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The Invincible (PC/Xbox Series/PS5) - a "retro-future atompunk" first-person thriller based on 1960s Polish sci-fi, update: reviews from OpenCritic posted


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New studio Starward Industries are shooting for the moon (well, Regis III) with gorgeous atompunk debut The Invincible, based on a novel of the same name.



"There’s much less firepower on one hand, but on the other we have a much stronger punch"




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The Invincible is a first-person Sci-Fi thriller set in a retro-future timeline. Waking up on a hostile planet, you embark on a mysterious mission to find the missing crew of your spaceship. Whilst trying to survive, terrifying secrets of the planet will unfold in front of you.








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  • Commissar SFLUFAN changed the title to "The Invincible" (PC/XSX/PS5, 2021) - a "retro-future atompunk" first-person thriller based on 1960s Polish sci-fi
  • 1 year later...
  • Commissar SFLUFAN changed the title to The Invincible (PC/XSX/PS5, 2022) - a "retro-future atompunk" first-person thriller based on 1960s Polish sci-fi, update: teaser trailer
  • 11 months later...

Some new previews:



We go hands on with an early build of sci-fi thriller The Invincible.




Ultimately, though, my overarching worry from this 50-odd minute preview slice is that The Invincible isn't doing enough moment to moment to keep players engaged and immersed in its story. While the chunk I played did successfully pique my interest to find out more about what the deal was with Yasna, Novik and the strange, swarm-like 'fly' robots that seemed to be the thing responsible for devastating the rest of the convoy (not the death laser Antimat bots), I was also quite bored at times and really wanted everything to just move along a little bit faster. There were also moments where I was wandering around for a long time searching for the next thing to click on, all because it hadn't previously crossed my eyeline. As I alluded to earlier, this will definitely grate over the long term if Yasna isn't able to move around her environment a bit faster, and could be a big turn-off for a lot of people if they're only so-so about the wider storyline.


I'm almost tempted to just go away and read the book first to see if I really want to come back to the game once it launches sometime in 2023. Then again, I do also think that part of my boredom stems from the fact that, well, we have kind of already seen the big plot twists of this particular moment in the game back at E3, and it was really only toward the end of my preview build that it started to get into some new and properly exciting story territory. There was still a lot of walking, a lot of talking, and a lot of poking and prodding of buttons and levers, admittedly, but the introduction of the all-consuming fly robots was pretty darn chilling. So I'm hopeful that the rest of The Invincible will be able to dial up the suspense a bit more. If it doesn't, though, then this could be pretty dull slog through the dusty canyons of Regis III.







The greatest compliment I can give the developers of The Invincible is that this feels like walking into the worlds imagined by mid-century sci-fi authors. Based on the novel The Invincible by Stanislaw Lem, I spent an hour with a development build of Starward Industries' upcoming sci-fi adventure and fell into a vibrant wonderland rife with adventure, danger, and discovery.


I took control of Yasna, a crewmember from the ship Invincible trying to find out what happened to some prior explorers on a remote, desolate planet. I wandered through the branches of a mountain pass, finding dead, lost crewmates in narrow ravines and twisting passages. Her slow, plodding space-suited bootsteps and labored breathing as she climbed rocks and dealt with an increasingly bad headache added a sense of depth and feeling to the world around her.


The gameplay is otherwise the kind of fare you expect from a first-person adventure game. I picked paths, interacted with objects, and generally watched pretty animations happen. Some segments have you use tools, like a homing tracker that finds space suit radios, a scanner that x-rays walls, or a handheld telescope. All of those were available at all times and worked in nicely intuitive ways.





Adapting a landmark work of speculative fiction for the Fortnite age is as risky as space exploration itself.




What this means in practice is a cheery retro-futurism about it all, like stepping into the illustrated cover of a classic sci fi novel. The landscape is littered with analogue tech, Robbie the Robot mechanoids, and antigrav vehicles with all the curves and flourishes of a 1960 Buick LeSabre – it’s almost goofy, and a harsh juxtaposition against the sheer desolation of the planet itself.


The overall effect is oppressive, but not excessively so: the pull to unravel the mystery of Regis III, and the methodical pace of the tactile, investigative gameplay is enough to provide a regular distraction from the pervasive unease.


