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X-Men: The Official Game

Score: 56%
ESRB: Teen
Publisher: Activision
Developer: Z-Axis
Media: CD/1
Players: 1
Genre: Action

Graphics & Sound:

Well, after seeing X-Men: The Last Stand, I would have to admit that I liked the game better. This alone however, was not enough to rise X-Men: The Official Game in to gaming greatness. Prepare your thumbs for yet another button-mashing experience.

There is nothing too uncanny about the graphics. They were par to the current standards for Xbox. The environments were relatively sparse with a few items that were disposible. Even these items had little more than three or four pieces that flew apart and then magically disappeared. There were not many particle effects either, making Nightcrawler's "POOFS!" look more like "PIFFS!" One thing I did absolutely love was the comic book style of all of the cut scenes. I look forward to them doing this effect again, as I actually found myself completing levels just to see the story done in this format.

The sound and feel could not have been pulled off unless they had the original actors playing their parts. Hugh Jackman, Alan Cumming, Shawn Ashmore, Patrick Stewart as well as many others contributed their voices and likenesses to the sound acting and story of this game. After that, there isn't much to speak of in the aspect of sound. The intro music is there, of course, as well as the appropriate swings of Wolverine's claws and Nightcrawler's teleports.


X-Men: The Official Game is pretty straightforward. You use the various powers of the characters you play to progress through the story. You can only play as Wolverine, Iceman, and Nightcrawler. The game is severely linear with each level having been very obviously built for each of the characters you are forced to use in each part of the story. You can collect Cerebro Fles and pieces of Sentinel Technologies to unlock extra content. Depending on the difficulty level you choose, there are "mutations" you are rewarded for completing each level. You use these mutations to permanently boost the attributes of the characters you are playing. You can increase strength, blocking, health, and many other attributes to help you survive the trials ahead. With slight character progression and a decent story, there is some redeemable quality. But with repetition and continuous, arduous button-mashing, there is little else for this game to offer.


X-Men: The Official Game can have its moments of extreme difficulty. Unfortunately, sometimes this difficulty stems from fighting the oldest enemy of action games, Dr. Bad Camera Control. The main bosses were actually easier to defeat than the hordes of ignorant A.I. computer enemies that come after you. You can get pinned in between them quickly and be beaten down instantly. Unfortunately, you find yourself running around, waiting to heal and then picking them off one at a time when you can.

Game Mechanics:

X-Men: The Official Game has all of the bad camera angles you can handle. This, mixed with the monotony of seeing the same limited animations all the time, equals a sub-par gaming experience. I liked the mission pathing and ability to replay levels for more unlocks. If you choose to play on path of the storyline, you can't jump to the other until you finish the story path you're on. Not being able to change the various control schemes, especially when it comes to camera control for Nightcrawler, is nearly unforgivable. As Wolverine, you get to unleash the claws a little, but his movements are very slow to me, and getting the character in position is usually impeded by the camera. Skating around as Iceman was by far the most polished control scheme of the three. It was very intuitive and easy to control.

As the movies claim to be coming to an end (Editor's Note: Shame on you, Wumpus - you obviously didn't wait until the credits finished rolling! ~Psibabe), I hope, of course, that they continue to make games based on the intellectual property of X-Men. And, as I mentioned, I would love to see more of the comic book feel of the game. This game needs more spit and polish on control in order to make it a more viable X-Men game.

-WUMPUSJAGGER, GameVortex Communications
AKA Bryon Lloyd

Sony PlayStation Portable Field Commander Windows Dungeons and Dragons Online: Stormreach

Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated