Wot I Think: Deadpool

By John Walker on July 9th, 2013 at 2:00 pm.

I don’t know how far through Deadpool I got. I do know I don’t much care. And it seems fairly evident the game doesn’t care either. I’ve hit a bug, the thought of replaying the level through to see if it doesn’t happen again is too much, and so we’ll call it a day.

Deadpool is an odd character. He exists to spoof the world of Marvel, from within the world of Marvel – an invulnerable arsehole whom none of the other superheroes like, but all too often are stuck with. Complete with multiple personalities all existing concurrently in his head, his primary purpose is to offer meta-commentary on the comics scene, while allowing it to revel in its inherent violence and boobs. As fast as Marvel eats at the Deadpool cake, there it remains in full on the plate before them.

This game incarnation sees developers High Moon attempting to do the same. With the license in their laps, Deadpool sets out to be a meta-commentary on third-person action gaming, while making absolutely no efforts to do anything vaguely interesting with the genre.

It happens every stinking time there’s a spoofing game. “Ha ha, look how we’re doing that annoying thing that’s annoying in games, and saying that it’s annoying!” It seems so many developers labour under the belief that Annoying + Observation Of Annoyance = Hilarity. However, Annoying being the infinite mass it is, anything added to it can only ever equal Annoying. So when Deadpool shouts how annoyed he is that the game is taking place in dreary sewers, that’s the precise moment when it should move on – not a queue for another tedious trawl of levels through the same. (Followed by dank corridors, followed by other dank corridors, followed by more dank corridors.)

It’s tough to balance a character like Deadpool. He’s a dick, so reading about him in comics we at least get a sense of detachment. Actually playing as him brings it a little closer, and could have been handled with a little more finesse. In either direction, really – either allowing the character to face some consequences for his behaviour, or even better, go all-out balls-out disgusting with it, and have him be so morally reprehensible that it becomes grotesquely funny. Instead, here you’re just playing as a cretin who says and does stuff you’ll likely not want to have said or done.

Yes, Deadpool’s a sexist jerk, but do I really need to watch him play “I crush your head” with the breasts of a woman he’s just killed by impaling her on rebar, immediately before referring to her as “hot tits”? It’s worthless. You could go down the line of pointing out that this is objectifying the body of a mutilated woman (following on from half a dozen other comments about her breasts when she was alive), but they have the get-out-of-jail that he’s “meant to be an arsehole”.

The theme continues, with endless close-ups on chests, comments about women’s figures – often disparagingly referring to them as “mannish” and the like – and puerile fantasies of women in bikinis with meticulous physics bouncing their ample bosoms. When Deadpool attempts to ‘motorboat’ such a figure, does it all become fine because it turns out to be a delusion and it’s Cable’s chest he’s waggling his face within? Honestly, the game’s of so little interest I’m finding it hard to care.

The game was listed as console only for most of its development, with a PC version only tacked on right toward the end. Which appears to be the case. Setting up the controls for mouse/keyboard is a farcical mess, requiring you pick letters to assign from a list, rather than just tapping them. Want E or F for Use? Tough. It defaults to, er, U, and you can have R.

Once you’re playing you’ll realise that there’s really no choice but plugging in a 360 controller, as there has been no effort to adjust things to play without one. You’re clearly meant to be struggling with the deliberately odd targeting anyway, the mouse removing an element of how it’s meant to be played.

Oh, and just to confirm that, during the tutorial Deadpool is supposed to be confused with learning the controls. Looking for help amongst his personalities, one responds that he can’t help because, “I only play PC games.” Smooth.

The game itself is clippy and buggy. Deadpool grips to doorways like they’re magnetic, while invisible walls in front of corridors and paths cause you to pop madly about the screen. The mission I reached had me clearing out yet another dull arena of its spawning identi-enemies, so when one of the bigger bads got stuck behind a wall the game wouldn’t let me kill it, nor move on. And I’d yet to experience anything to give me any motivation to care about that.

But it’s not a terrible third-person action game. It’s a mediocre one. Your ability pool grows as you spend XP on it, letting you increase your range of weapons and skills, and indeed combos. It mixes ranged and melee combat pretty neatly, which at least provides a glimmer of variation in its woefully repetitive scenes. Bug free, probably on a console, I can see that someone could plough their way through it without wanting to sever off an arm. But when the issues do come in, there’s just nothing there mechanically to inspire you to get past it. And there’s plenty there aesthetically to ensure you don’t want to.

Jokes often wildly miss. Very early on the game suddenly goes to a weird facsimile of 8-bit gaming because Deadpool spent too much budget on the explosions in the previous level. For a few seconds. And then you’re running around dreary sewers again. It comes and goes without meaning, and doesn’t do anything with the idea while it’s briefly there. Let alone the tangling confusion of the game’s developers not being able to control what the central character does in the world. Oh, and while we’re pointing out issues, how about the one where we’re playing an invulnerable character who can survive having his own head chopped off in a cutscene, who somehow runs out of health and dies when we’re in control?

What should be the best feature – the direct interaction between the protagonist and the voice of the developers he’s blackmailing into making the game about him – is disappointingly delivered. A great deal has gone into excellently motion capturing Deadpool’s movement, dances, even singing, but the gags they’re supplying aren’t particularly funny, and perhaps more importantly when trying to get all meta-meta, aren’t at all clever or interesting. In the end it doesn’t reach higher than, “Oh, the character is talking to the developer, that’s a nice idea.” There are moments here and there – a hand-made cutscene using dolls and cotton wool is briefly fun, if not actually funny – but for the most part, for all its puff, you’re just kicking baddies in a grey room.

And oddly, that’s Deadpool’s main problem. It’s unpleasantly foul, while not being interestingly offensive. It’s not especially funny, although isn’t knuckle-chewingly unfunny. It has a bunch of interesting ideas, even if it does very little with them. Ultimately, the issue with Deadpool is that it’s a bit of a dull action game, no matter the hits and misses going on around it. And in a universe that’s now as much as 30% action games, you have to be better than dull. What’s unforgivable, however, is your game’s central character pointing out that it’s dull as you play.

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Top comments

  1. rustybroomhandle says:

    Now where’s mah Squirrel Girl game?

