Review by SunsetRider

Reviewed: 06/19/03 | Updated: 06/19/03

Hulk finally smashes his way on the Cube and other next-gen consoles.

Videogames based on movies has always gotten a bad reputation. Why? Because on average movies are 2 hours long, and no one wants to play a game that is going to be that long. There have also been movies that become ruined due to their horrible videogame license, and most movies tend to steer clear of becoming video games. But that was before good voice acting and awesome graphics. Now movies have more to work with while trying to make some extra dough, they are making the entire experience much more entertaining. In order for the game to be great these days, the developers of the game have to throw in a bunch of extras, and put in some more bosses and levels to make the games replay value boost. Well that exactly what the developers of The Hulk did.

Gameplay:

Now you go through each level as two characters. One, is obviously the Hulk, and the other is Bruce Banner. Now the story of The Incredible Hulk goes like this. Bruce Banner a very brilliant scientist does a experiment where he uses himself as a guinea pig and now whenever he gets angry, he transforms into a beast known as the Hulk. You have to go through some levels as a wimpy scientist, who uses stealth techniques in order to accomplish various missions that the Hulk can’t accomplish. This is the biggest flaw of the game. Going through a level as Bruce Banner, you don’t get any weapons or any means of defense other than running, which wont get you very far when twenty soldiers are shooting AK-47’s at you. As Bruce Banner you get three basic controls. By pressing A you can duck, or if you’re running, a somersault. You can grab crates of wood and move them around, not the soldiers who are trying to capture you. The biggest disadvantage is not being able to jump.

When playing as The Incredible Hulk you will have a blast ripping out pipes, picking up cars, and just about anything else you can imagine and smashing it into the ground or onto S.W.A.T. team members. When you kill someone they will leave behind one of two orbs. A Red Orb, which goes towards Hulk’s Rage Bar, or a Green Orb, which goes towards his Health Bar. When your Rage Bar gets to the maximum, the Hulk is basically invincible and all of his moves are much more effective when in the Rage Mode. His slam into the ground wipes out everyone in sight, his power release becomes more effective and all of his other moves cause much more damage then they normally would. You could beat the game running past many of the enemies while not engaging them at allthey basically get in the way and don’t have to be destroyed. The camera also causes much stress and annoyance as well. When you take control of Bruce in his “stealth based” missions, the camera is very awkward. You see the camera flubbing up when you take control of the Hulk, but the camera angle isn’t as bad when your playing as Bruce Banner. Overall the gameplay is great, but keep in mind the fact that when your Hulk, the game is more funand playing as Bruce Banner the game gets strenuous, and very complicated.

Graphics:

The graphics in The Hulk are amazing. They are done with watercolors, and are slightly cell-shadedMost people don’t like cell-shaded graphics and probably never will, this is because there have been many bad cell-shaded games in the past that still haunt us They made it as realistic as it came with what they gave us, a comic book superhero, that hasn’t had much luck in videogames in the past. I think that they choose this unique watercolor mixed with cell-shaded graphics to make you feel like you were playing a comic book. The backgrounds aren’t as cell-shaded as the character designs are. This is one of the only games where I have seen this style of graphics. Another cool graphical feature that they put in the game are the damage textures that Hulk leaves when he’s finished trashing a room. Every mark that he makes on a room is left there, so a normal looking sewer will be thrashed and you will defiantly be able to notice that The Hulk has been there. Also they didn’t delay us on the cut-scenes. Each level has tons of beautiful cut-scenes that not only prepares you for whats next in the game, but key points that will be played out in The Hulk MovieAlthough the game is based on the upcoming Hulk movie, the developers wanted us to remember where The Hulk actually started off from, and that’s from comic books.

Sound:

While the sound is neither anything horrific nor anything special, it still gets the job done. I like hearing the little side comments from the tiny soldiers right before you crush them, “Put me down” little things like that make the game more enjoyable. The background music usually fits with the emotions that Bruce Banner is going through. When he is himself, Bruce Banner the music is calmer, because Bruce isn’t angry. When he becomes angry and transforms into The Hulk the music gets more aggressive, because he is angry and the more he gets pissed off, the more the music gets pissed off. The background music throughout the game isn’t anything too special, but the voice acting that the characters do is amazing. Especially, Bruce Banner, when he talks to himself throughout the whole game, while at points it may get repetitive and annoying, they showed us that Bruce Banner has immensely changed while becoming The Hulk not only physically but emotionally as well.

Replay Value:

The main problem with videogames based on movies, is their lack of replay value. You can only turn a 2-hour movie into a 6-hour videogame at most, but they need to throw in a multiplayer mode, or minigames, to boost up the games replay value, which both features are absent in The Hulk. The story mode itself is very short. While the developers let Hulk battle with bosses that aren’t going to be in the upcoming movie, the developers did the best they could by throwing in not only extra Hulk levels, but Bruce Banner levels as well. They did the best they could by throwing in trailers and artwork of the game, but for the most part the story mode game itself is the only reason to play the game. The trailers and movie spoilers will last for a little bit, but look forward to seeing most of the same extra content thrown into The Hulk DVD. The Story Mode will get you through a weekend if you pace yourself, or a day if you play it often. They also made three available difficulty settings to play the story mode in; Easy, Normal, and Hard. Once you beat it on easy, you’ll most likely want to try the next difficulty The Hulk was brought to us on all three next-gen consoles. Being on GameCube, Playstation 2, and Xbox, they were all ported from the same version and are the same with the exception of the controller set-up. The game has no special features on the Playstation 2, nor the Xbox that the GameCube version has not. Overall, The Hulk is one of those games that you will beat, and then might come back in a couple of months, and try to beat it again.

Closing Comments:

While the time I spent playing the game as The Hulk was very fun, slamming cars, blowing up things, etc. I grew very bored and annoyed when every other level I had to play as the goofy Bruce Banner, who is a lame scientist that has no means of attack or defense. The game is short as is the extras, so don’t get your hopes up that this is a long game. The game is a definite rental, especially if you’re a Hulk fan... While videogames based after movies, have been known to many of us as being horrid and something to stay away from, video game companies are getting together with the directors of the movies and are bringing some of our favorite movies to us, making the movie a more enjoyable experience.

Gameplay:
While playing as Bruce Banner is the biggest complaint, playing as the Hulk is worth getting through the tedious Bruce Banner stealth levels.
7.8

Graphics:
Where this game may stand out the most, great watercolors and cell-shaded mix.
8.5

Sound:
Nothing too special about background music, but voice acting is spectacular.
8.0

Replay:
Where the game lacks the most, extras aren’t much at all, Story Mode is also very short.
6.0

Overall Score: 6.0

Rating:   3.0 - Fair

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