Now obviously your reaction to that would be "That's definitely just an exxageration just to be haha funny" which it is to an extent, there are obviously worser games that exist out there in every aspect like writing, graphics, gameplay, etc. Stupid Invaders when you first look at it let's say through the lense of watching a silent playthrough or such, it just seems overall mediorce, at least that was my initial thoughts half awake when I decided to watch a full playthrough of it for lols. The more I looked into this game and finally managed to play it for myself the more baffling my thoughts about the game became and through the like 5+ hours I put myself through just getting an emulation of this game on my pc and playing through it TWICE I decided what's best then to fully air out my "review" of this god forsaken game cause I swear to god.
WHAT THE HELL IS STUPID INVADERS?
Stupid Invaders is a point and click adventure licensed game released on December 15 2000 for European audiences and later February 21 2001 for North American audiences for both Windows/Mac OS and Dreamcast. It was produced by Ubisoft based on the french cartoon Space Goofs by Xilam, most notable for their most popular work Oggy and the cockroaches, Zigg and Sharko, etc. Stupid Invader’s plot is very reliant on Space Goofs for it’s characters and basic plot stuff so I’ll just quickly touch on Space Goofs here for better understanding.
Space Goofs is about 5 (4 in season 2 onwards) aliens who accidentally crash land on earth while riding through space, it’s shown in the pilot episode “Once upon a time” how they land on earth and that if humans find out they’re all aliens they could be possibly experimented on which is a no no, so they all eventually find and hide out in this mansion till they can build a new spaceship or such to go back to their home planet Zigma B. However one of the main gimmicks of the show is that the mansion they reside in is constantly up for rent and as new tenants of all kinds move in there, the goofs need to come up with a plan to get them out of the house. The show itself is largely an episodic comedy series especially in season 2 where wacky expressions and physical humor galore is amped up. You may have seen some clips online of certain characters or episode moments that are fucking off the walls which they are but my god is Space Goofs an actuall trip, the more episodes you watch of the series the more just insane everything gets and honestly I would recommend it to those who are a fan of those types of cartoons or such however I will say that both seasons most likely due to the impact Stupid Invaders had since it was made inbetween the seasons (and this point will be mentioned later in the review) are quite different in tone and such, for one animation is significantly improved in season 2 probably due to experience on their other shows since space goofs was one of their first cartoon productions in 1997. Season 1 has a bit more of a toned down slice of life-ish feeling, while episodes are DEFINITELY still very wild in concept (for example episodes like rip van etno and old macdonald had a farm) it’s not as exaggerated compared to season 2 where once again stuff like silly expressions and physical humor are amped up, characters also get much more flanderized in season 2 (worst examples being gorgious and candy) and the most obvious difference if you pay attention is the complete removal of the character Stereo Monovici from the cast, as Xilam and such dubbed Stereo as “the weakest character” of the bunch, however only in two episodes does Stereo cameo in and even then it’s mostly as a cop out to when they don’t possibly seem to know how to end off the conflict present, speaking of such!
I’ll try and keep this short but to understand some of the problems with Stupid Invaders we’ll have to know the main characters we play as throughout the game. Bud Buddiovitch, Candy Caramella, Etno Polino, Gorgious Klatoo and Stereo Monovici, these are the main characters of the game and show. Other prominent characters in the game are Bolok/The pro and Dr Sakarine, the main antagonists of the game (at least for Dr Sakarine as Bolok then turns into a hero at the last second when Dr Sakarine betrays him).
Etno is the leader of the group, the smartest of all of them constantly researching in their lab or trying to fix the spaceship to get back home. Season 1 Etno looks especially silly from how off model they can look while season 2 Etno looks like they’ll maul me to death.
Bud is a fan favorite in the space goofs fandom, they’re also quite silly in appearance and is generally the “dunce/dumb one” of the group, he likes watching tv and generally is quite lazy, however in some episodes bud does seem to take interest in other things such as his extreme passion/knowledge in animals and cowboys and bud may be much more knowledgable then some of the goofs due to the information they gain from watching tv.
