Chicken Invaders

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Chicken Invaders
Chicken Invaders 4 Game Cover

Developer(s) InterAction Studios
Designer(s) InterAction Studios
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, Android, iOS, Windows Phone
Release date(s) 1999 (Chicken Invaders)
2002 (Chicken Invaders 2: The Next Wave)
2006 (Chicken Invaders 3: Revenge of the Yolk)
2010 (Chicken Invaders 4: Ultimate Omelette)
2014 (Chicken Invaders 5: Cluck of the Dark Side)
Genre(s) shoot 'em up, sci-fi
Mode(s) 1-2 Players (Episodes 1 & 2)
1-4 Players (Episodes 3, 4 & 5)
Rookie (Episodes 3, 4 & 5)
Veteran (Episodes 3, 4 & 5)
Superstar Hero (Episodes 3, 4 & 5)
Distribution Internet and Hard Disk storage (Downloaded)

Chicken Invaders is a series of shoot 'em up video games, developed by InterAction Studios and released for Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, iOS, Windows Phone, and Android platforms. Currently, there are five video games in the series, along with the three special editions: the Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving editions.

The main theme of the game is a battle between a lone combat spacecraft and a technologically-advanced race of space-faring chickens, who are intent on subjugating (and later destroying) Earth. The games make heavy use of humor, especially in the form of parodies of Galaxian, Star Wars, Space Invaders and Star Trek.

Chicken Invaders[edit]

Sometime in the near future, Earth is invaded by chickens from another galaxy, bent on revenge against the human race for oppressing earth chickens! Take the world's fate in your hands (or at least have an omelette) in this modern rendition of the 80's classic. Save the world today!

InterAction Studios

Chicken Invaders is the first game in the series. It is both a single player and two-player game.[1] The player takes control of a lone spacecraft, and must protect Earth from swarms of invading chickens. The game features weapon power-ups that resemble gift boxes, and the player can use these to upgrade their weapons. Chickens drop eggs which must be avoided, otherwise the player will die if they collide with these projectiles. Chicken drumsticks fall from the chickens when they're killed, and if the player collects enough of these they earn a missile. These missiles can then be used to wipe out everything (except the player) on the screen. The game also features unlimited levels. In each level, there are 10 waves, and at the end of every level is a boss, which must be defeated in order to advance (or warp) to a new system.

The gameplay[1] is endless, so there is no ending to the game; it continues on and on, until the player has finally lost all of their lives and the game is over. The difficulty increases each time players advance to a new level; the enemies move or fall faster, and objects like asteroids move faster, too.

There are no holiday editions of this game; this is the only game that has no Christmas, Easter, or Thanksgiving Editions made for it.[1] This is also the only game in the series that hasn't been ported to other platforms. It is only for Windows.

Chicken Invaders 2: The Next Wave[edit]

Just when you thought it was safe to eat chicken again, the chickens have returned with an organized invasion to take over the entire solar system! Journey to each planet and fight your way through to save the world (again)!

InterAction Studios

Chicken Invaders 2: The Next Wave is the second game in the series. It can be played by one or two players.[2] The player takes command of the same lone spacecraft of the previous and must eliminate the chicken infestation of the solar system. The game features eleven levels, each of which consists of 10 waves of attacking hostiles. In all the waves, chickens attack by dropping eggs which have to be dodged.[2]

The player can collect different items that help him/her in the game. Primary weapons may be changed by collecting parcels. Power-ups may also be collected to upgrade the primary weapon. Weapons may be upgraded up to eleven levels. The eleventh level however, is only acquired by collecting ten power-ups. Player may collect and accumulate drumsticks to get missiles, powerful weapons that can wipe out an entire wave.[2]

In all levels, except in the asteroid belt level, the ninth wave has a bonus (usually a new weapon, or extra firepower) awarded for not using missiles throughout the level, while the last wave features a boss.[2] InterAction Studios has also released Chicken Invaders 2: Christmas Edition in which eggs are replaced with Christmas balls and drumsticks are replaced with holly leaves.

Chicken Invaders 3: Revenge of the Yolk[edit]

Chickens. For centuries we have oppressed them, grilling, roasting, stewing, and stuffing them in buns. We should have known the time would come for us to pay. And it did!

