[Review] Space Invaders Forever – Nintendo Switch

  • Developer: Taito
  • Publisher: ININ Games
  • Release Date: 15/12/2020
  • Price: £24.99 /$29.98
  • Review code provided by ININ Games

Trailer

Video Review

Introducing Space Invaders Forever Switch Review

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild sure is a shiny new game, but have you ever played a modern revitalization of a video game originally released in 1978?  Space Invaders Forever is here to BE the answer to that question.  Combining cutting edge graphics, sound effects, and upgrades with the classic gameplay veteran players are used to, Space Invaders Forever offers up an experience for all players, even if the visuals could stand to just CALM DOWN once In a while.

Pew.  Pew.  Pew!  Pew!  PEW!  PEW!

[Explosion noise]

Space Invaders Forever is a game that is advertised to contain 3 games, which means 3 different takes on the classic gameplay we all know and are familiar with!

The first, which is Space Invaders Extreme, which is an even further enhanced version of the Steam release, which is an enhanced version of the DS/PSP port from 2008.  It delivers high octane gameplay with a variety of power ups, enemies, bullets to dodge, meters to pay attention to and 16 levels!  Get any score at all to access even harder EXTRA line of levels.

Space Invaders Gigamax 4 SE, which is a 1-4 player minigame that allows you and your friends to fight Space Invaders type enemies, as well as different enemies that obey a new, faster, flashier type of gameplay.  Team up and take ‘em down.

There is meant to be a third mode here named “Arkanoid vs. Space Invaders” but for some reason, that game mode is not available in my copy of the game.  After several restarts and attempted updates, it still never showed up.

For The Single Player

Space Invaders Extreme offers the original Space Invaders gameplay mixed with SO many refillable bars and SO many lights and sounds, you won’t know WHAT’s going on.  There are 16 levels you can progress through, but the level you reach is determined by your score.  If you score low, achieving a C or D rank, the game will progress you toward the easier levels at the top, score in the B or A range, and you move toward the harder levels. 

If this looks like a LOT to pay attention to, that’s because it is!  On the left side of the screen are several boxes which will indicate which stage you’re on, what number wave of enemies you’re fighting, whatever rate is, the number of enemies you’ve defeated in a row or ‘chain’, your shot level, how many lives you have left, and your standing on a leaderboard of some kind.  On the right you have a bar that fills with the different colors of enemies you defeat.  Defeating 4 in a row of the same color will cause the enemy to drop a powerup, filling up the OTHER bar on the right.  There’s a lot to pay attention to.  Not to mention the background you’re playing on.  The setting you’re shooting enemies on simply has too much going on in it and will make seeing enemy shots difficult.  It becomes a bit of sensory overload that really hinders gameplay.

Not as much as these random roulettes and minigames however.  They activate sometimes when you shoot the UFO shapes that fly around.  Progress will pause, take you to a loading screen, and you’ll attempt to complete a 15 second minigame.  It’s pretty jarring if you aren’t expecting it, and even if you are, it just adds to the visual sensory overload on screen, specifically if you do complete the minigame.

For the Multiplayer

If you have 1 to 3 friends that are wearing masks while near you, and sitting a reasonable distance away, you can ask them to help you play this mode!  It will pit you in somewhat classic Space Invaders scenario where you move slowly, shoot enemies, and they go [explosion noise].  However, after defeating all the Space Invaders Enemies, new enemies appear that don’t obey these same rules.  They move faster, take multiple hits, and show that this game should not have tried to reinvent the series, rather, it should have catered more to the classic way of playing.

We didn’t get very far in this mode, as it almost REQUIRES 4 players to defeat the giant UFO boss.  We couldn’t even get it past half health.  It’s kind of underwhelming and will afford you no new ways to play this game, or special rewards besides a slightly higher place on the World Leaderboard.

For The Breakout Lover

When you’re done dying to waves of bullets from bosses that show just how much the developers loved Bullet Hells, and a mode you can’t possibly play by yourself.  You can make a pit stop to this mode.  Arkanoid vs. Space Invaders.  Unfortunately, the copy I received of the game lacked this mode, so there isn’t much I can actually say about it.

Final Thoughts

Unfortunately, Space Invaders Forever is so lost in trying to appeal to the short attention spans of todays’ newer gamers that it loses track of it’s source material and just becomes a mess of lights, sounds, refillable bars, different shots you can’t see, and minigames that interrupt the gameplay.  It’s actually a rather unpleasant experience when your progression is based on how high your score goes per level.  The single player mode seems tailored to players who enjoy Bullet Hells rather than those that were looking for the classic Space Invaders Gameplay.  Oh, well, maybe they’ll get it right after the next release of this rerererelease.

Pros:

  • The Soundtrack is SUPER chill

Cons:

  • Visual sensory overload makes dodging shots difficult
  • Multiplayer mode requires 4 players to win
  • Bosses take too long for points to matter
  • Roulettes and minigames interrupt gameflow

Verdict
Space invaders forever isn’t forever fun, but is flashy enough to keep your attention for at least a few hours.

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