PS3 Reviews: X-Men: Destiny Review

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X-Men: Destiny Review

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Graphics:

 

3.9

Gameplay:

 

4.5

Sound:

 

4.8

Control:

 

4.1

Replay Value:

 

4.0

Overall Rating:       4.3

 

 

Online Gameplay:

Not Rated

Publisher:

Activision

Developer:

Silicon Knights

Number Of Players:

1

Genre:

Action

The X-Men have enjoyed quite the run of success over the past decade or so. Multiple blockbuster movies and even a few well-done, entertaining games have put the mutants in the public’s good graces. But X-Men: Destiny is a big step backwards and even the most die-hard fans will be disappointed in the new action game from Silicon Knights. It looks terrible, the control is poor, the stories (there are three characters, each with different back stories) are lame and undeveloped, and the button-mashing repetition gets tiresome really fast.

The less than mediocre graphical presentation actually surprised me. I hadn’t anticipated something so bad; there are downloadable titles designed for the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade that look far better. There’s minimal detail, the inconsistencies are obvious and glaring, the animations and effects are both boring and low-quality, and the environments are about as generic as one can possibly imagine. A few decent combat effects tied to special powers can’t save this one; it looks like a slightly refined PS2 game, and that’s not much of an exaggeration.

The sound is a little better thanks to a few average voices, but the soundtrack is almost non-existent (what we do hear redefines the term “run-of-the-mill”) and the effects fall flat. As for those voices, they’re all over the place, as some are actually quite good while others are pathetic. Nothing about this production explodes with the requisite audio impact; it’s as if they wanted to downplay the action for some bizarre reason. What this game needed was a kickin’ soundtrack and crisp, high-impact effects. But unfortunately, we got none of that.

The gameplay is about as straightforward as you would expect. You move around with the left stick, control the camera with the right, jump with X, dodge with Circle, block and parry with the trigger buttons, and unleash your attacks with the Square and Triangle buttons. But within seconds of starting, you’ll notice immediate issues. The camera is too jumpy, the dodge isn’t responsive or reliable, and the powers lack any punch. The enemies are faceless – technically, they’re “Purifiers,” but they’re all basically the same – and the AI is stupid.

Plus, there are major glitches everywhere. One time, my character ran into an invisible wall in the middle of an open area. Another time, an enemy just stood there and watched as I came up and beat the tar out of him. Oh, and let’s not forget the messed up presentation, where the narration and screen prompts pop up late or way early. “20 enemies left!” …oh yeah? Where? Oh, over there. Little too quick on the alert there, champ. Lastly, although there are three very different characters, you won’t form a personal connection with any of them.

The story just doesn’t go anywhere and worse, you won’t even care. The only fun part of the game is unlocking and upgrading new powers by earning experience, and occasionally unleashing a cool barrage on your helpless victims. And although the back stories for those characters are poorly constructed, the distinctness of each fighting style adds some diversity to the game. Also, you select the kind of power you’re going to have when your adventure starts, which presents you with three more options. Not too shabby, I suppose.

The developers further implement choice into your encounters with other characters, usually members of the X-Men or Brotherhood. See, the quest starts with apparent peace between mutants and humans, until someone (apparently Magneto but that isn’t confirmed) crashes the party. All hell breaks loose and your character, previously not a mutant, is suddenly in possession of special powers due to one of several possible occurrences. Along the way, you’ll have multiple opportunities to side with the X-Men or the Brotherhood.

This is a nice addition and should’ve really enhanced the longevity and appeal, but like most everything else in this game, it doesn’t develop. You can do little missions for members of either the good or bad guys, thereby gaining influence in either faction. But these missions couldn’t possibly be blander, and they actually have a negative impact on the flow of the game. Too much meaningless dialogue also puts a crimp in the pacing, and those little breaks do nothing to flesh out the plot. And when the gameplay gets going again, you just mash buttons.

