Review – Space Invaders Forever

Space Invaders is a franchise that needs no introduction. Anyone born after the 1950s has at least heard about it, played it or seen the ultra-iconic alien pixels that can easily be considered one of the most iconic game sprites of all time. With the recent revival of Taito that released games like Bubble Bobble 4 and the Darius Cozmic collection, it was only a matter of time before they finally brought their most famous franchise to this generation of consoles. See if Space Invaders Forever is worth your time.

Arkanoid versus Space Invaders is exactly what you think.

Space Invaders Forever is a compilation of three different Space Invaders experiments. The first is Space Invaders Extreme, originally released in 2008 for the Nintendo DS and PSP. It’s a crazier version of the classic formula, with complexity for style, fast action and trippy visuals. It’s all about destroying enemies as quickly and sexually as possible, combining power-ups to defeat a series of enemy waves as quickly as possible.

The second game is the animation game Arkanoid vs Space Invaders, released on mobile in 2017. The name speaks for itself. They are invaders from space, but you will defeat the famous aliens by deflecting their lasers with an Arkanoid paddle. Curiously, the game as a whole is played with the DualShock 4 trackpad, and it doesn’t work as well as it should. The touchpad has been criminally neglected for the past seven years, but that doesn’t mean it has always been considered an advanced technology. Playing the whole game with him is sometimes a little irresponsible. Fortunately, the game has also been redesigned to remove all micro transactions.

Space Invaders Extreme is far from the classic formula, but it’s still a lot of fun!

Finally, there is a strange anomaly called Space Invaders Gigamax 4 SE, a strange harbor of a game that was a tourist attraction in Japan. Actually, it is a gigantic failure, bordering on the ridiculous, of the classic formula, in which the player literally has to mow down hundreds of extraterrestrials at a time as he struggles with the classic controls of the 1970s. This game can be played by up to four players, which is an absolute must if you want to get past the first screen.

These are the three games in this collection. They have all their pros and cons and are really fun games, but you can see that they are not really retro. Of course they’re retro, but if you were looking for a collection of Space Invaders classics, you won’t find them here. It’s not the best way to survive a franchise, like playing for an hour. Taito should have added other games such as the original, Space Invaders DX, or the Get Even, a WiiWare exclusive. Hell, even the strangely stupid Space Raiders, originally released on the GameCube, could have spiced things up. In any case, all the games are incredibly well made and have graphics and soundtracks that make you shudder, even though the latter is not exactly what the entire franchise was known for.

So, uh… THIS…

If you are looking for fun retro games in a package, Space Invaders will meet your needs forever. But keep in mind that this is not a retro collection. You get the DS game, the spin-offs for the mobile and the whole damn Gigamax 4 SE. You won’t get the history of Space Invaders, no significant additional content or even an updated version of the original. At this stage it is still a well hidden gemstone collection. However, if Taito ever decides to release a second collection, I would like to see a better representation of the entire history of the franchise. I’m a fan of preserving history.

In addition to the anime aesthetics found in Arkanoid vs. Space Invaders is presented, the visuals are what you would expect from a retro-revival compilation like this: classic Space Invaders pixel art mixed with flashy graphics. Space Invaders is one of the easiest games to play, and the controls of these games show it clearly. That said, Arkanoid vs Space Invaders is played with the DualShock trackpad, and it’s far from as responsive as it should be.
A few subtle electronic beats and sound effects here and there, but nothing too exorbitant. Arkanoid vs. Space Invaders also has Japanese voices. A collection of fun arcade games with a retro twist, sure, but I wish that this collection included more classic games and information about the long-standing franchise, as a tribute to this huge franchise deserves.
Last block: 7.0

Space Invaders Forever is now available for PS4 and Switch.

Revised on PS4.

A copy of Space Invaders Forever has been made available by the publisher.


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