Microsoft Xbox 360 (PC, PS3)
ESRB rating: Mature
Review rating: 2.5 stars
Some people complain when game developers 'steal' ideas from other games, but I don't mind as long as they take the good ones. In fact, it's the really innovative ideas that eventually become expected in every game. Namco Bandai's latest shooter, "Inversion," incorporates many features from other titles, but it's the gravity manipulation that makes the game fall flat on its face!
Once trusted to police the futuristic Vanguard City, Davis Russell instantly became a slave after a surprise invasion by an unknown enemy called the Lutadore (No, they don't wear spandex masks!). After escaping captivity, his only goal is to find his daughter and pay back the enemy, with plenty of interest!
This cover-based shooter has many features found in the "Gears of War" series but tries to differentiate itself by offering the ability to manipulate gravity. Using the Gravlink device, players can increase or decrease gravity to gain both offensive and defensive advantages. For instance, it's possible to 'lift' enemies out from behind cover and then blast them with rocks or slam them to the ground. One of the cooler moves is to throw larger pieces of debris into open areas and then use it for cover.
Too bad that defeating most enemies requires little more than popping out from behind cover to blast them with a gun, which makes the special powers unnecessary. Later in the game, the inconsistent gravity controls become more of a hindrance than a benefit.
It doesn't help that this co-op-enabled game forces players to endure such a repetitive chatterbox sidekick. He's so annoying that I wish friendly fire were enabled! Speaking of annoying, who's bright idea was it to force players to fight the same boss over and over again?
"Inversion" has some good ideas, but I'd much rather play "Gears of War" instead.