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Simple 2000 Vol. 78: The Great Space War (THE 宇宙大戦争, Za Uchū Daisensō), released as Space War Attack in Europe, is a flight combat simulator game developed by BIT TOWN and released by D3 Publisher as part of the Simple 2000 Series. The game was released after the success of Sandlot's The Earth Defense Force, and despite being developed by a different studio and belonging to a different genre, it shares a similar setting and style, in addition to featuring the eponymous Earth Defense Force organization.

Like The Earth Defense Force, Space War Attack was first released in Japan as part of the Simple 2000 Series, then was later localized in Europe by the following year, this time by 505 GameStreet.

Description

Space War Attack is a 3-D flight combat simulator, in line with the Ace Combat and Sidewinder series, the latter of which was actually developed by the same studio, BIT TOWN. The game features traditional flight combat simulator gameplay, with the player taking control of a fighter jet from a third-person perspective and engaging in dogfights with enemy forces. However, like Monster Attack, Space War Attack takes heavy inspiration from Japanese and American science-fiction films, including the Japanese alien invasion and kaiju films produced by Toho in the 1950's and 60's as well as more recent major Hollywood productions like Independence Day. Because of these inspirations, the enemies in this game consist of alien aircraft and, much like in Monster Attack, gigantic hostile creatures, some of them being giant insects.

There are six different aircraft the player can fly in the game, with 12 different weapon types, which vary between missiles, beams, and bombs. The player can select three different weapons to bring into battle before each mission. The capabilities and weapons of the player's aircraft can be upgraded through fulfilling certain conditions while playing the game. There are over 20 missions in the game, which can be replayed in order to unlock upgrades. For every mission the player can select a wingman, an AI ally that will assist the player during the mission. The player can determine which aircraft and weapons the wingman will use prior to each mission. The game also includes a 2-player split-screen mode, where the wingman is controlled by the second player instead of the AI.

Japanese The Great Space War box art

Aside from alien aircraft and ground weapons, enemies include the Devil Butterfly, Nominon, Scorpius, Grand Dragon, and the Giant Shrimp.

Storyline

To the survivors of planet Earth!

For about 10 years we human beings have been boldly waging a difficult war against Aliens.

Giant spaceships, countless assault crafts, bloodcurdling biological weapons... The enemy's military power is immense.

We have already suffered heavy losses in this fight.

Tokyo, New York, Paris, London and many other beautiful cities have been wiped from the face of the Earth.

As a result of the depleting of the ozone layer, the planet's atmosphere has been disrupted.

The Earth population, which at the beginning of the 21st century was approaching 6 billion, has now decreased at a ratio of 1 to 500.

But it is not time to despair! We human beings have channeled the power of science and have overcome ideologies, nationalism and racism. We are finally ready to counterattack!

The X-DAY is approaching! Soon the humans will challenge the Aliens in a war with no rules for the Earth's destiny.

We need your strength! Now! Let us destroy the extraterrestrial invaders together with the Earth Defense Force's countless secret weapons!

Vehicles

There are six different aircraft the player can choose from. The F-17V Fighting Hawk is available from the start, the other aircraft must be unlocked.

  • F-17V Fighting Hawk: The first aircraft the player can access. It is modeled after an F-16, and has excellent acceleration and machine gun performance, however its engine output is low.
  • FA-24 Mantis: The second aircraft unlocked. It is modeled after an F-22, and is an overall well-rounded aircraft, although its weapon payload and armor rating are not particularly high.
  • FA-19C Scorpion: The third aircraft unlocked. Modeled after the F/A-18E/F, it possesses excellent flight stability, acceleration, and speed, but low armor.
  • A-11B Night Steal: The fourth aircraft unlocked. Unlike the previous aircraft, the Night Steal is not a fighter jet but rather an attack aircraft. As such, its weapon output and armor are extremely strong, but its mobility is very poor.
  • Su-40 Stingrey: The fifth aircraft unlocked. Modeled after the Su-33, it is very well-rounded and highly proficient in most categories, however its use of missiles is not very effective.
  • S45 Vulture: The last aircraft unlocked. The Vulture is modeled after the Su-47, and is the highest-performing aircraft in the game. Its only drawback is its inability to use bombs.

Trivia

  • This game's Japanese title comes from the 1959 Toho alien invasion film Battle in Outer Space (宇宙大戦争, Uchū Daisensō), the sequel to The Mysterians (地球防衛軍 Chikyū Bōeigun), which was itself the namesake for the Earth Defense Force games. Unlike the film it is named after, Space War Attack does not actually feature space warfare, as all of its battles take place on Earth.
    • The game's European title, Space War Attack, may have been chosen due to The Earth Defense Force being localized in Europe as Monster Attack.
  • Space War Attack features several unique giant creature-type enemies that have not appeared in any of the Earth Defense Force games, such as giant scorpions, butterflies, and shrimp. Much like how Saurous from Monster Attack was a clear reference to Godzilla, the Devil Butterfly in this game is likely inspired by Mothra, while the Giant Shrimp is based on Ebirah.
Earth Defense Force series
Main series and remakes Monster AttackGlobal Defence Force / Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders From Planet SpaceEarth Defense Force 2017 / Earth Defense Force 2017 PortableEarth Defense Force 2025 / Earth Defense Force 4.1: The Shadow of New DespairEarth Defense Force 5Earth Defense Force 6
Spin-offs Space War AttackGlobal Defense Force TacticsEarth Defense Force: Insect ArmageddonTapWars: Earth Defense Force 4.1Earth Defense Force 4.1: Wing Diver The ShooterEarth Defense Force: Iron RainEarth Defense Force: World Brothers
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