Energy Invasion (Nintendo Switch) Review

By André Eriksson 15.01.2018

Review for Energy Invasion on Nintendo Switch

The brick-breaking formula is one that has existed for a long time and been a very conservative genre with few changes over the years, and each release often mostly offers new interesting power-ups to change up the formula. Energy Invasion is a daring step to add new elements to a familiar genre by adding shooter elements. Will it work out? Cubed3 takes a look at the Switch version of Energy Invasion to give an answer.

It is very rare that a brick-breaker raises eyebrows with its old and tested formula that has survived the test of time. The formula takes the abstract elements of puzzle games that make them remain ageless and mixes it with some reaction action to keep the adrenaline pumping for an ultimate addictive combination that has kept the genre ever-floating.

Energy Invasion does, however, move away from the formula that has followed the genre truthfully for decades to add new elements in the form of shooter elements. An interesting, but risky idea. At first it seems like it pays off. The shooter elements add more action to the gameplay and create new challenges to the genre, such as keeping track of enemy fire.

It does not take long for the novelty to wear off, though, and the problems start to nag. While it is at first interesting to dodge enemy bullets while trying to both keep the ball in the air and aim bullets towards the bricks, it could have been executed in a cleaner way. Energy Invasion has a huge problem with bloating on the screen, with too many small things at the same time in no patterns at all, which gives a very messy feel.

Screenshot for Energy Invasion on Nintendo Switch

In addition to the screen being cluttered with unpatterned bullets, these bullets are also very small, which makes them a lot harder to keep track of. This would not have been a problem if the only challenge was not in dodging these bullets, which becomes apparent in linear mode. It seems to be the attempt to appeal to those looking for a little bit more traditional in brick-breaker levels, and some other stages without bullets. The brick-breaker gameplay is trivialised to the point that it no longer feels like a brick-breaker title. The stages are repetitive and do not have those sweet forms and colours that people have become used to in the genre.

There is, however, one very interesting play-style - the endless mode. This mode is pleasing as it lets gamers try to see how far they can go. This feature works really well here as there is very little focus on cute and colourful levels, but more of a dark and cold style. There is also an annoying bug that sometimes causes a random game over and crash, which can be very annoying when trying to either beat the 25 level modes or break a new record in Endless. While rare enough to be minor, it is still extremely annoying due to the arcade nature of the genre.

While the idea behind Energy Invasion is truly interesting, it is a problem that core elements of the genre get put on backseat to the point of being trivial, and the new core mechanic feels at best as a novelty, and at worst when the screen is cluttered unfair and cheap. There is something here to work upon, but sadly Energy Invasion does not fully deliver on the potential and only makes one wish to play any of the countless other brick-breaker games, even with their cookie-cutter gameplay, because it works.

Screenshot for Energy Invasion on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

5/10
Rated 5 out of 10

Average

Energy Invasion shows some interesting and bold design choices that challenge some core aspects of one perhaps the most static genres that is still relevant today. However, these changes are badly implemented, only adding too much unnecessary clutter that is sometimes annoyingly hard to spot due to the small size. It is easy to want to like Energy Invasion as it adds more action to a genre in which some people desire more action and there is a desire to see more like this, but the drawbacks and flaws slowly creep up on the player. All that can be done is to hope that a sequel or spiritual sequel to the game get made that fixes some of the annoying things and decrease clutter to make it a more enjoyable experience as there clearly is a lot of untapped potential.

Developer

Sometimes You

Publisher

Sometimes You

Genre

Shooter

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  5/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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