Point of reference
Let me begin this review by stating one simple fact, I am not a huge fan of Deadpool as a character. I know there are many “Dead heads” (Is that a thing?) out there but unfortunately, I am not one of them. Truth be told my only point of reference on this mouthy merc is Ryan Reynolds’ performance in X-men Origins: Wolverine. Although I have spoken to many fans of Wade Wilson’s work over the years and everyone seems to be of the same opinion, which is that he’s awesome. Even Deadpool himself states this fact right on the games cover, which features the following box quote, “This is what AWESOME looks like.” –Me. So there is a general consensus that, as a character, Deadpool is awesome. Unfortunately, the game featuring this hyper healing psychopath isn’t. While playing, I got the distinct impression that this game is made for fans, and if you are one, great! But if you’re like me, and this is one of your first run-ins with Deadpool I doubt that this game will convert you into a super fan.
Don’t get me wrong this game does have a lot going for it. Nolan North reprises his role as Deadpool and does a pretty decent job doing so. Personally, I’m more familiar with North’s dramatic voice work from roles as Nathan Drake and Cpt. Martin Walker in Spec Ops: The Line, and let’s not forget his six year run on the daytime soap General Hospital. Seriously! Look it up. Despite my familiarity with his dramatic stuff, I appreciate that North goes off the leash with twisted and funny portrayal of the game’s main character(s). I’m not entirely sure if North also provides the screwball voices inside Deadpool’s head but if that happens to be the case, bravo. Daniel Way a comic writer who has worked on many titles including Wolverine also wrote the game: Origins, and of course, Deadpool’s own book. The plot involves Deadpool seeking revenge on Mister Sinister who’s up to his old tricks of creating a super race of mutants. So there’s nothing really ground breaking about the plot it’s just good old-fashioned comic book status quo. The dialogue made me chuckle once or twice but in a game featuring what’s supposed to be one of the funniest comic book characters I felt that most of the jokes were either just plain stupid or downright sexist, not my cup of tea at all.
No Block for You!
The gameplay leaves quite a bit to be desired, like a block button, for example. The combat starts off pretty darn dull for gameplay that’s supposed to be fast paced, guns and swords, hack the enemy to bits type stuff. Once you’ve unlocked a few upgrades, it gets a bit more interesting but quickly plateaus once again. On the plus side, those upgrades are relatively easy to come by, almost too easy. I never really felt like I earned anything but was happy to have a few new combos to play around with.
While I found the evade mechanic useful, the gameplay really could have benefited from a block command. The game switches back and forth between melee and ranged combat pretty frequently. Normally while you’re slicing and dicing a pack of cloned goons you’ll come under fire from other goons with assault rifles. This is where I really could have used a block mechanic. I ‘m pretty sure that Deadpool is quite capable of deflecting bullets with his Katanas but noooo. No blocking for you. Instead, you have to teleport away like a coward. Overall, I found the gameplay to be pretty lacklustre, but if you’re a fan of violence, it has loads of that, so that’s pretty cool, I guess.
I don’t know if it’s because I’ve spent the weeks leading up to this playing Injustice: Gods Among Us and The Last of Us, two of the best looking games this generation has to offer, or the fact that at this point in the console cycle, my expectations of visual fidelity are really high, but this game looks pretty darn sloppy. The environments are generic and boring, with a lot of gray and brown in the colour pallet and the enemies look pixilated and jagged especially from a distance. It’s not a huge problem, and I’m willing to admit my standards might be a tad high, but there were quite a few times where I said to myself “Damn! That looks awful”.
As I mentioned in the beginning, I’m not a fan of Deadpool and this game hasn’t changed that, and I’m sure if you’re like me you’ll probably feel pretty much the same. However, if you’re desperate for something to play this summer or are already a huge Deadpool fan then this game will do just fine. It’s total fan service; I’m just not a fan.