Ion Assault is a particle physics-based shooter. Players control a small ship in a rectangular field filled with ion particles. Players must manipulate these particles to destroy enemies and objects alike. Each field has a finite number of particles to be used, but particles are never destroyed. Players begin with three lives, but may earn more through high scores. Being hit by an enemy will destroy your ship and crashing frequently may do the same. Power-ups dropped from enemies or trapped in objects may grant players limited use of alternative particle manipulation methods. Power-ups do disappear after a time and are lost when the player loses a life. Players work their way through four sectors of six levels. Each sector has a large boss on the sixth level.
Ion Assault has a dynamic difficulty setting where the number of enemies that spawn is entirely dependent upon how quickly the player destroys obstacles.
Scores are determined by the amount of 'Score Orbs' collected. Each obstacle and most enemies destroyed releases score orbs. Destroying multiple obstacles at once releases more valuable score orbs. More valuable score orbs are represented by multiple circles within the orb whereas the normal score orbs have only a single circle within them. The most valuable score orbs are worth triple the normal value. Scores can also be multiplied by collecting lots of score orbs in a short time. A timer bar is shown under the current score collection above your ship. Higher multipliers take exponentially more score orbs to attain. Scores are reset upon total death, or game over. Score orbs also disappear after a while. To collect score orbs, players only need to pass near them, as the ship's tractor beam will pull multiple score orbs into the ship at one time. For every increase of 100,000 points, the player will earn an extra life.
- OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7
- Processor: Core 2 Duo @ 2.0GHz
- Memory: 1 GB RAM
- Graphics: 512 MB Video Card (GeForce 7800 GT / ATI HD 2600 XT)
- DirectX®: DirectX 9
- Hard Drive: 150 MB space free
- Sound: DirectX-compatible soundcard