Chromehounds - Xbox360 review

2 out of 5
£35

For

Not much

Against

Slow plodding gameplay, complicated controls

There’s too few Xbox360 games on the shelves. See, I said it. I know we’re in the middle of the summer lull, but the pitiful amount of games available is a joke.

For those of us who splashed out on Microsoft’s next gen wonder, the lack of variety available is like waking up on Christmas morning, spying a huge box with your name upon it and frantically tearing off the attractive paper, only to be greeted by only a small thimble inside ... that’s broken.

Sega are trying to rectify this sorry state of affairs with the supremely terrifying Condemned a while back and now this brand new mech-style title.

But will the Japanese obsession with heavily armed robotic hulks of metal lumbering around make us rush out and buy it?

As soon as you start the first mission of Chromehounds it hits you square in your metal jaw. Can this game get any slower? We’re taking slower than dragging your heap of junk through alternating layers of molten tarmac and treacle slow.

At first you feel that it’s just Sega’s way of easing you gently into the action. After all, the control system is pretty complicated and we wouldn’t want your walking toaster to be toast in the first couple of minutes, now would we?

Well, you’re stuck with it. Ten hours later – if you haven’t thrown the pad down in disgust – you’ll still be trudging along. Yawn.

The strategy end doesn’t help much either. You can either play the role of Tactics Commander – opening up many more strategic options since you’re directing a full "team" – or take direct control of a individual mech. Either way you’ll still find yourself plodding along though. Plod, plod, plod.

You can also configure your mech to suit various styles of play, but attach more than the most basic of weapons to your hulking monstrosity and that initial slow trudge will transform into a pace very much akin to an elderly, asthmatic slug.

Visuals are reasonably good, though the surroundings can’t help but appear particularly sparse, with an incredible amount of differing shades of brown used for the backdrops.

Verdict

For those already obsessed with the likes of Armoured Core or Mech Assault, then the dreary slow pace of Chromehounds may have you shifting up a gear in excitement.

The rest of us will give this one a miss though. Even though we’re desperate for a new title to slip into our powerful white boxes, we don’t like paying to be bored.