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PS2 Reviews: Hunter the Reckoning: Wayward


Hunter the Reckoning: Wayward  screenshots


The Final Say!


Hunter the Reckoning: Wayward
 -  reviewed by Tory Favro
Review Score 8/10 
(not based on an average)
Distributed By:
Vivendi Universal

Welcome to the world of White Wolf Publishing, the creators of the Hunter world. For those of you not in the know, this title is the sequel to the mega popular title that graced the XBox not so long ago. A hack 'n slash of the highest order, Wayward will have you mashing and slashing beasties either by yourself or with a friend for hours on end of glorious gore-splattered fun.

Hack slash, hack slash this is all you have to do to get through this game is make sure that you keep on your toes at all times and slash your way through whilst following the mission objectives that are presented during the game to break the monotony of the title. That's right, if you don't like simply belting everything you see you are wasting your time as this is Hunting in it's most pure form and that means killing as much as you can as quickly as you can.

Speaking of killing, the killing looks mighty good in this game, however the sheer amount of stuff happening at any one time results in a fair bit of slowdown on more than one occasion. I'm not sure if this is due to a problem with code or what the case but I sure found it annoying. The amount of detail in this title is impressive however and makes playing the title a pleasure.

Fans of the series of books by White Wolf should be absolutely stoked as this game is picture perfect in matching the guidebooks and other role playing game books. The monsters and weapons look amazing with a level of detail that you can only dream about as is obvious from the screenshots that are to your left.

You can play as one of four characters, although unlike the XBox predecessor, there can only be two people playing at the same time which absolutely floors me that they did not bother with including multitap support for this game. Nothing would have been nicer or more fun for that matter. That was a real strength on the XBox and there really is no excuse for it not being done here as well.

Another thing I noticed and as someone lucky enough to own multiple consoles, I've played the XBox version and to my disappointment, I've noticed that the same environments are in the PS2 version. Now that's just lazy in my books, I could understand it if this was just a port of the first Hunter, however this is meant to be the second in the series and seeing the same areas just made my blood boil. It's not right as far as I am concerned as I know that I am not the only one out there to own more than one console who will feel a bit cheated by this. Fortunately the gameplay in these same locations is made different by the story, however the sense of deja vu is strong and I thought that a bit more thought could have been put into it.

Another thing to be aware of is the fact that there are some real problems with collision detection in the game. Sometimes you'll find that you will hit a dead guy only to find that absolutely nothing has happened to the bad guy which is a real annoyance.  It doesn't happen often and it just seemed to happen when I least needed it to. Overall it isn't to the detriment of the whole game but I had to note it.

The amount of enemies you will encounter is enormous and despite the premise of the general hack and slash, there are a number of ways to get rid of enemies depending on what sort of scum that they are. Casting spells against foes, shooting or swinging a great big bloody sword, the choice is yours and whilst it seemed that all will work, some methods will work better than others.

Having played the previous title on XBox, I noted that this version is more open ended than that title in terms of what the player can choose to do. Instead of being forced to follow a very linear gameplay, you can proceed to certain points and then go to destinations via a hub system. It's a nice innovation and one that certainly appealed to me. Choosing which character you use to play that game will also have a pretty huge effect on your gameplay as they all have certain strengths and weaknesses that can be exploited in different ways.

The title sounds really good and audio suits the genre to a T. Ambient sound increases the tension of gameplay and the sounds of combat are perfect. I found that the regular music tracks and in game fight sounds and atmospheric tracks do the game justice however the spoken word recordings for the characters is pretty poor, which makes for some hard to listen to in game movies.

All things said and done though, Hunter the Reckoning Wayward is a good title that is worth your money and time playing. Despite some of the small glitches in the game, it's a solid release that will have you occupied for hours in some of the nastiest battles that I have played in for some time. The tremendous good in the game certainly outweighs the bad, making this a game that fans are going to love.


- Tory Favro

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