By Odin’s beard, Thor: God Of Thunder has finally made it’s way onto the 3DS. It may be a bit late to the party, but when you consider the lacklustre reception received by Thor on the other formats, maybe Sega saved the best for last.
Thor: God of Thunder is based very loosely on the recent Thor movie, with all of the main characters modeled on their movie couter-parts, as opposed to the Marvel comics Thor. Once again, Thor is moody, short-tempered and looking for a fight, something which Loki, the god of mischief, takes advantage of as part of his own plan to conquer Asgard. What follows is Thor fighting a variety of different creatures from Norse mythology, including the icy Frost Giants.
Beyond the fighting, there is not really much else to Thor: God of Thunder on 3DS. There are a few nice collectibles, such as alternate costumes that will get comic fans all excited. The story is interesting, but by no means compelling, taking a back seat very early on to the action. The 3D effect is nice, but lacks real depth even with the slider on full. But fortunately, the fighting is where the game actually shines, offering a pretty decent beat ‘em up experience.
The game works on the formula that the player is presented with a bunch of enemies in a given area and must defeat those enemies to progress along the path. The variety of those enemies is not exactly huge, with quick and weak or slow and armoured examples. But there are some nice boss battles to be had with some truly impressive creatures.
The combat itself is based on quite a deep combo system. To begin with, the player has only a quick, weak attack or slow, strong attack. But as they progress into the game, they will have the chance to unlock new combos which, when combined with the basic two attacks, will allow Thor to perform some pretty impressive moves. There is also the ability to jump, spin Mjolnir to defend attacks and dash forward at speed (which also does damage to anything in the way). Using all of these moves, along with any unlocked combos, leads to an incredibly satisfying combat experience.
Using the 3DS circle pad for movement works really well, with Thor moving fluidly and freely. Although the handheld is somewhat limited for its buttons, the developers have done a great job of assigning the moves in a way that it all seems quite natural. When it comes time to use the shoulder buttons, things can get a little fiddly for gamers like myself with big hands, but it is nothing to really worry about.
Thor also has some special moves that have to be charged up throughout the game. These are lined up on the touch screen and require a quick tap to activate. This is perhaps where things become a little less than perfect, as the touchscreen much prefers the stylus to a sweaty finger, so it all feels a little clumsy and imprecise.
I have already mentioned that the 3D effect is not exactly impressive, but the overall look of the game is really quite good. The main characters are all re-created really well and are easily recognisable as their movie counter-parts. The environments are a bit slow to change and somewhat lacking in variety, but do the job. Most impressive are the bosses who look both big and impressive.
Repetition is a big problem in Thor: God of Thunder. As I have already mentioned, beyond the fighting there is very little else. But realistically, how many other games revolve entirely around combat in its various forms. An action-adventure game this is not.
But once you get into the game, it quickly becomes apparent that Thor is not trying to be anything other than a beat ‘em up, and that is something it does really well. Gamers wanting to test their puzzle solving skills or embark on an epic adventure should likely look elsewhere. However, if you are in the mood for some no-brain pounding on unfortunate creatures from Norse mythology, then Thor should be top of your list. Younger gamers will get the most out of Thor, simply because progression is fairly easy and the rewards are satisfying. Older gamers may find the lack of variety tiresome. But, whichever way you look at it, the 3DS version of Thor: God of Thunder is the most enjoyable of them all.