Candy is the main caretaker of the group, she’s obsessed with cleaning to a nauseating extent and is the only girl of the group. She’s also very dramatic and moody which does make her overreact in some cases. In season 2 they especially turned her into a bigger punching bag for a lot of the comedy then in season 1 and same applies for Stupid Invaders. She’s also canonically transfem/nonbinary, hashtag win.
Gorgious is definitely one of the more hated characters in the show, not only from just his greedy and selfish nature but how flanderized he came not only in later episodes of season 1 but the entirety of season 2, it’s quite interesting to see as in earlier episodes Gorgious seemed a lot more reasonable then he is now. Worst Gorgious moment especially was when he called Bud the r slur (very classy to the autistic coded character) or just the weird shipping dynamic they decided to apply to Gorgious and Candy due to Stupid Invaders that’s just really uncomfortable. Overall if Gorgious is your favorite character sorry I don’t trust you sorry not sorry.
Last is Stereo who as mentioned before was removed from season 2 due to xilam and co just deciding Stereo was too weak of a character and kinda didn’t really provide anything interesting to the story or characters which I can agree, but tbh it also feels like a cop out for them to just not try and improve how Stereo is written to at least make them involved with the main group especially how Stereo in season 2 is essentially reduced to only appearing when it just seems like a story can’t progress/solve itself without them. Other than that, Stereo I would have to say is my favorite design out of all of the goofs, just something about their design is really captivating like you just can’t hate on this, alongside their voices, one head being the nerdier of the two and the other being more mischievous in nature.
Other two characters I feel I need to also add here when giving basic character descriptions are Bolok and Dr Sakarine, Both actually appeared in season 1 of the cartoon previously, Bolok appearing in the episode "The Pro" and Dr Sakarine in the episode "Zero Stuff", I actually really like how they implemented Bolok as a villain in this game atleast till the end where they actually somewhat expanded and improved his whole thing beyond just him going "I'm a proffesional" also he says haha funny yo mama line.
Overall the space goofs as a cartoon itself is a very strange one but I think it's worthwhile if you're real into kinda raunchy ren and stimpy esc but kinda chilled out wacky situations about aliens, however I will warn you in both season 1 and 2 (but ESPECIALLY in season 2 ) there are some. really fucking racist shit cause french people can't be normal ig, luckily not all the goddamn time in the show but it's still there so best just avoiding those and not to mention what I said earlier (usage of the r slur near the end of a season 2 episode), a show best watched with friends blind.
WHAT HAPPENS IN STUPID INVADERS?
Stupid Invaders basically starts us off with a quick recap of space goofs premise, five aliens accidentally crash land on earth and hide out in this mansion that's always on rent while they try and return back to their home planet Zigma B, nothing too complicated, it then skips a couple years later after they crash landed (presumbably after most of season 1 ) where we cut to Area 52, Dr Sakarine in his lair hiring Bolok as a bounty hunter with a simple task "bring back the space goofs dead or alive for pay" which ends with Bolok leaving to do the job as we cut to Bolok arriving to the mansion. The scene then changes to the goofs in the attic watching Tv (atleast Bud is) till Etno comes in to announce that the space ship is finally they've just built is ready for take off, others a bit more hesistant about it working this time but nonetheless excited to finally go home, however their plan is so cut short from Bolok entering the room and freezing most of them why his freeze ray, all except Bud who briefly left at first to get the Tv but immediately runs away into the bathroom while Bolok chases him thus finally starting the game/gameplay.
The first main area of the game you traverse through is the mansion in which as bud you do pretty simple point and click puzzles to avoid being caught by Bolok and slowly find a way to get rid of him and save your friends, it's not unusual that most of the puzzles here aren't that hard to do and there are a few references to season 1 such as the santa suck in the chimney gag which are cleverly implemented but this area is the beginning of MANY problems soon to come in latter parts of the game which really could've easily been solved. One issue is with the characters walking speed/running speed or should I say the lack off, there for some reason isn't a dedicated run toggle or such so you just slowly walk through areas and it's incredibly unbearable here especially as the puzzles in this area make it a point to make you walk back and forth long distances or else it's game over, and while that's somewhat dealable I have to bring up the one roadblock in my path that almost made this game just completely unplayable for me at such an earlier part of the game. THE GODDAMN CURSOR CONTROLS, it's strange as in most areas it works alright but in this one goddamn specific area, it for some reason just locks you into a 'looking at' button click and you have to switch to the 'pick up item' button which the game itself nor manuel never fucking tells you about and it's so strange as well cause both buttons in the game especially for pc are on the same button when they could've just, I don't know, goddamn mapped it on a different key/button. I'm not joking when I say this "quirk" in the game had me stuck not knowing what to do to progress cause I just couldn't pick up this essential item to progressing the game, at the beginning and we're already at an excellent start at the state of this game's gameplay/controls.