So, what do you actually do, aside from wander around feeling anxious? Well, you poke around, look at stuff, and fiddle with things. From a gameplay point of view, it’s all very basic, and you’re practically guided through every step by the disembodied voice of your commander who crackles through the radio with reassuring regularity. Through the course of the demo, we are introduced to various pieces of equipment from Yasna’s permanent inventory: scanners of various sorts, for the most part, and beautifully rendered in period detail, with warped cathode ray displays, chrome bevelling, and filament bulbs. It of course has the distinct feel of a tutorial level, and so we’re confident that the game proper will have less of a tight leash on your activities. Indeed, in interviews, the developers have talked The Invincible up as a branching narrative with an emphasis on player choice.





The Invincible gameplay marries retrofuture style and modern space game tech, only tripping once or twice in its adaptation of Stanisław Lem's sci-fi novel



Between the convincing and beautiful visuals, excellent sound design, and deliberate sense of pacing, The Invincible appears committed to getting the details right – at least, in most cases. At one point, I open the visual logs of a broken robot, and the photographic record is presented as a series of hand-drawn illustrations. It’s a curious choice that stands out from the photorealism of the rest of the demo – it’s as if the spider-like robot carries a courtroom sketch artist instead of an actual camera.


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  • Commissar SFLUFAN changed the title to The Invincible (PC/XSX/PS5, 2022) - a "retro-future atompunk" first-person thriller based on 1960s Polish sci-fi, update: new hands-on previews posted
  • 8 months later...
  • Commissar SFLUFAN changed the title to The Invincible (PC/Xbox Series/PS5, 2023) - a "retro-future atompunk" first-person thriller based on 1960s Polish sci-fi, update: New Gameplay Trailer (PC Gaming Show 2023)
  • 4 months later...

Game Information

Game Title: The Invincible



  • Xbox Series X/S (Nov 6, 2023)
  • PlayStation 5 (Nov 6, 2023)
  • PC (Nov 6, 2023)


Developer: Starward Industries

Publisher: 11 bit studios


Review Aggregator:

OpenCritic - 71 average - 57% recommended


Critic Reviews


GamesCreed - Mariella Deadman - 4.8 / 5

The Invincible is fantastic. If you like a walking sim, then this is the one to go for. Beyond this, the conversations are full of heart, the environment is a thing of beauty, and the choices made have a real, forceful impact on the story. Starward was clearly working on a project of passion, with a level of detail rivalling that of most triple-A titles. The sound and art design leaves nothing to be desired, and the writing is truly masterful and the multiple ends make for an experience you will want to play over and over again. If you want to be a part of a fantastic story, then The Invincible should be at the top of your wishlist.

NoobFeed - Jay Claassen - 95 / 100

The Invincible is far from just a story-driven game, it’ll tell you a story but allow you to make the hard decisions and you’ll get the story you need. With a good majority of the plot and details extracted from a novel, it’s refreshing to see just how perfectly executed this was. It’ll leave you wanting more as you keep uncovering Yasna’s story. This is the type of game that gives you a rich story and unholy amounts of detail in one space-fueled shot. It’s a masterpiece that everybody needs to experience, not just for its beauty but also for what it is as a whole.

Rectify Gaming - Will "fncwill" - 9.5 / 10

The Invincible is a remarkable gaming experience that seamlessly blends a gripping narrative, profound philosophical themes, and impactful player choices. Its adherence to the spirit of Stanisław Lem’s work and its unique approach to multiple endings set it apart in the gaming landscape. If you’re in search of a thought-provoking sci-fi adventure that challenges your beliefs and offers numerous narrative possibilities, The Invincible is a must-play. It showcases the potential of video games to provide diverse and intellectually stimulating conclusions within an engaging story while delivering a visually stunning and immersive world to explore.

Invision Community - Sahil Lala - 9 / 10

The Invincible is a great game that more people should play. The storytelling delves into the philosophical at numerous points and it’s a game that will stay with you for a long time to come. It may be a bit frustrating to deal with the slow movement and the lack of actual fast-paced action gameplay but if you’re into slow-burn storytelling, this game will appeal to you.

The Games Machine - Emanuele Feronato - Italian - 9 / 10

When you're not going all-in on fast-paced action, focusing on story and atmosphere, you definitely need to capture the player's attention to avoid falling into the walking sim trap. The Invincible succeeds from the very first minutes, plunging us into a situation in which the last thing we want is to run like crazy into the unknown, preferring to move cautiously aware that every step could be the last. This is thanks to a superlative narrative technique combined with a perfect graphic representation. It's not a survival horror but a novel written in the form of an adventure, and lovers of the genre will love it.

Try Hard Guides - Erik Hodges - 9 / 10

Though it’s less of a game and more of an interactive novel, The Invincible is worth checking out for any fan of sci-fi or cosmic horror. This dreary adventure into the unknown makes fantastic use of suspense, mystery, and the out-of-this-world concepts of its source material to make for a truly unique Cosmonautian adventure into the unknown.

