzzle elements, resulting in a novel experience.
Velocity Ultra resembles a typical vertically scrolling shoot-'em-up on its surface. Players blast enemy ships on the way through each timed level, rescuing survivors in order to boost scores and post-stage rankings. The timer gives the game a frantic pace, but it's never so strict as to make gameplay frustrating. If you don't care about your rank on the leaderboards, you can casually stroll through the majority of the game's levels with more than enough time left over.
Giving the player control over pacing is a brilliant move, and Velocity Ultra encourages new strategies as its challenges ramp up in ferocity. Each level scrolls at a leisurely pace by default, but if you're the competitive (or over-caffeinated) type, you can hammer on the Vita's right shoulder button to engage hyperspeed and scream through every level as quickly as possible. It's a risky decision, but it pays off in the form of post-level accolades and unlockable trophies.