Metal Arms: Glitch In The System
|a game by||Swingin' Ape Studios|
|Editor Rating:||8/10, based on 1 review|
|User Rating:||8.0/10 - 1 vote|
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With Metal Arms practically coming out of nowhere (had you ever heard of it?), I was prepared for a run-of-the-mill third-person shooter. And for a while, that's all it was, with its iffy jumping, typical (although funny) good-versus-bad robot story, and annoyingly puny life bar that you only notice when it's empty. But I'm glad I stuck with it, because after I beat the imposing first big boss, everything began to click. The decidedly average core shooter gameplay gets a kick in the pants from the bevy of weapons that you manage with a sleek, user-friendly pop-up menu. And while neither the levels nor their layouts are particularly creative, clever gimmicks save them: Manning vehicles, controlling comrades, and wreaking havoc with jacked enemies (an excellent gameplay mechanic) all prove to be worthwhile diversions rather than feeling like last-second throw-ins. And the same goes for the impressive multiplayer modes--they're extremely entertaining. Unfortunately, PS2 players only get two-player action; given the choice, grab the Xbox game. But any version of this tough, satisfying title is worth salvaging before it reaches the scrap heap.
Robo-protagonist Glitch won't win any sexy awards for robot sexiness, what with his overturned salad bowl for a head and generally clunky demeanor, but he sure knows how to kick metal robot ass. I expected Metal Arms to be some kiddy crapfest, but it turned out to be a solid, challenging third-person shooter, with a nice bit of variety in the level-design department (controllable vehicles, on-rails shooter stages) and a double-entendre-focused sense of humor. Multiplayer is also a highlight, with a decent selection of maps and game types.
What's this? An original, license-free, American-made third-person shooter that's not crap? Believe it or not, it's true. Metal Arms is easily a contender for sleeper hit of the year, providing an excellent mix of platform-style exploration and fast-paced, action-packed gunplay that manages to stay fresh and interesting throughout. The weapons are innovative and cool, and the levels are vast and varied. Metal Arms has a great sense of humor, too, which is refreshing for a genre that often takes itself far too seriously.