Windows Central - Cole Martin - 4.5 / 5

The landscape of Regis III is as stunning as it is haunting, and Yasna's journey in this unusual land is rife with philosophical and moral conundrums that leave you with plenty to think about even after the credits roll.

Gamepressure - Matthias Pawlikowski - 8.5 / 10

In some respects, The Invincible is simply a work of art. And among others, a great story and 6-8 hours of wandering through one of the most beautifully designed planets in a video game.

XboxEra - Jesse Norris - 8.2 / 10

The Invincible is a great game, full of wonderful storytelling and choices that feel impactful.  The narrative suffers a bit near the end, but it’s an easy game to recommend to any genre fan.  The gameplay is enjoyable, Regis III and everything on it is gorgeously realized, and it is a dream prequel to an excellent book.

EIP Gaming - Daniel Downey - 8 / 10

The Invincible is a competent first person exploration title, with a wonderful astropunk aesthetic married to a compelling narrative. There are minor issues with navigation, but not enough to prevent the game from being an enjoyable experience.

Arabhardware - Ahmed Yousry - Arabic - 8 / 10

The Invincible is a distinctive narrative journey that creatively adopts the original novel, and presents us with a philosophical plot of a scientific nature which makes us wonder about everything that exists in the universe around us and how it poses a threat to our human lives. After years of losing hope, this is the closest thing we got to a game like Firewatch!

God is a Geek - Chris White - 8 / 10

The Invincible is a great walking sim that tells a solid science fiction story, with a likeable protagonist and some strong writing.

Multiplayer First - Vitor Braz - 8 / 10

If you’re a fan of slow-paced, story-driven games, this is a good place to be, with robots small and large, friend and foe waiting for your arrival, and quite a few landscapes to explore and instill a certain sense of dread, even if the layout design is excessively on the inflexible side. The Invincible may not mark a leap for the genre, but it is a well-rounded and interesting step for walking simulators.

PC Invasion - Sullivan Pearson - 8 / 10

The Invincible sets out to make you think about what if "not everything, everywhere is for us," and it does not disappoint in the slightest. With cutting-edge graphics and a compelling storyline, the only things holding this game back are its occasionally confusing objectives and relatively mediocre NPC design.

The Game Crater - Jade Garrett - 8 / 10

The Invincible is a phenomenal game that has done an excellent job translating a fantastic book into an even better video game. Its retro-futuristic art style compliments the concepts that it discusses, and there won’t be a moment during your playthrough where you’re not curious about what you’ll discover. I highly recommend The Invincible to anyone who enjoys narrative-driven sci-fi adventures.

TheSixthAxis - Aran Suddi - 8 / 10

The Invincible is a novel brought to life, blending its story and stunning visuals with engaging exploration. The Invincible goes back to the roots of sci-fi, offering something both classic and new when it comes to exploring the relationship between humanity and the final frontier.

Use a Potion - 8 / 10

The Invincible is a wondrous retro sci-fi escapade that’ll hook players in with its intriguing story and gorgeous presentation. It’s hard to talk about all of the things I liked about it without giving away too many little spoilers for players, but with plenty of surprises to encounter as you shape your story on Regis III, it’s easy to find yourself fully invested in Yasna’s journey.

It did suffer from a few technical hiccups during my time playing and I’d be lying if I said the movement speed wasn’t a little bit slower than I’d like, but they’re minor issues in what is otherwise an alluring sci-fi experience.

PC Gamer - Jon Bailes - 77 / 100

An admirable adaptation of a classic sci-fi story, despite a few stumbles.

AltChar - Asmir Kovacevic - 75 / 100

"The Invincible" is a game that definitely prioritises the delivery of an exceptional story over everything else, and it undeniably excels in that regard. However, if you're seeking a robust gameplay experience, you may find yourself somewhat disappointed. Nevertheless, the sheer quality of the narrative within this game ultimately outweighs its apparent shortcomings. In the grand scheme of things, you'll be inclined to forgive any imperfections, as I ultimately did.

BaziCenter - Mohammad Talebian - Persian - 7.5 / 10

Numerous technical problems and a disappointing finish have prevented it from becoming one of the best.

Gamersky - 心灵奇兵 - Chinese - 7.5 / 10

Adapted from Lem's works, The Invincible uses stunning art and intricate interactive gameplay to make the journey of alien exploration feel incredibly realistic and immersive.

