Insects: omnipresent and industrious, admired the world over for their adaptability and their drive – as long as they stay outside. As soon as they show up in your bedroom, they become a pest and a terror, resulting in a scramble for a poisonous spray or rolled up newspaper. That’s evolution, training us to be ready for the coming space bug invasion. Because when it comes, with their giant spiders equipped with rocket launchers, we will be ready. With bigger rocket launchers.
That’s the premise of Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon in a nutshell. Team Unwinnable got a hands-on look at the game at PAX East 2011, and we liked what we saw…
On my exploration of the Boston Convention Center for PAX East, I spotted something strangely familiar and my eyes lit up with joy when I realized it was Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon. I believe publisher D3 had no idea EDF 2017 was going to be the budget hit it became, so I was quite surprised when I saw they made a sequel. I really couldn’t pinpoint what hooked me on Earth Defense Force 2017. It could have been the destructible environments, the larger than life alien robots, fighting giant ants and spiders that brought me back to the movies Them and Tarantula.
Maybe it was just the incessant chanting of “EDF!” by my squad mates.
I had some hand-on time with the game and was pleasantly surprised to see that both the game play and graphics had been upgraded. The newest addition was classes. In the original game it was you and your selection of 170+ weapons. The sequel boasts over 300 weapons, new vehicles and at least 3 classes to choose from. Each class has an array of specials and skills to aid you in your defense of Earth. On a second run-in with the game, I got a chance to see Dave and Pete in action and got to ask some questions as a fan of the original. I was a little disappointed to know that levels like the ant hill in the original game, which made you traverse endless tunnels, did not make it to the sequel – too difficult to traverse.
All in all, for a budget title, it’s one hell of a game. Check out Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon and don’t forget your flyswatter!
Having never played the first Earth Defense Force, I was interested in what this third person shooter had up its sleeve.
Ken had been talking about it as soon as we stepped onto the convention hall. The premise of the game is very simple: shoot everything that is bigger than you. When choosing your character you have an almost ridiculous number of weapons to choose from based off the class you choose. Each class has different abilities on the battlefield – this encourages teamwork that will be necessary to get through difficulty spikes later in the game. The enemies that you will face on the battle torn streets will more than likely be as tall as a building – so it’s nice to have some friends watching your back.
At first I was concerned with the somewhat flat look of the game. The buildings and rubble were detailed enough but felt pretty bland, but that was quickly forgotten as the action ramps up – I can’t even tell you how much is going on at one time during game play, the explosions, the enemies crawling over buildings and dropping in from the sky, it is very exciting and fast paced. The controls were very comfortable and suited the run and gun. The demo did feel a bit repetitive after about twenty minutes of running from checkpoint to checkpoint fighting the same enemies. The developers did say that there would be vehicle combat mixed in to break things up, however.
All in all Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon is a great play at a budget price tag of $39.95. Keep an eye out for it on July 5, 2011 and get ready to log some hours on Xbox Live and the Playstation Network saving the world.
With Kenneth J. Lucas and Dave Trainer