How many gaming platforms do you have in your life? Two? Five? How about 15? Because that's how many some of us here at EG have to pay attention to in order to filter out the most interesting nuggets for your delectation.
But that's the nature of the increasingly fragmented market these days. No sooner have you caught up on the latest additions to PSN, WiiWare, DSiWare, Xbox Live Indie and Steam than a barrel-load of hot new Android, iPhone, iPad and Windows Phone 7 titles have hit the virtual stores. And that's before you've even taken into account the new boxed releases, or wistfully gazed at the retro scene.
And then someone comes along and asks you about reviewing Facebook apps, so you step on a pressure plate and an anvil crushes you to a squishy pulp. Problem solved. It's official: you can have too many games.
The simplistic concept of the initial arcade shooter was somewhat short lived. Left, right and fire had proved to be a successful formula for a vast number of releases after the arrival of the seminal Space Invaders in 1978. To ensure the continuing success of the arcades, however, publishers had to innovate.
Released by Taito in 1980, Phoenix propelled game play mechanics forward by introducing the concept of 'bosses' to the arcade goer - larger than life baddies that had to be destroyed in order for the player to continue on their quest for the high score position.
The player controls their ubiquitous space craft at the bottom of the screen; inheriting the traditional left, right and fire shooter mechanics of its arcade brethren. In addition, a short-lived shield is provided that, once activated, gives the player's ship seconds of protection through four levels of onslaught from phoenix propelled missiles and kamikaze birds of fury that launch down the screen in waves as they home in on your modest spacecraft.