A game all about hyper-violence and with an art style resembling Frank Miller's Sin City? Sign us up. Also, how is this a Wii exclusive?
- Worth The Time?Hell yes
- Things LovedIncredibly unique and gorgeous art style, great gameplay, lots of fun to play. So violent it makes Gears of War look like My Little Pony
- Things HatedThe narrative is a bit lacking and the gameplay is shallow.
- RecommendationBuy it, no need to say anymore.
- Name: MadWorld
- Genre: Beat 'Em Up
- Players: 1
- Multiplayer: None
- Platforms: Wii
- Developer: Platinum Games
- Publisher: Sega
- Price: R500
- Reviewed On: Wii
OMG!!!, Holy S#*t, are just a few phrases that comes to mind upon entering the first level of Platinum games epic MadWorld. The sheer brutality coupled with the unique visual style of MadWorld is sure to attract the hardest of hardcore players but does MadWorld succeed living up to the hype surrounding it. First a little history about the developer Platinum games, which has former Clover Studios members in its team.
Previously Clover released the supremely enjoyable Viewtiful Joe series on Gamecube and PS2, Okami and God Hand. All three of these games had a unique visual style coupled with excellent and new concepts which were attempting to revitilize their respective genres in video games. All of the above titles succeeded. In particular Viewtiful Joe reinvented the 2-D beat em up genre and is a game which I still maintain today as one of the best games ever produced. So with such a pedigree behind them MadWorld has alot to live up to, and I can gladly confirm that Platinum games has produced a real gem of a game.
The plot of Madworld is simple, you are Jack, a musclebound cigar smoking wisecracking chainsaw wielding mean mutha-f#***r and have just been dropped off in Varrigan City. This is no ordinary city, it is a city that has been converted into some sort of sick and twisted game show where the inhabitants have started killing each other in order to obtain a vaccine since they will spontaneously explode because they have infected with a virus. Enter Jack, whom within seconds gains a sponser due to his stylistic and gory kill of one of the ranked killers in the city. So basically Jack has this crazy game called Death Watch which takes place in Varrigan city. The rules of the game are simple, kill to survive. To say anymore would ruin an excellent story which has alot of interesting plot twists and is entertaining enough to keep you engaged throughout the game.
Now the really fantastic concept about about MadWorld is the simple pick up and play style which has enough depth to keep one from coming back for just 5 more minutes which then extends into 30 minutes and then you look at the clock and 2 hours have elapsed. The controls are very precise with Jack’s movement handled with the control stick on the nunchuk. Jack’s jumps and camera control is also mapped to the Z and C buttons respectively. The wii remote is used in a variety of interesting ways and it all feels very good and intuitive. You want to smash someones head with a garbage can, simple grab the garbage can by pressing and holding the A button, walk up to the enemy and then motion dump the garbage all over his dirty mug.
Platinum have cleverly implemented a chainsaw gauge which depletes when Jack uses his favourite instrument of death, I really liked this as this actually encourages one not to entirely rely on the chainsaw and also prevents cheap players from spamming the chainsaw. A typical level consists of Jack killing everything in sight and gaining the highest possible score. While Jack’s score is rising Blood bath Challenges, new weapons and the ranked boss battle gets unlocked. So in effect the player is never forced to do anything he does not want to do. This is what is so brilliant about MadWorld. It is so entertaining with a great selection of enemies, I actually think they enjoy being impaled every now and again, that the player never gets bored or lost and does not know what to do. It all flows seamlessly.
The art-style of MadWorld is different and takes 2 or 3 plays to adjust your eyes to. All I will say is just wait till your eyes adjust, then the real genius of the art style will visually delight you. Then again I had never doubted the style of this game, Clovers Studios err Platinum games know what they are doing. I must admit prior to the games release I had secretly hoped for a full color unlockable mode, now after getting my hands on the finished product I would not want it any other way. All kills are generously accompanied by copious amounts of blood which is displayed in an awesome crimson. Other actions and there are plenty of them are displayed in comic book style yellow cut outs. Madworld displays nicely on a LCD TV filling the entire screen with no stretching off the image, however displays in widescreen on CRT televisions. The game runs very smoothly with no frame rate issues. The audio in MadWorld is superb. It sports a hip hop soundtrack which really fits in nicely with the game. It also has running commentary which is rather harsh at times and utterly ridiculous. Sometimes you won’t believe what you’re hearing. The Pal release has 5 languages, my personal favorite is French, it sounds absolutely hilarious.
At the end of the day MadWorld delivers what was expected. It provides an adult orientated experience on Wii with enough depth to keep core gamers playing until The Conduit arrives in June. Sega really deserves a pat its back for backing up Platinum games and publishing this title. I really enjoyed MadWorld, and you will too. It has enough shock value to keep you coming back for more. This is strictly a title not for the faint hearted and kids. So the next time your friends your mates are over and start with the Marcus Fenix stories, you can just smile to yourself knowing that Jack will obliterate M.F. and then rip his heart out and squash it to little pieces.