by Vivendi Universal Games
Developed by Radical Entertainment
Platform: PC & PlayStation 2
Released - Out Now
Price : £34.99 (PC) £39.99 (PS2)
had quite a few games based on films this year and it's fair to
say that most have been poor to average at best. The Hulk is one
of those characters that could make for one heck of a game though.
The combination of the mild-mannered Bruce Banner and the primeval
Hulk has the potential to make for a fantastic experience. We've
looked at both the PC version and PlayStation 2 version of The Hulk.
you would expect the game is based upon the Universal Pictures film
and attempts to follow on from the events of the film. As with all
Hulk stories, there are two central characters, Bruce Banner and
the Hulk. You'll play a variety of levels as both and the game feels
very different depending on who you are controlling. Whilst you're
controlling Bruce Banner you have to be stealthy and use your brains
to solve puzzles (although they are not difficult). Whilst controlling
the Hulk, the game becomes a smash 'em up as the green monster destroys
seemingly everything in his path.
the game begins Bruce Banner get a phone call from a fellow scientist
who tells him that he has found a way to banish his alter-ego, the
Hulk, forever. However the scientist is one that Bruce doesn't trust
and with good cause too. As you would expect it's a trap and before
long a whole heap of trouble is made for both Banner and the Hulk.
the game has a mix of Banner and Hulk levels, it's the Hulk levels
that most gamers will enjoy, although they can get repetitive rather
quickly. There is an impression collection of attacks that the Hulk
can make. In addition to the more basic attacks and the ability
to pick items up to throw at your enemies, the Hulk has some special
attacks that can be performed using combo moves whilst the Hulk
is in rage mode. The Super Overhead Smash and the Super Sonic Clap
are just two of these and very powerful they are too. In fact they
are so powerful that using one of these attacks will end rage mode
so you won't be able to string a succession of these moves together.
game has around 30 levels altogether and the lack of a mid-level
save function will mean that you won't finish the game too quickly.
You can however, collect blue orb like objects which act as a checkpoint
to which you will be returned if you are killed. Collecting the
green orbs will replenish your health and the red orbs will fill
your rage meter. Every once in a while you'll come up against the
mandatory boss levels. Enemies such as Flux, Rampage and Half-Life
will provide a stiff challenge. Mercifully you'll have to use a
lot of variation from your usual tactics if you're to beat these
controlling the PlayStation 2 version is absolutely fine because
you have Dualshock 2 controller to use, it's no fun at all using
the keys in the PC version. Of course you can setup a gamepad if
you have one, but the game has a nasty habit of defaulting to the
keyboard controls and it's a real pain to have to reconfigure the
controls every time you load up the game.
addition to the main game there are also some bonus features for
you to unlock. Challenge mode offers two Endurance modes where you
have to survive for as long as possible whilst the two Time Attack
modes see you having to defeat as many enemies as possible within
a give time. Finally there is the Hulk Smash mode where you have
to destroy as much of the environment as possible within the given
time. There are also some special features such as the movie art
and film clips, which are not subtitled.
the game looks good on both the PC and PlayStation 2. The developers
have gone for a more serious cel-shaded look and it's suits the
game very nicely indeed. There doesn't seem to be any framerate
issues either which is always good to see. The camera angles are
generally OK but you do come across the odd occasion where they
prove to be a pain but there is nothing that spoils the game. The
PC version, again, has a nasty habit of defaulting to the default
640x480 resolution every time you reload which is annoying. Once
you've raised the resolution in the PC version though it looks better
than all the console versions (as you would expect).
deaf gamers The Hulk is not as enjoyable as it could be. Both the
PC and PlayStation 2 versions are not subtitled which makes following
the story more of a problem than it should be. At the beginning
of each level you receive brief text objectives which tell you what
to do. All tutorial messages appear in text so learning the games
controls is fairly straightforward. Occasionally you'll receive
a text message during a mission that instructs you to follow someone,
which helps. When fighting the various enemies, particularly the
bosses, the taunts are not shown in text so you'll be unaware of
those. Despite the omissions though the game is not impossible for
deaf gamers. The force feedback, on the PlayStation 2 version, is
generally good and adds to the excitement of the game.
The Hulk is a good game but it's a shame that it wasn't fully subtitled
as it would have allowed deaf gamers to enjoy the game in the manner
it was meant to be enjoyed. Personally I would opt for a console
version over the PC version as the one or two problems it has with
the control and graphical options returning to their default settings,
are very irritating. Still fans of the Hulk will be pleased with
Game Rating: 7.0/10
Hulk is an enjoyable title that only really suffers from too much
repetition in the Hulk levels and not being subtitled, which makes
it less enjoyable for deaf gamers.
Game Rating: 6.5/10
addition to the above comments the PC version rather irritatingly
has some extra problems with your control and graphics options returning
to default each time you load the game up.
There are no subtitles which makes following the story very difficult.
Tutorial messages are given in text but the enemy taunts are also