Independence Day is a 1997 video game based on the movie of the same name. The game was developed by Radical Entertainment. It was released for PlayStation, Sega Saturn, and Microsoft Windows. A version for mobile was also released.
The game's story is only loosely based on that of the movie. The City Destroyers have positioned themselves over the world's major cities, preparing to destroy them. The beginning of the game takes place directly after the canyon chase from the film, however, in the game the plane and Attacker don't crash. The mission is to take out all the City Destroyers, and finally fire a nuke into the Mothership's core.
The gameplay is a 3D arcade flying, shooting game comprising 13 missions. The levels take place in a circular area, usually a city, with a City Destroyer flying overhead. Forcefields prevent the player from leaving the level area, and the player cannot fly the planes above the City Destroyers. The player has mission objectives for each level, the final objective of which is to take out the City Destroyer's primary weapon.
Each mission has a time limit; failure to complete a mission in the allotted time will result in failure. Once the main objective is completed, the timer will drop down to 45 seconds to take out the primary weapon. If the timer goes to 0, the primary weapon will fire and destroy the city or area below. The game also features portals that transport the player to another area by flying through them, these sub levels have their own separate objectives that must be completed before the player can return to the main level. The final level takes place inside the alien mothership. This level also takes place in a limited area, and the final objective is to destroy the mothership's core.
At the start of each level the player has the ability to choose which aircraft they wish to fly (the player also has a wingman that will fly the same type of plane as him). The player starts the game with the F/A-18 Hornet, additional planes are unlocked mid-level by flying through an icon representing them. These planes are then available to fly the next time the player starts a level. The first 10 levels have at least one plane each, two if that level has a sublevel as every one also has one plane. Unlockable planes include the A-10 Warthog, Eurofighter Typhoon, F-15 Eagle, F-16 Fighting Falcon, F/A-22 Raptor, Northrop YF-23, F-117 Nighthawk, Grumman X-29, and the Sukhoi Su-27. Each plane has its own unique characteristics; these are speed, agility, durability, and stealth, the latter determining how much enemy fire the player attracts. If the player is shot down, whichever plane they were flying is lost and no longer available. If the player runs out of planes, the game is over.
The game also featured multiplayer capabilities, either playing online or head-to-head on the same console in a split screen mode.
- Grand Canyon
- Washington, D.C.
- New York City
- Oahu, Hawaii
- Las Vegas
- Area 51
- This game was originally rated "T" for Teen by the ESRB. It was edited so it can be re-rated "KA" for Kids and Adults (later "E" for Everyone) for its final release.
- Some of the enemy aircraft are based on those from the movie, but the game also adds many new alien ships.
- Only the underside of the City Destroyers is ever seen in the ingame levels.
- The Angry Video Game Nerd reviewed this game during Episode 29 of The Angry Video Game Nerd, created by James Rolfe for Cinemassacre.
Independence Day received mostly negative reviews. GameSpot complimented the game's playability, but said it was soured by the repetitive objectives: "...each new challenge is roughly the same as the previous... you fly around, use your radar to locate your targets, lock on, and destroy them with your heat seeking missiles. Each new level brings a sense of deja vu that can make the Eiffel Tower level feel the same as the Grand Canyon [level]." IGN was far more harsh, claiming "grainy and undefined" graphics and unrealistic physics.