    I’d imagine it to be a brawler with some Overlord-style minion-commanding thrown in.

  1. Captain Hijinx says:

    Someone give John a review of something he might actually enjoy. It’s breaking my heart. What are they doing to you over there Walker?

  2. RedViv says:

    Moderately enjoyable, sad to hear that the PC port is so shoddy, humour is subjective and I’d argue on the self-awareness, ‘pool did not impale Arclight himself (more of a freak accident).

    Oh, and the game is really really really short (took me five hours, I think, and then there are some challenge levels), so I would not recommend it at full price in any way.

  3. Utsunomiya says:

    Well, it’s a licensed-cash-in-trash-game-thingy.
    Did someone really expected anything else.

    • snappycakes says:

      The Transformers games by the same developer were pretty good for tie-in games. Stayed very true to their source material.

      I had a look at Deadpool and it definitely seems like one of those games to get on sale. Can’t believe Activision put the PC preorder on Steam up at £40.

    • Thants says:

      The X-Men Origins: Wolverine cash-in-game-thingy was fun.

  4. Jekhar says:

    “It happens every stinking time there’s a spoofing game. “Ha ha, look how we’re doing that annoying thing that’s annoying in games, and saying that it’s annoying!” ”

    Pretty much what i thought while playing the Bard’s Tale remake. It was funny at first when the jokes were still fresh and came quickly after one another. But then it just became more and more like the games it supposedly set out to spoof.

    • LionsPhil says:

      I’m trying to think which games have actually done spoofing of games well. I’m sure there have been some.

      I guess Portal 2′s first few moments touched on it a little, but it’s not a spoof game at heart at all.

  5. Crosmando says:

    I think Marvel comic-book characters are lame and every time the Yanks try and make them look cool and “in” they just look lamer.

  6. GameCat says:

    “misogyny”
    Oh God, not again.

    • iyokus says:

      Yes, again. And again and again and again until people understand, and change their behaviour.

      • Haysoos says:

        Does that mean we can’t have intentionally distasteful media anymore?

        • jedoran says:

          Sure we can. But it’s better when it’s funny and a bit clever (South Park – YMMV), than just there for the sake of it (this).

        • GameCat says:

          Are you nuts? From now on, ALL fictional characters must be vegan pacifist that doesn’t support sex* before marriage and have sense of political corectness.
          There aren’t any poor people anymore. All of them are “not economicaly viable”, otherwise you’re just poor-phobic dick. Deal with it.

          *Sorry, it should be called “intercourse”.

          • shagohad says:

            sometimes on the internet I just cant get a picture of what a person would be like in real life, because I really have never met people so ignorant and wonder if they are just fictional internet personas

          • iucounu says:

            1) This is the oddest spoof of PC attitudes I’ve read for a long time. Premarital sex is non-PC? People who are politically correct call poor people ‘not economically viable’? Eh? I think you have your prejudices confused.

            2) Political correctness doesn’t mandate that every character be a stereotypical liberal asshole straw man out of a Richard Littlejohn attack column, you know.

          • JamesTheNumberless says:

            He’s just at that age where he’s angry, but he’s not sure at what, or why.

          • Makariel says:

            Not sure if that was supposed to be funny or a statement of opinion?

          • Snidesworth says:

            There’s a difference between calling something out as being shit and saying that it’s not allowed. Just because someone expresses dislike for something that you enjoy doesn’t mean that they’re trying to ban or censor it.

            Also whoop whoop strawmen.

          • kleptonin says:

            More like GameTwat

          • GameCat says:

            It was supposed to be funny(probably failed to do it, nvm)/sarcastic and with little (or maybe more than little) dose of personal opinion.

            But I just don’t get it. Deadpool was intentionaly written as stupid prick wannabe superhero.
            He is so hilarious that he can’t be taken seriously. So any rambling about how he is so “that M word” is just funny.

            “GameTwat”
            You should be ashamed of yourself.

      • DarthBenedict says:

        So forever, then?

      • RedViv says:

        I’d argue that the BEST game about this could have been a Deadpool one, simply through what John so alludes to – make it so outrageously over-the-top (read: equalling low-rage MRA Reddit posts) that you can only shake your head at it. The game doesn’t linger on the moments when DP is so really really stupid, which is a bit sad. Mostly because the game is so short that even that kind of stretching of awareness in the writing would be warranted and effective.

      • JamesTheNumberless says:

        We should keep on being misogynistic until people stop treating women as human beings??

        • RobinOttens says:

          Exactly. A noble goal if ever I saw one.

          • The Random One says:

            Our goal: to be so horribly offensive to women that even the staunchest MRA douchebag will look at us and, weeping, mumble “that’s not cool, dude. Women are people too, aight?”

          • Cunning Linguist says:

            Only women have the right to say if women are people or not.

      • Fred S. says:

        Because being annoying and boring are so edgy and progressive.

      • Cunning Linguist says:

        Behaviour isn’t changed like that.

    • Mr.Bats says:

      This might be a good time for Mr. John and y’all to look up misoginy in the dictionary.

      • Strabo says:

        The irony….

      • Lacessit says:

        Gee thanks fella, you broke my stupidometer. Have you got any idea what those things cost?

      • Mr.Bats says:

        I’m sure English not being my first language and half spelling it like in my native language should be punishable by death.

        That doesn’t detract from the point, though.

        • twig_reads says:

          Well, if you criticize someone for not taking their time to know what something is, and then you’re not looking up things youself, that IS irony. It just is, you can’t just hide behind “I’m foreigner, so I get a free pass”.

          FYI, I’m also not a native english speaker and that’s why I looked up to be sure if I wrote “criticize” correctly. And you know, at first I did spell it wrongly. But I looked it up as I didn’t want to be a hypocrite.

          • Mr.Bats says:

            @Mike2R: Astounding.

            @twig_reads: You see, I speak and write in english everyday. I no longer (not that I even did it back then) use the dictionary as normally I don’t need to. Sometimes, these accidents happen, especially if the word is dangerously similar to the spanish one; shame on me.

