Mankind has always dreamed of reaching the stars, and yet all too often in computer games that dream turns into a nightmare. Infestation is no exception...
The year is 2237, and thanks to advances in technology man has started to colonise distant alien worlds, travelling through a network of warp gates that they have built to link their far flung settlements.
It isn't too long before things start to go pear shaped though. An alien race have discovered the warp gate network, and are flooding through the gates in vast numbers, attacking any colonies that they come across. The humans are planning a counter-attack to force back the alien invaders, but they need somebody to spearhead the attack. Well volunteered.
Your job is to single-handedly take on the alien forces across more than twenty vast worlds, facing a range of enemies as well as terrain hazards such as volcanoes, meteor storms, and minefields. And just to make your life even more interesting, gun turrets, force fields, generators and other installations dot the landscape as well.
Luckily you have access to the latest in military hardware - a vehicle which is capable of morphing between several different forms, allowing you to fly, hover and drive your way through the various missions. Each of the forms has its own advantages and disadvantages, and you will have to decide which best suits the local terrain, the current situation, and your own playing style as you battle your way across the alien worlds.
Your vehicle can also be upgraded throughout the game with a range of destructive weaponry, including lasers, flame throwers, cannons, grenade launchers, plasma bolters, and proximity mines. Good clean fun for all the family...
At first sight then, Infestation is an arcade shooter at heart, a throw-back to a simpler age when evil pixellated aliens terrorised the galaxy, and only one good man with an array of devestating weapons could save the world.
But it's not all about retro action - the game also features a variety of puzzles to solve, as well as a basic resource management and research element, and the landscapes have been designed to let you roam around freely, giving the game a less linear feel. The ability of your vehicle to morph gives you more freedom in how you approach the game as well, from an all-out slug-fest to stealthy hit-and-run tactics.
And, this being the 21st century, Infestation also includes a compliment of multiplayer options which take full advantage of the unique nature of your vehicle. As well as the now traditional deathmatch and capture the flag modes, you can also take part in buggy and heli-jet races, or even play football with your vehicles.
Infestation looks like a promising mix of fast-paced arcade style action and beautiful 3D graphics, with a healthy dose of open-ended gameplay, strategic elements, and multiplayer mayhem added for good measure.
How well these different elements will gel remains to be seen, but if UbiSoft manage to pull it off Infestation could well be worth a closer look. We should know soon - the game is due out this summer, and final review code is expected any day now. Stay tuned!