It’s something of a cliché to announce, that despite the Wii’s obscene popularity, it seems to be lacking in entirely adult video games. Yet with the horrifically crude, vulgar, bloody, obscene MadWorld, Sega seem eager to level the playing field in one fell swoop.
As Jack - just Jack - you’re the latest newcomer to the horrific brand of sport that’s currently flavour of the month in Varrigan City. The aim being to kill and maim in a variety of ways in order to attain a hefty points score, and claim the chance to take on another ranked member of this particularly brutal past time.
Each level consists of the initial score boosting batch of identikit brawlers just eager to be absolutely obliterated in the name of sport, a chance to try out one of the Black Barons Bloodbath Challenges, and lastly the aforementioned boss type battles. All very video game.
What isn’t quite so typical is the way you’ll blast through the poor folk that continuously get nudged in your direction. A typical highly scored method may consist of firstly wrapping a tire around your victim, inserting a spiked sign post through their skull, and lastly dumping their body in a flaming barrel for good measure. If there’s one thing MadWorld isn’t, it’s subtle.
Hit the required score and the Black Baron will saunter on screen and perform a TV commercial esque introduction to the latest Challenge he’s ready to set down. Though each ends with a nearly naked women using his own devices against him, before pulling a provocative pose.
Again, we’ll give an example to show just how over the top MadWorld is. An early case, entitled “Money Shot” requires you shake bottles of fizz, ram them down the throats of your victims, and aim them towards huge billboards of semi naked women with spikes protruding from, well, the areas you’d expect from a title such as this.
No matter how violent the action is, it doesn’t hold a candle to the commentary. Greg Proops and John DiMaggio utter some of the filthiest, misogynist, and down right hilarious gaming spiel ever written. Admittedly things do start to repeat quite swiftly, but only the cold of heart will find themselves not at least sporting a huge grin. Plus, it packs some words you’d truly think you’d never hear in a video game. Certainly keep the volume down before the kids have gone to bed that’s for sure.
The much praised visual style certainly helps proceedings too. The crisp black and white images are interspersed quite beautifully with the bright red gore that emanates during every slaughter, and this is truly one of the most stylishly gorgeous games gaming has produced. Admittedly the action can slow down to an absolute crawl when the slaughter on screen starts to get truly hectic, but it’s a once an hour appearance, and hence a long way from game breaking.
It’s not all gory brilliance for MadWorld. Though certain level specific kills appear as time goes on, the violence does start to repeat after the first half hour. The control system too, making use of every button and shaking variation can feel a touch off at times, and urging your character in the exact right direction can sometimes prove a real test. And the whole thing does only last around 6 hours, so unless you’ll be eager to nudge your score every upwards, then you wont attain more than a weekends gaming from this one.
Like House of the Dead: Overkill before it, MadWorld is ridiculously over the top, crude, vulgar, and downright obscene. But, since it refuses to take itself seriously, you can’t help but be attracted to every facet of this truly adult title.
Certainly not for the easily offended, but for those gamers eager for a truly brutal title to slip into the Wii, then MadWorld is one of the very best.