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Looking Back at Red Steel 2, MadWorld, and Punch-Out!!

by Neal Ronaghan - July 19, 2010, 6:42 pm PDT
Total comments: 11

I scored all three of these games highly. How do I feel about them now?

A friend of mine reminded me of Red Steel 2 today, and it got me thinking about my glowing review of Ubisoft's MotionPlus first-person brawler. I spoke quite hyperbolically, and even when I wrote the review, I wrestled with giving the game a 9.0 with that kind of exalted text behind it. Case in point, look at the balls on me as I close the review with this line: "Plain and simple, this is one of the finest games to grace the Wii console."

I standby that review, though I will admit that the game might not be for everyone. I did know for a fact it was sure as hell for me, as I loved my time with the game.

On the flip side is my review of MadWorld. I believe I was quoted on a podcast or something talking about my uneasiness with my review. A few months after the review, I actually did revisit the game in the forums:

"I was talking about MadWorld with some people recently and it made me think of my extreme insecurity of this review. I loved this game the first time I played through it, and I thought I would go back to it after I finished the story and the review and just bomb around the levels killing people violently.
I did go back to it about a month after the review and I was ridiculously underwhelmed. I had played the game already; there wasn't any more fun for there to be had. After that, I kind of regretted giving it a 9.0, because of my unhappiness with it a month after it came out.
After reading this review again, I surprisingly still agree with it. I think that this game is a 9.0 the first time you play it. It is a fantastic, bloody brawler while it lasts. If I have one regret this review, it's that I wasn't aware of how little lastability this game would have, but other than that, I feel completely justified in giving MadWorld a 9.0. I am now back to having no review regrets."

Then there's the 10 I gave Punch-Out!! on Wii. I have no shame, second thoughts, or regret about that review. Punch-Out!! was probably one of my most anticipated video games ever, and it didn't let me down at all. I played through that game in its entirety in three sittings that lasted 15 hours combined. It was easily one of my favorite gaming experiences ever.

I hope you enjoyed my look back at some of my more embellished reviews. I can guarantee you there will be no second guessing on Dragon Quest IX. That game is freaking amazing.


ZoltanJuly 19, 2010

It seems just about everyone on the NWR staff has negative feelings on Madworld after the fact  :( .  Personally, I've found the game to have the lastability that you said it lacked.  I've played through it twice, the second time in front of my Collage roomate who was just captivated by not only the specticle but the story.  (I told him the script writer did FFXII and he simply said "yah, they're both messed up stories")  I plan on playing the game again when the school year starts up and show my next roomate all of it's bloody goodness.  Given the length of it I know I can always replay it and it will never outstay it's welcome.  I'd say it's a guilty pleasure but I don't have any guilt about it.  Just the combination of all the grusome sound effects combined with the hip-hop soundtrack (I don't even like rap), and the halarious commentary gives you an experience I've yet to see anything replicate.  (I kind of get the same feeling from HotD Overkill and am greatly looking forward to the sequal.)  Overall, I would've also game it a 9.0 but would still look back on it with the same prais as when I first played it.

The title of this blog post should be "I Was Right," and it should be a recurring feature on the site from all of the staff.

StratosJuly 20, 2010

I want to see this done with reviewers revisiting games they blasted during the review process. If maybe time has softened their thoughts on the games.

Reminds me that I need to play Madworld and finish RS2.

For those who passed on MadWorld because they didn't feel a 6 hour game was worth $50, Amazon currently has it for $6.90, a little more than a dollar an hour.

LittleIrvesJuly 20, 2010

@insanolord:  That's my magic formula.  I'm pretty tight on money nowadays, so I look for deals where I can hope to get an hour of playtime for each dollar spent.  Pretty ambitious, yes, but I'm fairly close most of the time.  A few examples:
-BIT.TRIP Runner: 800 points    8 hr. 5 min.
-Wave Race: Blue Storm (GC)  $0.50     1 hr. 30 min
-Metroid Prime Trilogy $33.33   39 hours 55 min
-Wii Music  $33.33   33 hours
-WarioWare Smooth Moves $35  32 hours
-Kirby Adventures: 500 points  4 hr. 30 min.

Might just have to check out MadWorld then.  But I think I need No More Heroes first, if we're talking about stylish violence on Wii.

Quote from: insanolord

The title of this blog post should be "I Was Right," and it should be a recurring feature on the site from all of the staff.

LOL. I didn't plan to be like "So I doubted myself, and then I realized I was awesome," but it did kind of work out that way. When I started writing this, I forgot I wrote that thing about MadWorld in the forums.

Retro DeckadesJuly 23, 2010

I really enjoyed Punch-Out!! -- much more than I actually anticipated. The challenges are what really hooked me. They were mostly tough, but due to the pattern-recognition style of the gameplay, I never once found them to be unfair or overly frustrating.

I own Red Steel 2, but it is sitting in my gaming backlog. After Neal's recent comments, I am looking forward to it now more than ever.

For my first edition of "I Was Right," I'll talk about Phantom Hourglass.

Mop it upJuly 23, 2010

This is actually something which I sometimes wonder about: Do reviewers have different opinions later on, after reflecting on a game? They are on a deadline and have a limited time to play the games they review, so sometimes it may not sink in, or their enthusiasm might not last.

Of these three, I just own MadWorld. It's still in shrink wrap though, because I don't think I'll like it, but who can pass up a $7 game? Red Steel 2 and Punch-Out!! are similar, I'm not sure I'd like them so I'd get them only if I come across a deal. I haven't really been looking though.

MonteblancoJuly 24, 2010

I never thought highly of MadWorld. I played it at a friend's house and I couldn't stand it for more than ten minutes. I liked the black and white visual design and I don't have a problem with gore but I thought the concept to be too silly and I didn't found the gameplay to be good enough to keep me interested.

Red Steel 2 is a different case. I like the style and I was very hyped about the game. However, I thought the level design to be mediocre and the gameplay was tiresome after a while. Overall, it is a better than average game but not stellar.

Finally, Punch Out is very good but no way perfect. Visually is great but, in the end, the gameplay is somewhat limited, especially in the two player mode and there aren't as many opponents as I expected.

It seems that my tastes are very different from the reviewer. As such, if pressed to grade them, I would fail MadWorld (D), and give good but not exceptional scores to Red Steel 2 (B-) and Punch Out (B+ or A-).

RizeDavid Trammell, Staff AlumnusJuly 27, 2010

I wrote a few reviews back in my day that, looking back, I don't know what the hell I was thinking.  I don't think I will name names though.

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