Tuesday, May 24, 2011

MashButtons Reviews Thor For Nintendo's Wii and DS

Here we are, hot on the heels of Marvel's blockbuster movie release of Thor and here we go with reviews of not just the Wii version of the game, but the DS as well. Those that are not familiar with Norse mythology, the comic superhero, and big screen hunk, Thor is being brought back to life and thrown into our faces via just about any media outlet out there. Of course Sega has made sure to hold true to the comic series with the appearance of 12 ton frost giants and trolls in which you get to gleefully battle waves and waves of these beasts with your legendary hammer, Mjolnir, as Thor, the god of thunder. So here we go for the first time ever, multiple platform reviews for Nintendo’s iterations of Thor: God of Thunder, so on with the DS version’s hand on impressions.

Thor for the DS does not give away the spoiler of the movie, so you will not spoil the movie if you have not seen it yet. This title is a side scrolling hack and slash that features characters from the movie and comic book such as Thor, Odin, and Loki. Though it comes off as rather simplistic, the gameplay is what makes it entertaining. The action is fast and with numerous moves, it is easy to string along combos, but throughout the story, you will find equipable runes to boost speed, strength, special moves, and defense to help take down the onslaught of enemies thrown at you and the larger than life bosses at the end of each chapter. Unfortunately, there is not much in the way of variety between level designs and enemies, as even some of the bosses look alike. The graphics do not stand out to me, mainly because it has been a while since reviewing a DS title over the 3DS titles which just look so much better for a portable gaming system, and if Thor were developed for the 3DS I feel it would have been a better visual experience. The hardest parts of my playthrough were against the bosses as they often took multiple attempts due to the amount of health they have in comparison to Thor. The story of both the DS and the Wii renditions of Sega’s Thor comes down to the story as it is entertaining and adds a substantial amount to story behind the movie and this can quite possibly be due to the fact that the story was written by none other than the Thor comic book author himself, Matt Fraction.

Now for the Wii’s version to the god of thunder, full of remote and nunchuk shaking action. You all know I am not a fan of motion controls, but in this situation it works really well when trying to rack up large combos, as your basic moves are with buttons but you can then shake your controllers to really drive the attacks home. The action is fast and fluid, making the gameplay fun and what keeps you going from start to finish. The graphics are rather meh while still being able to deliver that comic book feel, and I though at one point I was playing Space Harrier when it goes to an on rails shooter. The voice acting was a good touch with Chris Hemsworth playing the voice of Thor. Like the portable version, the story does not follow the movie line so it doesn’t spoil anything if you haven’t seen it yet, but it you have seen the movie; the game provides an entertaining addition. Unfortunately like the latter, the levels and enemies look the same with small variations and battle tends to get repetitive because of this, but leveling up and unlocking new skills and abilities helps keep your mind off the monotony, and the boss battles are large and epic almost resembling a cross between God of War with quick time events and Shadow of the Colossus with the grappling system to climb and find weak point.

So all in all, there is some fun to be had with the two versions of Thor. Though it gets repetitive and lacks variation in character and level design, the gameplay is what carries the experience. Fans of Thor, either comic or movie, can enjoy as it is not a movie game but more of a substantial tie in. I felt like I enjoyed playing on the Wii as it looked and played better but the action on the go of the DS has me playing about an hour at a time before realizing the sun was shining and I should be out doing something more productive, but the Wii version had me flailing frantically while still having fun, despite how ridiculous I looked.

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