Review: Spaceland (PlayStation 4)

Incredibly dynamic turn-based strategy, reviving the traditions of the old school tactics. Lead a team of the most desperate fighters, destroy alien monsters and uncover the secrets of the lost planet.

Pros:

  • Cartoon-like graphics.
  • 356.5mb download size.
  • Platinum trophy.
  • Two difficulties-easy and regular.
  • Strategy gameplay.
  • Turn-based combat.
  • Tutorial as you play.
  • Fast loading times.
  • Arcade presentation and atmosphere.
  • Maps uncover as you play and rooms you leave will go back to darkness.
  • End of level breakdown with rewards.
  • Line of sight plays a huge part.
  • World map level select.
  • Workshop-craft any found items/plans and armor.
  • Team management–loadout for each character.
  • Difficult.
  • Levels have a grid floor system to help.
  • Wide range of enemies.
  • Puzzle elements.
  • Restart a level still has you keeping any earned coins.
  • Team members can talk amongst themselves.
  • Chips-earned in levels for each mission and used to improve characters and weapons.
  • Can choose the team line up before each level.
  • Little level variety in terms of goal, sometimes its a rescue and escape mission or a scouting mission or even a straight-up kill everyone.
  • Fun to play.

Cons:

  • No quick restart.
  • Never sure when saving.
  • Gaining unlocks feels sporadic.
  • No voice work.
  • Can’t see missions on the Hud or pause menu.
  • Hud takes a bit of getting used to as it is a bit clunky.

  • 8/10
    Graphics - 8/10
  • 7/10
    Sound - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Accessibility - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Length - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Fun Factor - 8/10
7.8/10

Summary

Spaceland is an arcade spin on the strategy genre made famous by the likes of X-Com. Getting into the action is quick and simple, dealing with equipment is quick but more because it lacks a huge arsenal of weaponry and armor. Levels use the fogging mechanic to great effect with rooms filling and emptying depending on if you are in or out of the room. The levels themselves are well designed and you can use cover to your advantage and they all have multiple ways to complete your goal. I like the arcade approach as I can get the same satisfaction of playing X-Com but in a much shorter time span. The unlocks feel sporadic but getting them is satisfying, I love how easy it all is and really opens up the genre. Yes, the difficulty is up and down but overall the mission variety and ease of use make Spaceland a worthy addition to the strategy genre.

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!

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