Wanted Corp is mindless combat at its best, which in the end is just what it sounds like.
Bust out your braille capable internet device because I want to paint a mind picture for you and that seems to work best with your eyes closed. Ready? Okay here we go: Two intergalactic bounty hunters with kick ass weapons and magic, space gorillas and mechs that rain missiles on everything and anything. Plus you can freeze things. It is cool to open your eyes again. This sounds like a formula for some kind of mythical super game correct? Well the game does exist, you are reading its review, but sadly it doesn’t live up to that amazing mental picture I painted for you. Sorry.
Wanted Corp. is a top-down twin stick action game with optional Move support. While that PR-speak may sound boring it does a good job of setting your expectations for the title. You can play as either the gun-welding Neal Maddogg or his lovely magic using teammate Irina-Ys. Each character has their own set of different abilities for you to use and upgrade. It is apparent right off the bat that they tuned Irina to be used with a Move controller. She sports a cursor on screen which is rather unwieldy when using the standard Dual Shock. But all those problems disappear when using the Move. I should mention right now that you will need a DS3 or Navigation Controller to play when using the Move. Once you start using the Move, you will be zapping space gorillas in no time. The opposite is the case for Maddogg. Since you are used to twin-stick controls with most other games, switching over to the Move and having to float a cursor around to aim was just a pain. Not to mention that the button placement for certain actions, like melee attacks just seemed off. One last Move complaint and I will shut up about it, shaking to reload is not something I want to be doing when I need to use a cursor on screen. So yes, if you have a Move I would only use it when playing as Irina for the majority of your game.
I say majority of your game because when playing single player you will need to hop between characters to do certain tasks. One of these major tasks is opening doors by turning valves. It seems that Irina is completely incapable of doing this task (10:30 in the linked video). This was especially irritating when playing online because it seemed to make certain parts drag on for far too long. Your co-op partner just gets to sit around and twiddle their thumbs while you take 45 seconds to turn all these valves. When not playing with another human you can control the AI of your partner with the D-Pad. There are three different “styles” at your disposal, neutralize, capture and protect. For the most part I stuck with capture because that is how you make the big bucks. Since you are bounty hunters you want to get the biggest bounty you can and this is done by capturing. Also making the big bucks means that you can upgrade your characters with this money in the game’s shop.
The funny thing about upgrading the weapons is that for 90% of the game I only used the starting dual pistols. Once you max those out there doesn’t seem to be a reason to use the other weapons, which you can unlock by capturing a certain number of fugitives in the stages. Fully maxed they can either kill or freeze just about every enemy in the game in about 5 shots. I have mentioned capture and kill a couple times now so I guess I should explain it. Each of Maddogg’s weapons has two firing modes, one for killin’ and one for chillin’. Freezing the enemies, Irina has capture rings if you were wondering, allows you to transport them to your ship for extra credits. While this is happening you have a combo metering that is racking up points. These points are added to the base cost of each creature when you cap or kill it. Keep doing that and it skyrockets, my best was around 12k. But if you kill a fugitive it will drop this back to zero. Also if there are no enemies around it will rapidly decrease until it is reset. This is probably where I had the most fun while playing. Trying to get that total higher and higher is really addicting and rewarding. But having your AI partner kill a frozen fugitive or shooting one while in a mech is rage inducing.
Flat out the best parts of the levels are anything you get to do in a mech. Trashing almost everything in sight never gets old. Sadly these parts are few and far between. When you do get to control one, it seems like it is only for a matter of seconds. There is one part where you literally walk up a ramp, destroy a tower that is a few feet away and you are forced to get out to continue. Why must you be such a tease Wanted Corp. The levels do remind me of Ratchet and Clank a lot. I think it how certain enemies and environmental features give off that cartoony look. There is a fair amount of variety in the stages too. Certain sections will be underground, in a swamp, a secret factory or even just a plain old forest type setting. While the visual variety is there, I was getting a little tired of the gunplay after about half way through. It seemed that each level followed a similar formula: Beginning area, shoot things, move a little, turn valve to open arena, shoot things, find a mech, open path, turn valve, repeat. As I mentioned before I think the only thing keeping me playing was the hope of another mech section.
Wanted Corp is best played with friends. You will have far more enjoyment when playing the game this way. The stale gunplay can be overlooked, like most things, when you and a bud are just shooting the crap out of everything around you. Just keep that in mind before you purchase this. Check the video below to see what I mean.
A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes. For more info on our review policy click here. This review is for the PlayStation 3 version of the game.
Chris K's Score:
What I Like:
What I Dislike:
Release Date:December 2011
Players:1-2 (Local), 1-2 (Online)