The Invincible title image

The Invincible Review

Game: The Invincible
Genre: Action, Adventure, Casual
System: Steam (Windows, MacOS)
Developer | Publisher: Starward Industries | 11 bit studios
Controller Support: Yes
Price: US $31.49 | UK £24.99 | EU € 29,99
Release Date: November 6th, 2023

Review code used, with many thanks to Keymailer.

The Invincible is a 2023 mystery game developed by Starward Industries and released by 11 bit studios.

The Premise The Invincible

The Invincible is a masterfully crafted prequel mystery adventure to Stanislaw Lem’s 1964 iconic novel The Invincible. We play as Yasna, an astrobiologist sent to the surface of a desolate planet, Regis III, to look for her teammates and the planet’s secrets.

The Invincible It's a start.
It’s a start.

A Perilous Journey

In The Invincible, the gameplay is linear, with brief, primarily non-playable flashbacks in the first half of the game while Yasna is still recovering from her memory loss. We have free movement of the camera and movement with WASD. There is no jump button, and I didn’t see any indications of being able to fall.

Climbing up and down while traversing the landscape is done with the left mouse button at marked places. Trying to be in the perfect position to click on a ledge or an object is annoying. By the end of the game, I got used to it, but the movements were still restricted, which slightly broke up the immersion.

The game is not open-world; we have invisible walls going around the areas of interest, and we can’t go back the same way. I don’t mind it when, instead of going back the same way, the developers have put a handy shortcut in front of me.

The map was a bit troublesome to read, and I am ashamed to admit how long it took me to realize that if you hover with the mouse over a landmark, the name will pop up over the map. But even with that, I’ve seen better designs of maps in games.

The Invincible A Dangerous Beauty
A Dangerous Beauty

A Dangerous Beauty

The Invincible is a stunning game, simply put. The main character here is Regis III. Regis III also offers a magnificent landscape with reds, yellows, and deep blue skies with visible celestial objects for a lonely desert planet. The feeling of eariness and vastness is helped by the minimalistic electronic soundtrack, which can be slow and mournful in emotional moments and delightfully quirky in moments of undeserving hope.

The attention to detail is ridiculous, from the animations for the climbing gear to the strange metal constructions found all over the planet. The weather is as unwelcoming and unpredictable as the planet itself- we see sandstorms and rainstorms accompanied by the appropriate sound effects. When Yasna moves around, we can see her steps in the sand, and that’s not just some cosmetic either – in one instance, we’ll need to look for those footsteps in the sand.

The Invincible With a scanner in hand.
With a scanner in hand.

The technologies are kept in style with the source material and the 1950s future ideas. We have rounded rovers, soviet style interiors, and even photographic slides on some highly technological probes. All in all, the style is clear retro-futurism. Even the tools Yasna uses are retro-futuristic, but all things considered beneficial.

An interesting idea is the comic book panels we unlock while playing. They form a comic book with the whole story, giving us more insight into some characters. At the same time, each comic book panel can serve as a loading screen, depending on where you stopped playing. So, they can also bring you up to speed storyline-wise.

The story itself, with its moral ideas that not everything in the world is there to be understood and poked around by humans, is very much in line with Lem’s original writings. I read The Invincible quite a while ago, and after this game, I can see myself rereading it.

The Invincible A strange world.
A Strange World.

A Cinematic Adventure

At this point, I must admit that cinematic-style games attract me. The Invincible is no exception. It is so cinematic that some people might argue it’s more like a cinematic and very interactive visual novel or walking simulator than an adventure game. Such an idea is not without merit; for one, there are few puzzles here.

Our decisions aren’t that many or essential either. The most obvious argument would be some instances when Yasna stands there, looks around, and waits, a flashback scene, an interrogation scene, and so on. Because there are no cut scenes, such scenes seem restrictive.

At the same time, even cut scenes and dialogues have no skip option. That, coupled with the lack of manual save, means that, for example, to get all the endings, you’ll need to replay large portions of the game. Still, the game is beautiful enough to make it worthwhile.

The Invincible Embrace the infinite.
Embrace the Infinite.

Some Side Notes

The Invincible has the standard audio and controls and extensive video and accessibility settings. Besides that, in the main menu under Comics, you can see the panels you’ve unlocked while playing. The Invincible has Steam achievements And trading cards and is Steamdeck-verified.


When I started The Invincible and saw the title screen with the note that the game is based on Stanislaw Lem’s iconic novel, I knew I was in for something unique. I was not disappointed. The Invincible is easily one of the best sci-fi games I’ve played in recent years. It’s engaging, thought-provoking, and beautiful. It’s the type of game that makes you take note of the studio enough to consider preordering their next game sight unseen. 

Final Verdict: Two Thumbs Up: Two thumbs up

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