He’s the best at what he does, and what he does isn’t pretty… oh wait. Wrong Marvel Anti-hero. The dangerous vigilante known as the Punisher has been brought back to the gaming world. His latest excursion into the virtual world takes place in the form of a Multiplayer focused First Person Shooter for the Playstation 3 via the PSN.
The Punisher: No Mercy features a story mode with co-op, however it’s not very long. Four levels, each one mirroring the online multiplayer. The story isn’t very deep, and doesn’t make a lot of sense, but is presented in a nice way.
Instead of doing CG cutscenes Zen Studios instead had comic book artist Mike Deodoto, the artist for the very cool Dark Avengers ongoing comic series, drew panels for the game’s cutscenes. My biggest problem with the story is that the story ends with a cliffhanger, which is either intended to be continued in DLC or a sequel.
The voice actors for game’s characters really good with only maybe Jigsaw being a major bother. They also add a certain level of humor as you play through the story and multiplayer. One of my more favorite characters to play as is Microchip, who often quotes internet Memes.
The multiplayer is fairly unique and really entertaining for a 10 dollar game. Sort of a Modern Warfare light. Choose one of eight characters, your main gun, short range gun, special gun, a passive mod and an activated mod. Unlike Modern Warfare these aren’t unlocked by gaining ranks but by accomplishing certain objectives, mostly with in the multiplayer.
The more unique feature in the game is the way it rewards good playing. By getting a lot of kills without dying your gun upgrades. These upgrades persist until you die and both change their performance and cosmetic appearance. These upgrades can also be obtained through using one of the active mods, but obviously results in you not having another mod that might be more useful for an extra level of strategy.
New character skins are also unlocked through the same manner as the new weapons and mods are activated. Each character is unlocked to start with in the single player. Unique skins for each character are unlocked in multiplayer, the number of which can range from three extra to five extra for some. They don’t change your in game performance, but are a nice little cosmetic change.
The graphics with in the game are a middle ground for the game. They aren’t horrible, but aren’t great. The levels are nicely detailed with some good effects, but the characters do have some rough edges on their models. Some are really well modeled, while others have poor skins or suffer from skinny joints. That being said, they’re all animated very well.
The multiplayer modes are mostly kill or be killed scenarios, which fits the whole Punisher theme perfectly. Free for all and Team Deathmatch are pretty straight forward. The other two are rather interesting.
Punish the Punisher is a game type similar to VIP. One person starts as the Punisher, he’s the target for everyone else in the game. The Punisher starts with a fully upgraded gun and is stronger than the others in the room. The person that kills the Punisher becomes the new Punisher and it repeats until the game ends.
Elimination is for the most part is a free for all with a few specific changes. There are a number of lives each person has. Whoever runs out of lives turns into a ghost but isn’t useless. They can’t win the game, but they can effect the outcome by placing some low powered mines around the map. These mines can be a little big jarring, or cost you the game.
Of the four my favorite would have to be Punish the Punisher. Most VIP games I play focus on Teams protecting their own VIP. One man against everyone is a really cool feeling, especially when you’re as strong as you are. They’re all really quite fun though.
The main fault some people might find with the multiplayer is the number of players. The game, because it’s a PSN game, only features a maximum of 8 players. While this might seem like a disadvantage the game works well because of it. The fights are small, personal and quick. The size of the map only benefits the number of people in the game.
Bottom line, The Punisher: No Mercy is a good Multiplayer FPS. For the 10 dollar price tag the game features some solid and well balanced multiplayer, with the story mode being it’s biggest flaw. You want a good multiplayer game on the cheap? You might be hard pressed to do better than The Punisher: No Mercy.