X-Scape is a sequel to the Japanese only GameBoy game X for DSiWare. The game continues the story of the brave pilot of the advanced VIXIV space tank. Set 20 years after the events of X, X-Scape focuses on a new conflict that arises after your awaking from cryogenic sleep. Much has changed, and a new, ruthless empire has sprung up lead by your former military commander seemingly bent on controlling the galaxy. Assisted by your "highly capable support droid" VIX-529, it's your task to find out the truth behind your commanders treacherous ways.
The game is split-up into exploration and mission based gameplay. The player travels from planet to planet via warp gates that, in turn, activate a short timed (e.g. 25-30 seconds) time-trial down a narrow corridor as you attempt to reach the end before the time limit, all the while encountering various enemies and obstacles. Planet side, the game becomes far more open, allowing you to take on various missions or move on to the next story mission all the while dealing with the planets own enemies, weather, etc. Furthermore each planet has it's own unique tri-tone color scheme and permeates all parts of the game, from the HUD to the color of planet and its structures.
This is also where the unique aspects on the VIXIV come into play through the vehicles two main modes. The first mode being the default tank mode where you drive, pivot, strafe, and shoot like you would ‘expect’ a space tank to do. The VIXIV’s ability to fly however brings another dynamic, allowing you a limited amount of airtime via launching off a launch pad at maximum speed. Here you control the direction, but not speed, of your craft.
Your tank comes equipped with an upgradeable cannon that can be used in any mode and is fired through manual aiming. The other two weapons, missiles and bombs, are lock-on only and are acquired through the course of the game, and in the case of missiles, have a finite ammo supply.The aforementioned upgrades come from collecting energy cubes, which are awarded after defeating enemies and completing missions in the game. Along with aiding the player and increasing their score, energy cubes and power crystals allow the ship to be upgraded via a simple upgrade mechanic. You are able upgrade Shot Power, Shot Speed, and Shield strength, each with three levels respectively. The rest of the ships upgrades are granted through the course of the game