THIS GAME HAS INVADED MY BRAIN
Destroy All Human was originally released back in June of 2005. I was out of high school for only one month and it was the first game I bought as an adult. I knew the game was going to be crazy but how crazy the world would be was truly unexpected. The game is set in 1959, you play as Crypto-137 on a rescue mission to save your predecessor, Crypto-136. You are one of many clones made by the Furon Empire to take over worlds and it is time to make Earth part of this glorious empire. Your Boss, Pox, has sent you to harvest as much human DNA from brain stems as you can to prevent the Furons from going extinct. In a weird and hilarious story plot, the Furon’s genitalia become non-functional due to too much usage of their nuclear weapons. This. This is why I love this game, it is nothing short of a hysterical action-adventure game from start to finish.
After playing through some tutorial missions you’re given the ability to lay waste to the beautifully remastered world of Destroy All Humans and holy hell is it fun. I was a bit rusty when I first started playing, taking a lot of damage, and getting lost in the areas I was exploring. I jumped in thinking I knew where everything was. However, the game looks so good and different in this remake I honestly felt like I was playing something new. I think it’s clear to see the love and care Black Forest Games has for this series. With that said the story is a great example of a game that doesn’t take itself seriously. Going from mission to mission I was laughing and just shaking my head, with old and somewhat corny jokes still in this game, I see many games missing this factor nowadays.
Every game now is so doom and gloom, but never really feel like there’s any room for comic relief. As you make your way throughout the story, you come to realize Crypto just doesn’t give a shit. The attitude that this little blue dude has is hilarious with comments like “I don’t care how many stomachs you have! I don’t have time for this!”…while addressing cows and getting mad at Earthlings for calling him green with the rebuttal of “Not again! I’m not green Colorblind moron!”
This may seem like a small detail but to me, it is something we don’t see in many games now outside of games like Saints Row and GTA. In the uncertain time, we are in now, we need to have fun in games with comic relief to take our mind off current events in the world, and Destroy All Humans is the perfect example of that type of escape! With that said, I did feel like using the original audio from the 2005 release was a bad choice. I know it would have been a big task of getting all the original voices and looking for new ones, but the new beautiful look to this game with the original audio just seemed weird. There are a lot of times the audio just seemed off and had times where there was no background music, the voice segment would be done in the cutscene and there was just an awkward silence.
This did take me out of the game and make it seem more like a reskin instead of a full remake, but that doesn’t mean this game wasn’t constantly on my mind. From start to finish this game is just pure fun, using mind control on town folks to do your bidding, using the HOLOBOB feature to disguise yourself as a human, or just picking humans and items up with your telepathy and throwing them across the map. There is never a moment this game is boring and that is what we love about it. Something that did get better with age is the gameplay controls. It makes this by far the smoothest version of Destroy All Humans yet!
SO EASY A HUMAN CAN PLAY IT
A few weeks before release, I played the original game via Xbox One. Though it was great to replay this game, it was so stiff and slow I really couldn’t play it long. This is not the case with the remake. The gameplay and overall controls have been revamped and it is so smooth. Playing as Crypto feels like you’re controlling an alien with amazing powers. Further enhancing the smoothness to the game is the skate-dash system. It makes it so much easier to move around the map and adds a unique style of gameplay to this type of game. Also, using weapons has never felt better. Locking onto enemies, jet-packing in the air, and using the Zap-O-Matic in a chain attack is nothing short of spectacular. You feel like you are shooting fish in a barrel and that is what we want playing an alien invasion style game.
The remake also gives you the option to upgrade your weapons more than ever. The Zap-O-Matic, Anal Probe (yes, a real anal probe), Disintegrator Ray, and Ion Detonator can be more powerful than ever. Thus, they make the game that much more interesting. You have the same option with your abilities and this just makes the game more fun and fast-paced than ever before. With that said it’s good that upgradeable options were added because THQ Nordic and Black Forest Games upped the difficulty just a smidge. In the original, we fought the same enemies and bosses, but this time they are much more challenging. Most bosses now have three different levels of help and boy is it tough, but that’s what we want right? A challenge suited for an overpowered alien race.
The great thing is before facing these powerful bosses you can explore the previous levels where you can collect more DNA and upgrade Cryptos weapons and saucer to the fullest extent. This gives you a much better advantage and also helps you get some of the cooler unlockables in the game like the skins.
Being the THQ fan I am the best one to use in the game for me is the Pale Rider Skin, giving a huge shout out to the Darksiders franchise. Also, if you preordered the game you have many other skins you can play with like Elvis Crypto, Nuclear Green Crypto, Gray Skin Crypto, Clown Crypto, and more! Now, I had a ton of fun with this game, but even the perfect remake has its problems at times and that can dull down your experience at times.
A NOT SO PERFECT EMPIRE
Of course, this game is a visual masterpiece when it comes to remakes. Black Forest Games and THQ Nordic did a great job at making this world look more beautiful than ever, but there were a few things that made this game slip up from being perfect. First, as I said earlier, the outdated voice acting bummed me out. The quality of the audio is not bad and of course Crypto and Pox sound amazing, but the other voice-overs for the game were just stale. When walking around this beautiful world and hearing voice acting that is over 15 years old just doesn’t fit well. There were even times that I had a clear lag in cutscenes during talking points and it was just a bummer.
There were also a lot of times on the PS4 version of the game that there were many screen tears and lag, especially when there was a lot of action going on at once. For reference, I was playing on a PS4 Pro and used my 70 inch Vizio 4K that is 120hz. Even with this high performing tech, I didn’t expect to see this many screen tears in Destroy All Humans. Though this was unexpected, it didn’t ruin my experience. However, it did make me that much more excited for the upcoming PS5 and hope that we won’t have these types of issues again.
Lastly, this is something I want from every game so don’t judge me, but where was the photo mode!? This is the type of game that a photo mode would have been perfect in. To have filters themes around the 1950s, the Furon Empire in the Destroy All Humans world would have been great. Maybe we can see a photo mode in an upcoming update or a new Destroy All Humans game…who knows.
This cult classic was one of my favorite games back in 2005 and it has now become one of my favorite remakes of all time. The Destroy All Humans Remake is one of the most fun games on the planet and is a definite buy for anyone looking for some comedic relief during this tough time we are all going through. Though it does have its pros and cons, I feel that this Black Forest Games and THQ Nordic could have more plans for this series in the long run and I can’t wait to play as Crypto and take over the world for the Furon Empire once again!
(Images and Code Provided by THQ Nordic)