Sometimes, you think the job to make one kind of game shouldn’t be that hard. This is especially true when it’s a game about one of cinema’s classic movie monsters. Have a vast array of monsters to play as, destroy buildings, and have the monsters fight each other with simple, but satisfying controls and combat. Unfortunately, the team over at Bandai Namco seemed to forgo those simple elements, because Godzilla, is sadly one of the worst games of the year. It may not be as blatantly horrible as some games from 2014 like Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric or The Slaughtering Grounds, but it’s easily one of the top 5 worst and most disappointing games I have played in 2015. How is it so bad? Why is it so bad? Well, read on to find out.
Godzilla doesn’t really have a story, so let’s get into the meat of the game. The main mode is called Destruction Mode, where you choose a monster like Godzilla or any other monsters that you unlock during this mode. The goal in each level is to destroy these power generators that are in specific locations. There are some side-missions like where you need to gather data about Godzilla, or another mission where a monster will come and try to beat you down. There isn’t much to this mode, since all you do is destroy generators. No other kinds of missions exist in the entire game. You can upgrade your monsters in a separate menu, but you can’t be doing it when you are playing the “story mode.” The only gimmick the “story mode” has to offer is that you can choose the levels you go to. Each time you select a level, the next one will split into two different levels, ranging in difficulty. The next mode is essentially an arcade mode where you fight through multiple matches with different monsters ranging in difficulty. The two other modes to mention are the Diorama Mode, where you collect and place figures to recreate scenes or make fantasy fights, and the online Multiplayer Mode, which is exclusive to the PlayStation 4 version. This mode lets two or three players battle it out as monsters that you have unlocked playing the Destruction Mode. Overall, you have a game with very little variety, some simple, if repetitive/satisfying combat/destruction, and some exclusive monsters and modes only for the PlayStation 4 version, which is the version we got.
Graphically, Godzilla is a budget title. I knew getting excited for this game that it was probably going to be a budget title, and some of those elements were fun for me. The monsters look how they should and sound like they should. I also like the little touch of how the buildings blow up, since they explode in the same way they would in the movies. The game has a lot of little touches like that. When the military sends out its secondary wave of soldiers to get killed, (because, you know, it’s the military from the Godzilla movies), they play the same uplifting song that makes you feel like the military will do great this time! Of course they don’t, but the music is pulled from the films, so at least you have recognizable tunes. The voice acting is just as intentionally corny as the dubs in the movies. They aren’t great actors, and some of them make the governors sound like morons, but they capture that spirit of the films that I grew up on.
Now then, where do I start with this list of problems? How about we talk about the controls? You think you just control the monsters with the analog stick, but you don’t. You have to use the shoulder buttons to turn your giant monster. This is so stupid. It makes me feel like I am piloting a tank, not a giant monster. They made controlling these slow-moving monsters harder than it should have been. I wish I could have moved faster, but because of this shoulder pad stupidity, I was vulnerable to multiple attacks, and couldn’t defend myself. It made fighting some of the tougher enemies a chore. For example, I played as Hedorah, the Smog Monster through my second playthrough of the “story mode”, and I had to cheese Rodan and a few other bosses by simply floating back and waiting until I could pull off an area of effect attack. When it got to the fight of Mecha Godzilla 2, the boss was way too tough for me. Even leveling up your character through the Destruction Mode is a hassle, since you can only grow stronger by 100%-ing each level. Since every level is the same, with the exception of when a monster comes to ruin your street cred, it gets tedious to play through because of how sluggish you move. The combat, while simple, leaves the fights feeling like nothing is going on, since opponents slack off the moves like they were this giant ball of dough that was getting punched. It makes the appeal of fighting monsters lose its luster very quickly. They really needed to hire a different developer to speed up the gameplay and make combat more satisfying and balanced. They either needed to get a team like Platinum Games or the God of War developers to give gamers the proper epic and satisfying game with an emphasis on beating the tar out of other monsters. Also, why is this game $60? This is so obviously a budget title and should have been $40. I think we would have been more forgiving of the game’s failings if it was priced right, but since it was priced at the same price as Splatoon, Bloodborne, and The Witcher 3, there is no excuse for all of the problems that plague Godzilla.
In the end, once you scrape off the fanservice and attention to detail, all you get is a mediocre action game with slow, clunky, repetitive combat. Sure, playing as a slew of iconic monsters from the franchise is great and all, but the gameplay really hit a low point. I hate that I have to say that this game is bad. There are elements for a great Godzilla game, but if they do make a sequel, I hope they improve upon everything that all the critics, including myself, are criticizing the game for. If you really do want to get this game, wait for this game to go to $20. It’s not worth the $60 price. It might have fanservice that any longtime fan can enjoy, but you need more than that. The King of Monsters needed a much better game than this. You are better off getting Godzilla Unleashed for the Wii.
This game gets a 4 out of 10