Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game
Posted 2 years ago By - Justin Arruda
In the last couple of months, if you asked someone to sum up all of nerd-dome in two words, the response would likely be “Scott Pilgrim.” The graphic novel-turned-movie-turned-videogame has been the subject of so much press, not only from film critics eager to have their say on the one-of-a-kind film, but also from gaming journalists and fans of all geek-culture. The unique blend of all three platforms has drawn nerds together in celebration of everything they love.
Having already joined the foray on Sony’s PSN platform on August 10, the retro-inspired Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game is now available on XBLA. The Ubisoft-developed title takes the old-school, side-scrolling beat-em-up design and teaches it some new lessons, but not without making a few mistakes of its own.
What immediately stands out about Scott Pilgrim is the irresistible charm that seems to permeate the entire property. Having seen the movie and played through the game, it’s clear videogames are an important part of the franchise, and this is reflected in the downloadable title. From title screen to end credits, the ‘8-bit on steroids’ aesthetic, rockin’ chiptune soundtrack and clever nods to classics of the past would have you believe that it’s the game, itself, that is such a fan of gaming heritage.
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World follows in the vein of Double Dragon, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Arcade and River City Ransom, giving players one job: beat the tar out of everybody on-screen. Similar to another fan favorite, Castle Crashers, Scott Pilgrim also incorporates a leveling system that injects a little RPG into the mix. Experience is awarded for defeating foes, and will accumulate in order to level up your character. In turn, each new level brings a new move to your arsenal. And though it doesn’t do a great job of explaining quite how everything works, players also have the opportunity to use money collected from beating up enemies to buy a myriad of items in the game’s many shops. Snacks, meals, books and other items all help your character regain health or boost their stats.
Unfortunately, a common beat-em-up stigma remains true in Scott Pilgrim. Namely, it’s just not that much fun by yourself. Getting a group of friends together to play will likely provide you with much more enjoyment. Yet that’s also one of the game’s biggest failings. There is no online component to Scott Pilgrim, and in a game like this - which supports up to 4 players - it’s a real shame.
There are a couple more frustrations that really have no place in today games as a whole. There are few things more off-putting than spending 40 minutes or more on a level, and then having to start from the beginning after losing all your lives. More than once this caused my friends and I to exit the game rather than continue playing. Another small oversight comes in that same situation. When playing with friends, players with no lives left will take the form of a ghost and have the opportunity to steal a life from someone else. But even when nobody has any lives left, you may find yourselves all roaming the area as apparitions, waiting for nothing other than to disappear just to be told it’s game over. Why not speed up the process?
Thankfully there are no deal-breakers in Scott Pilgrim. The game becomes more enjoyable as you level-up, even when playing alone. And despite the fact that the same will not hold true for everyone who plays it, seeing as how GameFocus is a Canadian site, it’s pretty cool to see the city of Toronto represented in the virtual world; especially when such iconic cities like Los Angeles, New York and London are so frequently featured in gaming.
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World will run you about $10, or 800 MSP for an approximate 6-hour playthrough. If you enjoy beat-em-ups or old-school gaming at all, you should definitely give it a try. It should be noted that while I completed the Xbox 360 version, I found the PS3’s d-pad offered more precise control.
I get the feeling that Scott Pilgrim is a deliberate three-part experience. Once you’ve been exposed to one of his three platforms (graphic novel, film or videogame), you need to take part in the other two, and Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game only helps prove my theory.
+ Light RPG elements enhance beat-em-up formula
+ Great old-school graphics and soundtrack
- No checkpoints
- Doesn’t explain upgrading mechanics very well
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Release Date : 2010/08/25
System : Xbox 360
Publisher : Ubisoft
Developer : Ubisoft Chengdu
Category : Fighting & Wrestling
ESRB : T
7.0 / 10
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