Sometimes, there are questions that just don’t have an answer. Why are we here on Earth? What came first, the chicken or the egg? Why is this game called Artificial Intelligence Police Department (AIPD)? The world may never know. What I can tell you is that AIPD is a twin-stick shoot-em-up that uses Unreal Engine 4 to create a Tron-like experience. It doesn’t have a story of any kind, and after playing for a few hours, it leaves a lot to be desired.
Here’s what I liked:
Typical things — AIPD has up to four-player local co-op, online leaderboards, multiple weapons and ship upgrades. It’s also colorful and sounds, well, OK. To be straightforward, it’s a stretch to find qualities that I like about this game. AIPD does everything it’s supposed to do to be decent, but it doesn’t go out of its way to be anything more. There is nothing truly noteworthy here. Watch a trailer and you’ll basically see everything you’re going to get from the game.
Here’s what I didn’t like:
Incredibly limited — AIPD is one circular arena with 15 waves that gradually get more difficult. Despite having multiple rule sets and the option to make your own rules, there is no significance to this feature as the standard rules encompass all other rules. So while custom rules allow you to start with whatever modifier you want, while playing standard rules, you end up picking up one modifier per round. As such, you’ll unlock every weapon and ship upgrade fairly quickly, and after just a few hours you’ll run out of reasons to keep playing.
AIPD‘s lasting appeal is equivalent to spending about $5 in quarters at an arcade cabinet before walking away satisfied, never to look back again. It’s not a bad game, but you’ve probably seen or played dozens of very similar games already. My unlikely-to-be-fulfilled wish is that Brushfire Games would combine Polychromatic and AIPD into one game, as they feature very similar concepts and would benefit from containing more playable content. As it stands, if you’re a fan of shoot-em-ups, feel free to add this to your collection. If you’re considering this as one of your first SHMUP experiences, you should look else where.
Score: Try It
Achievement notes: The Achievements in AIPD are about as varied as the gameplay. This game is an easy 850 Gamerscore. The one Achievement for beating the boss on hard could be considered difficult by some, while the rest are cumulative play or take minimal effort.
AIPD was developed by Blazing Badgers and published by mamor games. It will release on January 29, 2016 for $9.99. A copy was provided by Blazing Badgers for review purposes.