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Watchmen: The End is Nigh - Yet Another Comics Adaptation

by: Finn Orfano ; edited by: Michael Hartman ; updated: 4/17/2012 • Leave a comment

Watchmen: The End is Nigh is classical arcade or beat-them-up game similar to Cadillacs and Dinosaurs or The Punisher - levels divided by segments and lots of enemies waiting. Did Deadline Games managed to do something good or the exactly opposite?

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    Introduction

    Watchmen Cover Unlike the arcades from the past, Watchmen: The End is Nigh is in 3rd Person Mode. The game is actually prequel of the movie adaptation. At the very beginning you choose your character between Rorschach and Nite Owl. You will give and seek justice until they put you in prison, where your task is to hunt the Underboss down the city streets. Slowly, you understand it's just the next chasing type of game and with your actions corrupted political actions are revealed. Actually, is anyone interested in this so called plot?

    The game is far more simple than the prequel, beat the enemies of each segment and move to the next one. Very innovative approach, Sherlock. And that's actually the whole main problem - during the entire game the designers are leading you by your nose, intercepting any attempts of originality, freedom or personal choice. The worst is that they didn't even try to fool us with some illusion for freedom.

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    Super heroes or Superbad?

    The linear gameplay I mentioned starts even from the hero pick up screen. Let's say it open, who would ever pick the night bird as a Watchmen 2 character with his cotter, sadistic helm and the base of a Batman costume. Unlike his brother in arms, Rorschach has the look of a tough guy waiting patiently in the dark streets with his coat, ready to attack the non-suspecting victim just like a psychopath. Therefor, from the very beginning the authors left most of the gamers with one single choice.

    The second problem is the super hero part of the Super Heroes. It's just totally gone. While the gamers expect to see something "super", strength, agility, reflexes or special moves - they get nothing. Most of the fights are totally out of control and you can't notice how and when you got the crucial three out of four hits that get you back to the last checkpoint. At the end of it all, you just smash the joy pad hoping you will deliver these hits before the next ordinary enemy with a beer bottle in his hand.

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    Camera and Controls

    Watchmen 3 I though such games are stuck back in the 2005. In Watchmen, the primary promised design of the camera seemed to be great. However, the exact implementation of the idea was horrible and had nothing to do with the previously discussed effect. The angle is getting changed by the movement keys for example - and while you are trying to desperately hit your enemy, he might be dead meanwhile from laughing.

    That's not the last problem. Let's look at the combo system - great idea, a must feature in most arcade games. So far so good, however, once again we gain an awful implementation. Yes, don't get me wrong, the combos are there, but somehow they are often not working no matter how much you smash the pad. You will often find yourself dead in the middle of a combo, wondering where you did wrong. Luckily, I let the enemy beat my so called partner while I'm trying to survive through.

    The combos idea was also great, the making of the combo system and the integration, however, are once again - a disaster. Yes, they are there, but you will often be dead in the middle of them, wondering why the combo didn't work. I just left them beat my partner, hoping to survive through.

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    Wasting Your Time - Why Would You Do That?

    At the end, Watchmen: The End is Nigh is nothing but the next failed attempt of comics addaptation. Very hard, and very bad - but when I say hard that's mostly the result of the designer's non-professionalism. The only good feature were the scenery, but that's not enough to make out for everything else.

    It's sad to see how one designer studio wastes solid amount of money just to make one more or less unplayable game. Their only hope was the noise and fireworks around the movie, which could probably make the gamers buy this piece of disaster. It's not the first time we've seen a rusty game being released after a movie just to generate some extra amount of money, justifying the expenses, or not.