Tech News on G4
'Iron Man' flawed but fun
May 29, 2008
By John Powell - G4 Canada
When it was announced that Sega, the one-time console maker turned game developer, would be designing the forthcoming Marvel Entertainment video games instead of stalwart Activision, nobody was sure what to think. What people were sure of is they didn’t need another uninspired superhero game cluttering up the shelves.
First out of the gate for Sega is ‘Iron Man’, Marvel Comics’ high tech hero who is more at home with audiences now than ever before. That is perhaps why the movie has been embraced as it has been. With high tech gizmos and toys dominating our lives, there really is no better time for ‘Iron Man’ to have been released.
In the game, players learn that being Tony Stark maybe isn’t all its cracked up to be. The million playboy industrialist runs with the rich and famous when he doesn’t have his Iron Man battle suit on.
When it is time to take to the skies as the “Armoured Avenger” though, multi-tasking means more than just sipping champagne while gobbling up cavier. While in command of Iron Man and the battle armour, players must carefully regulate the power shifts that occur throughout the adventure. From a desert teaming with terrorist camps to a heavily fortified Mafia headquarters, you will be forced to monitor the armour’s power supply as you blast the baddies and their weapons.
This is where Iron Man diviates from your standard action game. When the heat is on, you have to divert power from one of the suit’s specialties to another, such as from the weapons’ system to your propulsion unit. Finding the correct balance to preserve all of your abilities can be a bit daunting when helicopters are firing missiles at you from above and tanks are shelling you from below. It is this unique style of on-the-fly gameplay that will draw some to the title while others who just want to blow things up REAL good might shy away.
Fortunately, unlike other movie inspired games, ‘Iron Man’ doesn’t follow the script of the feature film instead it expands the storyline of Tony Stark’s crusade to destroy Stark Enterprise weapons that have fallen into the wrong hands. The Maggia crime family and a mysterious business rival who contacts Obadiah Stane about joining forces and pushing Stark into early retirement…in more ways than one.
From time to time the targeting system does blank out in ‘Iron Man’ leaving you unable to reposition him properly but the incidents are so infrequent that the gameplay itself is not really affected. Although the Wii doesn’t have the muscle of the 360 or PlayStation 3 to flex, the ‘Iron Man’ cutscenes are really clean and really clear. They are some of the best on the system thus far.
Like Iron Man’s varying suits of armour over the years, there is room for improvement here but Sega has captured the look and feel of the character on the Wii and with the upcoming sequels maybe we will see more.
Rating: 7 / 10
About G4 in Canada
G4 Canada (formerly TechTV Canada) launched in September 2001. G4 is the one and only television station that is plugged into every dimension of games, gear, gadgets and gigabytes. Owned Rogers Media Inc., the channel airs more than 24 original series. G4 is available on digital cable and satellite. For more information, see www.g4tv.ca.