Space marine is based on the hugely successful tabletop game series Warhammer 40,000. Back in my youth I played Warhammer 40,000 as did many other gamers and as such I was interested to see how this game played out.
The campaign storyline follows captain Titus of the Space marine chapter the Ultramarines. These a one of the many chapters of super strong, utterly devoted super soldiers sworn to keep harmony throughout the imperium.
The story begins with a distress call from a planet overrun by the hordes of Orcs. The main battle fleet is too far away so a group of 3 Ultramarines are sent to help defend the planet and secure certain objectives. The storyline plays out fairly predictive but still felt fun and not too drawn out. After a short interlude you are thrown into the action battling against orcs, orcs and more orcs. The feel of the tabletop game is recreated well as you are overrun by countless hordes and you have to swathe a path through them with bolter and chainsword hacking and shooting till all that’s left are bodies, bodies everywhere. Although there are huge amounts of enemies that come after you, you never feel that you are in trouble. The game seems to give a good representation of the fact you are a tough super soldier.
As the game progresses through the usual objectives that most similar games have, the story develops with the inevitable twist that feels very expected. Although expected it does carry the story on and adds depth to it. Without giving too many details away it involves the corrupt and evil forces of chaos.
You can tell this game was graphically developed closely alongside the makers of the Warhammer tabletop game as it looks exactly how you would imagine and expect it to. The scenery is gothic and dark and very in keeping with the mood of the game. The scale is immense, the planet has a very industrial view and the towers and spires look great, full of eerie presence. The characters are well designed and you can tell exceptional amounts of time were put into the marine armour to make it look as accurate as possible and attention has been given to all the details to give each marine a personalized appearance. This is also true of the chaos troops that you will come across, especially lord Nemaroth, the main chaos character you will come across. The specialist orc troops look great and detailed but the standard run off the mill masses look and act very similar. This is to be expected really but i would have liked to off seen some differences in clothing colours and attitudes towards attacking. I loved the inclusion of the small but deadly exploding squigs. These small little beasts make a monstrous sound then come charging out and look comically small you might even dismiss them to begin with. That is till one gets close enough to you and explodes. They are damnable little devils and should be taken out as soon as possible.
During the game you are given numerous different weapons to use from the small bolt pistol to the large and deadly las cannon. On top of these you have the ability to use a myriad of melee weapons including the notorious chainsword to the awesome warhammer. Normally in a game like this if I have the opportunity to I will sit back and shoot the enemy, clearing them away. In Space Marine I felt differently, I looked for opportunities to go charging in with sword or hammer in hand and lay waste to the oncoming enemy no matter how many or how strong. This approach usually worked as well and felt great while doing so. Given the choices of weapons available you could change what you use often if you wanted to but in reality you could in theory go through without needing to change. Early on I picked up the bolt rifle and the stalker and they kept me going throughout most of the game. Choice is always good in a game but for me, the choices didn’t change things too much to make me want to keep the new weapons.
Space Marine also has a multiplayer element side as well. It has the usual variety of matches to go against other marines or chaos marines which is fun and does give the game extra legs. They also include a horde mode style of game where you and your fellow marines go up against waves and waves of orcs. It is fun and probably my personal favorite in the multiplayer options. It’s not fantastic or as atmospheric as the likes of the zombie mode in Call Of Duty World At War but it is fun and entertaining.
The customization option gives you the chance to change the colour and style of your armour and your character. You can create 5 separate space marine and 5 separate chaos marine styles which should give you room to experiment with different colour schemes and different chapters. As you go through the multiplayer games you unlock different options for customization by completing challenges, some easy, some not so easy. One shortfall in the multiplayer is that there isn’t an option to play as an Orc. Kind of a shame as I could see that being great fun. All in all it looks like the multiplayer side of the game was developed alongside the main campaign and not just tacked on to the game as an afterthought.
The game itself is very predictable but that said, it is fun and worth playing. It Space Marine doesn’t try to be bigger and better or do things that other games haven’t and that’s fine. Some people might say that they could have pushed harder or that the game simply isn’t strong enough to be a top title. These might be valid arguments but from my perspective it played well, i had fun with it and at the end of the day isn’t that what you want out of a game? If you want a fun, not too challenging but enjoyable title then i would recommend Space Marine. Is it worth a full retail price of £40-£45? Probably not, but if you find it for half price then grab it, play it and you won’t be disappointed. If a sequel is ever announced I’ll look forward to seeing where they take the series.
Addition: This title is going to be available free with PS+ so the multiplayer will pick up immensly. As stated above, This title probably isnt worth a full retail price but is worth a half price and is an essential when free!
And remember, you never expect the inquisition!
Score = 7/10
Will you be playing in 12 months = Probably not.
Photos courtesy of Google Images