Twisted Metal CES 2012 Hands-On Preview -- Insanity to the MetalBy Jonathan Deesing - Posted Jan 16, 2012
I’ve been waiting far too long to get my hands on Twisted Metal; ever since my first look at the game in June of last year to be exact. Well, I finally got my chance at Sony’s booth at CES 2012, and my initial thought was that the game will feel strangely familiar and unfamiliar all at the same time for longtime fans of the series. From the cheeky, unrealistic physics engine—can a physics engine be sarcastic?—to the weapons and insane vehicles, the game is Twisted Metal to its very bones. But the game is truly a next gen title, and for a series that has waited so long, the graphics are even more stunning, the environments are even more impressive, and the game is even more exciting.
Twisted Metal sports eight main maps cut up into 32 derivative maps. A cursory glance at any of the levels tells you one thing: the levels are humongous. One second I was driving through a residential area, mowing down trees and pedestrians alike, and the next I was driving through a movie theater, smashing through row after row of seats; this is where I graciously turn down any “drive-in movie” jokes).
If a building is too big to smash down entirely, there’s a good chance you can simply drive inside and gut the damn thing. Nothing relieves post-holiday stress quite like driving recklessly through a grocery store, smashing the aisles of food as you go. To fill these huge levels, multiplayer matches can feature as many as 16 different players all exploding their way across the map. The game includes 17 different cars, countless weapons and customizations for each.
The gameplay is incredibly fast paced, and takes a very lighthearted look at itself. If you’re trapped in a corner, you can simply bunny hop your car and speed away before being shot in the ass. Driving Sweet Tooth’s devilish ice cream truck, not only can you shoot flaming clown heads at people, but you can transform into, well, a Transformer and fly around as a bipedal robotic doom machine.
Or if speed is more your thing, I also hopped on Sweet Tooth’s motorcycle and raged around the city, trailing a chainsaw behind me on the pavement behind me to light it on fire. Then I threw said chainsaw at another vehicle, blowing it up. To call Twisted Metal “tongue-in-cheek” would actually be tongue-in-cheek at this point. The game is absolutely certifiably insane to watch or to play.
With online and offline co-op, four-player split screen and a number of inventive new game modes like Nuke Mode, the game promises endless new-age retro fun you can even share with your buddies on your couch. That is, until they punch you in the face for ramming them through a wall.