The year 2023 is slowly coming to an end, but there is still one space game in store: The Invincible. Unlike Dead Space and Starfield, however, this is not a title that is backed by a huge AAA studio. But that says nothing about the quality of the game.
First impression and creation
The Invincible comes from Starward Studios, a fairly small development team that does not lack experience. The game is based on the famous novel by S. Lem. So it’s not a completely original story, but the game knows how to use that as its strength. In the end, it is the story that carries this game and makes it something special.
Technically, the game can be noted that it comes from a smaller development studio. It’s mainly the little things that shine through here every now and then. Harmless graphical errors, frame drops in some places, nothing too bad. Things get a little more frustrating when it comes to resolution. Currently the game can only be played improvised at resolutions above Full HD. For example, if you own a QHD monitor, you currently have to put up with a window and black borders. However, the developers are already working to solve the problem as quickly as possible.
Gameplay: The action is in the story
Shortly after diving into the world of The Invincible, you notice that everything in this game moves a little slower than you are used to in other games. The tutorial doesn’t include any introduction to combat elements, and the first part of the game is a long walk through nowhere. Everything feels a bit slow at the beginning. However, that fits the story surprisingly well. At the beginning you find yourself disorientated and lost on the surface of a planet that was initially unknown to you. Your first task is to find the rest of the crew and ultimately figure out what’s going on on this planet. You keep remembering important details and slowly a picture comes together.
If you make it past the first part of the game, things start to get more action-packed. However, not through the gameplay, but through the story. The deeper you delve into the story, the more exciting the game becomes. Ultimately, the game’s greatest strength lies in the story. The Invincible manages to create an incredibly impressive atmosphere that grabs you and transports you into the world of the game. We don’t want to reveal too much about the story, but one thing is clear: this story is a real highlight. In fact, she’s one of the best we’ve seen in video games to date. Your decisions matter and it’s up to you to follow your instincts.
The controls of The Invincible are therefore very simple. Within a very short time you will get the most important elements and can easily follow the story. However, one point of criticism lies in the motion control. The game has a very linear structure and freedom of movement is therefore very limited. Again and again you find yourself running against invisible walls, or standing in front of small rocks or abysses that, paradoxically, suddenly become insurmountable, even though similar obstacles were not a problem before in the story.
However, these limitations are understandable given the small development team. The game always manages to quietly and secretly lead you in the right direction. As a result, the restrictions on freedom of movement are rarely really noticeable.
The game’s performance could be better, but that’s not a fatal point of criticism. The occasional stuttering is easy to ignore and frame drops are hardly noticeable due to the generally high frame rate. Unfortunately my Nvidia FPS counter doesn’t work in this game. Unfortunately I couldn’t find the reason for this. That’s why I can’t give exact information about the average FPS. However, at epic settings and a resolution of 1440p, I had to enable V-Sync and limit the FPS to 240, otherwise there would be screen tearing.
The game was tested on the following system:
- Nvidia RTX 4090
- Intel i9-13900K
- 64GB DDR5 RAM
Conclusion on The Invincible
The Invincible is a game that impresses with a fantastic story. If you can do without fast game speed and shooter action, you should definitely give the game a try. This is a profound story that asks existential questions about space exploration. This story is elegantly packaged in a game that impresses with attractive graphics and phenomenal sound design. The Invincible is a clear recommendation for sci-fi fans.