Thoughts on Elevator Action Invasion (Arcade)

The newest game to drop at the local Dave & Busters was UNIS’s Elevator Action Invasion. This title has quite an attractive cabinet design, so, naturally I was drawn into checking it out.

I did a little bit of recording and went through some of my thoughts on the game. I wouldn’t call this a full-blown review, but it encapsulates my basic thoughts on the game.

The review can be viewed in video form in the following video, but I have also included the text below the video file as well for those who would rather give it a read:

On my most recent trips to Dave & Busters, I noticed the addition of the UNIS cabinet of Elevator Action Invasion. This is billed as a unique game made by UNIS with blessings from Taito to legally allow its similarities to Taito’s Elevator Action Death Parade. The cabinet’s biggest bullet point is with its elevator-style doors that open and close in-between scenes on the game’s vertical monitor. Outside of that, players grab one of the cabinet’s gun controllers and fire away with a machine gun at the game’s countless enemies.

At its base mechanics, Elevator Action Invasion is enjoyable as a fast-paced action game and this is bolstered by a combo mechanic that encourages you to use the machine gun to keep peppering enemies with bullets before the combo timer expires. Scoring mechanics and ranks are in place as a measuring stick to see how long players can hold their combos. The game’s graphics look great and the cabinet itself has a really sleek and interesting design.

Elevator Action Invasion has no issue with filling the screen with enemies, and new enemy and trap types are sprinkled throughout the course of the game. While the game starts with basic soldiers, the game eventually introduces heavy soldiers with weak points to hit, soldiers that carry shields, small robots that resemble insects that try to swarm the players, soldiers that throw hatchets or grenades and mech-style robots. The basic enemy layouts are fine throughout the course of the game, but I did note that it didn’t seem like the enemies were taken out faster with headshots. I quickly found my groove with the game when it came to the general battles throughout the levels, but my strategy rarely evolved beyond spreading over the screen as much as possible. There were also rare instances where it seemed like the swarms of nanobots slowed the performance down a little, which was very noticeable when the firing rate of my gun reduced.

I played through the entirety of Elevator Action Invasion by myself, and my biggest complaint overall with this is in the boss enemy battles. The bosses are fairly interesting in design, but the gameplay involved is nothing but shooting flashing weak points when prompted. My problem with this is in the multiple times I would be firing at a weak point from the second it appeared on screen just to take a hit from the boss. Since the gun is an auto fire machine gun, I can’t fire the gun any faster, so the implementation of “auto-hits” from the major enemy characters was the biggest in-game disappointment for me. I’d be willing to try the game again with a second player to see if the added ammunition makes a difference in this regard.

For this part, I am going to speak about the conclusion of the game, so, if you’re still in a position where you don’t want this ruined for you, please skip this next segment.

*********************************SPOILER SECTION***********************************************

My play time for this session was just shy of half an hour, which is probably the most you would want out of an arcade shooting game. I fought the game’s third boss character in a tunnel and was given a final ranking of SS. I set my camera for a new recording in order to film the game’s ending … only to be transitioned over to the Game Over screen. I was holding the gun controller in one hand and operating my camera in the other hand, so I couldn’t have possibly pressed the start button to skip any scenes. The characters were talking about reporting back to base, my score and rank were shown, and then boom, game over. This was really kind of a blow to my experience, and looms over what I would have otherwise called an above-average game. There was largely no reward to me for investing the time and credits into the machine, and, unless there is something I missed in the game to see more content, really kills my desire to ever play it again.


Elevator Action Invasion is a decent time that I found was spoiled in those couple of key areas. It could have done more with the elevator mechanic, as it merely serves as a transition (maybe even hiding load times?). There is a scene where the players are interrupted in-between floors resulting in a short battle from a different vantage point, but that is short-lived. There are even weird bits of pacing in scenes where the players get out of the elevator, defeat a handful of enemies and then turn around and get back into the elevator for another transition.

Still, it’s a competent game that unapologetically provides fast-paced shooting action for up to two players. It definitely fits the bill for providing an arcade rail shooter experience, but the couple of points I touched on really hang heavy on the experience I had playing this title. I wouldn’t discourage anyone from checking out Elevator Action Invasion, though, as it serves up a pretty straight-forward action experience even if players decide they do not want to feed credits all the way through the game.

If you would like even more media from the game, I strung together some video files of me playing through Elevator Action Invasion:

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Categories: GemuBaka Feature, GemuBaka Review


Arcade enthusiast and game collector. Affiliate Twitch retro streamer and games archive writer at Gemubaka ( For business only: gemubaka at gmail


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