MTVs: Celebrity Deathmatch

Claymation has never been so boring...


The Lowdown

Pros: Simulated claymation, value priced

Cons: Stupid jokes, limited moves, awful "design a character" feature

MTV's Celebrity Deathmatch featured some of the funniest celebrity bashing mixed with wanton violence and claymation. Sadly, the show went off the air a number of years ago. This game was mentioned during the last days of show production and finally, two years later it comes out.

Celebrity Deathmatch suffers the same fate that most licensed games suffer. Developers rely too much on the license and don't spend enough time on making solid gameplay. When you start the game you have can either play in pre assigned matches which are part of an "episode" or you can go for free play where you select your opponent. The main difference between free play and beating episodes is that beating episodes inevitably unlocks more characters. The original characters that you can select include: Mr. T, Marilyn Manson, Carrot Top, Carmen Electra, Ron Jeremy, Busta Rhymes and all of the members of N-Sync. Sadly, the unlocked characters don't add any more celebrities, but do add some classic characters.

Each character has a limited selection of moves, which include punches, kicks, special moves, a throw and one super move. The moves don't combo of one another. Which gives the characters have a rigid feel to them. Each character has a very limited selection of moves so you'll see the same punch or kick over and over again. All of the moves have some comic value to them, with similar humor to the show. Jerry Springer can attack with a chair and call the audience to thrown stuff at his opponent. Ron Jeremy attacks with a chicken and a giant banana. Carrot Top throws carrots and punches a character and shouts "I'll show you how to dial collect!" Jokes like that are funny for the first time, but seeing the same jokes and hearing the same comments gets repetitive fast. What makes matters worse is the few number of moves each character has, which means a lot of redundancy.

The gameplay is similar to the show your job is to beat the stuffing out of your opponent. You move around the ring attacking your enemy. As you attack the "M" fills up, which is your super meter. When your super meter is full you can unleash your super attack, which for most characters is a full screen attack. Once your opponents life is low you can kill your enemy to end the battle. Each character only has one fatality. At least having another option would have added variety since you are required to sit through the death sequence to end the fight. Some of the fatalities are pretty funny. For instance Dennis Rodman's fatality involves him dribbling the head of his victim and Cindy Margolis' fatality has her program her enemy into a pong video game. One of the best features of the show was the fatalities and while they have the same humor as the show, we only wish there was more of them.

This game would have a lot of redeeming value if you could create whatever celebrity you dreamed of. They make the create a celebrity mode sound very appealing, but it's not even worth having in the game. You can choose from a limited number of premade features and outfits for your character. You can't actually make a new face or new outfits. There's only a few choices too, so its like having an extra ten pre made characters. The worse part about the create a celebrity mode is that there are only two fighting styles for whatever character you create. You either go barehanded or punch with boxing gloves. This means you only really have two new characters, since no matter what your character looks like they fight the same. What this boils down to, is you have the option to slightly customize the look of two new characters.

Graphically, the game is mediocre. Yes, the characters look like they're animated in claymation and they even look like who they are supposed to be. However, with all of the graphical technology now, the graphics look like a Playstation one or Sega Saturn game. The animation compares to Clay Fighter: Tournament Edition that was released in the days of the Super Nintendo. The dated look is only amplified by the lack of backgrounds and lack of animations that each character has. The sound effects suffer the same repetition as the graphics. All of the characters have sound bytes and jokes that they say. Some of them are funny, most of them aren't. Hearing the same bad jokes again and again just take more away from the game. The music in the game is almost non existent. There is white noise in between battles, which gives players a big yawn.

The main redeeming factor for Celebrity Deathmatch is its price, which is $20. If this game was anymore than $20 the score would be even lower. Since the game does provide some laughs and is fun when a friend is over $20 isn't too bad for the game. If you're a fan of the show you may want to pick it up, otherwise save your cash for a better game.

Console Comparison

The PC version is going to be the bottom of the barrel for this game since the controls aren't nearly as fluid as the Xbox or the Playstation 2 version. Unless you don't have a console, you shouldn't get it for the PC. Graphically, they all look similar. This game isn't pushing any graphical bounds so it doesn't make as much of a difference.

Import Friendly?

This game is currently in stores. There seems little reason why anyone would want to import this game. If you wanted to and could not read English you should be able to figure out how to play the game really quickly by button mashing. You would miss out on all of the humor, which may be a good thing.

US Bound?

It's out now and coming out for the Playstation One very soon.

Overall

The game's $20, which isn't too bad, but you'd most likely be better off saving your money to put it towards a better game.