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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published By: D3 Publisher
Developed By: Vicious Cycle
Genre: Action
Players: 6 Versus /4 Co-op
Rated: T for Teen (Animated Blood, Mild Language, Mild Suggestive Themes, Violence)
Release Date: July 5, 2011
Screenshots: Link
Amazon: Buy Now!
Written By: Matthew Prunty

August 28, 2011 - Thereís something about killing hordes of insects and saving the world thatís a lot of fun. With the latest installment within the Earth Defense Force series; Insect Armageddon, you have a very appealing and enjoyable game despite its shortcomings. This isnít a title that will wow you with its ultra-realistic visuals or its heartfelt storylines. This is a title that is what it is, and this is an engaging shooter that holds a special place in your heartÖ. not unlike those awful Starship Trooper movies. While there are a few chances within Insect Armageddon to help separate it from past installments, Insect Armageddon is by far the best installment within the series.

For those looking for a solid story element within Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon, you are barking up the wrong tree. Insect Armageddon involves a team of Earth Defense Force soldiers that must put a stop to an invasion from an alien race known as the Ravagers; who have set their sights on America. Short and sweet; your main goal is to stop the invasion by mowing down countless hordes of insects. At first I had my reservations about this title; having not played the previous installments, however once I hopped into the action, it soon became clear that this game is more of a filler than an engaging experience that will have you coming back for more. Being a filler title isnít a bad thing as you will certainly get a kick out of killing insects ranging from ants to spiders and even a couple of massive praying mantises. Knowing that each insect you kill will drop health for you to pick up; you donít really have to worry about holding back. As someone put it, you can go ďballs out like youíre going commando.Ē

The main campaign within Insect Armageddon is broken down into 3 chapters, each consisting of five levels (15 levels total); each having its own selection of missions you must complete. For the most part each mission has the same objective, which requires you to move from point A to point B, mowing down absurd amounts of enemies until that area is cleared. What keeps the action so appealing is the fact that the deck is definitely stacked against you and you are challenged to use the powerful weapons that are at your disposal in order to win the fight. While it doesnít seem like it, strategy does play a part in how you are successful you are in battle. At the beginning of each level, you can decide what weapons you carry into battle Ė boomsticks, rocket launches, machine guns Ė with the only drawback being that you can only equip two weapons at a time. You do have infinite ammo, so worrying about having enough bullets to take out the mantises, is not the case.

To ensure the action stays intense and isnít too repetitive, Insect Armageddon institutes a class system. At the beginning of each mission, you have your choice of four unique classes Ė grunt, tank, jetpack trooper and tactical trooper - each having its own style of play. No matter which class you choose, you will still be able to equip two weapons of your choice, however the class you choose determines the amount of health and what special abilities you will take into the battle. For those who opted to take a jetpack into the battle, except the ability to fly and move fast. However if you opt to be a tactical trooper, you will have a larger amount of health in comparison to the jetpack trooper, and also be able to utilize a shield. The institution of the class system alones adds hours of replayability to this title. You can play within one class throughout the campaign or switch it up along the way. However you choose to play, each class can be leveled up.

Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon isnít the most beautiful looking game to grace the home consoles. The budget game status that Insect Armageddon carries also carries over into its visual presentation. If I had to compare this title to anything that has come out before it, I would say the visuals fall along the lines of Untold Legends: Dark Kingdom. While the game isnít ugly looking, it doesnít take advantage of tech itís running on. The environments lack detail and look rather generic. The more destruction and insects on the screen, and the more the frame-rate will suffer. Itís not a gamebreaker; however it can get real annoying at times. The voice-acting and sound effects are cheesy; like they were ripped straight out of B-movieÖ Starship Troopers anyone?

To help get players to come back for more, Insect Armageddon features three levels of difficulty that allow for more powerful weapons to be unlocked, independent class level ups, and remixed stages, which switches the action up just enough to keep things interesting. If this isnít enough, you can also hop into the action with a couple of your best buds and show these insects a thing or two. You can partake in the multiplayer locally through its split-screen cooperative mode. However, if you and three other people want to game together, you can take the entire campaign online for some four-player action. If four still isnít enough, you can partake in the Survival Mode and have five of your buddies join in on the fun. The battle sequences are ridiculous at times, however through the bonding of guys and gals, the action is always fun.

Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon is one of those titles that are obviously made for a certain audience. Being a budget title, itís a rare find. Very few budget titles look the part, play the part and are actually loads of fun. With a price point of $40, it makes the game a more attractive property for PS3 and Xbox 360 to own. And certainly with summer ending; and along with it the gaming drought, this is definitely something that can hold over you and your friends until October hits.


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