Earth Defense Force 4.1: The Shadow of New Despair is a B movie-esque third-person action shooter where the player takes control of different characters in order to defeat giant insect monsters taking over the city.
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Pro Endearing pure action gameplay
The premise of the game is to constantly be blasting giant alien insects in a slightly open world environment. Each level starts in a large sandboxed open world arena where alien insects will swarm the area. It is up to the player and the character they choose to use (of which there are four choices, each with their own skills/powers) on how killing these creatures will be carried out. Some of the available weapons for the different characters will be things like hand grenades, rocket launchers and automatic rifles. These weapons will be used in order to kill as many of the alien creatures that you can. Somewhat of a mindless style of play, blasting away anything that moves, but is appealing in its design due to the destruction that can be carried out. Each stage allows for compete destruction of all of its structures, meaning if there are enemies behind a building, you can just destroy the building in order to get to them. Overall the gameplay is quite fun and quirky in its B movie theme and design that allows for a never ending flow of creatures and areas to blast your way through.
Pro Fun theme that does not take itself too serious
Much like a B movie, the game is themed as a low quality experience with dated looking graphics and a convoluted/outrageous story. The premise being, you are one of four playable characters whose job it is to destroy the onslaught of invading alien giant insects. There is little beyond this to be fleshed out, it is more aimed at being mindless fun. Luckily the little bit of story and dialogue you do get in the game often is a bit tongue in cheek, as it the game is often self aware of its role to play.
Pro Good co-op support
Players can play together locally and online in a cooperative manner, helping each other to defeat giant insect aliens that are attacking the city. The local co-op can be played on different devices (LAN) or even on the same device through split screen. The online multiplayer allows for easy access to friends and random people in order to play together.
Pro Solid PC port
EDF is a pretty good port for PC (originally a PS2 game ported to PS4) with a constant 60fps during gameplay (no matter how many giant insects are on screen) as well as good keyboard and mouse controls with a few PC centric settings to be found in the menus such as anti-aliasing (only on or off). This is all able to be done in full HD (1080p).
Con May not appeal to everyone
The gameplay can get a bit repetitive and the lack of polish may be a turn off. While there is a good bit of content, many may not want to spend the time with a game they consider cheap looking that has little incentive to play other than mindlessly blasting away giant insect aliens.
Con Not a ton of polish
While a mainstay of the series (and some would argue the whole point of its design), the polish of the game is a bit rough. Voiced AI is constantly repeated and poorly delivered. There is little story to be found and the graphics, while playing at a constant 60fps in full HD, leave a lot to be desired.