EDF! EDF! The cult classic Earth Defense Force 2017 is back with a whole new story, ready for fans to start blasting bugs. Everything you loved about the original game is back, including all the one-liners and insect-exterminating that made the first game a hit. Although there are plenty of noticeable problems with this game, it is priced as a value title, which helps ease the pain of these problems. Priced to sell at $39.99, you get plenty of value for your money.
What makes EDF a fun game is the B-movie action and dialogue, which remain entertaining while not taking themselves too seriously. You aren’t playing EDF for a featured title experience, and if you go into this game expecting that level of polish, you’ll be disappointed. The point-and-shoot dynamics keep things simple, and anyone can pick up and play the game without the need for a tutorial.
This time around you have your choice of player class, which was not an option in the original game. Whether your character preference is for a tank-like character with a missile launcher or a more nimble long-range sniper with a jet pack, EDF has you covered. The game also allows players to ride in vehicles and man turrets, putting much more firepower at your disposal. Raining destruction down upon your targets has never been so much fun. Both additions work well and are a nice improvement over the previous game. As you play through EDF, you’ll have the ability to rank up and gain more ammunition, stronger weapons and even some defensive capabilities. You can bring a friend along for the ride with the drop-in, drop-out co-op system, which works really well. This game lends itself to multi-player gaming, so you should play it with a friend. EDF allows you to connect to your friend quickly and easily, which is a necessity for this type of game. There is a solid game behind EDF, and when you have the right mind-frame it delivers plenty of fun moments, doing what EDF does best.
Unfortunately, there are a number of issues that prevent this title from being the greater mainstream success that it had the potential to be. First off, the graphics do not compare well to other games in its genre. Fortunately, this game is a budget title so you would expect this. Unfortunately for the rest of the game, this is the easiest thing to forgive. The graphics aren’t terrible by any stretch of the imagination, but you’ll notice the difference when you look at other games on the Playstation 3 or Xbox 360.
The largest issue with this game is the low amount of experience points it offers you as you progress through the campaign. The number of times you will have to grind out levels to gain experience is excessive. You rely on the experience points to level-up and gain access to better weapons, and once you start to progress in the story, you will find that the lack of firepower at your disposal is a problem which will prevent you moving forward. You will then have to retreat from the campaign, bump up the difficulty and replay levels you already played through once to get what you need. It is disappointing that so much replaying is required to progress. Granted, players may want to replay levels anyway, but it shouldn’t be required to do so. When players are forced to replay levels over and over again it slows the story down to a crawl, which doesn’t keep players engaged in the campaign. Especially today, when most games are very fast-paced, this game makes itself stand out poorly against its peers. When you combine this with the fact that there are no checkpoints, it really hurts the approachability of the game. Not everyone can play long missions in one sitting, and the further through the game you get, the longer the missions take to finish. Also, if you do not finish a level then you are awarded zero experience points. The game essentially takes you hostage with a finish-or-else attitude, and this hurts the game quite a bit.
Despite the shortcomings of the game, there is a lot to like about this title. Though your patience will be tested on more than one occasion, the EDF-lover in all of us will win the struggle and inspire you to play on. Though this title is probably not for everyone, if you enjoy campy and action-packed games then it should appeal to you, especially when you are paying a budget title price. As such, it is hard to pass up on Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon.
This game is based off a retail copy of the Playstation 3 version of Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon by Namco Bandai
- Fun Co-op
- True to the Series
- Frustrating Gameplay
- Repetitive Mission Structure