(I love you bud but please fucking say anything apart from that it's so annoying)
After figuring out how to finally pick up the mouse trap you bait bolok into getting trapped in there thus giving you access to the rest of the mansion till he later escapes the mouse trap and hides out in a wardrobe in the room where your frozen friends and the space ship are in, apart from that travesty everything beyond that is honestly a walk in the park if you know where to go and what you're doing, another thing you'll start noticing that becomes a pattern in the game is this game's sense of humour to say, while space goofs was a very wild and out there tv show, it never really fully crossed into just bordeline nsfw jokes which while not an entirely bad thing just gets really tiring the 4th time it comes up especially in some ways they decide to implement these jokes whether it's just there for the sake of being that 2000s brand of raunchy or just straight up tone deaf. Another thing to note is that in this specific part of the game some cutscenes that play have really good lighting for some reason and only really for this area, honestly reminds me of the cgi cartoon network Garfield show in a nostalgic way. Bla Blah bla you do a bunch of simple "get one thing to progress the story puzzles" like killing a pelican to access the spaceship room and end up severly injuring bolok in time to help de freeze your friends in which they compliment Bud for doing such kinda. They decide to resume their plan on going home not before Etno remembers a valuable item they'd like to bring with them back home in which it brings us to Etno's gameplay/the Lab.
Etno's part of the game is quite short, in fact I'd say despite being seemingly the "main-ish" character of the show or atleast a very important one Etno barely has any screentime compared to their counterparts, this only being followed by stereo.The objective here isn't that complicated at all and there's no way you can really manage to die in this area unless you piss off Etno's super computer who's guarding what Etno wants to bring back home with them, another nitpick I have alongside the slow running speed is the fact you can't just skip dialouge or anything even after finishing a first playthrough so you just have to sit there waiting for the dialouge to be done which in this area is that at it's absolute worse. After going through the correct dialouge options you end up in a losing arguement with your computer being upset about Etno abandoning them and refusing to open the lock with Etno's work in there no matter what, so you power up an invention of Etno's called the SMTV and transform yourself into the computer's favourite actor Maurice (definitely not a reference to Etno's voice actor)
(God you're so fucking ugly in 3d Etno)
After another long dialouge scene with the computer finally letting you in upon meeting their fav celebrity, you transform back to Etno and quickly grab the book which I can only describe as another sex/nsfw joke I guess??? I don't fucking know this is strange. Bla bla bla we finally fly off as the house blows the fuck up and the goofs are off in their spaceship. All seems well till their spaceship starts malfunctioning and they crash land in the middle of nowhere with the only way of possibly powering it up again is by collecting fecal matter which lodges up right into the next major area of the game, The Paste Factory, however I'll just be calling it the shit factory cause that's literally what it is.
This time Candy and Gorgious are the playable characters for this segment of the game, alternating between their povs as you progress through the game. Immediately this segment starts out really weird with Candy being snatched up by some weird lake fog creature and you briefly play as gorgious, you find a bunch of explosive chicks and then find this giant godzilla chicken creature when trying to enter into the paste factory, you have to make the giant chicken explode to actually continue in which Candy then gets spat back out and we reunite with her yayyyyy. We get a few more questionable exchanges between Candy and Gorgious and they decide to split up ways, we now play as Candy as she falls further down into the depths of shit caked everywhere and we arrive at single handedly one of the worst nsfw jokes they pull with Candy which btw is a reoccuring gag in the game especially later cause she girl I guess. Also we see one of the fucking terrifying human models of the game idk what the hell they were trying to achieve with it cause this character as far as I know isn't based on any prior season 1 characters or has much plot relevance he's just fucking there and ugly, anyways cuts back to gorgious's gameplay as we ride him up an elavator and it cuts to more of that joke.
