5 Reviews

Earth Defence Force 2017

Alien invaders have decided to up the 'ant'-e

It's the year 2013, a year that has given Xbox 360 more than its share of games. But while the Ghost Recon crew are shooting up Mexicans and Bullet Witch is hobbling across America with a gun the size of a giraffe's neck, the general public's attention is gripped by a more pressing issue. It seems that some aliens have turned up in the Earth's atmosphere - and the intro sequence is hopeful that these intruders are more interested in talking than fighting.

How wrong could one intro sequence be? Five years later, these intergalactic jerks launch a full-scale assault on Earth, using the slightly odd combination of enormo-robots and gigantic earthen arthropods such as spiders and ants.


Earth's response, brilliantly, is to send a crack team of soldiers out with a pile of bazooka or, at the very least, bazooka-like weapons to blast them to smithereens. And there's your plot right there on the back of that postage stamp. Truly, it's a ridiculous storyline for an absolutely ridiculous game.

But it's the good, smile-inducing kind of ridiculous; kind of like the sight of a fat man chasing after a string of sausages. While it's not anything we haven't already seen nine million times on Xbox, the daftness of both the enemies you encounter and the physics when you begin blowing things up crafts this into quite a decent budget shooter.

Missions are simple, often quite repetitive affairs, simply requiring you to blow up wave after wave of enemies until the level decides you've had enough. But although it may not be anything very special, it's undeniably therapeutic in that worrying way that only destroying everything in sight can be. Far-away buildings crumble with a single shot, giant spider corpses arc through the air and it's generally just a fun environment to muck around in. There's no way it can live up to something like Lost Planet, as one of the more obvious comparisons, but it's refreshing in this day and age just to play something a bit silly and a bit low-rent.

Twenty five brand new pounds isn't a bad RRP at all for a 360 game, particularly one with as much single-player content as this. A lack of any kind of online mode comes across as a missed opportunity, particularly considering the size of the multiplayer maps, and it struggles to justify itself in an over-populated genre on Xbox 360. But the fact that it's over here at all bodes well for many of the obscure yet intriguing titles being developed at the moment in Japan - rather awesome shooter Senko No Ronde being one particular title to keep an eye on.

The verdict

Nowhere near as good as the full-priced alternatives - but you're still guaranteed a pretty good time.

  • Packed with content
  • Gor the price, almost worth it
  • Limited, PS2 roots are obvious
Xbox 360