Never before have I seen a game fail to deliver with so much potential. Inversion, brought to you by the guys at Namco and Saber Interactive, tried to make a third-person shooter with twist, you can control gravity. Although at times you might find yourself the victim of this mechanic with your world turned upside down, leaving you floating meekly in the air or attempting to find cover on the face of a skyscraper. However to me the experience seemed a little stiff, the graphics were unimpressive and the similarities with Gears of War only highlighted disappointment with the project against such a strong comparable title. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed both the single player and multiplayer co-op on my PS3, but it does feel like a lacklustre performance from Namco with many missed opportunities..
Anyway, I’ll begin with the story and let you make up your own minds. You play the part of dutiful father, husband and Vanguard City law enforcement officer Davis Russel, alongside your partner Leo Delgado. On the way home from an average days’ work in the city you’re interrupted by a hostile alien invasion, the Lutadores have arrived. Some really big, ugly human looking things with advanced technology that allows them to quickly overpower your futile efforts, and see you condemned to work the mines for your new masters. Until for an unknown reason and with a glaring lack of foresight, they equip you with the ‘Gravlink’, a very cool device that controls gravity. This gives you a means of fighting back battling your way past the Lutadores to try and find Davis’s missing daughter (his wife having unfortunately meeting her end in the struggle before your capture).
I’ll move on to the games design now since the graphics are what really bug me, ranging from terrible at times and simply acceptable at others. The overall character design is poor, resembling something you’d expect to see on a cheesy 80s cop movie, the vehicles faring no better, reminding me of the old grand theft auto games where the wheels consist of one solid block. The enemies are equally baffling, designed to look big and dumb with no semblance of intelligence, yet somehow possessing the technology to control gravity. The futuristic antagonists also seem to possess pretty basic weapons like machine guns and shotguns, why do they not have cool lasers and plasma rifles instead?
Negatives aside I did like the cool way you can use gravity on a barrel containing explosive liquid and the liquid forms into bubbles, and the ability to damage and alter the environment; for example in the tutorial you’re on a mounted machine gun attempting to rid an adjacent building of enemies, by shooting at the columns you can causes the floors to collapse.
So what’s the gameplay like? Well it’s not all bad, although the character animations seemed a little stiff to me. The ability to control gravity is a fresh mechanic in the game, sometimes this will work in your favour, other times it can be a pain in the ass. For example one second you’re behind cover taking shelter from enemy fire, the global gravity shifts and will leave you floating, open to attack from opportunistic enemies. Although if you’re quick enough this can work to your advantage as the enemies will be in a similar vulnerable position allowing you to dispose of them all. So how does the Gravlink device work? By manipulating gravitational forces you can collapse structures to build bridges, lift up heavy objects such as rocks and barrels to launch at enemies and clear paths, or simply alter the level of gravity on any given target, switching the balance of battle into your favour.
The ‘Havok Destruction’ module in the game is responsible for the excellent destructible environments, allowing as they claim for “maximum destructibility”. So blow apart an enemy’s cover to make him vulnerable, aim your targets to cause overhead objects to crush those below or utilise the same affect to create cover for yourself, and even take out support beams to collapse entire buildings. Basically just be ready to buddy up with your environment because it will soon become your best friend, well, apart from a co-op partner in the game that is.
Well that’s a run down from me, our CEO had a few words to say about the PC version:
Craig The PC version again has to the best version to own, with Key-Binding, Xbox 360 controller support, DirectX11 graphic capabilities. The only issue I have is no support for VSync and Motion blur removal, the graphics in game are crisp and sharp and the sound is great either in headphones or using 5.1 Dolby digital surround system“
With a lack of polish and poor design choices I couldn’t help feel disappointed. Nonetheless despite its weaknesses though it’s worth a try if you spot it on offer, I just wouldn’t go and pay full price for it if just yet.
PC System Requirements:
Disclaimer:All scores given within our reviews are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase the game.
Buy the Game from CJS CDKeys Click Image to Buy for Est £22.99