InterAction Studios

Chicken Invaders 3: Revenge of the Yolk comprises the main game together with Easter and Christmas editions. It is similar to the second version (with up to 4 player cooperative play). It has 120 waves, in 10 levels across 12 systems in the galaxy.[3] There are 30 bonuses.[3] Weapons have 11 power levels, and a secret 12th level, which can only be reached by acquiring an additional 10 powerups after the 10th level powerup (the 20th). There are also eight which are unlocked after repeatedly completing the game.[3]

Plot[edit]

The hero is heading to Space Burger, famished as usual, when a twinkling behind the sun was spotted. When the hero arrives at that twinkling, he comes upon a giant egg currently under construction, that may or may not be built out of parts of the Mother Hen ship from the last adventure.

The UCO (Unidentified Chicken Object) attacking the player in Revenge of the Yolk

This egg, known as the Yolk Star, sends out a simple boss chicken to dispose of the hero. But, the player easily destroys it, and then taunts the Yolk Star. This angers the Yolk Star, so it fires up its lasers to destroy the hero, but instead pushes him into a black hole. The player arrives at the other end of the galaxy (100,000 light years from the solar system, to be exact), and battles his way back home.

By the time he gets home, the giant egg is completely built and is almost ready to begin its assault on Earth. Our hero barely makes it in time and begins his assault on the egg. He destroys the Yolk Star's shell, and the egg yolk within the machine attempts to retreat, but the player is in hot pursuit, and annihilates the yolk with a resulting explosion followed. Our hero is then congratulated by the narrator, and continues his order at the Space Burger restaurant. The narrator writes off the story, saying, "And so, we leave our hero to rest in his laurels, until his Earth-saving abilities are needed again...but that's another story." (This is an obvious reference/clue to a new Chicken Invaders game.)

Chicken Invaders 4: Ultimate Omelette[edit]

I remember the day of the invasion well. The memories still burn deeply, like spicy chicken wings. They came without warning, squawking menacingly, their ruffled feathers darkening the sun. Invading intergalactic chickens, out to punish humanity for our oppression of their earthly brethren!

InterAction Studios

Chicken Invaders 4: Ultimate Omelette is the fourth game in the series (UO) and is similar to Revenge of the Yolk. It has 120 waves across 12 or 13 levels. It includes weapons which can be upgraded through 12 power levels, with a supercharged 12th level. The weapons from Revenge of the Yolk are available as 'unlockables'. Ultimate Omelette unlockables can be purchased individually by collecting keys, which are dropped from destroyed enemies during the course of the game. A new feature in this game is the capability of the player's spaceship to face in any direction depending on the level (it was always facing up in previous games), and the camera can also zoom in or out depending on the wave (boss fights typically have the camera zoomed out to contain all the action). This game also has special holiday editions, which are the New Year, Easter, Veterans, Thanksgiving, and Christmas editions. This is the first game in the series to have a Thanksgiving Edition.[4] The game is also on Steam, with the graphics partially remastered in HD (or HQ2X Mode; this is what InterAction calls this).

Plot[edit]

The plot begins with the player/hero at Space Burger. An intergalactic portal suddenly opens and a ship known as the millennium hatch-ling comes out. The pilot says his name is Hen Solo and urges the hero to follow him to his galaxy to see the Chickens' latest creation. Eventually convincing him, the hero and Hen solo proceed through the portal to a whole different galaxy.

The player shooting down the Space Crab in Ultimate Omelette

The hero is separated from Hen solo, and flies right into the barrel of the chickens' gargantuan device. Immediately flying out of the way, the hero watches as the machine fires a humongous egg at a battle station that looks very much like the death star from star wars, and the battle station is easily destroyed. The narrator then realizes that the player has stumbled across some kind of testing site for the chickens' "latest contraption of doom". The machine then leaves the scene, and the hero is attacked by a horde of chicken invaders, which he destroys quickly with the help of a brand new weapon,[5] the Boron Rail-gun. The player also discovers satellite weapons, and uses them every so often until they run out of ammo.

