Inversus PS4 Review
Publisher: Hypersect Developer: Hypersect Genre: Action, Strategy
Players: 1-4 Age Rating: 3+ Other console/handheld formats: N/A
You’d be forgiven for thinking that Inversus is a game that has you shooting at AI and other players and little else, although the mechanics are actually a lot smarter than this. While Inversus is simple and easy to pick up and play, fast and strategic thinking is often required if you want to come out on top.
The game is actually quite difficult to put into words, but I’ll try my best. The action in Inversus takes place on multiple tiled grids, and you take control of either a black dice or a white dice. There’s support for up to four players at once in the game’s versus mode, both locally and online, while the arcade mode can be played in single player or by up to two players. Using the face buttons on the controller, and just as long as your ammo isn’t reloading, you are able to fire up, down, left and right, although as you quickly find out, firing in the game can be beneficial to you in more ways than one.
If you are playing as the black dice, you’ll begin in the predominantly black tiled area on the grid, while the opposing white dice begins in the primarily white tiled area. Firing your weapon from then on won’t only kill your opponent/s, but by flipping the tiles it will alter the grid, opening black or white pathways to you, allowing you to move along your specific coloured path. This obviously means that while you can open pathways for yourself, you are also able to trap your opponent/s on the grid by shrinking their amount of movement space if you are savvy or lucky enough, making for an easier kill. As matches wear on, the grid and pathways are changing all the time, and smart players will always be on the lookout for a mistake in their opponent’s game in order to catch them out. By holding down the fire button, it’s even possible to charge a shot, which fires three at once, creating a larger pathway for yourself and more for your opponent to avoid. It’s also possible to block any shot with a counter shot from your very own dice if you are fast enough. Parrying shots is also an option if you are able to time your own shot correctly, and you are also able to fire off fast shots by making use of a pick-up. All of these tactics add even more strategy to the game, and are very important against an opponent that knows of all the tricks.
As a fast cat and mouse like game where each player only takes a single hit, things can get tense very quickly, and there’s plenty of satisfaction to be had in scoring a point in a very tightly contested match, particularly if it was your quick thinking strategy that outsmarted your opponent/s and won you it. Similarly, getting yourself out of a tight spot and then winning a point or the match for yourself is as equally self gratifying. Inversus is definitely the kind of game that is as much fun to watch as it is to play if a number of skilled players are pitted against one another.
While the simple black and white visuals always remain for each one, the variation from one grid to the next is also pleasing, and being that they are laid out differently, you really do have to learn different strategies for each one. Grids come in various shapes and sizes, and with over 30 of them in total, there’s more than enough of them to keep things interesting. Interestingly, there’s even some mirrored grids, which makes you and your opponents vulnerable from a number of angles. This means that situational awareness is paramount at all times, and you really do have to keep an eye on the entire screen.
So far I have only detailed the excellent versus mode, but the game also has an arcade mode, which can be played in single player or cooperatively for up to two players. With limited lives, this mode has you destroying AI-controlled red squares, building your multiplier, and aiming for your best personal score. The arcade mode is a welcome and hugely enjoyable one and gives the game more variety, although it doesn’t quite have the lustre that the edge of your seat versus mode does.
At the end of the day, there’s very little wrong with Inversus, and it’s up there as one of the finest multiplayer experiences that I have ever had, and certainly one of the most inventive. As the game is fantastic for quick bursts of play, I often found it hard to pull myself away from what has turned out to be a perfect blend of action, speed and strategy. Inversus is a game that is simple in its execution, but it also encourages both split second thinking and swift reactions at all times, which can make for some tight and tense matches. In conclusion, I hope that this excellently designed game is every bit the success that it deserves to be.