Power Up looks at the latest from the digital world as we review Green Lantern: Rise Of The Manhunters, we've got news of Duke Nukem Forever, plus digital sheep and Lego Pirates ...
Lean, Green, Fighting Machine
Ever since E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (a game so god awful that it was blamed for the near-demise of Atari in the early 80s) made its ignoble bow, Hollywood studios have continued to pay game developers to create digital companions for their cinema-bound cash cows. And, almost always with lacklustre results.
Given the chequered history of such titles then, it’s little surprise that the inevitable Green Lantern tie-in won’t be shaking your universe. But as this sort of thing goes - and sorry if this sounds like faint praise - Rise Of The Manhunters really is the best of a bad bunch.
You see, GL:ROTM does at least have the good sense to nick ideas from better games (as it does quite a bit from the God Of War series mechanic), while also coming up with a few interesting innovations of its own. Playing like a kiddie-friendly RPG, you get to unlock special moves as you move along and assign them to your arsenal, a simple ploy that results in keeping the action fresh during the game’s slight running time.
The game piggybacks off the upcoming movie and features the voice and likeness of the film’s star Ryan Reynolds in a story that finds our green-suited heroes - essentially the police force of the universe who have magic rings which allow them to create "hard-light" constructs of whatever they can imagine - taking on an invading horde of robotic nasties called the Manhunters.
It’s all rather short, linear and easy but there’s some fun to be had in the action which allows you to bash baddies with conjured-up jet planes, giant hammers, buzzsaws and the like, while a rather old-school co-op mode which allows two players to deal out double levels of justice is a nice addition.
It can be pretty frustrating though. It’s very repetitive - alternate levels see you either kicking ass on foot or blasting baddies as you’re flying on rails - and the end-of-level bosses are all-too easily dispatched, while the voice acting and cut scenes are pretty awful.
However, in a field so packed with utter travesties, Green Lantern shines by dint of the fact that it looks good and plays well enough without utterly offending the player. With this kind of thing, that’s pretty much the best you can hope for.
Duke Of Malls
How do you fancy being ogled and objectified on the off-chance that you might win a trip to Las Vegas to celebrate the release of the 14-years-in-the-making Duke Nukem Forever?
Well, all you have to do is upload a picture to www.boob-tube.eu/ or catch the lady-lovin’, alien-stompin’ badass on his Europe-conquering tour in his custom-built Duke Nukem Forever Airstream trailer - next stop, Westfield Shopping Centre in London.
There’s a nice line in dark humour running through the pun-tastic Ewe Doodle - Keep The Sheep Alive, one of Chillingo’s new mobile game titles. Point and drag a herd of fluffy lambikins away from danger or watch them being devoured in amusingly graphic ways. Fast, furious and fluffy, what more do you need from an app?
While the sequels should be consigned to Davy Jones’ locker, LEGO’s reinvention of the Pirates Of The Caribbean movies is shaping up to be an altogether more seaworthy prospect. Check out the gameplay clip below and marvel at how they got that diddy Jack Sparrow sashay just right.