The hero then stops at a nearby star system as Hen solo reunites with him, and explains that he emerged a couple star systems away, explaining why the hero was separated from his partner. Hen solo then explains that the machine known as the Vitelline Molecular Propulsor, (Or the Egg Cannon) is on its way to Earth, and it is programmed to fire a huge egg at the planet Earth, and then let the sun's heat cook the egg, causing the surface of Earth to encrust and destroy the planet.

The two characters team up and proceed through the galaxy to stop the Egg Cannon. After a fight with a Giant robotic Space-crab, The hero and Hen solo split up and take 2 separate routes that the egg cannon could have taken. The Hero meets the Egg Cannon on his route, but the Mother Hen-ship returns (Yes, the second time!) before he can destroy the Egg Cannon. After eliminating the mother Hen-ship, the hero finds Hen Solo, and tells him what happened. Hen Solo then says for the hero to head to the galactic core to stop the egg cannon, and leaves to protect his own galaxy.

The Planetary Egg City in Ultimate Omelette

Our hero continues his journey with the narrator as his guide and companion as he makes it to the core. Instead of the egg cannon, he finds a planetary egg city made by the chickens, and quickly destroys it. Hen solo arrives shortly afterwards, and says that the Egg cannon jumped through the black hole in the center of the galactic core, and says that the hero must go through the black hole. The hero reluctantly agrees since he has no choice. He then arrives at a mysterious galaxy in which he must escape from to proceed with his mission.

The hero flies through another portal, arriving at a star system that is about to explode and go SUPERNOVA. The narrator explains that there is a chance of getting out of this mess by flying towards the explosion and through the black hole that forms in the center of the explosion. The hero once again agrees because there is no other option, and flies through the black hole. He arrives back at the galaxy where the egg cannon was recently, and realizes that he is going in circles. He is then confronted by a group of chickens that appear from a nearby planet.

After escaping the attack, he flies through another portal and arrives at the Space Burger corporation's home galaxy. The narrator realizes the Space Burger Corporation has a way of supplying its stores, including the ones in the milky way. He also discovers that they might be using a complex network of portals that lead to multiple galaxies. The hero follows a supply droid and eventually finds a portal to home, but not before wreaking havoc in the headquarters, not to mention destroying the main machine known as the "Iron Chef".

After arriving near the center of the milky way, the hero makes his way to the solar system and confronts the egg cannon just as it's approaching Earth. After a long battle, The hero wins and once again returns to the Space Burger, and goes back to his lunch-ordering. The narrator then tells the audience, "Let us leave our hero to a well-deserved rest; Content in the knowledge that our little home in the milky way is once again safe. For now...", leaving a possible clue for yet another game.

The game ends in an epilogue with hundreds of Space Burger Security droids heading towards the Hero's position. To be continued?...

Chicken Invaders 5: Cluck of the Dark Side[edit]

As the last intergalactic chicken invaders flee our Solar System and lingering feathers still smolder in interplanetary space, I ease up on the trigger and wipe the sweat from my brow. My work here is done.

InterAction Studios

Chicken Invaders 5: Cluck of the Dark Side is the fifth (and possibly final) game (COTDS) and is very similar to the previous ones. On July 26, 2014, InterAction Studios announced[6] that the beta team[6] for this game was opened, and that they were now accepting applications. This meant if anyone was interested, they could fill in and submit their applications to this company. This October, InterAction is currently review the applications to decide who shall or shall not participate. On October 20, 2014, InterAction announced that the first beta team will be finalized within a week. Four days later, the first beta team was finalized, and InterAction stated that the second and third (final) beta teams will be finalized. The beta game is only made for Windows PCs only, and not for Linux or Mac OS X.

On November 22, 2014, Chicken Invaders 5: Cluck of the Dark Side was released. The game is for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux at the moment. The game will be coming to the iOS, Android, and Windows Phone platforms.

Plot[edit]

It's a normal day at the Space Burger. As always, it begins in our Solar System where the Hero is ordering food at the Space Burger restaurant, this time a "World Savior" special. But before he can actually receive it, the Sun somehow darkens, and the narrator convinces the Hero to go and investigate. When he does, he finds a mysterious battleship identified as the CK-01 Henterprise positioned in front of the sun. The gargantuan device spews millions of black feathers between Earth and the sun, blocking the light and preventing it from reaching Earth.

