X-Men Destiny: Mutation, choice and evanescence

October 19, 2011

Superhero games have gotten a bad rap lately, and it isn’t undeserved. Outside of Arkham Asylum and a couple of Spider-Man games, they’ve all been anywhere from middling to horrible the last several years. In comes X-Men: Destiny, a valiant attempt to reverse this trend that falls just short of greatness.

In Destiny, Professor X died in battle against Bastion, a mutant-hunting cyborg from the future that is killed by Magneto, though too late to save the Professor. You will play as one of three different people about to come into their mutant powers during a peace rally being staged in San Francisco.

You have three different types of powers to choose from, and each lends itself to a different play style.  As the game progresses, you’ll also be given choices on how to progress your mutation, leading to all sorts of new powers. You’ll also take part in a somewhat open-ended story where you can choose whether to support the X-Men or the Brotherhood.

The combat is combo-based and felt similar to the combat in various other action games like Enslaved: Odyssey to the West. As the game goes on, you’ll gain access to genes and suits of various X-Men and Brotherhood members, which you can use to give yourself their powers in addition to your own. You can mix and match as you see fit, but if you use a complete collection from a single mutant, you’ll be able to enable X-Mode, which will grant you different bonuses based on which set it is.

The graphics work well for a comic-book-themed game, and the voice actors all sound like excellent choices for each character. (You may recognize Milo Ventimiglia, Scott Porter and Jamie Chung, voicing the three protagonists.)

The one thing keeping X-Men Destiny back? Its length. True, there’s some replay value in it due to the branching storyline, but each playthrough really only takes about 3 to 5 hours from start to finish. It’s a shame, because the story is entertaining and the game is really enjoyable.

If you’re a fan of the X-Men, then this definitely a game you should check out. But it isn’t likely to last you very long.

Pros: Storyline works for the series, gameplay is fun and enjoyable, voice acting fits well
Cons: Way too short

Score: 3/5

Questions? Check out our review guide.