This video game review looks into the newest edition to the X-Men gaming franchise - X-Men Destiny.
I remember when I used to have arguments with the rest of my comic book geek friends about what would be the best mutant power to have: ruby optic blasts, metallic muscle or a ferocious healing ability. And as the years progressed, so did the roster of cool and exciting characters with even more amazing powers.
However, if you were to ask me that question today, I would have to say that the special power that I would love to have is time travel. Why time travel, you may ask? It’s simple: if I had the power of time travel, I could go back and do my best to try to smack some sense into the developers at Silicon Knights before they released this atrociously mediocre entry into the X-Men catalogue of video games. What seemed like a complete no-brainer is exactly that, a game that requires nothing more than thumbs and stamina to conquer. In short, X-men Destiny sucks.
In defense of the developers, Silicon Knights, the premise behind the game looked promising on paper; however judging from the tepid, lackluster results, perhaps that where it should have stayed. In X-Men: Destiny, you as the player are put into the genetically enhanced shoes of three new mutants, created specifically for the game. There's college football star Grant Alexander, Japanese refugee Aimi Yoshida, and Adrian Luca, the son of a powerful anti-mutant terrorist group member (isn’t it ironic? Don’tcha think?)
As the new mutant, you are a tabula rasa thrown into the mix as you discover the awakening of your superpowers. As opposed to the more traditional linear type of gameplay, the "new" mutants have to make choices along the way to decide the ultimate destiny of their character. Will you decide to join the noble X-Men and fight the good fight, or will you fall in with Magneto and his brood of malicious mutants, The Brotherhood?
Guess what? It doesn’t make one bit of difference what you decide, because ultimately your choices prove to be as empty as the calories in a box of Twinkies. The "destiny" of the game progresses along the same linear path regardless of whether you're trying to align yourself with good or evil, leaving you with no real say in what your destiny will become. You can switch teams like Anne Heche without any real consequences to your actions, at nearly any point during the game.
Your choice of powers is about as exciting as the menu at an elementary school cafeteria. They're boring, bland and predictable. You choose from three mutant abilities (stop me if you’ve heard these before): density control (Kitty Pryde, The Blob, Black Bishop), shadow matter (which looks like Nightcrawler’s "bamf" effect, but you didn’t hear that from me) and energy projection, because that’s never been done before. None of this really matters, mind you, due to the fact that you pretty much just spend your time fighting endless -- and I do mean endless -- swarms of mindless thugs. It turns what could have been at least an innovative and ambitious addition to the X-Men brand into a two-bit arcade button masher.
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