The Hero immediately takes action (after the narrator snaps him out of his hunger again), and fights the machine, prompting it to retreat. After taking care of the Henterprise, he and the narrator try to figure out how to get rid of the feathers in front of the Sun before the absence of sunlight causes Earth to freeze over. The Hero suggests that maybe the space janitors could clean up this mess, but the narrator disagrees. The narrator finally suggests that they consult Madam Madámme, the galactic oracle. The Hero, who labels her as Mad Madam Madámme, is a bit reluctant, due to the their previous visit where she couldn't even guess his weight correctly, and the fact that she is currently on the next galactic arm (over 10,000 light years away).

This argument fails as usual, due to the narrator pointing out that there's no other option, and no time to waste. So an agitated Hero agrees to make the flight there.

He eventually arrives at Madam Madámme's area and asks her for any information. After consulting her crystal ball (because that's just how psychics work), she states that Humanity's Greatest Fan is their only chance of saving the day. Humanity's Greatest Fan is a device of advanced technology that was created by an alien race long extinct. Its mechanical parts were scattered across the galaxy, and each of the parts (or artifacts) are located on 3 planets. These artifacts are the Blade of Revolution, the Source of Power, and the Thingamajig of Vagueness, and they are located on Epsilon Thalassus, Gamma Chthon, and Eta Astropelecae, respectively.

So the Hero and the narrator set out on 3 artifact recovery missions to collect these parts.

First, they arrive at Epsilon Thalassus, a planet similar to Earth, except that unfathomable oceans make up 98% of the planet, according to the narrator. Luckily, the Hero's spaceship is capable of underwater travel on the one condition that it leaks 5 gallons of water each mile. They soon find the Blade of Revolution, which turns out to be 3 sets of large fan blades fused together.

Afterwards, they proceed to Gamma Chthon, a scorched planet with no life forms, except for some chickens that are presumably after the same artifact. Navigating through the hidden network of underground caverns beneath the planet's surface, they find the Source of Power, a potato battery that could possibly be radioactive.

Then they head to Eta Astropelecae, a planet with liquid nitrogen oceans and frozen surface, not to mention the incessant lightning storms. Turning up the ship's thermostat, the Hero blasts his way up the planet's largest mountain and recovers the Thingamajig of Vagueness, a strange gadget with a single red button. Likely the on/off switch.

Now with all three parts collected, the Hero and the narrator head back to Madam Madámme for further instructions. Ironically, the oracle never actually expects the Hero to survive, but consults her crystal ball a second time anyway. After being given the instructions for Humanity's Greatest Fan, the Hero makes his way back to the Solar System to assemble the device and install it onto Earth's surface.

However, when he and the narrator arrive, they find that the chickens have already taken over part of earth by creating a population area in the countryside. So they commence an atmospheric reentry down to Earth to not only take out the wooden barn-house, but to also assemble Humanity's Greatest Fan.

When the device (Which turns out to be visible from space by taking up at least 25% of the planet) is installed onto Earth, the Hero flips the switch to activate it. The wind succeeds in removing all the black feathers away from the Sun, but due to the Hero's incompetence, the fan also ends up moving Earth away from the Sun before it is turned off. Luckily, no damage is done to Earth or its inhabitants, but there's a slight chance that next Summer won't be as warm as usual. The Hero sarcastically claims he staved off global warming.

Immediately after the machine is turned off, a familiar battleship (the Henterprise) returns for a rematch. So a huge battle ensues, but as always, it ends with the Hero prevailing and leaving the Henterprise to explode.

Now done with every given errand, the Hero heads back to the Space Burger to continue his order, but he forgets to disassemble Humanity's Greatest Fan.

The narrator, as always, finishes the story by proudly announcing to the audience that Earth is once again safe, and that the Hero can once again enjoy his long-awaited meal. But, the narrator adds, "...while it lasts...", giving a possible clue to a new Chicken Invaders game (CI6).

Future Plans[edit]

InterAction studios told people who e-mailed them that they had plans for a new sequel to the series. They have given numerous clues to a possible new game; they have told everyone that the Egg Cannon will appear in Chicken Invaders 6, and the game could explore multiple dimensions. Also, the games always give clues to players that a new game could be in the works. For instance, in Chicken Invaders: Ultimate Omelette, the narrator tells the audience that "the Earth is once again safe...for now...", which meant that Chicken Invaders: Cluck of the Dark Side was soon to come.

