First Impressions – Based on my first few hours on the game.
Welcome back to the Multiverse! How Heavy Iron Studios has approached this is to create a feature length episode for the home console. Even having the opening theme tune and then going to the o so familiar wide shot of the Griffin's household will bring a smile to any fan of the series.
The game begins with banter between Brian & Stewie about a picnic they had planned, until they are disturbed by Stewie's evil brother, Betrum. Here the player finds out that, yes Betrum in this Universe was killed but there are many other versions of him spread throughout the MultiVerse and he is out again to destroy Stewie! And thus begins another adventure for the comedy duo.
The first thing I noticed whilst playing was how good the batter is between Stewie and Brian. Most of the scripting is taken directly from the shows, but the way in which it is arranged is perfect! It fits the situation and adds that satirical humour found on the show.
As have only completed the first two levels, I can really only comment on what I have seen and achieved so far.
The game itself is a 3rd person action, adventure game which takes place over 10 levels, throwing you around various alternative Universes. The control mapping could have been a lot better as it feels that it was first created for the Xbox 360 and then ported over to the PS3, as the buttons for aiming and firing are the L2 and R2 buttons. This takes a while to get use too, but you do still find yourself reaching over to the L1 and R1 buttons which are you special power up and grenades. At this point I find the game wants you to easily progress through the levels, so that you as the player can enjoy the scripting of the story. Scattered around the levels are many, re-spawn able items such as health, ammo and special items. With this items scattered around you will not be running out of items too soon. Weapons wise, out of the two playable characters, Stewie is by far the best. Not only are his weapons more fun, they seem to work better. At the start Brian has a nice pistol which is ok, but when he uses it against any enemy it feels that the aiming is a little bit off and the bullet just "bends" around your target. Where with Stewie you get his infamous ray gun! This too might have aiming issues but the target recital is so much bigger you don't even notice it (and it is a riot vaporising enemies!). Camera control is nice and smooth, but a little slow and scenery can block the vision. I came across so issues when fighting gangs of enemies in the Armish level where having the camera blocked by scenery nearly got me killed various times. Another issue with the camera I came across was against the boss in the same level. As the boss was a lot bigger than me, the game automatically pitched the angle a little higher so I could see the top of the boss. It was necessary (and a hint to how to defeat that boss) but gangs of enemies spawn during the fight and found the only way to easily overcome the angle was to go right up close to the gangs and deal with them that way.
Other than the story, there are various multiplayer options. They may be only local multiplayer, but I like to think of it as something in which Peter's gang play whilst drunk! I have only played 2 of the modes which are Deathmatch and Catch the Greased up Deaf Guy (others being Infiltration, Multiverse Madness/Wave Defence and Challenges)
From what I have played, the multiplayer reminds me of what multiplayer use to be like before we all ascended online. It reminds me a lot of how Goldeneye N64 handled its multiplayer. It supports up to 4 players at a time, with various characters to choose from, many which have to be unlocked by completed levels, finding all collectables and then buying it! This seems like a lot to be doing to unlock characters, but it is worth it as they all have different specials (So far Megs made me laugh most as she flashes which in turn makes the other players be sick!) and all have different taunts. Other than character specific specials, there are other items which you can pick up such as the Chicken and Ipecac. The chicken is very funny to watch as "The Bird is the Word" plays and he helps you defeat your opposing players by beating them senseless!
Catch the Greased Up Deaf Guy is a Family Guy twist on the classic game, Capture the Flag. The situation; Two Teams, One Map and One Greased up Deaf Guy (with the flag)! What to do? Simple; chase him, beat him up and take his flag to your home base! This game looks like it would be a riot playing with friends whilst getting very drunk! The GUDG comes out with some cracking one liners from the show and if you try to fire anything at him he just slips away out of reach!
The camera is once an issue in the multiplayer, but you do notice it more as the games can be very frantic, but it can be manageable once you get used to it.
The only other issue is that to truly enjoy the multiplayer you need to have three friends playing with you, but I am sure once they see how much of a riot it is they will be begging to play.
From what I have currently played, I cannot complain about much, other than the camera could have been a little better, but at least it does not get obstructed by scenery and refuses to move at all (I am looking at you COD!)
Family Guy BTTMV is proving to be a very good game and I believe it will be missed by many people as we are currently in a very bust time for game releases! All I can say is if you are a Family Guy fan please gives it a go and if you really hate the show, well….. Do not play it as it is just like the show!
Current rating 8/10 and I don't think this will change but once I have completed the game I will try and finish this review.