X-Men Origins: Wolverine - Cheat Happens Game Review
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X-Men Origins: Wolverine
PC, Playstation 3, XBox 360

Reviewed on: PC

Developer:
Raven Software
Publisher: Activision
Rated: "M" for Mature



CHEATfactor Game Review
by Joe Sinicki

   
   
   
Audio/Visual: 6
Gameplay: 5
Lasting Appeal: 5
Overall: 6
   
CHEATfactor: 6
   
     

Throughout the years, we’ve seen quite a few different versions of Wolverine. There’s the grizzled loner from the comics and early cartoons, the hesitant mentor from the films and oddly enough – the leader as seen in the new Wolverine and the X-men cartoon. Thankfully, for his first starting role, Raven Software (mostly known for the X-men Legends games) chose to showcase a different Wolverine – the blood thirsty violent mutant who wouldn’t hesitate to tear an enemy limb from bloody limb. Sadly, the bloody novelty isn’t quite enough to save Logan’s first starring role, as repetitive gameplay, a thin presentation and one hell of a twisted (and not in the good way) plot make the title a bit messy.

As you’d probably expect, X-men Origins follows, but expands upon the story from this summer’s movie – explaining Wolverine’s origins.  Though the first two acts or so are tolerable, things start to get weird shortly after. The game flips between the present and past with little to no warning, leaving gamers to try to try to figure out what they just went through.  Popular characters like Gambit make brief cameos, only they’re never to be heard from again, and what little they do seems to convolute the story that much more. By game’s end you’re left with a ton of plot holes, and very few answers.

"...you’re going to encounter some of the lamest enemies you’ve seen in a long time."

 
   

Another issue is the game’s creativity. Now, don’t get me wrong, the movie was far from a masterpiece itself, but at least it made sense and the characters were entertaining. In Origin's original levels, you’re going to encounter some of the lamest enemies you’ve seen in a long time. Thrill at the giant rock monster that looks like it came right out of the 80’s! That not enough for you? How about a guy who’s seemingly burned 95% of his body and calls himself the machete master? Seriously? That’s the best you could come up with? At least get Stan Lee to come up with some lame villain names to make it interesting! How about the Machete Mongol?

But let’s be honest with each other. You’re not playing X-men Origins: Wolverine for the story. You’re playing for the Snikt snikt. You’re playing to rip into some baddies with the most badass set of adamantium claws in the Marvel universe. And rip they do.  Read: Origin’s is not a game for kids; it’s a violently fun title that shows Wolverine as he was meant to be – a homicidal maniac. You’re going to plunge your claws deep into chest cavities, slice off limbs, and even use a helicopter’s blades to decapitate pilots. There’s even environmental kills ala last generation’s Punisher game.  The team at raven software did a great job making combat fun, and actually making you feel like you’re Wolverine.

The game has an incredible sense of production as well, and it adds to the allure of the combat system. Enter an area and the camera begins to pull back, sweeping dramatically out far enough for you to see your enemies and plan a strategy. The opening levels do a fantastic job of teaching you your basic move sets. One of the highlights is being able to lunge (a better word, given the character, would have to be pounce) on an enemy that’s far off. The animation of landing on the poor sap and digging your claws into him is quite gruesome yet you won’t be able to turn away.

Everything sounds great so far right? Not so fast.  Though Origin’s combat is fun and gruesome, it’s also incredibly thin and repetitive. Remember games like Double Dragon, Final Fight and Battletoads -- and how you would fight a seemingly endless wave of identical looking enemies? Hope you liked it, as you’re going to relive it here.  Seriously, how many guerilla soldiers can occupy one island? Now, this is a Marvel Comic game, so it’s not out of the question that there’s a cloning machine hid somewhere, but what can be said when a game’s strongest aspect gets so old so fast?

"...you will be using skill points to unlock new moves and abilities throughout the game."

 
   

To its credit, Raven Software made a valiant attempt at making the game deeper by implementing a crude version of X-men Legends’ upgrade system. While you won’t be unlocking many items or weapons; you will be using skill points to unlock new moves and abilities throughout the game. It’s not as deep as in previous games, but it’s a welcomed addition.

Another great aspect of Origins is the level of fan service it delivers. Wolverine is one of the most popular comic book characters of all time – and the game embraces that. You can collect different mementos from Wolverine’s past, which also leads to unlocking new costumes to unleash your berserker rage in (including everything from Wolvie’s X-Force costume to his 1990’s lemon-yellow getup).

Graphically, Origin’s is a mixed bag. At times, the textures and environments look detailed and great, but at other times, they look unfinished and jaggy.  It should be noted that character models, especially that of Wolverine himself look like a fantastic mix of comic book art and real life. It’s really cool to just sit and watch the game’s dynamic regenerative health system, where scars, broken bones and gashes appearing on Wolverine’s body heal right before your eyes.

Let’s face it, X-men Origins: Wolverine was supposed to suck. You know it, I know it. It’s a licensed game. Surprise!  It doesn’t.  That’s not to say it doesn’t have its fair share of problems though. It’s repetitive and the story is just plain awful, but you can’t deny how fun it is to finally be able to control Logan like he was meant to be. 

 

CHEATfactor

CHEATS USED: Unlimited Health, Rage, 999.999 XP, 999 Skill Points


Let’s face it – you’re playing X-men Origins: Wolverine for the combat and little else. The best moments of said combat are when you use your rage meter and get to go all out. Using Cheat happens trainer you can unlock unlimited rage and show those waves of identical enemies just what pain is. For added fun be sure to use the unlimited health and super speed mode.

Another key asset of the trainer is the ability to start off with 999.999 XP and 999 skill points. Being able to instantly unlock every ability and move makes the combat that much more fun and should be experienced by everyone who plays it.


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