Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space

Game review by
David Chapman, Common Sense Media
Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space Game Poster Image
Sci-fi extermination game plagued by too many glitchy bugs.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Though player is part of a planetary defense force working to save humanity from invading aliens, ultimately it's little more than an excuse to shoot giant alien bugs.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Player characters essentially nameless templates in battle against aliens. They aren't "bad" role models, but there's not enough development to call them "good" role models, either.

Ease of Play

Some weapons, action require multiple buttons, awkward placement. Camera less than ideal.

Violence

Though smaller screen, lack of blood reduces impact of violence, nonstop destruction as players constantly shoot waves of alien bugs with everything from rifles, machine guns, rocket launchers, even air strikes.

Sex
Language

Occasional use of minor language, though no explicit profanity.

Consumerism

Remake of a previous entry in Earth Defense Force franchise, which has spawned multiple titles.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space is a third-person sci-fi-themed shooter for the PlayStation Vita. Invaders from Planet Space is an extended remake of Earth Defense Force 2, originally released on the PlayStation 2 in Japan and Europe. Armed with an array of military and sci-fi-themed weapons, players have to shoot waves of oversize enemies. Defeated enemies generally explode or, in the case of many insects, flip over twitching before fading from the screen. The game does include multiplayer support for up to four players via online or ad hoc play, potentially exposing younger players to some offensive language.

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What's it about?

EARTH DEFENSE FORCE 2: INVADERS FROM PLANET SPACE is a portable, expanded remake of the original Earth Defense Force 2 PlayStation 2 game, which was never released in North America. After driving away an alien invasion, the leaders of Earth united together and created a special response group, the Earth Defense Force. Now, two years later, reports are popping up that the aliens are back, and the EDF is being called to action. Armed with everything from assault rifles and rocket launchers to jet packs and laser guns, it's up to you, as a member of the EDF, to save the citizens from the invading aliens and their insect armies. With more than 70 missions, six difficulty levels, three playable classes, and co-op support for up to four players via ad hoc or online, Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space is the definitive release of the cult classic.

Is it any good?

For over a decade, this sci-fi franchise has been a cult hit, filled with all the cheesy, sci-fi B-movie schlock that fans just can't get enough of. With such a devoted fan base, it's surprising that it's taken 10 years for this highlight of the series to make its way to North America. Unfortunately, this remake ultimately does more damage to the EDF than anything the Ravagers could ever throw at them. Though Invaders from Planet Space does have some extra content, such as multiplayer and a third playable class, it feels like everything else was just thrown together and rushed out the door. The visuals feel stripped down and bland. Even worse, during review there were a couple of occasions when technical glitches had characters falling through buildings and even defying gravity by running sideways. On top of this, the controls don't quite make a smooth transition from a PS2 controller to the Vita. This is particularly noticeable with the action buttons that wind up mapped to the Vita's Select and Start buttons. Despite this, when the game isn't falling apart at the seams, there's actually some fun to be had. If only you didn't have to fight through so much virtual muck to get to it.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about violence in video games. Does it lessen the impact of the violence when there is no blood? What about when it involves nonhuman creatures?

  • Talk about disaster preparedness. Though it's unlikely a city will be overrun by giant insects, what if some other disaster were to occur? Does your family have a plan in place?

Game details

Themes & Topics

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