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Fallen Skies: The Game Review

Playing a game heavily based on a TV show you are unaware of let alone watched is never going to be an easy task, not having the faintest idea on who is who or what has happened before it, so please excuse me if I mix my Espheni's with my Volm's.

For followers of the show Falling Skies: The Game takes place between seasons three and four and even though there are some cameos from the shows stars, for the majority you control battle weary grunts and new recruits. The survivors of the invasion have come across an alien power source and with this tech decide to create an ultimate weapon to hopefully turn the tide in the battle to reclaim earth with missions involving your team collecting vital intel and items and also rescuing and recruiting captured humans.

Though I know little of the show, I certainly know a lot about the game, or to be more precise, the game it copies. Falling Skies: The Game is for want of a better word, a clone; it has the same DNA as X-Com, the same basic structure that made those games so great but on the outside it is a little different, presented with some basic graphics and an extremely annoying camera angle that even with adjustmets still does not give you the most advantageous view of the battlefield, often resulting in errors in your tactical positioning.

However, bashing on a game for being like others and also a cash in on a TV show is too easy and that's all I have to say thats negative about the game as what Falling Skies does well is offer a solid tactical shooter experience that will continually evolve as you play. Starting with a small group of guerrilla fighters, you tackle simple clear the area missions in this turn based shooter. As the god-like commanding officer you order your troops to move around the map, using cover to stay out of the enemies sight for as long as possible. Each character has two action points to use up per turn, letting you choose from a selection of simple moves like movement, shooting, reloading and swapping weapons or as your soldier progresses, use one of the many special skills available.

As you battle through the many scenarios, those of your team that survive gradually level up; with them all starting off as a rookie, after initial training they take on one of four possible personas, Berserker, Fighter, Scout and Spiked Kid. Each one has their own specific skill tree that lets your unlock more and more skills as they get even more battle hardened, adding skills like covering fire, rage, carrying more items or focused aim, eventually creating an ultimate alien killing team. Of course the woes of war are ever present, with death on the field being a permanent fixture, with many characters you become attached to bleeding out on the field, their names forever etched on the memorial wall.

Its not just the recruits that get better over time but also the equipment, with medical supplies and weaponry able to be upgraded with supplies you earn from successful missions or scavenge mission you send lone soldiers out on. The gradual gathering of supplies and time taken to research new weaponry adds even more depth to the game, with latter missions upping the challenge but at the same time giving you ample time to test out all of your new toys, weapons and skills.

OK, so Falling Skies: The Game is not a AAA title, the graphics are a bit poo and its a total copy of X-Com but so what, the first person shooter and role playing game genres are full of rip-offs so why not here. In the end Falling Skies: The Game covers the most basic of gaming requirements, its fun to play and keeps you occupied for a good few days.

Words by Ash Buchanan.

(Version Tested: Xbox 360)


+ Great tactical shooter
+ Fans of TV show will no doubt get more from this


- Looks very dated
- Camera angles are frustrating

Edited On 24 Oct, 2014

( 1 )
Hymeleon's avatar
Hymeleon 2 years ago
Mistake in title?

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