No doubt released to coincide with any ‘Godzilla Fever’ generated by the latest Godzilla reboot1, Avatarzilla ($1.00) hopes you’ll be intrigued enough to plop your jumbo-sized digital self— complete with whatever ridiculous outfit you happen to be wearing— into a cramped metropolis in order to cause a little havoc.
Too bad this mash-up shares more in common with the bland-to-bad-to-terrible 1998 Godzilla reboot2 than the new film (which I hear is pretty good). To start with, you can choose from a whopping total of two(!) special attacks, shooting either fire or a laser from your mouth / eyes. I’m not sure which. The game’s lone map, a congested cityscape, provides plenty of buildings for you to demolish3 and / or walk awkwardly through, using said special powers, or a less-effective (and less fun) combo of punches and kicks.
There is no real single-player option in Avatarzilla. Minus filling the minimum requirement for an XBLIG demo, or the chance to lumber around unopposed (the tiny helicopters that hover around the city do not attack or otherwise harm you) and burn a hole in random buildings, there is no point in loading up the solo option. Plenty of multiplayer-only games have this problem, and while I personally favor shoddy AI bots over a vacant ‘practice’ map any day of the week, you shouldn’t immediately write off a game because of it.
Or perhaps you should. Even in an empty arena, the framerate dips once you start destroying buildings, slowing things to a crawl when I spammed my laser attack. Of course, some of that could be forgiven if the online battles were intriguing. Sadly, I wouldn’t know. I never once found a game to join, and no players ever entered the matches I created. So in essence, I’m left with a game I cannot ‘play’, one marred by technical issues and boring combat even if I could.
Coming from the same developer behind Stop the XOID!, a self-confessed beta where I was similarly unable to find online matches (but still enjoyed), I expected better. Nothing in Avatarzilla was given much thought or attention. It plays as such, a quick cash-in product that should just as quickly be forgotten.
- A trailer. Walt from Breaking Bad versus Godzilla? Automatically better than 1998 Godzilla. ↩
- Everything wrong with 1998 Godzilla, courtesy of the always-funny folks at Cinema Sins. ↩
- Sort of. The normal laws of gravity and structural damage do not apply to Avatarzilla. Punch a hole through a skyscraper, and that sucker will still miraculously stand tall. ↩