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The classic game: Space Invaders Infinity Gene

PEW PEW PEW! As Space Invaders hits 45, we explore an iPhone game that brought the arcade classic bang up to date

The latest entry in our classic iPhone games series took a stone-cold arcade classic and wrenched it into the modern era in touch-optimized and pulse-pounding fashion.

Space Invaders Infinity Gene

What was Space Invaders Infinity Gene?

Space Invaders. At least, for about 30 seconds. Once you’d shot a few invaders, the game got fed up and ‘evolved.’ And it kept on doing this throughout its length, gradually warping and expanding the gameplay until you were facing a dazzling mix of retro-inspired visuals, thumping music, and dizzying screens filled with enemies, bullets and terrifyingly huge bosses.

Why was it a classic?

Because it understood the importance and heritage of classic arcade games, and brought them up to date in a thoughtful and compelling manner. In an era of mobile gaming increasingly obsessed with realism, Infinity Gene bucked the trend, with gorgeous minimalist vector-based craft and sleek gradients.

But it was the staccato gameplay that most took hold – you could play for a few minutes and try to improve on a single level, or instead pick your way further into the game. And when you flipped your device to landscape, Infinity Gene had yet another surprise, taking you through the history of horizontally scrolling shooters.

Space Invaders Infinity Gene

Where is it now?

Alas, long gone from the App Store. A version still exists for Android, although Android grumbles when you try to install it, since it’s too old. Sadly, it also turns out that yelling “EVOLVE!” at the standard Space Invaders ($4.99/£4.99) that is still on the App Store doesn’t appear to do anything. Bah. Perhaps Infinity Gene will make a triumphant comeback when Space Invaders hits 50.