Bulletstorm is unique in that it never strives to be anything more than a damn entertaining game, and it’s in this regard where the game really kicks us in the face with just how awesome it is. If you’re looking for a deep or meaningful story you won’t find one here. Bulletstorm doesn’t want to be your friend, it wants to show you how big its balls are before it lassos you with an electric leash and kicks you where the sun don’t shine.
TJ and I have had a chance to really explore the inner intricacies of a game that doesn’t merely grant you the ability to shoot out a man’s asshole but actually rewards you for performing such a feat. So if you’re sick of the repetitive slosh of Modern Warfare clones I suggest you let us introduce you to a shooter game that is the first of its kind. The Baby Factor: If Gears of War was a whole lot more fun, strayed outside that grey and brown color pallete and got together with a 40 year-old man-child, Bulletstorm would be its profanity spewing offspring.
Adam: One of the first things you’ll notice about this game is its juvenile sense of humor. Usually this is something that would annoy me but it’s actually well-written and occasionally hilarious. The fancy concoctions of words like dick and tits have added more than a few new words to my vocabulary.
TJ: But the best part is how they combined words to make swearing more fun. Such as, well dick and tits. Dicktits! My good friend Kiel actually combined dick and tits a while back. He called them dick tities, or ditties. Boobs with penises where the nipples go. But I’m straying off course here. Ahem…..Adam?
Adam: Thanks for that image, I’m pretty sure I’ll never be able to get it out of my head. Where were we? Oh yeah, I also love how Bulletstorm never takes itself too seriously. If you want a serious game that throws you into morally ambiguous situations like shooting up an airport you have more than a few options that offer that. A game that lets you gag a foe with a grenade before kicking him into his friends for a glorious explosion of man-giblets? Not many games offer that.
TJ: Very true. This game stays “light hearted” and loose the whole way through. Which is great because some games try to hard to hit the serious notes and the comedic notes and they always end up falling short of one or the other. Something I thought was weird was, I don’t think I saw a single female enemy. Are we to think all these males are asexually reproducing? The future is a horrible place. I can’t beat women in real life, so why can’t I beat them in a video game? I mean, you can shoot the enemies in the dick, why can’t I shoot some ladies boobs off? ANSWER ME!
Adam: While we’re on the subject of kicking, gagging and shooting off assorted dicks and tits, the controls and combat in this game are rather fantastic. I love that there are so many ways to dispatch your enemies and being able to find the perfect arsenal of badass weaponry to help you do the trick helps a bit. I think I used the Leash on essentially every bad guy I came across until I realized I could slide a great distance than I used that for the latter half of the game. Really, the only thing this game is missing is some sort of cover system, but in the end it’s not entirely necessary since Bulletstorm isn’t about hiding in cover, it just would’ve been nice to have as an option when I’m getting my ass kicked.
TJ: Whenever I was getting totally whomped by the enemies I would whip out the leash thump and knock everyone on their ass. You really have to pay close CLOSE attention to the environments for different ways to kill your enemies. I would end up shooting a bunch of them boringly to death, and then upon scanning around for weapons I would find a cactus, or some rebar to kick them into and I would slap myself for missing them.
Adam: I learned early on that shooting enemies was a waste of time. I’d much rather embed a Roman Candle looking thing into a bad dude’s anus and kick him into his friends so I could watch the colorful consequences. Speaking of, when I’m not sliding around like a total idiot you can usually find me experimenting with the game’s arsenal of weapons. I found a few that I absolutely loved, namely the Flail Gun and that crazy screwdriver thing you get near the end of the game. Using these to get massive Skill Shot bonuses takes this game to a whole new level of deranged, childish fun. I do have one major issue with the weapons this game gives me and my problem with it is there just aren’t enough weapons to choose from. I could’ve used more options.
TJ: I would say I wished there were more weapons, but in some games I almost feel overwhelmed. And with the fact that you had a regular shot with each gun, you had a charged shot on each as well. Sort of how all the guns in Dead Space have a secondary fire. One of my only real problems with the game was a lot of the skill shots were confusing when written out. Example, I would read the list of skill shots I needed to get, and I’m thinking “How the hell am I supposed to do that?…Put the drill in someones ass…and spin them around like a ceiling fan, and kick the other enemies heads off what??”. But other than that I had a fun time trying different combos out with the leash and yes I slid around like a total asshole the whole time. Crouch to go under? No, I’ll slide through thanks. I loved the fact that they made the sliding so out of control, like being able to slide up and down stairs like you were on a handicap ramp is the best. And when you fight the giant plant boss and there was no end to the sliding. I slid around that fucker 90 percent of the fight.
Adam: That’s the only way to beat that thing, just slide around like you’re a nude model on a disco floor slathered in a thick coat of butter. With Epic Games’ name on the box you had to know there would be a few things: brutish bad guys (check!), gruffy men in bulky armor (double check!) and some truly incredible set pieces (and check!). Over the course of the game you’ll find yourself rafting down a collapsing damn, being chased by a massive wheel of robotic death, fighting a creature that could kick Godzilla’s scrawny ass and walking nonchalantly down the side of a building. And that’s just a few of the more memorable sections of a game filled to the brim with incredible locations.
TJ: It’s true, when I’m playing Bulletstorm I’m waiting for Marcus and Dom to show up somewhere, or some of the guys from Unreal, but that’s ok. They are sticking with large men build like brick shit houses and it is definitely working in their favor. The scenery is constantly changing and breaking down and it really spices up the game play and levels. The robotic wheel of death part, pure gold. Also, I love the voice of Jennifer Hale (Trishka, Commander Shepard Mass Effect). She has one of the best video game voices for the ladies.
Adam’s Final Word: Bulletstorm is a fantastic game you won’t soon forget. In a shooter market filled with an excess of games trying to capture Call of Duty’s magic it’s nice to see a game try something different, and more importantly, succeed.
TJ’s Final Word: This game spews swears that my own sailor mouth would be ashamed to speak, and I love the hell out of it. I can’t wait for a sequel (Hoping for a 2-4 player co-op campaign), you need to buy this game.
This review is based on the Xbox 360 version of Bulletstorm.