            I don’t think you should compare an englishman wrongly using a strong word and aggravating the blatant and wide misuse of said word this days, to someone who changes a “y” for an “i” as is accustomed to read “misoginia” and not “misogyny”.

            Calling a sexist misogynyst is quite the leap.

            P.S: And no, I didn’t check the dictionary. So sue me :)

          • Eddy9000 says:

            I don’t want to sue you, just laugh at you for telling someone to look up a word in the dictionary before spelling it wrong yourself. Normally I’d be sympathetic towards the possibility that English might not be someone’s first language, but again…dictionary.

          • Mr.Bats says:

            @Eddy9000 You do understand meaning and spelling are not the same thing, right? You also understand that I’m not to be measured by the same standards an english speaker should? Right?

    • quijote3000 says:

      Probably Walker head that there was a character being sexist, and he demanded to make the review of the game, because he has this terribly urgent need to overdo it every single time he can.

      He actually complained about a single consensual sex scene in Far cry 3: blood dragon. Not even FOX News do that anymore

    • misterT0AST says:

      “Again” implies a period when it stopped.

    • mike2R says:

      If it really wasn’t an issue (and I thought it wasn’t when RPS started banging this drum), it would just get ignored. It doesn’t because it is.

      People who get actually angry about it need to ask themselves why. I’m sure you are capable of not reading articles that bore you, or skim-reading over paragraphs that do the same. I bet there’s other content on this site which bores you as much as MMOs and the latest kickstarter stuff does me, and you skip it without even thinking.

      • Vermintide says:

        Uh oh… I’m getting involved again. Either way this immature, hasty MSPaint comic does a good job of summing it up. We’ve already been through wether it is legitimate for young male gamers to feel “threatened” by gaming feminism, but in a society where virtually all other traditionally male institutions are crumbling, their feelings do have some degree of validity.

        http://imgur.com/YOhkyCx

        Personally I don’t see why we can’t have games that are marketed to men, thus containing guns, rock music and tits; as well as games marketed to women that have… I dunno, things women like- My point is I won’t be offended if a game marketed towards women had casual sexismand objectification of men, like female-audience TV shows and films do. The third path would be games marketed to a universal audience which is moderate and inoffensive, which we can all agree would make gaming a more enlightened and progressive hobby; just perhaps a tragically boring one if ALL games were to be so.

        I feel that the average gaming journalist (Richard Cobett comes to mind especially) have this very patronising stance that we must all take up the fight- Those poor feminists wouldn’t be able to do it on their own! I consider women my equals IRL, therefore they are every bit as acceptable a target of cheap, tastless humour as men are. This applies to racism and gayism too. I appreciate that people’s hearts are in the right place on this, they are just somewhat short sighted and idealistic in my opinion.

        “If you are offended by any word in any language, it’s probably because your parents were unfit to raise a child.”- Doug Stanhope

        • zenjestre says:

          i want to hug you so bad for expressing my sentiments better than i probably could have.

          women and men, we’re all just humen and we all have differences and some of us are better at some things and worse at others and it is a very good thing that we have these differences or the world would be boring.

          i recognize that there is a serious problem of sexism in the game industry, very similar in fact to every damn other industry in history, and it should change. people are equal, and need to be treated as such.

          but for god’s sake don’t take away my tits and explosions. WHAT IS LIFE if there aren’t any tits and explosions at all?

          if you want equality, lets attack censorship and get more dicks in games. i’m serious about that. put as many dicks in there as you want, just don’t take away the tits.

          this sounds pretty crass now i think about it. sorry, guy above me. i cheapened it.

          • jrodman says:

            Always strange to read the het male idea about what’s hot about males.
            Lots of dicks would be .. something.

          • ffordesoon says:

            Nobody will take away your tits and explosions. The only thing that’s needed is a broadening of the palette. I like tits and explosions too, in isolation.

            Here, I’ll make it easy for you. You know Cho Aniki? Those really weird Japanese shooters where you, like, fight giant phalluses and naked, flexing men by firing sweat from your rippling biceps at them?

            You may not. I am shit at XHTML, but just copy-paste “Cho Aniki” into Google or Youtube and you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about.

            You done? Okay, so:

            Men can laugh at those games, because all games aren’t like that. Whereas, for female gamers, basically every game is a Cho Aniki game. Some games are gritty Cho Aniki reboots, and some games are typical Cho Aniki, but most of the games that get coverage look about as dumb to female gamers as Cho Aniki does to us.

            Now, if every single game looked like Cho Aniki to you, it’d get pretty old pretty quick, right? If there were decades of nothing but Cho Aniki games, you’d be pretty irritated, right? Because you’d want to play something, anything else. You’d be like, “I enjoy these Cho Aniki games for what they are, but do they have to be so hideously pervasive?” You might even get annoyed that there were no games where dudes weren’t flexing, naked objects.

            Now imagine you tried to talk about making some games that weren’t Cho Aniki games on the internet, and the few people who listened to you derided your idea of non-Cho Aniki games as impossible because they “wouldn’t sell,” or because there were “plenty” (read: three) of games where you played as clothed men, or whatever. Imagine you had to fight an uphill battle for decades just to secure a small and very provisional place at the table for your “crazy” non-Cho Aniki ideas. Imagine recieving death threats for expressing your ideas in any forum whatsoever.

            There. A small taste of what it’s like to speak out against sexism in games. Do you see the problem now?

