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Reviewed: Rampage: Total Destruction
Producer: Midway
Required System:  Nintendo Wii
Overall Rating:
Author: Michael Ahlf
Date: December 12th, 2006


One of the oldest, and possibly most fun to play, arcade games I ever encountered was called Rampage. The premise of the game was simple: up to three players teamed up (or not) and took on the role of giant monsters, beating the stuffing out of a town and eating people, food, cars, and anything else they encountered.

As visceral pleasures go, the game still serves today as an example of simple, but fun game design.

The 1997 sequel, World Tour, was more of the same quite literally, but worked just as well. Unfortunately for Midway, by that time many gamers had moved on from the arcades, and the game didn't quite catch on the way they hoped.

Total Destruction is an attempt to revive the franchise; rather than just three characters, Midway's introduced a horde of unlockable crazy movie monster-style characters, as well as a "storyline" involving mad science, greedy corporations, and pretty much any other excuse they can think of to let gigantic mutants loose upon unsuspecting cities.

Graphically, Rampage: Total Destruction is what you'd expect; a 3-D version of a 2-D game. Buildings that existed behind buildings actually exist "behind" buildings, requiring the monsters to walk into the scenery now, though moving in more than about half a city block causes them to reach the invisible wall of the world. Despite this, the character models are decently detailed, as are the various other moving elements of the game; Skyscrapers and buildings tend to be around 20-30 polygons at most, but what do you expect for rectangular buildings?

The real genius for Rampage, and what will call to smaller children, is the controls. The Nunchuck stick is used for character movement, A button for jumping, and attacks are actually done by swinging the Wii remote in smashing or punching motions. It makes for a bit more involved gameplay than the original, though detection of the controls causes the gameplay to move a bit slower than the original title or World Tour.

Bonus pack-ins include the original Rampage as well as World Tour, both enjoyable and still fun today.

For some fun times beating up on buildings and your friends, it's a great title. The only real objection I have is that there aren't more characters available at the start (just the original three), and unlocking the rest requires completing "missions" in certain stages, the targets of which are very easy to miss when more than one person is playing. A fully unlocked title will take longer than it's worth, and has serious potential to make the owner tired of the game before they can get friends over to enjoy the new characters and some random carnage.

Added:  Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Reviewer:  Michael Ahlf
Page: 1/2

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