Wanted: Weapons of Fate Review - May 12th 2009

Movie tie-ins tend to be poorly designed affairs that fail to make a positive impact leaving gamers annoyed and frustrated, and leaving the games themselves collecting dust on the shelves. Is Wanted: Weapons of Fate another one of these forgettable affairs or have we finally got a worthwhile movie tie-in?

Wanted: WOF is in fact a sequel to the movie and so anyone hoping to see Angelina Jolie rendered in pixels in this game will be sorely disappointed. WOF picks up about 5 hours after the ending of the movie and follows Wesley Gibson’s continued descent into the world of assassins. The game's storyline is based around the player, as Wesley, as he hunts down the French Fraternity of Assassins in an attempt to get to the truth about his family and his mother’s death. Apart from taking the role of Wesley, players will also play as Cross, Wesley’s father, who appears in flashback levels of the game. Unfortunately the actors from the movie don’t provide voiceovers for the characters, which has to be a disappointment.

Gameplay in WOF centres around 3rd person shooting with some time-trial events in which time slows down and you have to pick off the enemies with precise shots before the timer runs out, which break things up nicely. The main sections are well played out as WOF’s cover system is very intuitive and easy to use, however after a while things become tedious. The reason for this is a lack of variation , as all the main sections take the same form: enter a stage via a cutscene, rid the area of all enemies, advance and then do it again. Although the game mechanics are accomplished, doing the same thing again and again soon becomes a drag. The time-trial sections are exciting and do offer a good alternative to the main game, however the controls for the PC version make these sections, and in fact the whole game, all the more difficult.

The action is fast-paced and fun.

Being based on the Wanted universe, the game of course had to include bullet bending, and it does. This is activated by killing enemies, and allows you to bend the trajectory of your bullet over any cover your target may be hiding behind. This gimmick is well implemented and makes things fun, giving WOF a unique identity, however the novelty soon wears off and thus doesn’t help to keep monotony from setting in. Another gimmick present in WOF is bullet time, which again is activated by killing enemies, however this is far from unique and has been done many times before. The game is also very linear as there really is only one path that you can take through a stage and the feeling of being herded towards that goal is a little off putting.

The controls for the PC version are hit and miss. Although the layout of the keyboard-mouse configuration is easy to get to grips with, the sensitivity of the mouse is way too high, even on the lowest levels. Due to this, aiming can become a chore, and a sudden movement will leave the camera spinning in circles as you become disorientated and ultimately get killed. This problem is annoying in the main sections as it makes headshots and conserving bullets difficult, but is even worse in the time trial events that intersperse them. Due to the nature of these events, having only a limited time to pick off the enemies, the over sensitivity of the mouse makes it almost impossible to get the one hit kills that you need to get through these instances. This leaves you repeating these parts over and over and doesn’t really help with the monotony of the game. Furthermore, the game doesn’t cater for certain types of controllers (I tried a PlayStation one) and thus leaves you no choice apart from the default keyboard-mouse combo.

Some of the set-pieces are really impressive.

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Warner Bros.
Warner Bros.