Alas, it's time to finally unveil the fruits of my January trip to Japan, the official strategy guide for MadWorld, the incredibly entertaining hyper-violent action game from Platinum Games. Yes, the black & white one for the Wii.
MadWorld pits you in the role of Jack, a stone-faced chainsmoker with an iron jaw and a chainsaw for a prosthesis. Without giving the surprisingly deep story away, Jack finds himself entered in a contest known as the Death Watch Games, a kill-or-be-killed battle for ten million dollars. The city is cordoned off, various weapons of mass dismemberment have been strategically placed throughout the location, and the cameras are rolling. So many ways to kill, so little time. And no kiddies, this game isn't for you. Make no mistake about it, despite the black & white graphic novel appearance, this is the most violent game I've ever played. it's also the funniest. The violence reaches absurd proportions from the start and stays there and the endless play-by-play and event introductions are laugh out loud funny. Oh, you'll cringe the first couple times you jam a street sign through some guy's head, then chop him in half inside a guillotine-like dumpster, but you'll come to laugh. Oh, yes you will.
As for the book, I'm really proud of how it came out. The strategy is solid and I know you'll have no trouble man-handling the game's nasty boss creatures if you follow the tactics I included in the guide. Maps show you where all of the power-ups, weapons, and bait-items are located for every level and an expanded Death Watch Challenge section gives you tips for each and every Bloodbath Challenge and shows you how to complete even the most difficult challenge.
Then there are the interviews. One of the reasons for the trip was to interview Atsushi Inaba and Shigenori Nishikawa, the game's Producer and Director, respectively. Many of the people at PG were from Clover Studios, makers of two of my favorite games (Viewtiful Joe and Okami) and it was a real treat to visit their studio and sit down for two hours worth of interviews with these industry luminaries. I also got to interview the famed script writer Yasumi Matsuno via email. All of these interviews are included in the guidebook in their entirety and they're not a bad read, if I do say so myself.
Reviews for the game are coming in and so far they're all very positive. One thing I haven't seen mention however is that each non-boss stage has multiple Death Watch Challenges built into it that encourage replaying the stage. Some have time limits, others challenge players to use no continues or to score a set amount of points. These additional DWC really do add to the replay value and definitely offset what many might consider a rather short play-time.
No hoop-jumping this time around. If you want a signed copy of the guidebook, be one of the first three people to email me your name and address and I'll get a copy out to you as soon as they arrive.
And if you don't own a Wii, now may be the perfect time to finally get one.