After taking on the bit more serious Plague Tale: Innocence game, I wanted something more light hearted. Lucky for me, Microsoft added the Guardians of the Galaxy game to Game Pass. I enjoyed the movie and a coworker highly recommended the game, so I was in. It’s also hard to argue with no added cost.
Great Guardians of the Galaxy Game Story
Right off, the characters and story are funny. I got a kick out of a few bits of story that flash back to Peter Quill as a teenager, still living with his mom. The heavy metal (or was it Rock and Roll?) posters bring back the nostalgia of his childhood.
Back in the present, the actual Guardians of the Galaxy team members are hilarious.
Much like the movie character, he’s a big man baby. He’s stuck in his 80’s childhood, constantly listening to his cassette mix tape. The tape player is actually an important part of the Guardians of the Galaxy story and it’s what drives the soundtrack.
I loved Rocket’s complaints and made up words. His obsession with technology over even other members of the crew was entertaining. It’s also comical how upset he was with characters calling him cute, furry or threatening to throw him over gaps.
Drax the Destroyer
I think Drax was my favorite character. His warrior mentality and super direct statements were comedy gold. The dry and dark humor was a perfect fit. Although a silly part of the game, I cracked up every time he’d insult Peter Quill with his “dog report items”. The dog part you’ll find out about mid-game.
It was interesting to watch Gamora go from galactic assassin to an emotional wreck. Her backstory with Thanos and her sister Nebula were great additions to give her character depth.
“I am Groot”. If you’ve seen the movie, then you know that’s pretty much all Groot says. Even with the lack of vocabulary, he has so much personality in the game. The tones and speed of his words are big clues of what his intentions are.
Journey Through Space
Of course the Guardians of the Galaxy story started with stealing something. What followed was a great journey from dealing with the Nova Corps to dealing with an intergalactic cult. There were spaceship battles, great escapes and plenty of fighting monsters.
In between all that good Guardians of the Galaxy game comic book style action, there were bits on the ship to get to know the your fellow Guardians better. It reminded me a lot of talking to crew on the Normandy in Mass Effect. It was a great break from the action in the game.
Guardians of the Galaxy Graphics and Gameplay
First thing I did when I loaded up the game was turn on those beautiful ray traced reflections. The planets, ship, and stations, all look fantastic. It’s not as impressive as Cyber Punk’s implementation, but it’s a treat for the eyes. Even though it’s only ray traced reflections, there are so many shiny surfaces to take advantage.
The combo of the great lighting and ray traced reflection bring the alien worlds to life. I liked the sense of scale too. Sure the game is mostly linear, but it provided a bit of open world illusion. One complaint I do have is the black bars on the screen sides during cinematics.
I wish developers will stop doing this, because the rest of the game is wide screen. When you spend extra on a wide screen monitor and see how much better games built for it look, it’s like a let down when the cinematics revert to old monitor dimensions.
Perfect Comic Team Up Gameplay
As Peter Quill, Guardians of the Galaxy presented me with some dialog choices that actually impact the game. The impact of those choices varies from the way other characters react to my character to actual changes to the story points.
There’s really only one ending for the game, but how much help I received along the way depended on my choices. Some of my choices in the beginning did not turn out well. One in particular led to a more stressful fight to escape rather than a stealthy exit.
Later in the game, I was happy to see how my choices helped me in the game’s finale. For example, instead of taking on a room cultists, one of my allies swooped in, unexpected, and took them all out.
Obviously, the game includes battling with aliens and monsters, but the comic style team up battles raise it above other games, at least in fighting fun factor. Stagger an enemy down enough and all members of the team take turns beating them down with their own style.
There are upgrades for each member of the team for special moves with cooldowns. None was more entertaining than Rocket’s power ups. There’s one in particular where he pulls out a comical number of guns and rocket launchers stacked on top of each other like a super gun.
Build up enough action and a “Huddle Up” option becomes available. The Guardians of the Galaxy team literally huddles up and a small word game decides whether Peter inspires the team or just himself. It serves as a temporary buff for the team, but it’s a nice touch for the story and gameplay.
Guardians of the Galaxy Team Based Puzzles
There are are upgrades to Peter’s weapons, shield and additional moves. As the story progresses, there are even elemental options for Peter’s guns including: ice, electric, wind and fire. Each more effective against different enemy types,
Those gun elementals are also useful for solving various puzzles. Freeze some water here and fire to burn things there. It’s a nice touch. Guardians of the Galaxy Puzzles also extend to the team. Each member contributes to solve various puzzles.
Groot can extend bridges or raise platforms. Rocket can fit into tight spaces and interact with various electronics. Gamora can attach to some walls to offer a boost or cut thru various materials. Drax solves puzzles in a more brute force method by pushing, pulling, throwing and generally breaking things. I loved the comic team up fun.
Can’t Wait to See What’s Next for Guardian’s of the Galaxy
The Batman Arkham games were great, but I’m confident Marvel’s Guardian’s of the Galaxy is my new favorite comic based game. I’m all in for any future DLC the developer chooses to work on or a sequel. I wouldn’t mind seeing them take a crack at maybe an X-Men or Fantastic Four game down the road.