Earth Defense Force Insect Armageddon Review
This is how you make a sequel to a cult hit.
Many people loved 2007′s Earth Defense Force 2017. I was not one of them, I thought it was terrible. Many people call it a cult classic; I call it the worst game on the Xbox 360. It was 50 levels of killing ants. Not cool space ants, just normal black ants. Somehow a sequel was green-lit and here we have Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon. The sequel takes the absurdity that some loved from the first game and adds in some actual fun. It’s not perfect, but Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon is a good time.
EDF: IA is a third person shooter that puts you in the boots of Lighting Squad, a group of EDF troopers tasked with holding back the alien invasion in New Detroit. That’s about all the story you’re going to get. An operations officer guides you from waypoint to waypoint but she doesn’t offer much in the way of extra detail. The enemies you’ll be facing are still giant ants, but they are much more detailed this time. The ants are accompanied by spiders, ticks and robots. Remember, I said it was absurd.
This time around you will have access to a number of different load-outs based on armor type. There is Trooper, Tactical, Jet and Heavy. Each have their own special abilities and available weapons. The points you earn in-game can be spent on new weapons and upgrades after each mission. It’s a simple system but it keeps you interested and invested. EDF: IA is all about mowing down hordes of alien insects and this is about 95% of what you’ll be doing in the game. This is where the charm lies; the game manages to be mindless fun rather than tedious.
One of the other great additions to this sequel is destructible buildings. Every building can be brought down to a pile of rubble, it’s not in the pretty, systematic way of battlefield, but it’s still fun. It sort of adds to the unintentional comedy, you are tasked with saving New Detroit but you will end up destroying most of it. If you are looking for a few hours of blowing stuff up and killing huge bugs, you’ll have a good time with this one. After the campaign you can hit up the Campaign Remix mode for even more content.
Multiplayer is the main thing that makes EDF: IA better than EDF 2017. To start, you can play 2-player split screen local throughout the whole campaign. That’s cool, but they also have what we really wanted, 3-player online co-op. The campaign can be played in its entirety with one or two friends. In addition to all of this there is the 6 player Survival mode. This is your typical firefight/survival/horde clone where you will face of against wave after wave of enemies in a battle to see how long you can stay alive. These modes are usually a good time and the addition of six players should up the chaos. One thing survival does make me wonder is why can we not have six players in the campaign? That would have been nice.
Not a whole lot of thought went into the achievements, most are awarded for killing 100 ants, 1000 ants, 10000 ants then substituting ants for ticks, ticks for spiders and so on. The good news is you’ll be killing a lot of bugs.
As far as semi-budge titles ($39.99) go, EDF: IA is one of the better. It’s not the prettiest game or the most innovative but it has enough player advancement and co-op to make it worthwhile. If you and your friends were looking for some mindless co-op mayhem, be sure to grab this one.