Squarepusher: Chaos Invaders

I was only a figment of my father’s inexhaustible libido when Space Invaders came out, but I appreciate this nonetheless. Indie dev Bit Battalion (creator of the stellar Mr. Runner) writes to tell us about his new game, Chaos Invaders, which is sort of like Space Invaders playing out in a wind tunnel. Sacrifice a minute or two and go and have some fun. Trailers and info below.

So, yeah. Instead of just shooting the aliens, you knock them out of place and can then fire them back at the horde. Bit Battalion writes that “Its music, visuals and feel all add to this chaotic, fast-paced gameplay so it really appeals to players with the shortest of attention spans”. I love a dev who knows his audience.

And look! Here’s a preview of Mr. Runner 2. Ooh, it’s looking good, and sounding better. Bit Battalion really does know his music.


  1. BooleanBob says:

    Chaos Invaders looks (and really, really sounds) excellent. I don’t think I was expecting that.

    Seems like Mr Runner 2 also could be interesting, in a pure/’masocore’ platformer way, but I suspect it will have a hard time in a market which is already post N, post Canabalt, post IWBTG, post VVVVVV, post Meatboy. By which I think I’m trying to suggest some degree of saturation, but it’s an entirely personal/arbitrary suspicion – for the dev’s sake, I hope I’m proven wrong.

    • Tom O'Bedlam says:

      Yeah its not just me that thinks that looks idectical to SMB then?

    • GoodPatton says:

      Just played Mr Runner, and regardless of it’s similarities to any of the games you mentioned, it’s good fun and worth a play. Personally I hope he creates an Iphone port, only problem is there is already a free Mr.Runner Iphone game, which is lightly entertaining but not up to the standards of Bit Battalions!

    • Sash says:

      I can see why you would be worried! But don’t be, Mr Runner 2 is as different again from SMB as N+ is.
      The gameplay is really focused on speeding through longer levels. The controls are focused around speed as opposed to precision and each level has a ton of short cuts – which means that levels aren’t hard to beat, but they are really hard to beat with a good time. So while the controls are similar, it ends up playing really differently: It’s like a racing game in a platformer ;).

    • shaun says:

      Chaos invaders is really fun, but the fact that the mouse:ship movement ratio isn’t 1:1 makes it so your mouse moves off the flash screen and you lose control, which can be the tipping point to failure on higher levels. Also, you can end up clicking something on the screen as well. The game is great, but they REALLY need to make it fullscreen.

  2. Pijama says:

    I was only a figment of my father’s inexhaustible libido

    I believe we have a winner for the best post introduction of the week, gentlemen!

  3. Tom O'Bedlam says:

    No matter how good this game is, it will never cancel out my joy of seeing Squarepusher at the top of the news and hoping he’d decided to start making games. Scary games.

  4. Haplo says:

    Oh bloody hell.

    I started watching the 2nd video, and around 1:05 into it I saw all the spikes and… And…

    Oh God VVVVVV you have ruined me forever. I just… The spikes! Oh god the spikes

  5. Snooglebum says:

    I approve of this obscure music pun.

  6. Dominic White says:

    From the Chaos Invaders site:

    “Space Invaders for the 21st century. I’ve taken the core mechanics of Space Invaders and twisted them into a chaotic experience filled with visual effects, different enemy types, Boss fights and more.”

    It looks good, I’ll admit, but it’d be more impressive if Taito hadn’t already done it, and even gotten Jeff Minter to do the dynamic backgrounds.

    • PleasingFungus says:

      You didn’t actually watch the trailer, did you?

      It’s nothing alike.

    • Dominic White says:

      No, I didn’t watch the trailer. I played the game – is that good enough?

      Doesn’t change the fact that Taito did exactly what he describes in his own mission statement, though. Done in a different way, of course, but it’s undeniably a modernized, faster, noisier, more chaotic Space Invaders.

  7. Cutman says:

    I was expecting a new Squarepusher album.

  8. K says:

    Chaos Invader has a bit too much screen shaking. I get motion sickness. It also reminds me of Uwe Boll, which is never a plus.

  9. mujadaddy says:

    I cannot tell what is going on in Chaos Invaders.

    • Jimmy says:

      It appears to be a mechanic in which you fire the corpses of fallen invaders back at their brethren, in a space-age version of loading your trebuchets with the bodies of the fallen.

    • mujadaddy says:


      Yet, i do not see a differentiation between the single-“pixel” firing coming from the player craft and the (presumably) deadly touch of the enemies before they are killed. At first, I thought it was a sort of Tetris; your comment only slightly brings it into focus.

  10. Olivaw says:

    How are you supposed to beat the Guerrilla level? There is no way! No way I say!

    This game sucks.

    • Zapatapon says:

      I must have restarted like 40 times the Guerilla level, it is enraging. It took me 10 tries to realize that the ennemies were also shooting bullets this time, 10 more tries to understand that you can knock the bullets out by shooting stuff at them instead of just dodging. The best strategy I found was to first dodge bullets and amass a sizable clump of invaders, then shoot them like crazy (though occasionnally releasing some of your growing stack on the side to gain some precious seconds). Don’t expect the following levels to get any easier though (in particular the 3rd boss coming after that I found more difficult than the 4rth and final one).

      Woo! I made it to the 3rd best score of the day on my first run. This just never happens to me.

  11. Rane2k says:

    Chaos Invaders: Cool sound and nice semi-retro look.
    I got ragequit in level 8, where the game mechanics where subverted (enemies “stick” to the boss instead of returning).
    It´s really rather annoying when every tip the game gives you is WRONG for that level and then the game decides to insult you by giving you the tip “Don´t suck.”… You´re right, don´t suck, CTRL + W, bye :-)

  12. Chris Hertlein says:

    Just from looking at the screenshot and not the video, it looked like a rip off Conway’s Game of Life, but instead it seems much more awesome. Speaking of Awesome Space Invaders-esque things, thoughts on Infinity Gene?

  13. Chris says:

    The pause just after the beginning of the level, where it displays the name of the level? Super, super annoying. It gives you control for a brief, brief second and then cruelly whisks it away with a forced several-second pause. Gnnnh. Yes, I know what the name of the level is, you already showed it to me about half a dozen times. I didn’t even care the FIRST time. Just let me play already!

    Ragequit on level 9 or 10. Don’t suck, indeed.

  14. Subjective Effect says:

    Now where can I get these tracks? Even the one on the start screen, which is just dark repetitive DnB with some wind effects, is fa-a-a-a-b!

    Both games were fun plays.