          • zenjestre says:

            i am also not good at internetting, i don’t know how to respond to the feller what responded to me, but i am responding to ffordesoon.

            i do understand the problem with sexism in game culture. it exists! it shoudn’t! we can all agree on this concept.

            what i am saying, and mind you i am only just realizing this pretty much as i type it, but it is a philosophy i have always agreed with, is that passive resistance and snarky commentary is a tactic that achieves us nothing. do we want to see equality in games? fine. let’s have equality. dem titties is not something that’s going away- they are, apparently, a staple of the industry, and also apparently, they are something many of us do not want to see leave. so there they are and that’s that and whether we want we want them to go away is immaterial because I, and others, do NOT want them to go away, and you would have to have some pretty fucking good arguments to impinge on my personal freedoms that way, but, meanwhile, let’s cheapen the whole concept of titty exploitation and start exploiting those dicks.

            important note: yes, me being valued strictly for my body is entirely different from a woman being valued strictly for her body. i don’t know how, because the feminists haven’t explained that to me yet, but when somebody wants to talk to me solely because of the awesomeness of my dick, then that is definitely sexist. if i want sex from that person, then that is a good thing! if i don’t, which is probably far more common, then it is also a good thing, but in a different way! because that person has demonstrated to me what it is that they value in my company, and if that is something other than what i desire from them in terms of mutual valuation, then i have been given a useful filing tool. i know that this person is ‘irrelevant’ as regards my day to day affairs, and i will from this point treat them as befits such a category.

            and since i consider ‘women’ to be equally as ‘human’ as myself, only with a different set of sexual genitalia and cultural upbringing and literally no other distinction, then i also trust those women to have the intelligence to treat ridiculous valuation in the same way i do. which is to say, if you like me for something i don’t want you to like me for, i don’t have to pay attention to you. this is exactly why i don’t read certain books, or watch certain movies, or play certain games. not because i have a sociopolitical aversion to them, but because they simply don’t interest me. offense doesn’t even enter the picture. don’t pay attention to what offends you.

            the problem as i ‘think?’ we both see it is that the games industry, apparently unlike any other form of media entertainment? is statistically MORE sexist than any other. i guess. and that doesn’t seem fair. so we all want that to go away, and for all things to be equal.

            but you don’t fight a fucking nazi occupation with flowers in their gunbarrels. you fight it with molotov cocktails. enough of these passive aggressive reviews, take to the streets with a lead pipe and GET WHAT YOU WANT you whining nancies. sexism? inequality? fight it. LITERALLY. actually throw a punch and fight this shit.

            i don’t have a problem with people wanting equality. i have a big problem with people expecting ME to care about THEIR feelings. i’m not offended by this stuff. you are. your feelings aren’t mine. i say, get what you want! more power to you! i morally support you in this goal.

            but holy shit stop whining about it and just DO something already.

            edited addendum: this whole ‘games industry is rife with sexism’ topic is pretty much a year old. i’m not saying there isn’t any validity to it. i just feel like a huge amount of this controversy is bandwagon me-tooism. and frankly, if you people actually cared about this shit you wouldn’t only just now start getting all pissy about it. it’s been there for long enough that y’all should have been pissed off LONG ago.

          • Cunning Linguist says:

            Dicks being squeezed by tits.

        • Sian says:

          I think the reactions are so strong right now because most games don’t represent women at all. You rarely get a strong female protagonist in a character-focused game, and in other games, women are mostly skimpily dressed gazebait. I think if there were more games with, to pinch your word here, a more enlightened portrayal of women, there could still be a market for male-oriented games.

          That said, there are quite a few women who enjoy both guns and rock music, so we needn’t lose those aspects of gaming at all.

        • ffordesoon says:

          I don’t get it. The comic, I mean.

          So because the male character complied with the female character’s demands instead of resisting them in any way, shape, or form, we now have a series of YouTube videos examining sexist tropes in video games that no man has to watch ever?

          1. Why is that bad?

          2. If any of that shit “she” (which is to say, he) got rid of was that important to the male character, why didn’t he say, “I know it might seem silly to you, but I’d really like to keep [such-and-such], because it’s important to me,” rather than just take it? Or perhaps they could have worked out some sort of compromise that was mutually equitable for both parties.

          Instead, he’s a spineless wimp who’s angry at her for “taking things away” from him, when all she did was say she didn’t like certain choices he made. He’s the one who meekly complied with nary a grunt of protest. He’s the one who didn’t assert himself, and yet she gets the blame for assuming he didn’t care enough about any of that stuff to keep it. She didn’t have to coerce him at all. Any resentment he’s nursing is misdirected self-loathing. There was no power taken away from him in any situation.

          3. If the reason why he never spoke up is because he wanted to sleep with her, well, that in and of itself is sexist behavior, not to mention the foundation of an unhealthy relationship. He doesn’t value her, he values what she can do for him, and tolerates her and her demands to get to it. When he finally speaks up, the implication being that it’s “no longer worth it,” he is simply choosing to exercise a power he already had. The “crime” she committed was expressing her opinion as if it had equal value to his. Which is no crime.

          4. She stops talking [i]as soon as he says something[/i], which means he she would have listened to him – or at least stopped talking – if he had voiced an opinion contrary to hers. And yet she is painted as the villain for speaking her mind in a way of which he does not expressly approve. That’s a pretty sexist implication, isn’t it?

          5. I suppose the intended takeaway is supposed to be that video games used to be a man’s escape from his nagging wife, but that now video games are being invaded by women who speak their mind about certain aspects of gaming they don’t like.

          That such a scenario is presented as a bad thing is somewhat silly, isn’t it? There’s not even a little bit of ambiguity there?

          6. The female character is not a character, but a strawman. She is given no nuance or dimension whatsoever. she isn’t even allowed to directly interact with the objects she finds offensive. It’s a peculiar form of objectification, but it’s still objectification.

          What is this strip meant to prove?

          • Dominic White says:

            I think the ‘joke’ is that women are supposed to be irrational and controlling and will ruin everything men have ever held dear.

            The punchline is that there are people who actually believe that. Probably including the creator of the comic.

          • Sian says:

            I think what the “comic” “artist” (come on, it’s stick figures!) wants to express is that he feels that women are taking away the things “we” like in videogames. It has nothing to do with her invading his last retreat, it’s just her nagging about it until the stuff she doesn’t approve of is gone.

            Note that I do not share this view, I’m merely trying to explain what I think is the message of this “comic”.

        • Snidesworth says:

          I can understand the sentiment of that comic, but it pitches the situation as a boys vs girls issue where the mean girls are trying to take away the boys’ toys because they’ve got different tastes. Which it really isn’t; it’s about people taking issue with the general presentation of women in video games. To use the same example the comic does, Tropes vs Women isn’t trying to morph video games into something fundamentally different, it’s about pointing out that the depiction of female characters in them is shoddy for the most part.

