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[PSN Review] Space Invaders: Infinity Gene

There are few of us that remember “Space Invaders” being released on arcade back in June of 1978, as most of us here probably were not even born yet however there are even fewer of us that are not aware of the classic title that went on to be a foundation for video games for years to come.

Game developer Taito (the company that brought us the original in 1978) and owner Square-Enix have joined together to bring us this new PSN title dubbed “Space Invaders: Infinity Gene”.

A revamped, techno’d classic retro game with a quite a few changes and upgrades for nostalgic fans and younger curious gamers alike.

The first thing you will notice about Space Invaders Infinity Gene is that there are several ways to play it. You could run through the fast paced chaotic “Normal Mode”, try your hand at the “Challenge Mode”, earn some of the “Bonus Stages” or even unlock and play “Music Mode” that allows you to use music saved on your PS3’s hard drive.

Everything is earned through points. Unlocking new weapons, new BGM, new bonus stages, etc. Think of it sort of like XP earned towards unlockables. You have a level tree which is made to look sort of like what I would call a genome tree and branching off of it are each and every unlockable you have earned along the way.

Gameplay – 6.0

While Space Invaders Infinity Gene is literally decades above and beyond the original, its still years behind any other recent top down shooter. 99% of the game is a simple forward progressive top down shooter where you have control to move in virtually any direction to kill off the super fast paced bad guys. Occasionally the plane is skewed at a 45 degree angle or they add a 3D element to it, but over all its a straight forward top down shooter. There are several weapons of which only 2-3 are useful at all but it does add a bit of strategy to each level and sometimes after unlocking a new weapon, its fun to go back to other levels to which it would be more useful.

On higher difficulty settings, this game is unmerciful and relentless. Even on easy and normal I’ve caught myself shouting expletives on higher levels.

With the exception of the bosses and some enemies, the game is pretty much the same on every level. Dodge and shoot.

Graphics – 7.0

While the game is colorless, antiquated, lacking of any technological advancements in the past decade and not a far cry from great flash game, it holds a strong nostalgic, quaint and a “you can’t help but smile” design.

Sound – 8.0

Here is where the game takes off but follows in the footsteps of many downloadable shooters this gen. With remixed techno music, it adds a nice setting to the game and sets up a nice beat to kill some aliens too.

The X – Factor – 6.5

This game would be suitable for a $4.99 price or even push it to a $6.99 price but at its current $9.99 and weighing in at its tiny 91mb’s, I wouldn’t be able to help but feel a tad ripped off. While the game does offer some replay value for those of us that are a completionist, it simply does not hold up to even some of our average shooters that we can purchase for much cheaper right now.

Looking for a game to score some quick trophies? Pass this game up. The trophies, minus a few bronze ones, do not come easy.

Final Verdict – 69 / 100

This review is based on a retail copy of the PS3 version of Space Invaders: Infinity Gene provided by Taito.