PS4 Review: Earth Defense Force 4.1 – The Shadow of New Despair

Can the PS4 breathe some life into this series?

This is the first Earth Defense Force game I’ve played, so I didn’t know what to expect…it’s essentially a third-person shooter with giant bug aliens and robots, little story but tons of weapons, vehicles like tanks and battle suits. It’s a re-imagining of EDF 2025 with improved framerate, visuals and 50% more content.
This version has 2 player local co-op and versus modes, while online can support up to 4 players. Solo missions are the main course of the game with over 100 to dive into, although most seem like filler. EDF 4.1 is mindless fun, it doesn’t look the best…even on PS4, it looks dated beyond belief and the AI is laughable, but there’s one thing it does have, it’s addictive.
The first mission throws hundreds of giant ant-like aliens at you, you can mow them down and even kill civilians with no consequences. I’m impressed by how many enemies they are able to fit on screen without any drop in performance, but it doesn’t help that the game still looks pretty bad. Even basic things like menus, HUD and how much ammo you have remaining all look cheap. Weapons pack a punch against your foes and it does seem to handle well, although I found it incredibly odd that L1 makes you jump.

I can see that it’s like an old-fashioned arcade shooter, which is fine…but it really shouldn’t be full price for what it is, which is essentially a remake with some added content. £50 is a lot to ask for as it is these days and it doesn’t really seem to warrant the price tag. I’m not saying that EDF 4.1 is a bad game, sure it looks pretty bad…but this does prove that looks aren’t everything. I just think it’s overpriced.

The Verdict

EDF 4.1 is a great mindless shooter, but that’s essentially all it is. It’s dated visually and so is the AI. Co-op is fun, while there are a lot of filler missions, I can’t help thinking it’d be better off as a digital-only title for half the price.

Score: 7.0