Starship Troopers: Extermination takes its inspiration from the 1997 science fiction film directed by Paul Verhoeven. It incorporates iconic phrases from the original movie throughout the game. In this game, players find themselves battling swarms of alien bugs on an extraterrestrial world, with dramatic airlifts whisking them away just as the insect onslaught becomes overwhelming. While the Early Access version of the game is already impressive, it holds the promise of even greater improvements in the future. Read on for our Starship Troopers: Extermination review.
Made for multiplayer
Starship Troopers: Extermination excels as a player-versus-enemy tactical shooter, offering a quick entry into action within minutes of launching the game. Each match accommodates between 16 to 20 players, organized into squads of four. Players have the option to communicate with their nearby teammates or the entire squad for coordination. Each match consists of a series of three or four missions, involving tasks such as clearing and securing positions, resource extraction, base construction, and subsequent defense.
The game introduces the extraction and construction mechanics through a brief Bootcamp tutorial at the beginning. Here, players must gather ore from an extractor and transport it to the headquarters to obtain materials for building structures like walls, gates, towers, bunkers, and ammo depots. These structures are subject to budget constraints within a designated building area. Notably, once someone initiates a construction project, any player can contribute to its completion.
Work together or die alone
What’s intriguing is the organic, player-driven decision-making process within the game. In the absence of a formal hierarchy, players independently decide where to place walls, gates, bunkers, and towers based on their assessment of the local terrain. For instance, if a vulnerable tunnel exists through which insects can attack the base, a player might decide to construct a wall and defend it from a tower above. The complex network of tunnels, walls, and fortifications that players spontaneously create without verbal communication is quite astonishing.
Some games involve players hurriedly completing constructions, while in others, players take a more deliberate approach, assessing the bases’ weak points and fortifying them strategically. As players become familiar with the maps, they gain insights into where they should go and what they should do before the match starts. Each map also hides Easter eggs, secret pathways, and scenic vantage points for added exploration.
Choose your playstyle
Currently, the game features three classes: Hunter, Bastion, and Operator, each with unique abilities. Hunters are agile and possess jet-powered jumps, akin to jetpacks in Tribes: Ascend, albeit with limited fuel. They also wield an array of explosives. Bastions attract enemy attention and focus on crowd control, deploying shield walls to transform into mobile turrets. Operators specialize in chemical warfare and provide battlefield healing with their drones.
Bastions can employ mines and electric nets to trap insects, while Operators excel in chemical warfare. As players complete missions, they earn XP based on their contributions, which unlocks higher-tier gear. Players start with basic assault rifles and can progress to specialized weapons suited for different combat scenarios. The only missing element is a potent long-range weapon for sniping from a distance, but the game offers sufficient weapon variety.
Faithful to the source material
After every round, players experience a sense of accomplishment. While the XP earned may not always unlock the desired combat gear, it contributes to improving their battlefield abilities. It maintains fidelity to the source material while offering a unique and immensely enjoyable gaming experience, particularly when playing with friends. Well-coordinated squads can effectively tackle insect hordes, gather resources, construct bases, and engage in intense combat until the last second before extraction.
Visually, the game impresses with its fantastic design of bases, buildings that faithfully capture the essence of the movies. The game runs smoothly, although players may experience occasional frame drops during the initial onslaught of hundreds of arachnids.
In terms of sound, while there’s minimal use of the soundtrack from the original Paul Verhoeven movie, Extermination features its own tracks clearly inspired by the film’s theme. The main menu theme embodies the courage and valor of the DSV, enhancing the overall immersive experience.
The game’s limited map variety and repetitive objectives pose challenges to its replayability. With only one map reused for various difficulty levels, gameplay can become monotonous over time. Although character upgrades and relentless combat provide a satisfying sense of progression, the repetitive nature of objectives and the single available map can diminish overall excitement and motivation to advance further. Expanding the map selection, diversifying objectives and new game modes would enhance the game’s longevity when playing with others.
– Faithful to the Source Material
– Fast-Paced Action
– Unique Classes with Abilities
– Limited Map Variety
– Repetitive Objectives
– Limited game modes