Preview | Deadpool brings the funny
Last week I had the opportunity to meet with High Moon Studios to check out the highly-anticipated Deadpool game, which is slated for release on June 25 for the PlayStation 3, PC and Xbox 360.
Now a little background on Deadpool himself – he’s a mercenary for hire who regenerates when hurt, while dealing with a bit of a personality disorder. In fact, Deadpool deals with two separate personalities that talk to him so throughout a typical day, you’ll find Deadpool essentially talking to himself – the childlike and gritty versions of himself, to be exact. To put it frankly, Deadpool is insane, and that’s fine by him, and me for that matter.
So first thing’s first; Deadpool is fully aware that he’s in a comic, and more importantly that he’s in a video game. In fact, as the game kicks off, we see Deadpool hanging out in his apartment, when he talks to High Moon Studios over the phone. He’s pitched an idea of starring in his own game, which at first is snubbed, then accepted. Though he’s given a script of how the game will play out, he scoffs at it and decides to do things how he prefers. I must say, even the intro is pretty damn hilarious, and really sets the stage for how the game will be presented.
Deadpool will have access to a variety of weapons, which can all be upgraded, along with other abilities throughout the game. As we entered the demo to get a first-look at Deadpool in action, we’re taken to an industrial looking area in the game, where Deadpool beats down a handful of enemies. Deadpool plays very much like an arcade action game that somewhat mirrors what we’ve seen from the upcoming Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game. You’ll be hacking and slashing, pulling off combos, racking up points, but unlike TMNT, things get extremely gory and over-the-top. Perhaps “over-the-top” is the best way to describe the game and it all fits in beautifully. As you’re beating down and dismembering enemies, you’ll fill up a gauge for each face button on the controller. Once any of the gauges is full, you can pull off a special maneuver using that face button such as doing a breakdancing movie that takes out a number of foes at once. Towards the end of the first demo, Deadpool annihilates his enemies and then comes across his old pal Cable. This was one of the more comical (no pun intended) scenes of the demo, as we get a bit of a comic-style intro of who Cable is and his relationship with Deadpool. In one scene, we see Deadpool hallucinating that he has a bikini-clad fan waiting for him; prompting him to walk up to her and grab her boobs. Turns out it was actually Cable standing in front of him which leads to a pretty funny and awkward situation.
Finally getting some hands-on time with the game for myself, I learn a bit more about the combat and realize that aside from the slashing and gunning action, there are also some bits of stealth involved. Immediately after meeting Cable, I carefully walk up to a guard and figuring I’d snap his neck or something, actually end up crawling underneath him in a sort of voyeuristic manner and as I look up at the guard while laying down between his legs, I unload an arsenal of gunfire that pushes him up in the air. I literally shot this guy about a hundred times while in mid-air while he slowly lost skin, meat and bones. It was so insane and bloody and exaggerated that I couldn’t stop from laughing.
This is probably what’s made the demo so enjoyable. Deadpool, thus far, has proven to be a side-splitting affair. I mean this is seriously some laugh-out-loud funny stuff, which may ultimately make the game, regardless of how lengthy it turns out to be, or how deep of a story it plays out as. As I continued by demo, I ended up inside of a business building as I looked to track down my main objective. I got a better hang of the gameplay mechanics, which let me try out combinations, as well as the ability to teleport short distances. Aside from using some kitana blades, I also used a couple of guns and even a large hammer (Thor anyone?).
Some enemies will be a bit more defensive, so there are other aspects to consider, such as trying to trap them or slow them down somehow before you can attack. There’s a big brute that I came across that was beating the crap out of me until I figured out I could use a bear trap to get him stuck. As he tried to free himself, I was given the opening to lay waste to him and finally take him down. (Note: there are a bunch of these guys, so strategy is key).
After finding away to get by a helicopter that had a few enemies shooting at me, I managed to get to my target and throw him out of a window. Pretty funny stuff, but the best part was the recap of my mission. I got a quick fast-forward recap of everything I did, while I saw how many points I was racking up. While this is happening, Deadpool is doing some outrageous things, such as showing up on a unicorn and flying over a rainbow. It was so outrageous that I couldn’t stop from laughing.
Ultimately, while I enjoyed the combat and gore, I really, really dug the comedic aspects of the demo. I seriously can’t wait to play more of the game and if what I experienced is any indication of what I can expect from the rest of the game, this is going to be a cult classic.