Inversion preview

Inversion is a game that few people I speak to have heard or know much about, but I have no doubt that this will all change in the coming weeks when the amazing shooter hits consoles with a gravity-defying bang!

Going back to play Inversion for a second time led to me falling in love with the game all over again. The single player story sees aliens (at least I assume they’re aliens) known as the Lutadores invade the city and take over with their strange foreign weapons and gravity defying technology. You play as cop, Davis Russel with your partner Leo Delgado by your side, as your day at work quickly goes downhill when a simple drive home becomes a fight for survival. The strange new invaders show no mercy and are keen to wreak a path of destruction through the city.

The comparison was always going to happen, but it has to be said that Inversion plays a lot like Gears of War. You’ll find yourself sprinting from cover to cover and taking out small groups of enemies in an extremely similar fashion whilst using a very familiar button setup (if you’ve played Epic’s shooters before).

There are various weapons that can be found in Inversion, each very different to the others. In my campaign play time these included the shotgun, an assault rifle with a bayonet (there’s no “retro charge” in this though) and a sniper rifle.

One thing that I noticed and loved about the game when playing the campaign was just how alive the world around you is. You will see a lot of activity in the background when playing and it definitely adds to the world around you. A particularly cool example of this is when you find yourself in a slave camp and are forced to walk through from one end to the other; you can see other slaves all around the camp digging and being forced to do other laborious activities whilst ominous guards stand around the area shouting in broken English and roughly shoving you in the intended direction if you dawdle.

Another thing that I instantly fell in love with about Inversion is the spectacular destruction physics that the HAVOK destruction engine brings to the game. Shooting at the columns of a building in an early level brought whole sections of it raining down on my enemy’s heads, and taking cover behind small walls will see parts worryingly chip away as bullets collide into it, leaving you exposed and vulnerable.

The story kept me interested throughout the whole time I was able to play, and the likeable characters meant that it wasn’t painful to watch or listen to in any parts.

The multiplayer side of the game is awesome too. Inversion has a lot of modes to choose from that allow you to pretty drastically mix up your gameplay style depending on your mood. There are two co-op modes available, which are the game’s campaign mode (player two will get to control Leo in the story) and Survival mode which sees up to four players work together against waves of enemies whilst progressing to new areas on the map.

Adversarial multiplayer modes consist of the standard Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch modes where the objective is to simply kill your enemies (with gravity powers too of course!). There is also Hourglass mode which is a 6 vs 6 player battle for an objective which your team must defend until the time runs out, King of Gravity mode in which there is only one gravlink (gravity controlling weapon) on the map that players must fight for to score points with – kills on a non-gravlink holder result in minus points, and finally my personal favourite mode, Gravity Slaughter mode which sees your enemies crushed by gravity changes if you can manage to rack up a small killstreak and activate the switch in one of the allotted areas on the map.

Multiplayer matches are hectic and insanely fun. You’ll have to think fast and use all of your shooting skills to fight in a world where an enemy may be standing on the ceiling directly above you just as easily as they could be right in front of you. I should also mention that team modes come complete with bases to spawn in that enemies can’t access due to a force-field blocking entry. The same however can’t be said about free for all gametypes and whilst a spawn shield system is in place to protect players, I’ve still spawned or had invincible enemies spawn right next to me more times than I would care to experience.

There is a plethora of weapons to be picked up on the maps from flamethrowers to plasma assault rifles and rocket launchers. As well as pickup weapons you can customise your character’s loadout allowing you to spawn with a weapon of choice. The starting option lets you choose from a shotgun or assault rifle, but there is also a sniper loadout available which is no doubt unlocked as you rank up more.You can also customise your character’s appearance in the multiplayer modes, from their face to the clothes that they wear. There were only two options available for each section of my characters when I played, but it’s likely that more items will be unlocked as you earn more exp in the game.

Inversion blew me away when I played it. I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect from the game initially, but in it I found a fun and interesting gameplay experience that has left me wanting much, much more. Whether it will be a “Gears killer” or not is hard to say, but one thing is for sure, any shooting game fans will definitely want to give this game a try when it is released next month.

Inversion will hit stores on the Xbox 360, Playstation 3 and PC starting from the 5th of June.

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