Retro Sci-Fi Games: Space Invaders

Posted by Guest Author on Mar 13, 2008 in Videogames |

Space Invaders

It seems almost impossible to fall over in a game store without knocking over a few dozen sci-fi themed games, so we wanted to take a look at the ten best examples of the genre. Our twist? Retro! So here’s one glimpse of the future from the past:

Space Invaders

One of the great things about certain types of sci-fi is that they leave a lot up to your own imagination. Sometime the things that are left unexplained are the most intriguing. You can select the things you think are interesting and build them up in any way you see fit. I mean, this is exactly what the fan-fiction industry [community] is built upon.

Space Invaders is one of those less-is-more sorts of situations. The basic premise, heck, the only premise, is that the aliens are coming and they want us dead. Where are they from? How far have they traveled? What is it about us that they find so offensive as to throw literally everything they have at us? It’s enough to paralyze even the most iron-clad ego. Fortunately, the game gives you exactly zero chance to ponder the finer points of pan-galactic diplomacy. Before you can even survey the playing field, the electric disintegrator rays are raining from the sky and it’s time to boogie. You can try and hide behind your shields, but eventually those space bugs are going to crush you, so shut up and pull the trigger.

Space Invaders is without a doubt the most iconic sci-fi video game of all time. It rather famously created a coin shortage soon after its appearance in Japan, and those alien ships second from the top of the formation have become the symbol for all things retro. They can be seen in graffiti around the world, and their pixelated descendants even created quite a scare around Boston not long ago. Watch the skies!

Zac Bentz is a regular contributor to the Japanese culture blog Japanator, runs his own Japanese music review blog ZB’s A-Z of J-Music and plays crazy electro-rock in The Surfactants. He lives in Duluth, MN with his wife, pets and a closet full of adventure.

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