AIPD – Artificial Intelligence Police Department
Gameplay 8
Graphics 9
Sound 8

For an action-packed, neon-fueled arcade shooter, look no further than AIPD. Despite the intriguing title, the game does not have a story-driven campaign mode but has tons of action. The number of enemy and arena permutations on offer also gives it more replay value than typical arcade shooters. Best of all, it features a four-player local coop mode, which is as fun as it is chaotic.

Gameplay: AIPD features plenty of addictive old-school shooting action.

Graphics: The 80s neon glow art style has been done before, but it still looks great.

Sound: Features a nice electronic soundtrack and solid sound effects

Summary 8.3 Outstanding
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

AIPD – Artificial Intelligence Police Department

Developer: Blazing Badger | Publisher: mamor games | Release Date: 2016 | Genre: Action / Indie / Twin Stick Shooter | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

AIPD is the harrowing tale of a brave police officer battling insurmountable odds to save the world from almost certain disaster. Actually, since the game doesn’t appear to have any form of a story whatsoever, that would be our best guess as to what is happening. According to the developers, you are thrust into the “AI arena” to do battle with evil artificial intelligences, but that is about it as far as the plot is concerned. Thankfully, the game is a twin-stick shooter with a decidedly old-school neon art style, so no motivation beyond chasing a higher score is required to enjoy it.

What APID lacks in story, it makes up for with excitement as it is possible to jump straight in and start blasting. There is a help screen to explain some of the basics, but it boils down to shooting everything that moves and dodging everything heading in your direction. The action is viewed from a top-down perspective, and the arenas are round, so there is nowhere to hide. Geometry Wars players will feel right at home here, but some things set AIPD apart from its peers.

First up are the customization options. The game starts you off with a Gatling gun as your primary weapon and an “All Rounder” modification for your ship, but amass enough points, and you start unlocking new ones. This means that to get your hands on weapons like the shotgun and howitzer, you must earn them. The same goes for the modifications, which allow you to choose between speed and defense or abilities, such as automatically using collected items. These unlocks are tied to your lifetime score, which is tallied each time your ship is destroyed, but it doesn’t take too long to get your hands on everything.

The game also allows you to choose how you want to play it. In “Standard” mode, you start with your chosen weapon and modification before taking on fifteen increasingly tough waves of enemies. For a more significant challenge, you can select “Tough Transporters” to fully upgrade all the superweapon transporter enemies you encounter.

There is also “Hostile Space” for playing with all the environmental dangers present and “High-tech Armada” for taking on enemies that start with all their abilities. If this isn’t enough, you can even customize your challenge by selecting which modules must be active from the start. Modules are rules that increase the game’s challenge but reward you with extra multipliers, which is vital for attaining higher scores. For example, the “Overdrive” module grants a 75 multiplier but means you will be facing faster enemies. On the other hand, the “Bad Weather” module causes an EMP to rock the arena now and then, disabling your primary weapons, but it has a whopping 125 multiplier. After each wave you face, no matter which mode you are playing, you must choose between two different modules, so the game becomes more challenging the further you get. Finally, if you manage to complete all 15 waves of a mode, you face a boss battle and receive your final score. The game is accessible for newcomers and veterans with four difficulty settings and separate leaderboards.

If you ever tire of chasing high scores on your own, you can team up with up to three other players in the local coop mode, which is every bit as chaotic as it sounds. Sadly, there is no online coop, and the lack of a campaign mode of some type is also disappointing. Thankfully, this issue has since been remedied by Steam’s “Remote Play Together” feature. The game is incredibly addictive in short bursts, but repetition can set in after a couple of hours.

Visually, the developers were inspired by games like Minestorm on the Vectrex and the art direction of films like Tron, so expect plenty of 80s-style neon glow. However, the game is actually powered by the Unreal Engine 4, which allows all those glowing wireframe enemies to zoom about in buttery smooth high definition. The quality settings for antialiasing, textures, post-processing, and effects can be adjusted, and when maxed out, the game is a thing of beauty. Enemies include drones, bombers, battleships with massive beam cannons, cruisers, interceptors, and more. In the heat of battle with bullets, lasers, and enemies everywhere, things can get chaotic, but the clean interface makes it easier to track what is happening. Weapon heat and player health are displayed right next to the ship, along with the current super weapon and item, so there is no need to take your eyes off the action.

Speaking of weapon heat, this feature prevents you from simply holding down the fire button all the time. You can still do it, but the result is that your weapon will overheat, causing it to stop firing for a moment. Overheating also causes your ship to drop a “heat bomb” that can cause damage if you don’t move clear of the explosion. Destroying enemies causes them to drop multipliers, represented by small, glowing pyramids. Unfortunately, the game does not feature any form of health restoration; you only get one life, so avoiding damage is very important if you want to clear all the waves. Fortunately, your ship is equipped with an emergency shield that activates when you take damage, so at least you won’t lose big chunks of health at once. The Transporter enemies drop superweapons like torpedoes, bombs, missiles, and shockguns, but these have limited shots, so they are best saved for emergencies. Power-ups like the ability to slow down time briefly, reduce your heat level, and increase your score multiplier can also be collected, but watch out for the bad pickup that disables your primary weapons for a few moments.

