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X-Men: The Official Game

Score: 55%
ESRB: Everyone 10+
Publisher: Activision
Developer: WayForward
Media: Cartridge/1
Players: 1
Genre: Action/ Themed

Graphics & Sound:

X-Men: The Official Game's graphics are okay for a GBA title. They aren't the best I've seen on the portable system, but they aren't the worst either.

The main characters are recognizable, but the common grunt enemies look like ... well, generic grunt enemies and don't really add anything visually to the game. Each location has its own floor, wall and platform style with some generic machinery or environment in the background that seems to repeat itself every few screens (like an old "Tom and Jerry" chase scene), but this isn't too unexpected for a 2D GBA side-scroller.

As for the game's sound -- well, there is little to talk about here. The music was low-key and didn't really leave an impression one way or the other and the various bangs, bams and booms of the combat sound effects did their job, but again weren't really impressive.


X-Men: The Official Game takes place between the final two films and acts as a bridge between the events at Alkali Lake in the second movie to the events at Alkali Lake at the beginning of the third movie. So where does this game take place? Why, Alkali Lake, of course!

Wolverine, Colossus, Iceman and Nightcrawler travel back to the place of Jean Grey's death in order to look for the stolen Cerebro components that Colonel Stryker used in the second "X-Men" movie. The band of mutants quickly discover that the facility is not as dead as they once believed as the workers start preparing the damaged base and try to bring it back to running condition. So now, the four mutants will go through level after level of defeating grunts and mutants alike in order to stop the facility once and for all, as well as retrieve the missing Cerebro parts.

As you fight through the factory, you will meet up with villians like Pyro and Sabertooth, and typically you will be forced to play as only one or two characters in these circumstances. This is to allow for some of the more classic battles like Wolverine versus Sabertooth or Iceman versus Pyro, but for the most part, all four of the characters are at your disposal.

Since you are playing as all four X-Men, you can switch between them at will in order to use each one's special abilities. At least that is the theory, and while each one does have some uniqueness to them and you can switch between each character, the characters themselves are just too similar to really make any difference.

Levels are straightforward and don't really require a lot of effort to get past. You run from one side of the screen to the other killing anything that moves until you find the exit, then you do it again. The worst part of this game is that there is nothing to break up the monotony.


X-Men: The Official Game isn't difficult ... I mean at all. The game is short and easy to go through. You might lose a life every now and then, like when you go up against a boss, but in general, you should be able to work your way through this game without any problems in very little time.

The enemy A.I. is very basic and typically involves running up to you and attacking until one of you is dead, unless they have a projectile weapon. Then they will just stand still and shoot at you. Even the aforementioned bosses are basic in their attack "strategy" and the only thing that really separates them from the rest of the minions is the health bar that appears on the screen.

Game Mechanics:

X-Men: The Official Game's control scheme supposedly allows you to use a wide variety of attacks based on which button you push on the D-Pad when you hit the attack button (B). But ultimately, you will just end up mashing the B button as you plow through the many enemies that will come after you. You can also use your character's special ability by pressing both B and A. For Colossus and Wolverine, this means a stronger attack, while Iceman can throw shards and Nightcrawler can (of course) teleport. Swapping between X-Men is done with the L button while the R button is for your character's charge attack. In the end, the characters are fairly interchangeable and the little details like Wolverine's Healing Factor and Nightcrawler's teleportation don't really lend you to liking one character over another, so you can just look at them as four lives before you get a game over (if you get a game over).

Quite frankly, with the game's repetitive gameplay, it just isn't worth the purchase. I've heard some people say that they want to play the game just so they can see why Nightcrawler isn't in the movie -- but it really isn't worth it. If you are desperate to find out, then look it up in some forums or, if you really want to pay the money, rent one of the games. But X-Men: The Official Game on GBA just isn't worth the effort.

-J.R. Nip, GameVortex Communications
AKA Chris Meyer

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