          It’s not a matter of different genders having different tastes either. There are plenty of women who like guns, rock and (in some cases) tits, just like there are plenty of men who don’t care for those things. Catering to them doesn’t mean tearing down the foundations of the explosive action romp genre, just making sure that the role of women within the genre amounts to more than things to be ogled at. There’s also plenty of men who like to enjoy that sort of game and aren’t keen on the objectification either. John, for example.

          You seem to be viewing this as a man vs woman fight, with the whole line about men patronisingly helping out feminists because they can’t do it themselves. Which, again, it isn’t. The girls aren’t trying to ruin the boys’ fun. People are just asking that games be less demeaning and exclusionary.

          • Vermintide says:

            You misunderstood- I meant it was patronising towards women, because women ARE prefectly capable of doing things on their own.

          • Snidesworth says:

            I understood what you meant, but voicing such opinions isn’t “doing women’s job for them.” It’s not saying “stand aside ladies, I’ll carry that banner for you.” It’s saying “I think this is crap.” When those journalists you’ve mentioned have called for people speak up it’s to encourage them to voice their opinions instead of keeping quiet for whatever reasons.

          • zenjestre says:

            to snidesworth:

            editorial opinions are shitty journalism.

            people should be encouraged to say what they think. but they should not be encouraged to leap onto the writer’s subjective opinion. was there objectification of women in deadpool? clearly! was there objectification of men in the same game? almost certainly! but john didn’t mention any of that bit, and i find that to be rather unlikable, coming from somebody so superficially concerned with ‘equality.’

            if people want to take a stand, raise awareness and fight for equality, that implies true, neutral and objective equality for all represented categories. you don’t get to bitch about what personally offends you and totally ignore what may offend others. i mean, yea, you CAN. but you shouldn’t. not if you value journalistic integrity.

          • Nogo says:

            zenjestre: It’s really dumb to make an argument based on “I assume this is in here despite having no evidence!”

            Just sayin’

          • Vermintide says:

            As opposed to what feminists do? Just sayin’.

            I mean, take for example the example the guy stated above about all games being like Cho Aniki… Holy false equivalence batman. I mean, I knew this industry had a problem with sexism, but I didn’t realise everything I’ve played in the past 20 years was actually a hentai game.

        • jrodman says:

          Yes. I’m a man, which is why i like guns, rock music, and tits.

          Wait, no, I don’t like any of those things.

          I guess your simplistic worldviews are just wrong.

          • Vermintide says:

            Then what DO you like? Cocks? In your bum?

            Because I mean, there’s nothing wrong with that, just… You know. Your argument is sorta self defeating in that case.

          • LennyLeonardo says:

            Weird how Vermintide’s username seems to give shape to the apparent influx of bigots to this site.

          • zenjestre says:

            i really am sorry in advance for this one.

            in ‘tarzan of the apes,’ the first in the famous adventure series, the titular hero’s favorite pastime was lynchings. he would seek out and hang the black tribesmen who roamed the jungle, simply because they were there. along with many other things, this was a pretty glaringly racist thing to have in a simple adventure novel.

            but, if we don’t forgive it, we at least forgot it, because there was enough there in that material to take enjoyment away from. times have changed, and that shit definitely wouldn’t fly anymore, not these days.

            so the misogyny thing is also an issue of the times, and these times, they will change. considering the state of the industry and all the hullabaloo concerning this topic that has cropped up recently, i’d say they’re changing pretty damn quick and we’ll see the end of all this sexism in, what, like about 2 or 3 years would be my guess.

            it might take a while to see the fruits but the enlightened have won (or to be accurate, are winning). horray! now be quiet and blow up some tits in front of me because that is what i like.

          • Vermintide says:

            Welp, I’m a bigot apparently.

            I only asked a question. If the chap doesn’t like female mammary glands then he might very well have a preference for the male copulatory organ, it’s not that much of a stretch. Who are you to say he can’t?

          • jrodman says:

            Because “gay men aren’t men” is really open minded?

          • J-Spoon says:

            Yes, you are a bigot. We can move on now.

          • jorygriffis says:

            Yeah, you are, and if you hadn’t already proven it, you definitely have now.

  7. Gesadt says:

    might this be one of those whatchamacallit,.. shit games?

  8. Danda says:

    John Walker is definitely not the right person to review this game.

    • Squirrelfanatic says:

      I guess it’s a good thing then that this is a Wot I Think. And the statement made in the article couldn’t be clearer.

      • Ninja Foodstuff says:

        I don’t think it’s fair to wave this off as a “non-review” and then have a “review” tag at the bottom of the post.

        But on the other hand, it seems perfectly reasonable to me to call something a review that’s entirely unbalanced and opinion-based.

        • Jim Rossignol says:

          Wot I Think’s are definitely reviews. The point is that we are honest about what a ludicrously subjective thing a review by a single person actually is, hence the name.

        • shagohad says:

          they way to find game reviews you can trust is read a couple of reviews of games you loved and games you hated and see what the reviewer said.

          to just blindly trust reviewers is silly, I find I prefer honest opinion to just arbitrary scoring, so yeah like Jim said, they are reviews, and like any review it requires the participation of you’re own opinion

          • Ninja Foodstuff says:

            But I also think you can disagree with reviews and still respect the reviewer. My experience of 400 Days, for example, couldn’t have been more different from Nathan’s, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to write off everything he says from now on.

            Likewise, there are some games that I’ve enjoyed and subsequently read reviews for which made me consider things I wouldn’t have otherwise, such as the Scientific Gamer review of Max Payne 3, which was a little bit like pulling back the curtain for me.

            My point is, a “review” does not have to mean the same thing as “tell me what to think about this”

          • InternetBatman says:

            Conversely, you can agree with a review and still come off hating the reviewer. That’s why I stopped reading IGN way back in the day.

          • shagohad says:

            yeah i think we are agreeing, thats what I mean by you’re opinion is a participant to a review, everything you read in media has a bias, people seem to forget that sometimes

          • The Random One says:

            A good review is one that makes you know whether or not you’ll enjoy the game even if you would disagree with the review.

    • John Walker says:

      Who is then? I’m a fan of Marvel comics, a fan of third-person act games, and a big fan of fourth-wall-breaking ideas. This is just not a very good action game, as the text says.

