I hate bugs. All bugs. In some cases it doesn’t even have to be a bug to freak me out, simply possessing bug-like qualities will do the trick. Strangely enough, this powerful phobia is exactly what attracted me to Deadly Creatures. This Wii-exclusive Action title from Rainbow Studios that puts you in control of either a Tarantula or a Scorpion and lets you explore the world from a pint-sized perspective.
What better way to conquer a fear than to embody the very thing that horrifies you?
This game received a lot of hype after it was revealed. The Wii market has been starving for hardcore games, and Deadly Creatures seemed to be the exact thing Wii gamers wanted. A unique premise, great visuals, and raunchy gameplay were more than enough to get starving gamers drooling.
While I wasn’t starving for content or drooling over this title, I was still watching it with a great deal of interest. When the title finally hit store shelves it scored very mixed reviews. The positive press could’ve been the result of a great game, or it could’ve been partial journalists submitting to hype. The negative might have come from the game performing under expectations, or it was possibly a result of Wii haters.
I decided to rent the game first, and see how it appealed to me. Days turned to weeks, and weeks into months, and I just never picked it up. Then, simply by chance, I happened across the game at Walmart and noticed the delicious discount price of only $20 and I couldn’t resist. The fact that the game was only a fraction of the original $50 price tag meant that not only was I adding another game to my growing library of Wii titles for a bargain, but I was supporting hardcore games on Nintendo’s consoles at the same time.
After finishing the game and spending time forming a solid opinion, I have found that the experience behind Deadly Creatures is as mixed as the reviews the game received. There are spectacular things about the game that are unique and that I wholeheartedly love and embrace, but there are also things about the game that I loathe and dread, and they make the game feel like a chore at times.
The gameplay is, at its roots, little more than a simple Beat ’em Up in design. Combat controls are handled with a mix between button presses and waggle movements, and are often times unresponsive and frustrating. Simple fights against basic enemies can be fun and refreshing, but when fighting against minibosses you’ll often find yourself more than ready to quit and move on to better games due to ridiculous AI advantages.
That said, when this game performs well it is an absolute blast to play. The thing is, it rarely ever works the way you want it to. This inconsistency in design is dreadful and leads to several potential controller smashing moments. Perhaps the most frustrating thing about Deadly Creatures in the roller coaster difficulty, ranging from a fun and rewarding Action title to a frustrating, head ache-inducing throw away.
The camera is one of those head aches. You’ll find that crawling all over walls and ceilings, however cool and intriguing it may be, leads to some serious motion sickness and confusion. This makes appreciating the game’s stellar visuals pretty difficult at times, but for the most part you’ll enjoy taking in the desert scenery. Until you notice a particular enemy is stuck inside of a wall, seizuring uncontrollably that is.
One thing that is on the absolute solid side of the spectrum is the stellar sound design. The development team went to great lengths to build a solid audio presentation to accompany players along their quest. For starters, the game’s human subjects are voiced by talents Dennis Hopper and Billy Bob Thornton, and they do a fantastic job. On top of that, the music is eerie and fittingly moody and sound effects are brilliantly done. There are a few problems, but for the most part the sound is an absolute treat.
Deadly Creatures clocks in at well under 10 hours, and with no multiplayer modes to speak of there is very little content to push that number. Sure there are a large number of different things to collect, but those things are primarily Crickets and Grubs that do very little to provide any real satisfaction whatsoever. But at only $20 for a brand new copy, it is very hard to complain. If this game still ran at $50, this would be a much larger gripe.
For only $20, gamers are getting a pretty decent bargain. That is, if they can get passed the frustrating camera, strange visual glitches, and often times frustrating combat mechanics. In all honesty, this game is worth nothing more than a five day rental despite its low price tag.
- A unique take on the otherwise mundane Beat ’em Up genre
- The visuals are mostly gorgeous
- Absolutely stellar sound presentation
- Obnoxious camera
- Frustrating controls
- Lack of polish
- Grows repetitive
Score: 7.0/10 (Average)
Entertainment Value: 5.0/10