Once again like Bud's and Etno's previous sections in the house there's nothing really too complex one can't figure out for Gorgious's puzzles, they're quite straightfoward apart from this one puzzle that just requires you continuesly click on this item till you can use it or else it's game over but honestly it's not that bad compared to ahem certain puzzles. Bla ble you get this hammer made out of shit infront of a confederate flag cause I guess and you use it to kill one of the factory workers and get his gas tank which you feed to this disgusting pink dog beast (but I will admit the death cutscene if you get near it with Gorgious is pretty funny) and you get this hook carrier thingy to get one of the shitting cows on display. You get the cow and carry it all over to the bottom of this pit which ends the Gorgious segment and cuts to what Candy's doing. As Candy you escape the sex dungeon you're trapped in and fly up to the other areas of the factory, most notably the kitchen. You do some stuff and you go into this one segment in a big fish tank and see the one and only fugu fish which I can assure you is what most people know this game by, haha funny don't piss.
(Don't pee on the floor, use a commodore)
Anyways you take the fugu fish and get this... very questionably designed asian guy in the kitchen to eat it and die, rip fugu fish. Now with that guy gone you go up this elavator to get flattened in this one room which luckily does not kill us and instead let's us access the next point. Important in the next room we enter we pick up this can of chilli to progress with a major ending puzzle of the segment, only annoyance is that this can of chilli is frustratingly place in a hard to see area of the room we enter with absolutely no indication of where to find it, very awesome. Once you find the can of chilli you kill this hill billy guy who's just straight up a Bud disguise not even kidding and you go back into the same kitchen to cook the chilli cause we find out when reuniting with Gorgious who's in the next room the cow he brang in refuses to shit till she's feed chilli. After feeding her the chilli we use a tractor left by the now dead hill billy to carry all that shit back to the spaceship. As everyone's celebrating being able to finally continue going home, low and behold Bolok appears and forces the goofs to all fly to Area 52, as this is going on and they fly off, some exposed gas from the kitchen causes the shit factory to explode like the mansion as we move on to the final segment of the game, Area 52.
Once we arrive at Area 52 the goofs finally face Dr Sakarine and his assistant Igor who lead the goofs into being incased in these containers with some other aliens, as the goofs are being escorted by Igor Dr Sakarine ends up betraying Bolok's end of the deal and getting Igor to kill Bolok. We cut to the goofs being trapped in these containers till Stereo's cage breaks open due to some mystery gas being filled in, from this point on we play as Stereo which unfortunately same with their show counterpart has minimal screentime being the only goof to have 1 game segment. You can interact with the other goofs which also gives us this dialouge:
Nothing more needs to be said. Stoned again.
Anyways, while in segments like the mansion or the shit factory, at first the puzzles in Area 52 are fairly simple abliet annoying when you have to walk all the way to get to an elavator just to get to an area but after that I'll tell you Area 52 is a literal hell world as the difficultly all the sudden ramps up for no reason, I seriously don't know how they thought people were going to beat these latter puzzles or if they even wanted people to beat it. You get into this room and fill a tank up with laughing gas and then fill into this room of identical Igors while Candy's been brought in the room as the first one for experiments with Dr Sakarine in the same room, however before they can really do anything about her the room fills with laughing gas and everyone apart from Dr Sakarine starts laughing hysterically in which Dr Sakarine decides to leave and Candy is dumped off somewhere else. In fact one of the Igors laughs so hard they faint in which you have to check this guy two times to get their card and their foot cause once again why not. Bla bla bla long ass walking sequence back to the room where most of your friends are held captive and you use Igor's card to open one of the containers and obtain a space brick, you head back and use the foot to get into this area of the game which is where we start the Candy section of Area 52. As Candy you have to continuesly interact with this fly taxi cab driver?? to give you a lift out of shit world but uh oh! Candy doesn't have enough money to pay so you have to... dress up as a female robot with giant robot boobs and have this robot guy have sex with you, once again another one of those fucking weird ass nsfw jokes. Anyways past that it's Gorgious's time for gameplay as he's carried out into this remote area of the game, you essentially just gather a bunch of bones and organ remains to platform around the area, you escape this meat hook freezer room and threaten to chop up these sentient furniture who call Gorgious an ass, on your way out you can optionally just kill a bunch of innocent aliens and you get trapped in the epic tube which ends gorgious's gameplay segments.