      • analydilatedcorporatestyle says:

        Do you keep said Marvel comics of which you are a fan in plastic bags, pristine?

        The answer to this question is important!

        • John Walker says:

          Nope, as it would make my Android hard to use : )

          • analydilatedcorporatestyle says:

            Thank fuck for that! I read with my fingers(and eyes) a series of Alan Moore and David Lloyd comics owned by a exhousemate back in 1990, still to this day not forgotten/forgiven. Sort of a Vendetta, mind he has thousands of of the fuckers all in plastics bags, worth a fortune (to sad fucks who collect comics). I myself have my set of Freak Brothers replete with pinhole burns!

    • fish99 says:

      You might have a point if other reviewers were saying Deadpool is great, but they aren’t. 63 on metacritic.

    • realmenhuntinpacks says:

      You know John loved Saint’s Row 3rd, right? It’s not like the man can’t enjoy tasteless mayhem.

    • quijote3000 says:

      I don’t mind him reviewing this game, because, frankly, Deadpool is not a good game.

      I’m worried that if a game like Mass Effect came out today (improved graphics, and all that), 2013-John Walker would be the person chosen by Fox News to call it “a porn simulator”.

        • quijote3000 says:

          “Wot I Think: Mass Effect 2, By John Walker on February 9th, 2010″

          That’s why I said “2013 John Walker”. He wasn’t obsessed with driving a point home as he is now.

          • Chris D says:

            There are fourteen paragraphs in this review. John talks about sexism in two of them.

            He’s not obsessed with driving a point home. Some people are so intent on not hearing anything at all about these issues that paradoxically it becomes all they can see.

          • Nogo says:

            I’ve seen a comment on here where someone said “thanks John, you’re pretty much the only person that mentions this stuff in reviews, and it happens to be important to me.”

            Don’t you want that person to have continued happiness at such a small cost, quijote?

          • jorygriffis says:

            Really well said, Nogo. Thank you.

  9. Haysoos says:

    John Walker and a game about a douchey womanizer do not go together in any way.

    • c-Row says:

      Next thing, they will let vegans do reviews of steak house meals.

      • RedViv says:

        Well, they do seem to have some spice-hating pasty bloke over on some U.S. food competition show right now. But that’s Yanky reality TV, so who knows.

        • JamesTheNumberless says:

          Spice haters are the worst kind of pasty bloke

          • BooleanBob says:

            I thought it was the ones who put Cornish in one end and fruit pie mixture in the other.

          • JamesTheNumberless says:

            Cornish what? ice-cream? Surfboards?…. The language?

            EDIT: Actually a pasty which starts off as a delicious fruity snack and ends with you feeling the overwhelming urge to chase English people off of your land in a combine harvester, sounds like a great idea.

      • shagohad says:

        well that doesn’t really make any sense, John played the game so he can tell us its shit, vegans wouldn’t eat the steak so why would you read the review?

        watched a trailer for this a while back and saw a review like this coming, it looked like shit and wasn’t funny

    • twig_reads says:

      And yet the main thing I get from John’s review is that the game is really just a mediocre 3rd person action-game, where the crude humor doesn’t elevate it to anything special (because even crude humor needs effort, just being crass or random does not make comedy gold but a cheap attempt at it a la the “movie”-spoofs). While the very same John finds that the crude humor suits Saints Row 3 fine. So maybe remove the bias agaisnt John next time and actually read the review and the arguments for and against the game?

    • Nogo says:

      So you’re saying he actually enjoyed the game-breaking bugs and terrible controls but his bias clouded his judgement?

  10. MeestaNob says:

    It’s a real shame they mucked this up, I was looking forward to it (even though I should have known better).

  11. skyturnedred says:

    This game is so mediocre in every possible way I just got sad playing it.

  12. rustybroomhandle says:

    Now where’s mah Squirrel Girl game?

    I’d imagine it to be a brawler with some Overlord-style minion-commanding thrown in.

  13. Deadend says:

    It’s a really boring game.
    With the worst camera since 2005. Seriously, it’s ridiculous, can’t even see most of the guys I’m fighting, it’s the exact opposite of Arkham City.
    Actually good summary: It’s the exact opposite of Arkham City, except it’s just as funny.

    The game can’t decide if Deadpool is supposed to be cool or stupid. The best scenes involve Cable, because he’s a straight Man for Deadpool to play off of.
    But almost the entire game is spent alone in dark areas and broken sewers of Genosha, a location that isn’t really that interesting.

    I mean, Deadpool is a Merc, he can get hired to kill/attack people all over the world, instead the entire game is spent in basically 1 location.

    It’s shitty, and I also think that High Moon’s Transformer games were pretty shitty as well. Boring corridor crawls with bad layouts and boring combat.

  14. sirflimflam says:

    I don’t really get why Walker is reviewing the Deadpool game. Honestly it seems kind of like asking a devout christian to become Satan for a few hours and begin torturing the souls of the damned.

  15. Alextended says:

    Sexism is only important enough to be offended (enough to critically write about it) by when in something of higher (personal or general) interest? Hmm. Hopefully not just because of hit potential.

    • jorygriffis says:

      Are you fucking with us? There have been tons of posts specifically about issues of sex and gender on this site. Comments like yours were stuck to the undersides of every one of those, too.

  16. K4S3 says:

    I’m not even going to touch the whole “waah, this guy is the wrong guy to review this” thing going on here. My thoughts on the game:

    Maybe I’m lucky for not being very familiar with the comic character; this was basically my first time in Deadpool’s puerile little mind. But for my (probably too much) money, the game was fun, and even genuinely funny. I even LOLed, if you understand that my usage of the term is the standard “a sudden puff of air out of my nose while the corner of my mouth twitched a little (actually, I think that that’s internet-speak for ROLFing; I’m not up on my nerdmenclature)”. Yes, the levels are shit-dull, yes the enemies are just pallette-swapped cannon fodder, fucking YES the whole endgame grind is fucking bullshit. I will NEVER defend the whole insanely popular “durr, ya gotta just turn yer brain off an’ enjoy it” position, but I guess it applies in this case. After stellar titles in recent months like “The Last of Us” (no PS3, haven’t played it, leave me alone) and “Bioshock Infinite” (*cough* read my review on IHC *cough*) pushing the envelope in terms of story and presentation, this game is firmly set in ‘popcorn’ territory, and anyone hoping for more is judging it by the wrong criteria.

