Earth Defense Force—an action shooter series from Japan that has become a cult hit in the West—will be getting its latest iteration soon with Earth Defense Force 2025. Publisher D3 has now not only solidified a date for the game’s release, but also detailed three DLC packs that will be coming for it.
Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 owners will battle giant alien bugs once again come February 18th, the day we Westerners will get the chance to check out Earth Defense Force creator Sandlot’s return to the series. (The previous game, Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon, was developed by North Carolina-based Vicious Cycle Software.)
On the same day, the first of three mission packs—”Special Ops”—will be released, featuring five new missions for $2.99. Then, on February 25th, “Mutant Rampage” will bring an additional 20 missions for $8.99. Finally, on March 11th, “Beyond Despair” will bring one more set of 20 new missions (for the same $8.99 price tag).
Earth Defense Force has been a pretty interesting franchise to watch over the years. It originally started as part of the Simple series in Japan, a line of budget titles developed by a wide variety of Japanese studios and published by D3. While not reaching the level of fame that Earth Defense Force has, another notable name to come from the Simple series is Onechanbara—the tale of a bikini-clad Japanese samurai cowgirl who can usually be found slashing her way through hordes of zombies. (Sadly, the games don’t live up to the amazing premise.)
I could also, to some degree, say that about Earth Defense Force. I keep wanting to like the series, but feel like the clunky controls that I once excused to a lower price tag just don’t feel as polished as I think they should now that the franchise has become a hit. Still, I know there are plenty of die-hard Earth Defense Force fans out there—and even if I’m not happy with their controls, I’m down with the games in spirit. I’m always willing to try a new chapter in the series out whenever it hits, hoping that I’ll finally feel the gameplay is as polished as I’d like it to be.
Earth Defense Force 2025 is rated M for Mature, and will carry a $49.95 suggested retail price when it hits on February 18th.