As a huge comic nerd, I go after all the comic games I can. And recently, X-men Destiny has come out. A friend of mine let me hold on to it, and I gotta say I am underwhelmed.
X-men have a long history in games, and not all of it good. X-men had a really bad run on Nintendo, but Capcom really hit some home runs with not only X-men the fighting game, and the Super Nintendo Rise of the Apocalypse game were both great games. And Konami did a great job with the beat em up game as well.
But with the action based X-men games lately, there’s only been a few gems. Wolverine: Origin’s, which was much better than the movie, out shinned the X3 game tie in. Other than the PS2 action/RPGs, there hasn’t been that much going on. Now, X-men Destiny is out, and hopefully it’s supposed to get them back on track.
X-men Destiny, has some pedigree behind it. Silicon Knights, the guys behind the great Eternal Darkness game, are behind this. Unfortunately, it’s not nearly as good as Eternal Darkness. Not even close.
The problem with this game, is that it seems to be missing a lot of polish. The story of the game is not bad. Written by X-men Legacy’s Mike Carey, it has a LOT of comic references. A few fan favorites are in it, like Pixie and Surge. So, the story, isn’t bad, but at the same time, it’s nothing special.
When you first start up the game, you’ll notice something pretty much right off the bat: This game is not pretty. In cut scenes are rendered with the in-game graphics, not only that, the in game graphics aren’t very good. They do the job, but it just seems like the character models are really rough. Some just don’t look good, some look alright to not so bad.
Gameplay is pretty simple. Pretty much press X, X, X, then Y. Over and over again. Occasionally you’ll get a choice, but the only time it makes a difference, is when you pick your powers. This is honestly, pretty nice, as it does give some variety in game play. Sometimes, it could honestly be a chard choice too. So, it gives you a new type of attack, which makes it a bit different, other than that, game play is pretty much just routine.
It’s a very typical game. Get to a spot, a wave of enemies comes out. You beat them up. You go to the next check point. More enemies come. Typical classic game sense, but, the problem with this, is that it’s 2011 and a sixty dollar game. Of course enemies get bigger, or stronger. But, it never truly grows. Your combo’s don’t ever get really beyond basic, and the enemies never really change up what they really do. They’ll change skins, but again, it’s pretty much the same.
The game also says there’s a big “moral” choice. You have to chose between Brotherhood or X-men missions, but as I’ve seen this game played through a few times, there is little to no difference between them. There’s not a conflicting moral choice, it’s usually “Gambit wants you to do this, but Colossus wants you to do this. Pick one. They’re both ok”
Very few dialogue choices lead to much different things. So really, there’s a false sense of Morality in this game. Most games, there’s a “good” and “bad” choice, but it’s really just “We’re gonna do the same thing, but SLIGHTLY different”. It doesn’t really lead to anything that makes a second play through even worth it.
The X-men cameos are rather nice. It’s cool to see Wolverine come out and fight along your side, but often times they almost seem practically useless. You can take out enemies much easier than most support guys can do it for you. With very little effort.
Now, I’m not TOO far in the game, but it’s hard for me to want to keep going. Especially with what I’ve seen in the game. Boss fights are decent. Sometimes they throw a little curve ball in. Getting a force field, or regaining health, or the like, throws a little mixup into the game.
Overall, the game’s writing is good, with some nice X-men cameos and easter eggs. But is really let down by uninspired gameplay and a false moral choice system. Power customization is nice, but other than that, nothing is spectacular in the game. This game gets a 6 out of 10.