DeadMan’s Scott Pilgrim vs. The World The Game Review
Scott Pilgrim originally started as a comic book series. Written and drawn by Bryan Lee O’Malley, the series followed 23-year-old Canadian indie rocker Scott Pilgrim who, along with being the bassist for Sex Bob-omb and barely skating by life, is trying to be with the literal girl of his dreams, Ramona Flowers. Only there is a slight problem. Ramona’s 7 exes, all of whom have some video game inspired skills or powers, have banded together to control the fate of Ramona’s love life and beat Scott to a bloody mess in the process.
Now, unless you know all this going into Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game, you may be a little lost. Saying this game is light on story is an understatement. All the set up it gives you is a 10 second intro cinematic that says “Scott Loves Ramona. Ramona Loves Scott. Scott Has to Defeat Her Evil Exes. Go..” or something to that affect. But the thing is, you don’t really need the story to play Scott Pilgrim and enjoy it for what it is: A retro and fun side-scrolling brawler in the vein of Double Dragon or River City Ransom with some interesting enemy designs and a difficulty also pulled from the aforementioned brawlers of old.
If you have ever played a brawler before, you know that basics of gameplay. Walk from the left side of the screen to the right, mashing light and heavy attack buttons until everything on the screen bursts into coins. Where it sets itself apart from a lot of the older brawlers is in the RPG elements.
Players can choose between 4 different characters to play as: Scott Pilgrim, Steven Stills, Ramona Flower and Kim Pine. Again, if you don’t know anything about Scott Pilgrim you won’t know who these people are. And again, it doesn’t really matter. The character select is basically just a color select screen. Each character has essentially the same attacks just with different animations. However, each character gains XP in battle and levels up, unlocking new moves and increasing your HP and Guts Points, the points you use to do special moves. The kind of annoying thing about the leveling is that each character levels up individually. If you play the entire game with Scott and get him to the max level (which is 16 for some reason) and you decide to play it again with a friend, either you will have to grind the fuck out of the early levels or have previously leveled that character up to play the game on equal footing and not have on of you be insanely more powerful than the other. The Scott player will probably destroy everything before the other one can so they level up.
One other problem this game has is with flow. In the early character levels if you get knocked down (and believe me, you will), you have to wait like 3 seconds before you can get back up. You learn an air recovery after a while but even that doesn’t work all the time. With this and the fact that big enemies and bosses have a habit of stun-locking you quite a bit, the flow of the game gets broken quite a bit.
Stun-locking and leveling issues aside, Scott Pilgrim The Game is still really fun. With gameplay that is simple and by not expecting (or even caring really) if you know the source material it is really accessible to newcomers of the genre and series. For fans of the old style of games and of Scott Pilgrim, it has the difficulty and look of a classic brawler and has enough of what made the comics really cool to make just as cool.
Final Score: 4/5