  17. Tomo says:

    Well, John is my favourite and you’re all meanies!

    Seriously though, I found this to be an eloquent dissection of what looks like a steaming turd of a videogame.

  18. InternetBatman says:

    I think Deadpool just isn’t a great solo protagonist for a videogame. He’s a commentary on the marvel universe, an intentionally thin shell. As such, he works better when he has people to play off. I would welcome seeing him in a game with a bunch of comicbook heroes, because he would be a great way to play off the dissonance caused by gameplay mechanics and characterization.

    Imagine this scene. The Macguffin Corporation has invented a cure to superpowers, and everyone is investigating. Cable hacks into their systems to download all the data about it, playing a neat game where he goes into the internet. When he enters the building he methodically grabs keycards to open doors, etc. Spiderman watches the building, and sneaks in through the roof and stealths around guards and vents. The X-men end up finding and fighting a giant robot while minimizing damage. Deadpool just cuts down low-health, low-accuracy security guards, blows up the doors in his way, steals the cure, and then takes a dump where it used to be. It’s crude, it’s stupid, and it effectively satirizes all the characters.

    Also, the womanizer aspect of Deadpool is relatively new, and supposed to be at most Leisure Suit Larry slapstick.

  19. DestructibleEnvironments says:

    For one thing, they should not have hired the writer Daniel Way. The guy responsible for making Deadpool an ADHD-ridden teenager from 4chan.

  20. Vermintide says:

    I played a bit of this one one of those TV video box thingies, and I didn’t think it as bad by any means. Uninspired and pretty derivative sure, but not deserving of the scorn I knew it would be getting on pretentious comment threads like this.

    I guess it’s a lot like W40K: Space Marine. If you’re a fan of the franchise it’s based on, you’ll geat a real kick out of it. If you’re not, you can safely pass over it as another generic shooty punch waste of time, and should simply ignore it until something you like comes out. Not that you can’t still score Internet Points by bitching how typically testosterone fuelled it is and why that’s a Very Bad Thing, of course.

    • twig_reads says:

      What scorn? John just said that the game is mediocre and when there are plenty of 3rd person action games being mediocre is a waste. And from the comments I see that they say the same, that it’s just lackluster, mediocre, I’m not seeing anyone damning the game.

      But don’t worry, I’m sure there are plenty of “Internet Points” for acting like a tough cool guy and looking down on people who think pointless sexism (as in, it’s not something clever, it’s just done for cheap attention) should be pointed out. I’m sure you can look cool and clever that way, don’t give up on that dream!

      • Vermintide says:

        Now now. It would be easy to bait me into a cycle of sarcastic one-up manship; but not this ti- FUCK

        • twig_reads says:

          Just that thing mentioning sexism is more or less one sentence, there’s a whole lot more to this review, but somehow you singled out that people who don’t like the game have problem with testosterone in games? (And I still don’t get why GUNS! TITS! XLPOSIONS! is considered manly, it’s more juvenile then manly). So a whole long explanation about this game being poor both in technical level AND as a meta-gaming piece was nothing, you found the thing that matters: John Walker is a pussy and that’s why he doesnt liek Deadpool? Come on, that’s as ridiculous as those who claimed that “if you don’t liek DNF then you’re jsut not manly enough”.

          • jrodman says:

            Is this reply in the correct location?

            This makes me wish for a minigame where we get to re-arrange RPS conversations for comedic effect.

  21. Pich says:

    It’s fucking Waypool, what did you expect?

  22. Stellar Duck says:

    Interestingly, I read this article on my phone at first, not being signed in.

    Reading it now, while signed in, I notice that most of the people who I earlier read complaining about Mr. Walkers thoughts are actually blocked. I’ve only blocked people on the posts Walker has made about women and gaming. Fancy that. Same bunch of people throwing a fit over a review of a meh game that has some weird depictions of women. I’m positively shocked.

  23. MajorManiac says:

    Shame about the game as I do like a good 3rd person super-hero bish ‘em up.

    I also think John is the best of a group of amazing writers.

    • K4S3 says:

      I think… um, I think that’s a pretty…different genre from this game. Lots of lithe, androgynous young men lightly slapping each other with bouquets of flowers: pretty different from ‘Deadpool’.
      :P

  24. blackmyron says:

    bad console port – that pretty much says everything I need to know about the game and whether or not to purchase it.

  25. Megakoresh says:

    Can someone please make sure that John reviews Civ games or Simulators or Historical Strategies? Wot is the point of “Wot I think?” if the person who writes is already against the product, huh? It’s like giving Duke Nukem 3D to my grandmother to play and asking if she finds it funny.

    There’s Borderlands or that Duke Nukem 3D game or, hell, even Serious Sam, which are all funny and good games that this guy will smear. If someone gave me a Card Game to write about, I, even though I am not a professional journalist, would refuse. It’s simple responsibility. You are turning people away from the game because you don’t like the style.

    Wot do I think about “Magic: The Gathering”? I think I would fall asleep after playing it for 5 minutes. Does it make it a bad game? Hell no, it’s a very good game. I just hate the genre. It’s easy to distinguish when the game is bad from when it’s simply not for you. Easy for anyone. Do you have any objective proof that the humour was “delivered poorly”? How so? I thought it was great. The game’s stupid and random and jokes were stupid and random. They did not stick to anything for too long. The jokes don’t get old as a result of being short and not making sense in terms of context.

    It’s a funny game and the sexist jokes are funny, and the cruelty is funny, and the crazy violence is funny. It’s just funny. Humour is subjective. A responsible person would have said “I did not understand the game’s humour, and didn’t like it. Here are examples of what the game has:”. But then a responsible person wouldn’t write about it to begin with.

    I agree on level design though. It is lacking colour and variety.

    • nearly says:

      A good portion of the readers here (myself included) are here because they understand the writing staff’s taste and respect their opinions. If he didn’t find it clever or worthwhile, chances are that I’d respond the same way, even if there have been occasions where I enjoyed a game he didn’t or disliked a game he praised. Chances are that I’m intelligent enough to figure out if this might actually be the case.

