Scarface: The World is Yours Wii Review

May 29, 2010 by Chris Wigham  
Filed under Nintendo Wii, Reviews

I loved Scarface: The World is Yours when it was released on PS2 and Xbox, so much so that I decided on the lofty score of 9/10. As tradition goes, if a publisher released a popular game earlier, it finds its way to the Wii later on, complete with for better or for worse motion control. I’m not going to go too in-depth here, lets just say it’s still a great game, although that’s all I’m saying for now. Sorry about that.

Al Pacino isn’t dead, now please don’t argue with me about that, if you truly want someone to argue with then argue with the people behind this game instead. Actually Mr Pacino is still very much alive and well, but, in something that is similar to an alternative ending on a DVD, his Scarface character Tony Montana actually escaped with his life intact from his not so lucky mansion. That’s of course where you come in. Indeed this isn’t a movie sequel but a game instead, and one that will delight some fans for bringing the Cuban crime lord out of his not-so permanent retirement, whilst angering others for making some major changes to the 1983 movie ending which saw Montana‘s death (or apparent death, it‘s all a little confusing).

If you’re in a rage about the ending, put that anger aside right now, it’s not good for you, and this is also more than a simple cash-in on the cult film. Taking control of the luckiest man alive (or dead depending on whom you may be) your objective soon becomes crystal clear: buy your mansion back, drive some cars, kill some people and let grace know that your fall was premature by rebuilding your empire.

Scarface is a part of the open world crime genre (your environment is 1980’s Miami as well as some of its surrounding islands) that was pioneered by the popular and controversial Grand Theft Auto series, and there should be few arguments that GTA did in fact create a genre, so please stop with the “GTA clone” name calling. It’s not very nice.

There’s much familiarity to be found, including driving and shooting, although The World is Yours isn’t without its standout features. Unsurprisingly cocaine features heavily, and obtaining it from enemies and suppliers and then selling it on can make you rich very quickly. The money, power and respect theme runs throughout allowing you to furnish and redecorate your mansion (trust us it needs it), fill your garage with motors (which can be brought to you instantly by summoning your driver, always handy when you don‘t want any attention from the boys in blue) and take over all the Miami turf by wiping out gangs and purchasing fronts and warehouses.

As a sandbox game The World is Yours gives you the freedom that we have come to expect from the genre. You can get on with the main missions or involve yourself in side tasks, which includes taking control of a driver, an assassin, and an enforcer. These lot can only be utilised upon purchasing their services, and are involved in missions that Tony himself isn’t really suited to, but often give you a good payoff for completing them. As mentioned earlier, taking out gangs, which show up as skull symbols on the map, is also a possibility, and gets Tony closer to making Miami his own.

Lets talk about those controls, as the game was already so good this is the thing that is going to make or break this Wii version, and in all honesty they‘re a bit of a mixed bag, working wonderfully well in one instance and then being a little fiddly and disobedient on another. Camera control and weapon aiming is done via the remote and as there’s an impressive four schemes it means that you’ll most probably find something that will suit you, whilst the remote once again proves itself to be very efficient and precise when shooting enemies. We did have a jittery camera on occasion where we seemed to lose our focus, although we put it down to our brisk movements rather than Montana’s cocaine snorting. The driving is meanwhile perhaps a little worse than other versions, don’t get us wrong it’s still fun, it just doesn’t seem as comfortable with a remote in one hand and a funny plastic thing in the other, particularly when you‘re combining both driving and shooting. That funny plastic thing is otherwise known as the nunchuck and allows for blind rage and taunting (more about these later). Now, we come to the in-game menus, which are an important element in the game (allowing for access to missions, the exotics catalogue, summoning your driver to bring you a car and so on), but here being mapped to the 1 button makes them a little awkward to get to and encourages some unnecessary finger exercise. To end this paragraph on a high note, just wait until you get your hands on the chainsaw, it’s bloody good fun.

Now those nunchuck actions I mentioned are rather important. Pushing the funny bit of plastic forward results in a Tony taunt (that rolls off the tongue rather nicely), and he certainly could do with getting his mouth washed out with some dirty soap, such is the amount of expletives that comes from it. Swearing, shouting, driving crazily, intimidating people, distributing drugs, and shooting your enemies actually contributes to something, although we’re not talking about any good causes involving god here, oh no, we’re talking balls. All the aforementioned actions fill the rage meter, and when it’s full you are then able to unleash blind rage by shaking the nunchuk like a madman (supposedly showing off your rage of course), with the game then stylishly switching to first person mode, making you invulnerable to damage, boosting your targeting to robotic proportions, and again should encourage anyone that is offended by swearing to clap their hands over their ears. During this state killing enemies earns you back health, which is helpful when Tony takes a barrage of bullets and is about to be killed in action, and you never know he may actually stay dead this time, or perhaps not.

Scarface: The World is Yours is still a brilliant game on the Wii that allows you to live the fancy lifestyle of a cult cinematic icon, and the remote once again proves itself to be a brilliant device of precision, and it’s not a bad chainsaw either – but it has to be said that that the controls make it feel worse in a number of ways. It’s still perfectly playable, though, and this version certainly has its plusses, although I’d be lying to claim that it’s the definitive version, as quite simply it’s not.

8/10

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