Vanquish Won Me Over In 5 Minutes
5 minutes with Platinum Games’ Vanquish was all it took to convince us it’s one of the games of 2010.
Most of the time we make pretty quick decisions about things as to whether like them or dislike them. How do you feel about Marmite? Do you prefer sugar in your tea? Could you make any sense of Inception? When it comes to games we’re no different and often we’ll go into a new title with a preconceived notion of how we’re going to feel about it. For me, Vanquish was not one of those times, which is why I was surprised by the strength of my reaction to it.
I knew Vanquish had a strong pedigree behind it. Shinji Mikami, who can boast the likes of Resident Evil, Devil May Cry, Viewtiful Joe, Killer 7 and God Hand on his CV, is directing it and that gives it some weight straight away. But those are games from a different era. I’ve been burnt too many times having faith in the great developers of the last generation to assume they can deliver the goods this time around.
Then of course you have the developer, Platinum Games, who even if you ignore the Clover connection still has Bayonetta to its name. That’s nothing to be sniffed at either. But again, I remained cautious. What if Bayonetta was a one off? What if the expectations of a third-person shooter were too much for Vanquish to bear? Thankfully my concerns were wasted.
I played Vanquish for not much more than 10 minutes in total, but I was won over by it in less than 5. Most games bring you in slow, get you playing with the basics and ease you into stuff. It might take you half an hour to even begin to make up your mind about it. Not so with Vanquish. Within second of the opening level I was rocket-boosting around on my knees, switching weapons on the fly and taking out red mechs left and right.
Then I started shooting while on my knees and I got the glorious pay-off of bullet-time. So overused in the past, redeemed by the simple act of combining it with a rocket-propelled warrior sliding around on his knees like a lead guitarist. It was glorious. Ridiculous, but glorious.
I’m sure that this will all seem rather frivolous to those of you unconvinced by Vanquish and I sympathise with your skepticism, but I really think Platinum has put together another hit here. In fact it may even be better than Bayonetta. There, I’ve said it. I can’t take it back.