Bionic Commando

Making sequels to old games hasn’t been the greatest thing I’ve faced. It can be a fun, pleasurable experience (points to Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts) or it can be a rather disastrous **** up (points to NiGHTS: Journey to Dreams). Bionic Commando for the NES came out more than 20 years ago. I’m pretty sure it was forgotten. However it seems Capcom are always as money-desperate as usual so here’s a new sequel.

Now in this Bionic Commando it’s gone down Hardcore street and made some bad deals down Realism road and everyone says “****“ like it is the newly directed law. It’s been 10 years since the events of last game (which is wrong as it was 20 years ago) and people for some reason hate Bionically enhanced soldiers for, well being there. So they decide to give them all the death sentence. Well that’s a bit harsh. In these times if someone as a fake hand with a wooden spoon attached to it they get executed. Whatever, You play as Nathan Spencer from the previous titles but all that’s different is that he has dreadlocks instead of ginger hair and he has a bit more sympathy for you to feel, as he was never an interesting character. Nathan is about to be given this death sentence when the person he saved in the last game cancels it. Because (get ready for disaster moment like ones you see in most JRPGs) a bomb hit’s a city and kills millions and somehow there is still a resistance/military force left to save absolutely nothing. So the guy gives Spencer his arm back and decides to get he arse into the city, filled with radiation to save his wife, which was the only influence of getting him into the city.

Oh, I love to share the “amazing” plot twist that happens. But that apparently gives far too much away. I know, I’ll put the “epic” twist at the end and hopefully that’ll influence you to buy it, or you can skip through the spoil.

You first task revolves around getting Nathans arm back. So it gives you time to get used to the arm-less controls. There are so many damn controls in this game that every button has at least one function. During every loading screen you can learn all about which button does what in case you forget, which unfortunately appears a bit too much. Loading screens are quite a pain in the arse as they take more than 25 seconds, can you imagine that? Okay stare at this upcoming shape for 25 seconds and see

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[__] (Stare at me ***got.)

In all that time you just wasted, you could have been reading this review. So the first level revolves in an unknown building and you fight with only a pistol at your side There is this evil government group which I forgot their real purpose in this story, I mean, they already blew up a city so what are they still doing here? There are guarding your arm so you must fight your way through a couple of enemies. The minimap below you can show you where to go, which is good but it’s a bit too small. I had to get closer to my screen to see exactly where to go. So after that you finally get the bionic arm back. This causes him to go to sleep and dream of a tutorial stage. Here you get to get the grips of Nathans bionic arm. And the arm works absolutely perfect. You can pretty much grab onto anything and climb on it, the momentum of your swinging always stays the same. You start swinging and you get full speed on the first swing, so you don’t need to waste time gaining full momentum. The arms controls are so perfect you could make a diamond necklace out of it.

Now I need to tell you and very bad point that everyone needs to hear. Sniping is the worst thing about this game. You only use the sniper rifle when facing other snipers. The first time you ever use it is the worst place to put it. It was on a destroyed building and all the other snipers were on bigger building basically staring down upon you. You have to get out of cover and try and shoot them, but sadly they are already shooting the crap out of you. Of course you can get back into cover to regenerate health, but certainly there has to of been a better way of doing this obstacle. And what is the worst of all about this stage is there isn’t enough rounds in the sniper rifle to kill all the snipers you are attacking. It frustrated me so much I broke the controller in half.

On the plus side Achievements aren’t exactly hard to obtain. The game sets you with challenges throughout the story mode. These challenges mainly revolve around learning the controls, swinging techniques and killing enemies. This is all fine and dandy but there are too easy to obtain, into about 10 minutes into this game and got about 7 achievements all worth about 5-10 gamerscore, so I got 50-70 odd gamerscore just for doing the tutorial.

I must say the visuals like fantastic. Ascension City in ruin would usually look quite dull and uninteresting, but somehow that’s how this game gets its overall charm. The sound does help keep an suspenseful tension, but you hardly hear it, nor notice it at that matter, whilst playing.