Game Rant - Adrian Morales - 3.5 / 5

But even with a few technical hiccups, checkpoint woes, and a sense that maybe going this big with such an intimate game wasn’t the best choice, The Invincible is an enjoyable experience. The Invincible is a '60s sci-fi novel brought to life that is best suited for those who love to get nerdy about hard science and love that retro sci-fi aesthetic. More casual fans will likely find plenty to enjoy with the game, but they should know that this a game about getting immersed in a world that wants to tell a story instead of the usual space-faring adventure shtick. When The Invincible gets its hooks in players, it can be a narrative experience that is thrilling, thought-provoking, and worth the ride.

Gameffine - Subhasish Das - 70 / 100

The Invincible does a great job of establishing its retro-themed space journey that feels surreal. It follows a strong premise that feels original and unique. However, it is plagued by its repetitive campaign activities, tiresome exploration, and technical issues. If you are looking for a space-faring experience, this might just be your next pick. Just be mindful of a sale.

Generación Xbox - Luis Falcón - Spanish - 70 / 100

The Invincible is an interesting game and with an adaptation of a best-selling novel, however, the game falls a little short in different aspects. Although you will find a title that will be able to entertain you for a while, perhaps from three quarters of the game onwards you can start to notice those shortcomings, especially when it comes to moving between places. Since it seems that the developer wanted to extend the duration of the game a bit to give you more time glued to the controller. A more compact story that gave a few more moments of action would have been great, since at times it is easy for you to lose the rhythm of the game, since the title itself gives rise to it.

Press Start - Matthew Zimmari - 7 / 10

The Invincible brings Stanislaw Lem's work to life in a faithful adaptation that plays out as if it were ripped directly from retro-futurism art of the 1950s. Starward Industries have gone to great lengths to craft an experience that is visually appealing and makes great strides to maintain Lem's philosophical concepts while being grounded in hard science fiction. But where the game excels in some areas, it loses its way in others, falling victim to pacing issues and hollow choices, resulting in hurried endings that may leave you feeling lost in space.

Push Square - Liam Croft - 7 / 10

The Invincible has a wondrous story to tell and dazzling graphics to match, but it's held back from greatness by gameplay that struggles to ever break away from the genre structure of old. Mostly walking and talking, it never feels anything more than serviceable. Still, there's an interesting narrative to experience, and with your own decisions changing events, The Invincible should still be played by sci-fi fanatics.

Screen Rant - Ben Brosofsky - 3.5 / 5

The Invincible is hard to recommend on the basis of its gameplay alone, as its walking sim core doesn't always feel like the best use of its potential. Its best features can be found elsewhere, however, with a competent take on a great story and a truly staggering success in the looks department keeping the engine running across a modest runtime. Branching possibilities may not be enough to incentivize a second bout of slow exploration, but as a one-time dip into a mysterious tale of beauty and danger, The Invincible might just do the trick.

Seasoned Gaming - Ainsley Bowden - 7 / 10

The Invincible takes the player on a scientific journey of mystery and discovery. It’s a trip worth taking despite some frustrations.

Spaziogames - Domenico Musicò - Italian - 7 / 10

The Invincible tells the story of the iconic Lem's novel from another point of view and recreates the same atmosphere, tackling important philosophical themes.

Wccftech - Ule Lopez - 7 / 10

In short, The Invincible is a relatively comfortable experience that I could recommend to fans of thrillers and science fiction. I don't think it could be scratching an itch for horror fans specifically because it certainly doesn't have much going for it when it comes to cosmic horror. Still, its twists and turns can leave an impact on those seeking a psychological thriller, especially with the kind of questions it poses at the end.

WhatIfGaming - Rizwan Anwer - 7 / 10

The Invincible is a story about surviving an unforgiving planet brimming with the unknown. The slow-burn takes a while to get interesting and you should be ready for a lot of exploration with minimal gameplay elements. The voice acting does a great job of keeping you immersed in the world, and the story ultimately The visuals may not be the best, but they're decent enough to set the pace for a decent story.

ZdobywcyGier.eu - Paweł Bortkiewicz - Polish - 7 / 10

The Invincible is a story-driven walking simulator with beautiful graphics, but bugs and some decisions in terms of gameplay unfortunately killed the potential to present an interesting adaptation of literature from Stanislaw Lem.

WellPlayed - Kieran Stockton - 6.5 / 10

The Invincible absolutely looks the part, jampacked with stunning alien vistas and a brilliant retrofuturistic aesthetic, but its premise can't quite maintain the momentum of suspense and intrigue generated in its opening act

Eurogamer - Robert Purchese - 3 / 5

The Invincible is a spectacular adaptation of Stanisław Lem's book, but it's limited in terms of what you can do in it, and the impact on the story you have.

