Hopeless: The Dark Cave was a striking little twitch game, made memorable by the juxtaposition of adorable little Marshmallow Peep creatures and the hulking, snarling monsters that wanted to eat them. In that title your only defense was old-fashioned lead (which was occasionally and tragically collected by the peeps themselves), but in the sequel, you get access to something with a little more pop. Hopeless: Space Shooting takes the original game and covers it with DayGlo colors and Buck Rogers lasers.

The core concept remains the same: tap around the tiny circle of firelight to make your quivering peeps shoot at the aliens. If you're too slow, one of them will be eaten. If you're too careless, you might just fry one of your allies who was coming to fill your own ranks. Survive to the end of the round and your little guys will get a beam-up rescue. If not, all of them will be mercilessly devoured. The standard weapon makes the gameplay essentially identical, but you can unlock a sort of shotgun and a Spartan laser if you get enough points.

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The biggest change is that you can now shoot multiple weapons at once with multi-touch taps (assuming you've got enough peeps). That makes for some interesting options: press two or three fingers in a tight pattern to take down the bigger, nastier aliens with one multi-shot, or wait until you've got enough peeps, spread your fingers out, and shoot constantly in all directions, killing pretty much everything including any incoming peeps.

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Unfortunately, developer Upopa has changed Hopeless: Space Shooting into a paid game without changing the essential free-to-play structure. You can still unlock all the add-ons, like an early warning system and grenades, with enough playtime. And eventually you'll be able to call in emergency peeps, which seem to be added to your reserves at random. But the store is still filled with in-app purchases for these upgrades, and having them there makes the player suspect that the unlocks are a little padded.

Hopeless: Space Shooting is a $1 download for Android 2.2 and up. It seems a little unfinished at the moment - leaderboards, Facebook integration, and some unlocks are still off-limits.

Hopeless: Space Shooting
Hopeless: Space Shooting
Developer: Upopa Games
Price: Free+