EDF 5 - Wing Diver
A Wing Diver from Earth Defense Force 5 SANDLOT


  • "Earth Defense Force 5" is an action game about killing giant bugs and aliens
  • The game is part of a long-running series that started back in 2003
  • Another sequel is set for release in Japan on Aug. 25

"Earth Defense Force 5," the bug-killing, alien-smashing, giant-robot-scrapping arcade game from Japan, reached a major milestone earlier this week.

"Earth Defense Force 5" was first released in Japan for the PS4 in 2017 and later again on Steam in 2019. Its total shipments and digital sales have reached over 1 million copies sold, according to Gematsu.

This is an impressive feat for a 5-year-old, non-live service game with a somewhat cult-like following.

EDF 5 - Air Raider
Beat back alien invaders with overwhelming firepower in Earth Defense Force 5 SANDLOT

"Earth Defense Force 5" is one of those games that many players tend to overlook because of its outdated graphics. However, beyond the visual side of things lies a fun and absurdly chaotic third-person shooter that's all about kicking alien invaders out of the planet.

Players drop into fully-destructible warzones as part of the eponymous EDF, a military organization that's tasked with defending the Earth from hostile extraterrestrials. The organization boasts highly advanced technology like satellite lasers, mechanized infantry, heavily-armed vehicles and 50-meter-tall, anti-Kaiju robots.

There are over 800 weapons to choose from, all of which are distributed among the four available player classes: Ranger, Air Raider, Fencer and Wing Diver.

Each of these classes has unique strengths. The Wing Diver, for example, uses only high-tech laser and plasma-based weapons, and they can use jetpacks to fly over the battlefield. Meanwhile, the Fencer's power armor can be equipped with hammers, swords, 150mm artillery guns, miniguns and other weapons of mass destruction.

The gameplay itself is straightforward. Players are tasked with eliminating oversized threats such as bus-sized ants, giant spiders, mechs, toad people and more. It is essentially a horde shooter where players are always outnumbered but never outgunned.

There is precious little in the game in terms of artistic value and its developers, Sandlot, has fully embraced the silliness, absurdity and extravagance of entertainment tropes in Japan. Call in a big mech and punch a giant lizard, or go on foot with fellow soldiers and blast bugs away "Starship Troopers"-style.

There is plenty of fun to be had with "Earth Defense Force 5" as long as players aren't afraid of giant spiders. With over 100 missions, four-player online and two-player split-screen co-op and tons of replay value, it's easy to understand why the game reached 1 million in sales.

"Earth Defense Force 5" is part of a long-running series that started back in 2003. Another sequel is set for release in Japan on Aug. 25.

EDF 5 - Kaiju
Fight kaiju in an enormous robot battle mech in Earth Defense Force 5 SANDLOT