The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction PS2 Review

May 31, 2010 by Chris Wigham  
Filed under PS2, Retro Content, Retro Reviews

The previously released Hulk was an admirable attempt at capturing the essence of the green muscled monster and the path of destruction that he leaves in his wake. It was the Bruce Banner stealth sections that many people took a disliking to, if we had to choose between taking control of a powerless scientist and a hulking unstoppable monster, then we’d definitely know who we would go for. Thankfully this new game doesn’t have such sections, meaning its Hulk through and through and we only get to see Banner during the games cut-scenes.

Playing exclusively as Hulk isn’t the games only major difference as the animal is now out of his cage and on a destructive rampage. We’re talking about an open-ended experience like nothing ever seen before, with impressive amounts of destruction caused by an endless list of powerful moves. The Hulk is definitely in his element, and so were we upon playing this smashing game!

The game takes place in the badlands as well as a sprawling city, and Hulk’s unstoppable movement soon becomes a fact opposed to being a lie to make the game sound better on the press release and advertisements. In the city you can run through the streets knocking obstacles such as vehicles out of your path as if they were mere baked bean cans. Activision’s Spider-Man 2 showcased perfect web swinging, Hulk meanwhile travels with immense ease sans the web, instead utilising the scaling up/along buildings trick as well as making huge distances via some truly gigantic leaps, this all makes travel particularly easy and thoroughly enjoyable.

The Incredible Hulk is defined by his destroying and thankfully the game acknowledges this. The bountiful amount of moves that Hulk is capable of on this game is vast like the universe, and the stuff he can do is absolutely astonishing, utterly marvellous and everything else that says things are good. If you have something in mind that you would like the Hulk to pull off, then if he isn’t already capable of granting your wish, then he most probably will be able to at some stage in the game. The great thing is you can refer to your move list at anytime to look up the controls, just as if you were playing a fighting game. Think tearing helicopters out of the sky, ripping a vehicle in half to create a pair of steel boxing gloves (who said the Hulk was dumb and had no imagination!), shielding yourself with a vehicle, creating very large bowling balls, swinging tanks around and catching missiles and tossing them back. We could continue, but we’ll just conclude this paragraph by saying that “The Ultimate Destruction” moniker fits like a…steel glove.

All this destruction looks and sounds great too with explosions; large blemishes on the landscape and buildings toppling down like packs of cards as a result of Hulk’s battles. The game also includes sound effects that can only be described as “booming” and almost “thunderstorm” like. Needless to say it’s a really loud game. This all collectively immerses you into Hulk’s heroic universe.

The game has its story missions that have you protecting things, blowing things up and obtaining important items that are key to ridding Banner of his curse. The story missions obviously push the narrative along, and unsurprisingly for such an open-ended title, side missions also make an appearance throughout the sizeable playing world. Often funny in nature, the side missions earn you additional smash points, which just happen to be the games currency that is used to earn new moves. These missions are surprisingly ample in number, and include everything from time trials to batting soldiers around to see what distance you can achieve.

The side missions aren’t the only reason to freely roam the landscape, as secrets are also waiting to be found. These hidden surprises are in the form of comic books (60 of them to be precise) and give you access to cheat codes, movies and concept art. The game is so good that we wanted to hunt the whole lot down!

The Incredible Hulk is one of those characters that is ideal for the gaming world, and he has finally got a game to his name that he utterly deserves in Ultimate Destruction. If you are a Hulk devotee or an action fan you’ll love the impressive destruction on display here as well as the powerful methods that allow you to cause it. It’s a great licence, and with all that said it’s definitely one of the finest superhero games we have ever played, which is only marred by some terribly frustrating moments in the later stages of the game.

8/10

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