This one's for all the kids out there who enjoyed frying ants with magnifying glasses! And also for people born after 1950
who have fond memories of blowing up wiggly things on their games machines over the last 13 years. Worms
is returning to the PSP and DS, and it's bringing new stuff!
The central challenge facing the guys over at Team17 with the Worms
franchise is that by the end of the 1990s they'd got it right
. A beautiful turn-based strategy game that featured off-beat 2D graphics. Where do you go from there to keep things interesting while retaining the same core game mechanic that made it great?
foray into 3D, although understandable, was perhaps inadvisable. Worms: Open Warfare
on the DS and PSP marked a return to 2D form for the series, but was lacking in the new features department. The good news for all you fans of making elongated, soft-bodied, invertebrate animals explode is that Open Warfare 2
looks set to continue with the 2D goodness while introducing a bevy of new features.
The classic elements of Worms are all here. Players command their squadrons to blow the slime off each other, turn by turn, across an array of landscapes. If this were a next-gen game I'd no doubt be spouting out the buzz-word 'destructible,' but the worming landscape has ever been prone to getting blasted to bits. There are five terrains to play across this time out, World War I, World War II, the Cold War, a pirate battle and two as yet undisclosed landscapes.
Graphically, the Open Warfare's
polished and rendered with Worms
trademark brand of cartoon surreality. The game's look won't blow your mind, but if it did I'd have a wriggly feeling in my gut that something had gone amiss with the focus of development. This is classic worms, and it looks as good as it should without compromising gameplay to make our eyes pop out.
One extremely welcome addition to the series is a wholesome dose of new weaponry to obliterate your spineless opponents with. Sick of old-fashioned grenades and banana bombs? No problem, try the Holy Hand Grenade! Getting a bit bored of using the redneck weapon of choice: the shotgun? The Buffalo of Lies sounds pretty interesting, doesn't it?
We're not just talking about tweaked old weapons with funky new names, however. Some of the new arsenal on offer can potentially change the way you play worms on a deep level. Take the Bunker Buster, for example. This bad boy was specifically built by Team 17 to defend against what they call 'dark tactics.' More specifically, it'll smash through several levels of cover, exposing those annoying players who just hole up at the bottom of a big ol'... well, hole.