Bringing John Wick to video games with a low budget and getting a fun title was difficult, and those responsible have chosen the best possible way: ingenuity. In this analysis by John Wick Hex, we tell you how this Keanu reeve has turned out to be more biased but just as ruthless.
With a frankness that I always think is worthy of admiration, Mike Bithell (the head of John Wick Hex ) acknowledged that among the first ideas he had to adapt John Wick to video games there were some really terrible ones that he had to discard. Finally, he found the formula, and it is what we have in hand. An amazing entertainment that captures well the spirit of the saga of action movies, and does so by taking them to their field. Far from the pyrotechnics of the great blockbuster blockbusters here, we are committed to an equally visceral approach but much more tactical and adequate for the title profile that the person in charge wanted and could achieve, not in vain we talk about the creator of Thomas Was Alone among other great indie titles of recent years. It is no-nonsense.
Aesthetically it can remind you of an XCOM, both for the type of perspective it uses and for the fact that everything is managed in turn, however, this is much more dynamic and quite different. And, as if that were not enough, it also takes elements from other recent titles in the indie scene, such as the remarkable SUPERHOT of 2016 in terms of its management of a time that only progresses when we do it.
Between the isometric camera and the zenith perspective, the action of the Mike Bithell Games title is developed, and certainly we can define more or less to our liking where to fix it to try to see the action. The purpose is simple, John has a series of objectives that can range from going from one point to another in a given scenario to liquidate a final boss. The title is structured in a series of chapters composed in turn of several phases, and there is a rather small story that spins them. There we can not blame him if the plot of the films is already quite basic we were not going to ask the video game to work wonders. It is the least, Charon and Winston are out there and we are explained that we are living events located before the first movie, but we are here to meet goals and to kill everything that moves along the road and that is what really matters.
John Wick Hex, tactics and fuel
I like that, although it is an experience similar to a turn-based development that could lead to a certain slow pace; the truth is that the game manages to offer gameplay that gives us time to think, yes, but at the same time tries to imitate the agility of the movies … In its own way, of course.
We can choose what we want to do in each moment, but absolutely everything we do consumes concentration. Something like the hero’s fuel, which we can recharge whenever we are calm and can spend a few seconds of our time bar doing it. Using the head to decide when it is most appropriate to stop to try to restore that bar is as important as, for example, also decide when we want to reload the magazine of our weapon.
What can we invest that concentration in? There is a variant of movements where, among other things, we can move John, change positions or actuate certain parts of the stage (a door, for example). Or, if we have someone on target, we can carry out actions on him such as shooting him or throwing his weapon (surprisingly useful as an extreme resource if we run out of bullets) or the melee classics wi th a punch, push and so on …
The design of the stage is great, optimal to take advantage of the tactical possibilities.
All this, which apparently seems simple and in reality is not too complex, is combined with skill in the video game. We have to be aware not only of that “gasoline” for John but also of managing his health with the bandages, how our weapon is going to see if it is necessary to load it or get a new one and many more things. And also be attentive to the stage100%, since our position dictates not only the classic virtues of mobility (rolling) and pointed in the case of being crouched, but quickly the bar of a disco or the columns of a building can become unexpected allies. There is a great stage design behind it, to take advantage of the tactical possibilities that John Wick Hex presents.
The great thing is that when we take a few hours, each time our brain manages faster everything that needs to be done. I will not say that there comes a time when we do things in real-time, but I can guarantee that the action menus are so intuitive and the action rewards in such a way that sometimes we will go so fast and, under our baton, John will execute all the movements with such precision that the sensation will be similar. It is similar to being at the head of one of the most elegant murderers we have seen in recent years in the world of cinema, and the feeling is very satisfying. At the end of each level, in fact, we have the possibility to see a real-time repetition and with very cinematographic cameras of everything that has happened to the delight of that small and lethal murderer that we carry inside.
Aesthetically the video game seems very interesting. At one point he created a certain rejection between a certain profile of fans, who might expect something else, but it seems to me that with the media that there is the title he manages to offer a certain variety on the stages and show the characters in a way between the comic and the cartoon, but definitely recognizable. Closer to reality in the case of the recurring side of the movies, and more casual in the case of Keanu Reeves. The animations are, without a doubt, the worst part of all of them, both in execution and in chains. It is there where the modest origin of the video game is most noticeable.
As for the sound, the soundtrack is provided by the always talented Austin Wintory; that, although it does not leave us one of his best works because the bar is very high, it does bring us a few themes of great quality and a phenomenal finish. Good audio effects and John Wick Hex arrives in our country with the English voices of Ian McShane and Lance Reddick repeating their roles in the movies, and the ubiquitous Troy Baker in the role of Hex, the villain who gives a name to the game.
John Wick Hex seems like simple entertainment, and possibly it is, but it hides many possibilities under that first appearance. It is a very clever tactical action game, with a very resounding aesthetics and sound, and that do what seemed impossible: to transfer the viscerality to a videogame of the most surprising the ingenuity of the fighting of the films starring Keanu Reeves.
- It’s a really ingenious way of formulating John Wick’s action.
- When we get acquainted with what it offers it is quite addictive and very dynamic.
- The design of the scenarios is perfect to facilitate a biased action.
- History leaves much to be desired, although its importance is very low.
- Some moments when the enemies are not hustled.