      I also think you’re being very ungenerous and a bit silly in saying that he reviewed it poorly because he just didn’t understand it or was against it from the outset. You’re honestly going to sit there and say “It’s easy to distinguish when the game is bad from when it’s simply not for you” and then suggest that a writer on this site is utterly incapable of that? Yes, bland unfunny games aren’t for John Walker and they should have let someone who loves bland unfunny games review it.

    • alw says:

      Or here’s another idea – how about John reviews whatever he likes and if you don’t like it, then you can bugger off?

    • Eddy9000 says:

      “It’s a funny game and the sexist jokes are funny, and the cruelty is funny, and the crazy violence is funny. It’s just funny. Humour is subjective. A responsible person would have said “I did not understand the game’s humour, and didn’t like it. Here are examples of what the game has:”. But then a responsible person wouldn’t write about it to begin with.”

      Funny how pretty much every other reviewer has said that the game is mediocre then isn’t it? Do you think all of them were the wrong people to review it as well?

  26. cdx00 says:

    Mr. Walker, I am not typically a fan of The Words You Write™ but you have redeemed yourself with this review. I don’t get the criticism; this review is very concise. I feel as if your writing was very objective here. Please continue this pace, please.

  27. F3ck says:

    “Once you’re playing you’ll realize that there’s really no choice but plugging in a 360 controller, as there has been no effort to adjust things to play without one. You’re clearly meant to be struggling with the deliberately odd targeting anyway, the mouse removing an element of how it’s meant to be played.”

    …so you could’ve saved your virtual breath and simply said that it was not a PC game at all (since it’s clearly not to be played with native PC hardware)?

    I find more and more that I have to wade through supposed PC game reviews just to find out if in fact it will play as a PC game. That same simple sentence would’ve saved me wasted time and money on Dark Souls.

    • maximiZe says:

      So how exactly is a game’s status as a “[real] PC game” defined by the preferable input method? PC gamepads have been a thing for decades.

      • jrodman says:

        Lots of PCs don’t have gamepads, so a competent port works well even if one isn’t present.

        That said, I’m not sure about “real” vs “not real”.

  28. Sardukar says:

    I played it on my PC on m/kb and had a blast. Very funny and lots of fun. Simple and sweet. Well worth the money I paid for the hours of fun I had.

    That’s all I can ask of a game, in the end. Some games aren’t art, but they are fun anyway.

    • Eddy9000 says:

      Oh thank god, someone who disagrees with the review who has a) actually played it and b) chosen to give their opinion on the game rather than complain about the reviewer. Sir I salute you.

  29. Xotes says:

    All I’ve seen of the game is a little less than half of the game and cutscenes on youtube in a ‘movie’ format, and I can freely say that it’s incredibly dumb and yet I can’t help but find it hilarious. I wouldn’t want to play it myself, but I had plenty of fun watching it.

  30. Sami says:

    Deadpool calling women “mannish”? Deadpool, whose greatest love is Bea Arthur?

    This all sounds very tragic. Deadpool is awesome, but handled that badly, sounds terrible.

  31. Blacknsilver says:

    I think he should have just stopped playing the game when he realized he didn’t like it. What’s the point of writing a 5-page review that could be summed up as “I don’t like this game.”?

    • Jimmy says:

      The bad reviews are often the best reads, and the harsher the better when deserved. The gaming industry has a got a long way to go before it matures. Not that I don’t like a bit of pointless gaming violence and titillation. Just that as someone else said, South Park and the like at least do it in a clever way.

      There was an excellent observation piece in the Guardian about E3, where the journalist – not a big gamer – commented on the continuing trend to make facile changes to existing games and add a numeral to the name. Pieces like this one in RPS, and God help us, even the moralising ones on sexism, help advance the debate. Long live RPS, etc. (Also a lot of us are getting older and less tolerant of crap games – maybe they should put a age range on games like 15 – 19 years only? Adults must be accompanied by a teenager.)

    • pipman3000 says:

      yeah man dont like it? don’t review it!!!11111

      did you get all your expectations of what a critique is supposed to be from the description page of some deviantart kids crayon drawing of a pregnant wolf crying about 9/11?

      maybe if you dislike his reviews so much you should follow your own advice and go read ign or kotaku instead

  32. LordMidas says:

    Dear John Walker,

    Thank you for your reviews. It’s like they are written by a bloke like me. Some one who thinks if something is shit, then he will say it’s shit.

    I come to RPS for just this very thing. Not an arbitrary score, but words of insight and wisdom and stuff about games that many other game-word-outlets seem to ignore.

    And metacritic can fuck off.

    Cheers John… don’t change please. Nice one.

  33. quicktooth says:

    This is so sad. Getting flashbacks to the main character of Transmetropolitan regarding with weary horror his likeness in the sick entertainment of his setting, and exclaiming “I’ve gone *mainstream*”. As he more or less exists to *fight* that mainstream, well, you get the idea. Same thing with Deadpool. He had a really deep and hilarious (and tragic) story in his first sixty-odd issues, then people with no idea what made him funny or interesting or cool took over. They failed to make jokes. They forgot his quest for redemption. They had gratuitous sex etc where before there had been Deadpool… *watching* porn (which you never see). He HAD been a satirical character, and a comment on how fucked up comics are, and an interesting character in his own right. Then the sort of thing this game embodies took over and it was just unfunny, disgusting, morally reprehensible, and crap. They made him into the embodiment of what he was supposed to show was dreadful, and then transcend. It didn’t help that the original authors made it clear after a while that the trainwreck the story became was the direction they WANTED to go (from their answers to readers letters). RIP Deadpool, issue Sixty (or so. Deadpool And Cable was great too). You were awesome. Wish you got that redemption, the girl (or girls), and became a real hero after all. Comics authors are shit.

  34. quicktooth says:

    Ohshit must add: NEVER READ TRANSMETROPOLITAN. It’s sort of “literary”, in a hellish and disturbing way, but it’ll still scar you for life. In other news, my “friend” who insisted I read it is possibly insane.

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