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Inversion – E3 Preview

June 8, 2011 Written by Cameron Teague

Think about a game that will let you flip the entire battlefield upside down and take the fight anywhere and you have yourself Inversion. In development by Saber Interactive, I sat down at the Namco Bandai booth to check out this gravity defying shooter and things are definitely looking interesting.

In Inversion you are thrust into the role Davis Russell, a young father who decides to take up arms against an alien race who invades Earth. Davis must throw out the usual tactics he learned on the force and, along with partner Leo Delgado, he must master the control of gravity to save the entire world. The world around you looks like one that has been utterly devastated and, while it is not the most visually impressive games, it is still a solid-looking shooter.

At the start of the demo one thing was made perfectly clear and that is that Inversion is a game that you can play without ever firing your guns. Your character has the ability to push up or down enemies with the use of gravity. Once you push them up in the air, you can pull them in close and slam them into the ground for an instant kill. Another option is to grab the environment around you and hurl it at enemies, causing all kinds of chaos and destruction. This whole setup works very well as you can have so much fun that pulling enemies or throwing barrels there are times you really will forget about your gun. Players will also have a gravity stomp at their disposal for when enemies get in close.

Don’t get too cocky with the gravity powers though, because the enemy has the same powers as you do. This means that if you stay in cover too long and don’t move around, the enemy will gravity push you out of cover and you will be left exposed and floating in the air. When this happens, you can fire widely at your enemy or you can try to push yourself from side to side until the effect wears off. There was also one section where enemies were fighting me while standing upside down on a rooftop, which added just a very cool element to the combat.

On top of that, you can actually use standard and some not so standard guns to take care of those in your way. The cover system and cumbersome movements of your main character reminded us a lot of Quantum Theory or Gears of War, which is not a bad thing. The cover system is easy to jump in and out of cover, and at some parts during the demo I was able to pull down boxes from higher areas to provide new cover. Everything here works as it should and there are no main issues to be found at this point.

Inversion is set for release February 7th, 2012, and from what I played it is a fun experience that brings a unique element to the shooter genre. That being said, E3 is chock full of shooters this year and Inversion might find it hard to control their own gravity and land on two feet.