Viewtiful Joe Hands On
We take a closer look at Capcom's next big leap. Find out all the goods in our full hands on!
With E3 finally dying down and the news letting up it was nice to get the controllers back in our hands for some great game time. First on the agenda was our playable copy of Viewtiful Joe for the Gamecube and what a great return it was. Capcom has always been know for pushing the limits in every genre and now they are continuing this trend with what could easily be the best action/side scroller of this century. Viewtiful Joe is a simple concept but executed so brilliantly it deserves to be noticed. You play a mild mannered character that is about to discover his "special powers" and become a super hero, yup it sounded corny in text to us too but trust me it rocks!
The graphic style of the game is the first notable item. Capcom has decided to use the ever famous cel shaded technique when crafting Joe. The difference here is that it is done in a very comic book style with lots of bright colors and tons of flash. The enemies, while dumb in nature, and just as gorgeous to look at as they are enjoyable to whoop ass upon. The levels scroll just like the old days with lots of platform jumping and super moves to boot. What makes this game so memorable though is not in the graphical style (although it does kick mucho ass) but in it's simplicity and sheer fun factor.
Controlling Joe is a cinch, you direct with the analog stick and jump with A. When in super hero status you can also perform a double jump by tapping it twice. Pressing up and down on the analog will allow Joe to dodge enemy attacks very simliar to those flashy fight scenes you see in movies. When powered up Joe can either speed up or slow down time to make the action even more intense, but it is of course limited to a meter.
You use the X and Y buttons to attack, punches and kicks are the main course, and you use the left and right triggers to trigger slow mo or speed up in super hero mode. The combat, while simple in premise, is deep in enjoyment. Executing a 10 hit combo while in slow motion is just too fucking cool all around. Not to mention dodging enemy attacks and insane acrobatics with the touch of a button. This is what makes VJ so intriguing, taking a simple concept and making it fun and entertaining at the same time.
If Capcom keeps this game on track it could easily be one of the best the Cube has to offer in 2003. Viewtiful Joe is a take on old school gaming with a new style twist and it's executed flawlessly. Look for our upcoming import review in the next month or so and until the enjoy this awesome screenshots!