Past that we come back to Candy's segment where like before she sneaks out of the creep's place not before stealing some of the robot's cash to pay the fly cab to bring her to a different location, after that we enter this room full of transportation rooms which requires you to enter a certain pattern of pods to be put into the epic tube like Gorgious. Past that we cut back to Stereo in which you enter this certain area and lay the space brick down to enter this other room which is where the annoying ass puzzles start, here you have to play a memory game of simon says by clicking and matching the same color patterns that blink, normally this isn't too much of a problem but how slow Stereo's clicking animation is and just how long and tedious it is is enough to annoy basically anyone especially since this is a needed puzzle to progress the game. After you're finally done with that we now have access to Dr Sakarine's power room in which we now have access towards the entirety of Area 52 in which we now cut to Bud.
With bud remaining being stuck in the container this white alien comes in and helps free them in which you access this room with a bunch of toilets and end up in a golf ball hedge maze, this is another annoying puzzle they place seemingly just cause out of nowhere, you painfully have to wander around this maze with no clues or indication of where you're going at all and it's not helped that the controls for clicking the areas to move (atleast for the version of stupid invaders I played) are so finicky you're just fucking stuck there waiting for bud to finally move in the direction you want him to go. I seriously have no idea who's bright idea was it to include this in the game expecting people to somehow manage to beat it, it's just a constant slog to go through, but once you do manage to get yourself out of the maze puzzle this snail just helps you get out which btw goes on for a 4 minute cutscene cause once again why the fuck not, atleast you can skip it.
Anyways now when you're out of there Bud uses these mipy alien things to flew up to an opening with a robot worker and a giant fan, the robot calls Bud a homophobic word and Bud kills the robot with the fan and we escape to the outside which SUPRISE ACTUALLY another maze like puzzle cause fuck you for wanting to finish the game, seriously once again, not only is it just frustrating finding out where exactly to go but you're also timed on it cause if you wander too much, too bad! you're dead so make sure you just open a guide to this or just save a fuck ton. Just basically wander around to get this skull and find this pipe trumpet thing that directly communicates to Stereo in the big control room. After what is an admittedly cute interaction scene between Stereo and Bud, Stereo tries to open the opening to Area 52 but can't cause somethings wrong with the machines which launches us to Etno's part of the game. This part like Etno's last gameplay segment is stupidly simple, however I will say the beginning of Etno's segment and the first death you can get from it is too amusing where if you don't escape this giant toaster Etno's in, for an idle animation Etno just brings out a phone and then dies (I know it's a calculator but idc this fucker got punished for choosing iphone and not book). Past that just climb up this one area and take out this mouse stuck in the wheels of the machine for Area 52's opening and head back in which Etno gets put in the epic tube.
Once Etno's done with that, Stereo can now open up the opening to Area 52 where Stereo then leaves the control room and enters the epic tube like all of them. All that's left is Bud's section in which you wander around to find a water pipe next to the Area 52 opening and use the rope and skull you have to jump down safely and save the rest of the gang. When all seems well as they rush to their spaceship to escape, the white alien that helped break open Bud's capsule takes the spaceship keys and leaves leaving the goofs with no other choice but to use the giant spaceship left, as Candy goes in to start up the thing Dr Sakarine appears wanting to recapture the aliens again, this is the final gameplay segment as you basically play as candy getting new fuel to power the rocket, luckily the puzzle here is pretty simple to do, once the rocket powers all up everyone else rushes in to escape but not without Dr Sakarine entering as well revealing that the lower part of the rocket they're in is a bomb that will detonate itself when they arrive on Zigma B. All hope seems lost till Bolok appears having survived Dr Sakarine's assasination attempt urging the others to leave upwards as Bolok takes his revenge on Dr Sakarine by seperating the lower part of the rocket ship which was the bomb and basically exploding the earth just in time for the goofs to succesfully travel home and that's Stupid Invaders.
