Replay Value: 8.8
When last year's Twisted Metal 3 hit the shelves, fans were very upset at what they witnessed. Basically what we got from 989 was a super washed down version of the very first Twisted Metal. What the game featured was, horrible graphics, meager level design, an awfully slow multi player option, and underprivileged car physics. After some wait, around May, Twisted Metal 4 was announced. 989 promised better, more improved physics, great multi player, huge level design, a story, and as well as more depth. Has 989 Studios' word been kept, or is this another Twisted Metal 3?
Visually Twisted Metal 4 is breathtaking. I'll start with the explosions, when seeing something explode you just can't help but to awe. The detail in the explosions are miraculous. For instance Calypso's special "Nuke" is pretty self explanatory, and when you see that thing explode, prepare for some of the coolest looking special effects you have ever seen your PSX do. During an enormous explosion like Calypso's "Nuke" attack, I guarantee you won't see a single frame drop in the single player or two player death match. Now let's discuss the level design. One of the frequent complaints about TW3 is that it had an insufficient amount of space to battle on. The level design was pretty weak, and it seemed that 989 didn't put much time into developing larger arenas. Well now things have changed, 989 Studios has got their act together and built many urbanized arenas so huge it would take you days to find out all of their secrets. Besides being huge, the arenas are multi level, so there is even more freedom, and that can also be used for tactical strategy. And finally I want to mention that car detail is phenomenal, each car moves fluidly and looks very crisp.
What made TW 3 so ghastly is that the game had an awkward physics engine, making control a very big issue. Scraping the wall can already result into flipping over and over while the opponent is thrashing you miserably. Well that has been changed, it seems like 989 scraped the old TW 3 physics engine and built a new one. Although you still roll over, you always land on your wheels, and you still keep going. But some might be wondering what if you scrape a wall, will you begin to flip, the answer is no. TW 4 is much more improved in terms of variety. The first thing that really impressed me is that you have the ability to change the appearance of your game. You can go to the options and tune the graphics under the Video Options. 989 Studios puts the performance under your control by giving you the option to change the priorities between graphical and gameplay performance. In my opinion that's an excellent idea, those who don't care much for graphics will set the option to gameplay, while others who know that graphics aren't everything will select gameplay over graphics. I also don't want to forget mentioning that TW 4 has a new feature, a create a car feature. Although it isn't very deep, it still proves to be very good. TW 4 also boasts an array of kick ass weapons that might very well be the most innovative and yet best weapons any shooter has to date. And a final note, TW 4's 4 player action is very choppy (if set on gameplay), and is more smoother on graphics mode (surprisingly), although not a lot more smoother. But still 989 gives a good effort into pulling off a pretty good multi player mode. If you loved Twisted Metal 2, you will die for Twisted Metal 4.
Like the black sheep (Twisted Metal 3) Twisted Metal 4 has a first-rate soundtrack featuring Rob Zombie (who also stars in the game as a playable character), Cirrus, Cypress Hill, Skold, Ghoulspoon and One Minute Silence. The sound effects are exceptional as well, and if you have a powerful stereo system, you might want to hook your PSX up to it, and make your neighbors think it's World War 3.
Although the game doesn't suffer from atrocious controls like last years version, TW 4 does have one, it's camera moves way to fast for the eye to keep up with. You might find your self to be dizzy, but you do get used to it in a matter of time. I should also state that the dual shock is very nicely supported, when you use your machine guns, you fell the controller rumbling, and when you get caught in an explosion you can almost feel the heat.
Concluding this review, I can say that Twisted Metal 4 is far more than what I expected it to be. The game should last you quite a while, due to it's variety of tracks, cars, create a car option, the ability to finally change graphical speed, and just for being Twisted Metal. Forget anything bad that has been associated with the word 989 Studios, because Twisted Metal 4 makes up for everything 989 screwed up. Now, if only I knew which Playstation the next Twisted Metal will be out for.