Lastly, the control is just too jerky and erratic. The exaggerated dodge isn’t responsive enough and it doesn’t even work that well, and the climbing is just plain ridiculous. It’s almost worth playing just to see the weirdest pseudo-platforming mechanic out there; it’s not weird in execution (it’s actually really simple), it just looks exceedingly strange. It can be entertaining to push forward and earn your mutant stripes for either faction, but it’s a very ho-hum sort of fun. Chances are, you won’t make it to the end. And that ain’t good, considering the short length of the campaign.

X-Men: Destiny trips and stumbles out of the gate, and never gets going. Way too many problems hold it back; the shortcomings range from control to story to presentation to technical elements, etc, etc, etc. It’s just a really disappointing production and one that isn’t even worth a rent. Most simplistic, button-mashing action games are worth a few bucks on a rainy day, but there are just way too many other cheap - and playable - options out there. Forget about this mess.

The Good: A few very cool mutant powers. Accessible action. Character and power options add some flavor.

The Bad: Horrid graphics. Seriously lacking soundtrack and effects. Loose, ultimately flawed control. Camera is jerky and unreliable. Story is lame and never develops. Technical glitches are obvious. Terrible AI.

The Ugly: “I can’t believe I had to put 4.5 gigs worth of this crap on my hard drive. …coming off now.”

10/5/2011 Ben Dutka

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Comments (21 posts)

Mr Bubbles IGR
Wednesday, October 05, 2011 @ 11:56:36 PM
Reply

wow, think this game has major promise LMAO

Last edited by Mr Bubbles IGR on 10/5/2011 11:59:15 PM

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DazeOfWar
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 12:04:17 AM
Reply

I knew this was going to be crap. A friend of mine really wanted this and didn't believe me that the game was going to suck.

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Beamboom
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 12:39:44 AM
Reply

... And so the tragic story of the Marvel games continues. Hate it.

At least it looks like the new Spider-man game, Edge Of Time, is semi-decent. But semi-decent doesn't cut it at all these days.


Last edited by Beamboom on 10/6/2011 12:41:39 AM

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tridon
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 5:30:40 AM

Spider-Man: Edge of Time does look decent, but after Beenox fooled me with Shattered Dimensions, I think my Spidey days are done. SD had some of the worst controls for a Spidey game ever. Swinging around only caused a headache. You know what'd be great? Neversoft seems to be doing absolutely nothing at Activision right now, why not get them to develop a new Spider-Man game? Their Spidey game on the PS1 is still one of the very best Spidey games to this day!

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Beamboom
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 6:45:46 AM

I actually played Web Of Shadows again just a few weeks ago, and that game got to be my fav Spidey game so far. A Spidey game should be open world.

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___________
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 3:25:17 AM
Reply

OUCH!
sigh, when will we get a decent xmen game?
origins was ok, but it had so many bugs it made fallout 3 look like uncharted 2!
bump bump bump and another one bits the dust!

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Beamboom
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 5:04:49 AM

X-men: Origins II were great! Absolutely loved it on the psp. That and the first Ultimate Alliance. The only two really great Marvel games so far.

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tridon
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 5:28:42 AM

Beamboom, that was X-Men Legends you're thinking of. X-Men: Origins was the Wolverine title that was released two years ago, which was one of my favourite underdogs of the year. God of War with Wolverine? Yes, please. ;)

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Beamboom
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 6:43:19 AM

Dang you are 100% right, Tridon.
But yeah Wolverine were not too bad either, at least amongst Marvel games.

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___________
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 10:34:35 AM

i wish the same guys would do a sequel to origins, it was such a fun game!
just for the love of god dont tie it to a movie license that way they have enough time to develop and clean out all the bugs!
oh, and please for the love of god dont use the UE3!

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Kall555
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 3:47:41 AM
Reply

Yet another comicbook heroes to game adaptation fail. How many of these turds does Marvel have to barf out before they get the hint that these games are nothing more than bargain bin fodder or easy hock money for the pawn shops?

