Earth Defense Force 2025 review: cheese whiz

The Earth Defense Force is back. Once again, The Ravagers, a race of enormous insects and robots, have begun invading the Earth, and it's up to the brave EDF soldiers to eradicate them once and for all.

Earth Defense Force 2025 largely follows the blueprint established by EDF 2017, but adds a few more weapons for good measure, along with a couple of classes, and the return of local and online co-op.

There are four different classes to choose from here, more than its predecessor. There's the Ranger, a ground troop with access to vehicles, such as tanks. Others include the armored Fencer and the Wing Diver. The Fencer is slower, but trades agility for a gatling gun and a shield. The Wing Diver is far more mobile, flying through the air to unleash neon blue death blasts from above. However, she's less effective at close-range combat.

No matter which class players choose, destruction is the name of the game. You'll spend a good deal of time running head-first into a firefight and turning ants into carcasses, destroying robots and starships along the way. Collateral damage is hilariously unscripted, with humans and buildings all succumbing to stray fire.

However, EDF 2025 runs into a fair share of slowdown, which bogs down the experience. Also, the game's hit detection can be frustrating, with random NPCs sometimes getting in the way of an otherwise well-aimed shot. And while EDF 2025 is obviously trying to be campy, it can sometimes go a bit too far, particularly with its dialogue.

Shortcomings aside, Earth Defense Force 2025 is an action experience that will put a big, stupid grin on your face. Like Starship Troopers, EDF is a campy adventure that doesn't attempt to redefine the paradigm, but offers a reliably good time. [6]

This review is based on an Xbox 360 copy provided by the publisher. Earth Defense Force 2025 is available on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 for $49.99. The game is rated M.