PCGamesN - Josh Brown - 6 / 10

An intriguing story of exploring new frontiers and an easy gateway into retro sci-fi literature, The Invincible is a powerful, engrossing cosmic drama that's held back by a lack of variety and innovation, rough edges around its core mechanics, and a supporting cast that can't quite match the energy of its stars.

Slant Magazine - Steven Scaife - 3 / 5

Once we stop sharing in Yasna’s discoveries, the storytelling never quite clicks. Apart from a few stiff flashbacks, players simply don’t get to know enough about Yasna’s fellow researchers to get invested in how their fate drives her search for answers. Yasna’s quest feels detached rather than desperate, with all the game’s themes coldly laid out in dialogue choices. The Invincible does remain reasonably engrossing through to the end, but it never recaptures the interactive vigor of its first half, eventually becoming a bout of scientific calculus on autopilot.

Wolf's Gaming Blog - Baden Ronie - 3 / 5

Perhaps best described as Firewatch in Space, The Invincible is a narrative game that weaves a compelling mystery, but not compelling gameplay. The slow-burn story takes a little while to get going and the ending leaves something to be desired, but everything in the middle tells a thoughtful, traditional sci-fi story of people, evolution and what mysteries we might find in the universe should we ever be able to travel through the void of space. I’d recommend this one only to the more die-hard walking sim and sci-fi fans who have the patience needed to fully enjoy The Invincible’s narrative.

Hobby Consolas - Alberto Lloret - Spanish - 58 / 100

The Invincible is a walking simulator that, starting from a good story, fails to adapt it to a video game in a satisfactory way. It's a slow game, with accessory and sometimes unnecessary mechanics that at times feels more like a visual novel with playable "globs". And that's a shame, because there was potential in its atmosphere.

Lords Of Gaming - Joshua Reding - 5.5 / 10

The Invincible plays much like I would imagine the book feels. Its heady exploration of evolution, adaptation, and the nature of life wraps around the video game shell. The game drags on just a little too long. Ultimately, the game part of the equation just doesn’t do enough to make the experience fun to play. The ideas presented while compelling, fall apart in multiple of the game’s endings leaving me feeling baffled at some of the design decisions made.

The Invincible feels like a palette cleanser of a game. It attempts to be literature in a marketplace surrounded by bombast. Somewhere along the line though, Starward Industries lost sight of the fact that interacting with the world has to be engaging and not just a canvas upon which to paint a story.

TheReviewGeek - Greg Wheeler - 5.5 / 10

For a walking simulator, you’d think that Starward Industries would have at least nailed down the walking. Instead, it’s arguably one of the worst parts of The Invincible. Walking sims can be great if they have an interesting story (which this one does, in fairness) but with such laborious, sluggish mechanics to accompany that, this is way more of a chore to get through than it should be.

But Why Tho? - Charles Hartford - 5 / 10

The Invincible is ultimately a sub-par experience. While it delivers flashes of quality in its cast and its attention to some details, the narrative is ultimately weighed down too much.

Entertainment Geekly - Luis Alvaro - 2.5 / 5

“The Invincible” really is a mixed bag, and it might not be your cup of tea if you’re looking for something with a bit more action and interaction.

IGN - Andrew McMahon - 5 / 10

The Invincible might have a strong inspiration in the 1964 novel, but every time it attempts to make it more interesting as an interactive experience it ends up doing the opposite.

ACG - Jeremy Penter - Wait for Sale

Video Review - Quote not available

Duuro Magazine - Krist Duro - Essential

There are no real puzzles to solve, there's no combat, there's just you trying to traverse through gorgeous landscapes, claustrophobic places and other things I won't mention, trying to figure out what happened and that's absolutely enough. The Invincible is brilliant and I strongly recommend you playing it.

One More Game - Vincent Ternida - Wait

The Invincible is a well-adapted piece that brings to life a complex sci-fi novel into a fully immersive experience. However, we're also treated to much of its meditative and tedious aspects to create an isolated world filled with complex themes that can be satisfying to more discerning sci-fi aficionados, but as a video game, it is definitely not for everybody.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - Julian Benson - Unscored

The Invincible is an engaging sci-fi adventure that can leave you cold and confused the moment it stops holding your hand.


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  • Commissar SFLUFAN changed the title to The Invincible (PC/Xbox Series/PS5) - a "retro-future atompunk" first-person thriller based on 1960s Polish sci-fi, update: reviews from OpenCritic posted

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