In Infested Planet, you control a small squad of soldiers as they battle an insidious alien species on exotic terrain. The aliens swarm thousands at a time, and your only recourse is to rush their bases and take control.
Infested Planet is a real time strategy game coming out on PC and Mac on March 6. I got a chance to preview this game and it’s looking really good. The easiest way to describe the game is smooth. It just runs well.
Rocket Bear Games put a lot of work into game and camera control. I really enjoy strategy games, but often wish there was a greater level of control over the cameras. Infested Planet offers a clean, top-down view of the map that you can easily zoom in and out of at any time with the scroll wheel. If you ever get stuck, you can shrink down the map for a total terrain view with clear borders so you know you see everything.
The game runs well whether you zoom in to see individual characters or zoom out to abstracted moving pixels. The missions are defined as much by color as they are by action. The target bases will always be bright yellow or pink hexagons, your troops will always be blue, and the swarming horde will always start off with light green…tentacles? The consistency is appreciated in a game as fast and challenging as Infested Planet.
The big catch with the game is procedural maps. Even though your objective will always be the same on a given level, the map is going to change on each play through. You will have to determine the location of the objective points and enemy patterns every time your enter a map, even if you’ve played the map a dozen times before.
Infested Planet also features a number of equipment upgrades and enemy mutations as the game progresses. Successful missions earn points that can be traded in for various wartime necessities, while the aliens themselves can mutate into a very different kind of enemy mid-battle. The game has enough variables that there is no single correct way to approach a given mission or upgrade options.
Will the final battle run as smooth on release day? Our final review comes out soon.