Complementing the sharp visuals of AIPD is a very fitting electronic soundtrack. We would have liked to hear more bass in the tunes, but overall, the music matches the action well. The game is also straightforward to control, and while the keyboard and mouse controls are serviceable, it feels best with a dual analog stick controller. One thing worth noting is that when playing with a controller, you must use a trigger button to fire and the right stick for aiming, which initially feels a bit odd. We are used to firing directly using the right analog stick, but it doesn’t take long to get used to the method used in AIPD.

Overall, AIPD is very enjoyable, and while it doesn’t exactly revolutionize the genre, it provides an addictive experience. The visuals are top-notch, and trying out the four-player coop mode is a must. It is not a game you will be playing for hours on end, but it is perfect for taking a break and enjoying a few minutes of mindless shooting.

System Requirements

  • OS: Win7 32-Bit
  • Processor: Intel i5 1.8 GHz
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Intel HD4000
  • DirectX: Version 10
  • Storage: 300 MB available space

Related posts

Nidhogg

Nidhogg

If single player games are your thing then you can probable give Nidhogg a miss. Gather around a few friends and start a tournament if you really want to experience what all the fuss is about. The frantic combat will test your luck and reflexes while the low system requirements means the game will run smoothly on just about any hardware. Gameplay: The single player is good practice but the real fun lies in multi-player. Graphics: Retro pixel art with smooth animations. Sound: A brilliant electronic soundtrack composed by Daedelus.

Pretty Girls Tile Match

Pretty Girls Tile Match

Pretty Girls Tile Match tackles the match-three genre and combines it with Mahjong titles and kawai anime girls. The game features 120 levels that increase in complexity with twenty levels allocated to each girl. A combo feature incentivizes players to make matches as quickly as possible, but the addition of help functions and difficulty options keeps the game accessible. While it doesn’t do anything extraordinary it is fun and addictive enough to recommend to fans of the genre. Gameplay: Match three identical Mahjong tiles to remove them from the board and then continue to do so until everything is cleared. Graphics: The character designs look great and overall the game is very bright and colorful. Sound: The soundtrack is quite catchy and all six of the girls are voiced in Japanese.

Star Sky

Star Sky

Star Sky is a mysterious, relaxing game about a man on a midnight walk. The stylish 2D silhouette visuals and ethereal soundtrack make for a very atmospheric game. However, it is also very short and can be completed without much of a challenge. Anyone looking for a traditional game will be disappointed by Star Sky, but open-minded players who enjoy unique gaming experiences will enjoy it. Gameplay: Very short and simple, but also quite charming. Graphics: Minimalistic but stylish. Sound: Great ambient sounds and soothing music

Firework

Firework

Firework is a Chinese horror puzzle game with a strong focus on story. The game was already a hit in its home country, but a wider audience can now enjoy it thanks to its English translation. Unlike other horror titles, Firework delivers a creepy atmosphere, and compelling story without resorting to cheap jump scares or excessive gore. The unique setting and cultural elements also make for an engaging experience that we highly recommend. Gameplay: Very linear, and the puzzles are straightforward, but the story is very compelling. Graphics: Makes good use of color to deliver a creepy and unsettling experience. Sound: Great soundtrack and plenty of sound effects.

Professor Lupo and his Horrible Pets

Professor Lupo and his Horrible Pets

Professor Lupo and his Horrible Pets is a fast-paced puzzle game with a great story and interesting enemies to outsmart. Playing as an intern trying to escape a doomed space station overrun by deadly alien pets is a lot of fun, and the solid narrative elements make it even better. The game also features a surprising amount of content and can keep players busy for a long time. Some more variety for the environments would have been nice, but the great monster designs make up for this, and their varied behaviors keep things fresh. Overall, this is one of our favorite puzzle games of the year and a must-have for any fan of the genre. Gameplay: The game features five chapters with a 100 challenging, but entertaining, levels to conquer. Graphics: The hand-drawn visuals and the monster designs are neat. Sound: The audio is well-rounded, with a great soundtrack, decent sound effects, and even full voice acting.

Tokyo Dark

Tokyo Dark

Explore the sinister side of Toyko in this compelling point-and-click adventure / visual novel hybrid. When a seemingly supernatural opponent confronts Detective Ayami Itō, she must put her job and sanity on the line to figure out what is happening. Tokyo Dark features an engaging storyline and a unique system where every choice and action influences your sanity, professionalism, investigation, and neurosis. You also have the option to be as professional or reckless as you would like to be, which can alter the story and lead to more than ten different endings. While the game has some minor flaws, these do not detract from the overall experience, and Tokyo Dark definitely lives up to expectations. Gameplay: The storyline is compelling, and the game has buckets of replay value. Graphics: Tokyo Dark has its fair share of interesting characters and locations. Sound: Full voice acting would have been great, but the music and sound effects are great.

Leave a comment

9 + seventeen =