Aliens are attacking earth using an army of giant insects! Only one thing to do, wipe the earth clean of every last giant baddy, probably taking down a city or two with them. If such a job interests a player, Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon is for them!
Anyone who likes blowing things up and surviving insurmountable odds will like this game, pure and simple. In fact, simple is entirely what this game is. There are four classes, each with different abilities and weapons, cooperative online gameplay, a campaign with 3 levels of difficulty, and a survival mode. That is all this game has, so someone looking for a long, expansive story with memorable characters and tear jerks will not find it here.
No, this is the realm of arcade junkies and 'Starship Troopers' fans. This game is not intelligent in the least, though I suppose the game's AI might argue to the contrary. It's surprisingly good, with swarms of insects path finding easily along, always making their way towards a player's face to remove it. It probably will get removed several times, as the lowest difficulty setting is normal and stepping it up to hard without first unlocking some serious firepower is entirely a mistake. This game will be as difficult as a player wants it to be, pure and simple.
Going back to simple, it is amazing how great a game can feel when the core mechanic works well. There was only one thing the developers at Vicious Cycle Software had to focus on, and that was blowing up bugs. They accomplished that with polish. The buildings collapse as well aimed or misplaced rockets slam into them, particle effects blindingly present at times as the radar shows large blobs of red moving in from all sides. Plug in an x-box compatible game controller and the arcade feel is palpable, though no quarter slot could be found. The enemy variety is average, so nothing to complain about there, and the game tends to focus on large, outlandish foes.
In summary, Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon is a fun game. It is by no means the greatest game, and the farthest thing from an innovative game, but it works. Everything works. Not a single crash, mission unable to complete, or bug stuck behind a wall somewhere, which was surprising for a game with a $20 price tag (at the time of review, though on steam, there will undoubtedly be sales at some point). If someone's looking for some good, simple fun with plenty of explosions and swarms of things, they'd be hard pressed to find a better deal.
Final Game Guys grade: A
- by Richard Kern for news10.net's Game Guys
(D3 Publisher supplied a copy of this game for review.)