Posted: November 21
Iron Sky: Invasion, could be best summed up in the phrase 'wasted potential.' At it's core, it's an arcadey space shooter. You fly around in space while aimiing your cursor at painted targets. What stands out about the game is the various, neat, little systems it incorporates. A large map covering the space between the Earth and Moon is filled with various space stations and allied ships. Enemeis are marked as well, travelling in groups. Quests dot the map and while some are critical path, others are completely optional. Ships travel in real time, meaning that while you're completing one mission, a seperate quest may have passed by, or a set of enemy ships may have made their way closer to Earth.
Reminiscent of X-Wing, shields, weapons and engines can draw off each other, giving combat a little depth. It's deepened as well by how you can individually target cannons or engines on ships, wearing them down in chunks instead of slowly draining them with imprecise fire. Heavier fighters have weak spots, and the game has no fixed plane, allowing you to flay around in any direction you want and line yourself up to take those weaker points.
What drags the game down is the repetitive nature of the game. Once you know how to approach a situation, combat becomes rote as you first target the light ships then start chipping at the bigger ones. I only ran into one or two scenarios where I was genuinely engaged in executing a strategy.
While it's novel that they used the actors from the movie for unique in-game FMVs, the acting is unbearable. It's dull and unfunny and the game's plot is lifeless as well. The mission videos are also badly timed, as it seems they were recorded at a different time than when the game's voice actor recorded his.
It's evident that someone at the development studio cared about this game, which makes it stand out a bit amongst terrible movie tie-in games. It's not enough to rescue it though. That said, I would be genuinely interested in seeing Reality Pump further develop the ideas laid down in this game; there's some genuinely talented designer(s) over there and they deserve the chance to make a great game.