Now that's a lot of explaining just to single down all my problems with the game in everything from the exacution of puzzles and dialouge so I'll just be pin pointing it's main flaws.
For the most part, it looks passable especially for the 2000s but man do the goofs just not look good in 3d/CGI, the most passable one is Candy. Areas and models are decent looking enough but I for the life of me do not understand this animation/render error that pops up constantly which is the inconsistent eye colors, most of the time it'll be the right color but even then randomely in cutscenes or renders like the saving or leaving images their eyes will just magically change color, I don't know if just no one noticed or even cared to really make it consistent but it's whatever, just strange. This also ties into some other points but man do some of the cutscenes that play just feel so stiff and lifeless, not helped by the lack of music whats so ever in the cutscenes so they're always silent no matter what unless it's cinematic like the beginning cutscenes or sound affects. There's just a very noticable inconsistency with the quality of animation cause in the beginning there was some genuinly well lit scenes but past that everything else is just mediorce.
Gameplay and Controls
What more can be said about the gameplay and controls that I haven't said, while it's not bordeline unplayable it's just not fucking fun at all, most puzzles are exceptionally easy you're just so bored how much you have to wait with once again the slow ass walking speed/no run button or no skip dialouge buttons and then all the sudden the difficulty ramps up for Area 52 with puzzles like the simon says button puzzle, the golf ball maze and the desert the last two having absolutely no indication or clues for you to move forward. All these coupled with the janky and limited control set you have makes all of these just a hell to go through, I seriously don't get why they couldn't take influence from other point and click games like having a dedicated run button/toggle or skipping dialouge or god forbid mapping the different actions to a different key or such. I just don't see how anyone of any age would enjoy or even manage to complete these levels without a guide/walkthrough cause this game is clearly not for young kids from all the blatant nsfw jokes in it but it's also from a mostly kid/teen oriented childrens cartoon so it most likely wouldn't appeal to most adults, especially those who don't enjoy tongue in cheek or raunchy physical humour unless it's sole audience was just to really dedicated space goofs superfans in the 2000s. All I can really just say is man do I feel bad for literally any kid who was given this game as a gift having to fucking play through puzzles like the maze.
Writing and characterizations
Man do I feel like this game influence a lot of the flanderization of the goofs in season 2, everyone is either just not like themselves or saying the most baffling out of character shit ever, it's not helped as well by the game manuel's game descriptions of the characters just straight up being inaccurate to characters traits of the characters. There's barely any dialouge of the characters that are like themselves in the game to items or reactions, they act very bare bones and sometimes are just straight up mean spirited or nasty to each other or such, I normally don't like using mean spirited when it comes to characters but man does it just feel that way, worst cases is the forced shipping/dynamic with Gorgious and Candy with Gorgious just acting fucking nasty to Candy in one scene but then like lusting after her in another?? strange as hell writing descisions. There's just so little to make out of the characters beyond cutscenes like I get the voice actors they had for the characters at the time could be expensive but jesus. Literally just feels like hostile winds the video game.
Stupid Invaders at first glance from a far just seems like your average mediorce licensed game but the more you actually look into it through the lenses of watching space goofs season 1 especially do you start pointing out and noticing every single flaw within it from basic graphics errors to lackluster and minimal writing that effected season 2 to the bland puzzles with frustrating controls and gameplay with no smooth difficulty increase or clever ideas implemented that work off or adds to the original media, it's not hard to say that Stupid Invaders is a bad game, infact a very bad game, I just once again feel bad for the people who bought this game during the time where game guides or walkthroughs were pretty much hard to come by who had to beat this game, if you honestly wanna view Stupid Invaders by itself just watch a gameplay of it unless you really wanna play it for yourself then just emulate it off archive.org or something, I just used a version from the collection chamber to do it (but I'll have to warn you the version of the game can bug the hell out of your computer through watching cutscenes alone)
I'll also just link some space goofs related sites/things that are interestingThe official Stupid Invaders site (flash needed)
Space goofs fansite (flash also needed here)
Stupid Invaders soundtrack