by: Marc "Djinniman" Allie
One would think that super heroes would translate well into video games. Colorful costumes, superhuman abilities, and over-the-top storylines should combien to make great games, right? Sometimes, this is the case (Batman: Arkham Asylum, Marvel vs. Capcom 3), other times is spectacularly not so (any of the Superman games). Unfortunately, Thor: God of Thunder falls into the latter category.
Thor is a 3rd person brawler, which is pretty much the standard for boring movie tie-ins. Gameplay consists of Thor whacking his enemies with his enchanted hammer, or zapping them with bolts of lightning. This sounds like fun, but it isn't. The controls are fiddly, the animations are jerky, and it's hard to actually get Thor to hit the bad guys even when they are right in front of him. It's clear that the developers were going for a Norse flavored God of War clone, but it fails miserably in this regard.
The environments are about as generic as they come. Apart from Asgard itself, you'll spend some time in a jungle world, a frozen world, and an underground realm. Sound familiar? The enemies are bland and you see them over and over again. Boss fights break things up somewhat, but due to the iffy controls and one of the worst cameras in video game history, they are far harder than they should be.
If there is any saving grace to Thor: God of Thunder, it's two things: the voice acting and storyline. The movie actors for Thor and Loki both voice their characters in the game, so there is so continuity between the two. The story, a prequel of sorts, is written by comic scribe Matt Fraction. It's nothing special, really, but the fact that it was scripted by someone with comic book chops has to mean something, right?
My son and I are big comic book fans, and we were really looking forward to playing this one. However, after only a few levels, we lost almost all interest. It got to a point where it was, frankly, more of a pain than it was worth to continue. It speaks volumes that a family like us, who is exactly the target audience for a Thor game, didn't even bother to finish it. The game is already heavily discounted not even two months after its release, and for good reason. Thor: God of Thunder is the epitome of bad movie video game tie ins, and should be avoided by most gamers.