There is no doubt that there are a lot of companies out there who are just dying to be the next "big thing". One thing about the gaming industry is that its one that is open for new experiences, but to get a new experience that sells well is a different question all in itself. So SEGA teamed up with Bizarre Creations, not necessarily to create a new genre, but instead to take what is popular out of the run and gun action market and create a serious "game" out of it. What’s this all boils down to is a game titled The Club, and it hopes to become apart of your game library. Does it have what it takes to be worth that? Read our full review to find out!
So the story in The Club mirrors that movie from last year starring the WWE legend, Stone Cold Steve Austin, where really you’re in a tournament to fight for your life. The idea basically behind the game is that there is this tournament with the best assassins in all the world who come together to basically tout their skills and try to prove who reigns supreme. The characters are really knock offs of many villains and heroes that you would find in a typical run and gun action movie. Not only do you have to be quick to kill, but the game also wants you to look good while doing it.
The game is actually a really interesting concept and if you read it on paper, you will probably believe this to be a great idea for a video game, and in a lot of ways it actually turns out to be quite good. The game is played in the third person perspective, so for those of you like me who don’t want to play yet another FPS, this is the game’s first big plus. Secondly the game actually adds another element of complexity/challenge to the game by really making you try to not only kill but kill with skill, and this is an interesting and for the most enjoyable mechanic.
I feared going into The Club that it was just going to be one giant string of deathmatches compiled together to make one game, however that is actually not the case. Playing offline you will find that you’re not only going to be running through levels trying to go quick while hitting high scores but also defending areas, or staying in a certain area while fending off enemies, there is a good deal of variety offline which does help the offline experience quite a bit.
The big issue that I think most will conclude is with the multiplayer, which for my experience seemed to be lacking in a big way. This may have something to do with the Christmas rush of great online shooters, but The Club just doesn’t do anything with its eight player online gameplay. There are some interesting options, and in a number of cases an enjoyable experience to be had. I just however never felt necessarily compelled to stay online with this game.
As a shooter, the game has all the mechanics down, with no real overlaying control issues. The game manages to keep things pretty standard, and doesn’t stray too far off the familiar track. As a whole this is a game that has everything that you’re going to be looking for in an offline shooter. To me this is a game that really appeals to someone who may just want to enjoy a game offline, and just compete against all of the different challenges that the game has.
I have to admit, the visuals really did a great job of getting a different feel of a shooter then we are so used to seeing. I would say that The Club could have used some better work done on the environments however which to me looked a bit grainy, and lacking a lot of the details that we expect for a next generation title. The character models however do a lot in the other direction giving a lot of personality and life to the experience. Combine all this with a good frame rate and nice animation and you have a pretty darn good looking game.
There is one thing that I think some gamers will not enjoy and that is the memorization that comes into play when playing this game. You’re going to be playing missions more than once and to do better the next time you really want to hit remember where everyone is, and that requires a bit more work then a normal shooter. On the flip side, if you just play this game for the run and gun shooter that I believe it was designed to be the game is extremely easy going and makes for a very fun experience.
The Club was a pleasant surprise. It’s a guns blazing light hearted action experience that may not be the best shooter out there but it doesn’t have to be. This game to me is directly suited for those who just want to kick back, stay offline, and just enjoy a good old fashion run and gun experience, and in that case, The Club succeeds.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.