Surely the whiff of 5/10 product is evident by now after all these years? Can they not smell it yet? It's time to un-vice the yard pegs from your conks lads, your games stink. Do something about it or face a well deserved flogging from the critics.

Props for being able to tolerate playing this mess for us & mustering up a review of the crap while us lot are playing quality such as Rage or Dark Souls champ. ;)

Thank god for Batman Arkham, seriously.

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tridon
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 5:26:48 AM
Reply

Geez, I remember the old days when Silicon Knights were a force to be reckoned with on the Gamecube. These days, they just seem like a joke.

Activision are such a bunch of morons. Why would you put all of your major developers on one series instead of spreading them out amongst all your big franchises? Or here's a better idea: Get Raven Software off of yet another CoD game and let's get rolling on some X-Men Legends III!

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Highlander
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 10:37:32 AM

The only thing I remember them (silicon knights) for is suing Epic over the perceive inadequacies of the Unreal Engine 3. Their claims being that epic held back specific engine components and/or enhancements on the 360 that affected Silicon Knights and others. They also alledged that epic broke their commitments to deliver a working PS3 engine to 3rd parties such as Silicon Knights. This apparentlty hurt devs looking to release games on PS3 based on the Unreal Engine 3.

They actually seem to have a case because they point out that although Too Human sucked hard - in specific technical ways, Gears of war released on the 'same' engine did not, they point to Unreal Tournament on PS3 releasing, despite the unreal engine sold/licensed to 3rd parties not working sufficiently to complete development of PS3 projects using it.

LOL! I can't believe I remembered all that.

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clockwyzebkny
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 9:47:18 AM
Reply

Yea the Wolverine game was awesome I hope for a sequel. As for Destiny, I had a feeling it was gonna suck.

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Highlander
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 9:53:15 AM
Reply

Yikes! Ah well, a broken game gets the review it deserves.

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duomaxwell007
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 10:22:05 AM
Reply

lol theres only ever been one game i delete off my hard drive immediately after finishing (like literally as soon as the credits finished rolling i deleted it) star ocean 4...

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Highlander
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 10:30:26 AM

That's understandable. I mean, I actually like the game, but it's extremely infuriating. WKC1/2 sucks way, way more time, but there is some reward for the time. SO4 sucked time without a reward. Of course, I still have my game saves, so I can go back if I choose... There were so many 'almosts' with that game. It could have been *so* much better than it was.

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duomaxwell007
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 12:27:17 PM

i had high hopes for SO4 being that i loved SO3, (never got into SO2 as the graphics were terrible compared to what I was used too in PS1 rpgs, with my first PS1 RPG being FF7) and i was actually mad that SO4 was an xbox exclusive only to be excited that it was finally coming to PS3... then I played it.. and it was horrible... at least part 5 seems to be promising and is said to have online play similar to that on WKC... that alone makes it a day 1 purchase for me.

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Highlander
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 2:05:20 PM

Regarding SO5;

That would indeed be much more appealing and interesting to me. But there had better not be any Microsoft exclusivity shenanigans this time.

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coverton341
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 10:42:15 AM
Reply

So the company that made the asstastic Too Human has put out another stinker of a game...colour me not surprised.

What was the last good game they had, Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem? When did it come out, ten years ago?

Of all the good publishers and development houses going under and this one stays afloat.

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Ogibillm
Thursday, October 06, 2011 @ 10:49:58 AM
Reply

yeah. bought this game. was really looking forward to it...

i didn't realize it was an endless series of "defeat XX enemies!" challenge (and i'm using the word loosely, i don't believe i died even once while playing)rooms with little to no variation in play. I mean sure, you got to upgrade your powers... but since i hardly used the special abilities i'm not sure what the point was.

so extremely disappointed i decided on that instead of the ICO/SotC release - although on the up side that's on sale at Best Buy for $25

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