Reception[edit]

CNET gave 4 out of 5 stars to the first Chicken Invaders game, highlighting the graphics and sound but criticizing the game's lack of features, and for the gameplay being repetitive.[7] CNET also gave The Next Wave 4 stars, again praising the graphics, but criticizing the lack of a windowed mode.[8] The Next Wave was rated "mediocre" by GameSpot, criticising the repetitive gameplay and indistinct enemy bullets. However, the colorful, cartoony graphics where highlighted, as were "flashes of understanding of what makes a good shooter".[9]

Shortly after its release, Ultimate Omelette was included in Adrenaline Vault's "Top Casual PC Games of 2010" list.[10] The reviewer described it as "the most fun arcade space shooter in a very, very long time". The original orchestral soundtrack was also praised as rousing, invigorating, and "simply the absolute best".[11]

Gamezebo gave the fourth game, Ultimate Omellete, a 4 out of 5 stars, saying that[5] "Chicken Invaders 4 is fantastic for a first-timer to the series", but criticizing that "for veterans of the games, it will feel a little too samey. The action has improved somewhat over the course of the series, but it’s still really the same ideas and premise that ran through the other games. Hence, those who are not new to the games may feel that paying full price for this latest release is a little too much."

Soundtrack[edit]

On March 20, 2011, InterAction Studios released the soundtrack for both Revenge of the Yolk and Ultimate Omelette.[12] This soundtrack was titled Chicken Invaders Episodes 3 & 4: The Soundtrack. It consists of 31 individual song tracks, which includes music from both of the games, and these can all be purchased at once. They would all come in one digital .zip archive, or can be purchased individually. These can also be used as ringtones. The soundtrack can be purchased on InterAction's website, Amazon, and iTunes.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Chicken Invaders". InterAction Studios. Retrieved 2014-08-18. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Chicken Invaders: The Next Wave". InterAction Studios. Retrieved 2007-01-26. 
  3. ^ a b c "Chicken Invaders: Revenge of the Yolk (Christmas Edition)". Interaction Studios. Retrieved 2007-01-26. 
  4. ^ "Chicken Invaders 4: Ultimate Omelette". InterAction Studios. November 29, 2010. Retrieved 2014-09-09. 
  5. ^ a b "With entertaining shooter action throughout, Ultimate Omelette is definitely a good egg.". Gamezebo. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  6. ^ a b "Chicken Invaders: Cluck of the Dark Side". InterAction Studios. Retrieved 2014-08-18. 
  7. ^ "Editor's review of Chicken Invaders". cnet.com. Retrieved 2007-06-02. 
  8. ^ "Editor's review of Chicken Invaders 2". cnet.com. 
  9. ^ Navarro, Alex (2005-08-26). "Because the first Chicken Invaders was so great, it needed a sequel, right? Right? Hello?". Game Review - Chicken Invaders: The Next Wave. GameSpot UK. Retrieved 2007-01-26. Shooter fans will likely garner some amusement from Chicken Invaders: The Next Wave, but they won't want to pay full price for it. It's a legitimate distraction that wears pretty thin pretty quickly, and there just isn't a compelling enough product here to really make it worth your time. 
  10. ^ "InterAction Studios news--Adrenaline Vault". It gives us great pleasure to announce that Chicken Invaders: Ultimate Omelette has been included in the Top Casual PC Games of 2010 feature article at Adrenaline Vault. Once a year, Bob Mandel unearths the very best hidden computer treasures that casual gaming has to offer and compiles them into a 'best of' list for your playing pleasure. The list has a long tradition as the longest-standing one of its kind, and competition for those top slots is fierce, so it's a real honour for our latest Chicken Invaders chapter to receive this accolade. All chickens involved in the production are exceptionally proud and have been preening up and down the office all day. Ba-qwaaack!. Retrieved 8 September 2014. 
  11. ^ "Top Casual PC Games of 2010". The Adrenaline Vault. Archived from the original on 2011-01-31. Retrieved 12 March 2011. 
  12. ^ "Chicken Invaders Episodes 3 & 4: The Soundtrack". InterAction studios. Retrieved September 8, 2014. 

External links[edit]