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Slash and Burn

by Kavish Chetty / 12.05.2009

It’s difficult to keep a stiff upper lip when one’s childhood heroes are being exhumed from their peaceful slumbers and caricatured at the movies year in, year out. It’s even more difficult to bat off the raging froth around your lips and keep calm when you hear another videogame/film tie-in announced – usually by another decadent executive, rubbing his palms together, with dollar signs propping up his eyelids. It came as a complete surprise to me, then, that Wolverine, the videogame cash-in, isn’t all that bad. It’s passable, it’s enjoyable – it’s a far cry from being essential playing; but it’s not frothy-mouthed, follicle-injuring ‘bad’ as these things usually are.

The developers have clearly been much inspired by console-stalwart series God of War and Devil May Cry. From the third-person, the player is given access to a series of light attacks, heavy attacks and grabs (each mapped to a single button) with which to utterly deracinate, tear apart, slice down the centre, impale, and otherwise widow-make his way from start to finish. Wolverine, animated rather nicely, and brought to life by a series of grunts and growls voiced by Hugh Jackman himself, traverses all the locations of the film (the game exploring the background of the Wolverine mythos, detailing the origins of his birth, his formative years in rural Canada and his eventual recruitment into William Stryker’s Weapon X programme), and a few others besides. To get from A to B, you’ll have to rely on Logan’s heightened feral senses to detect traps, solve puzzles, and search for weak spots in opponents, allowing you to chain together some eye-squinting combos with ease.

It all gets rather repetitive, as these things do, and is not really a game to write home to brother about. You’ll most likely buy this as a longsuffering fan of the sideburn-wearing, all-American mutant. And in that case, you’ve come to the right place, bub.

Consoles: PS3 and X-Box 360

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