We Just Played Thor: God of Thunder

We raise hel with the god of thunder at Sega's recent press event.

It's no secret that video games based on movies get a bad rap. However, Sega is looking to lift some of this negative stigma with its series of Thor: God of Thunder video games. Instead of just retreading the events of the upcoming movie, these games have been given the liberty to tell their own tale outside of the movie's narrative. Marvel Comics writer Matt Fraction, known for his work on Uncanny X-Men and numerous Thor comics, has been assisting as a story consultant in crafting a tale specific for these games. It will chronicle Thor's journey across the numerous worlds of Norse mythology to battle enemies lifted straight from the comics, including Ymir, Surtur, and Ulik.

The first version of the game I checked out was on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, which was a third-person action game. The areas I saw focused primarily on combat, which was very straightforward and built around accessibility. Fighting was a mixture of normal hits with Thor's legendary hammer, Mjolnir, interspersed with the elemental powers, which acted as finishing moves. The direction pad could be used to switch between Thor's three elemental powers: wind, lighting, and thunder. If an enemy got out of range, Thor could attack from a distance by locking on to and strafing around an enemy while lobbing his hammer into its face. Check out the video below to see the Odin son in action.

The Wii version took a similar approach with the same third-person action, but it had a different visual style. It looked more like the comics, unlike the previous game, which more resembled the movie, with its bright, colorful palette and numerous unlocked outfits for the title character taken from his numerous incarnations. I started out in a boss fight against the flame giant Surtur and his minions. This encounter introduced me to the game's combat, which was very reminiscent of the previous version's combat. However, because this was on the Wii, combo finishers were executed using specific motions with the Wii Remote rather than mere button press. Using the direction pad and gesturing with the Wii Remote, I could also access Thor's numerous elemental powers. One summoned a typhoon to knock enemies around; another called upon a lighting storm to stun targets; the third supercharged Thor's hammer for additional damage.

After shattering Surtur's giant, flaming sword, I wailed on his weak spot by throwing the supercharged Mjolnir at it repeatedly until he finally submitted. The second area I played in showed off a mechanic unique to this version: flight. Thor took to the skies in a simple rail shooter sequence where I used the Wii Remote to point and shoot lighting wherever I pleased (which was everywhere). I could also hold down the fire button and paint the cursor across multiple targets to strike them all at once, a technique that was useful for catching smaller enemies.

The flying sections help break up the brawling.

The last version I saw was on the Nintendo DS, and it turned out to be my favorite. Developed by WayForward Technologies (Contra 4), this version of the game featured yet another unique art design. This time, it was in the form of some highly detailed and stylish sprite designs. The game itself was a 2D side-scrolling brawler that utilized both screens on which to smack foes around. The first area I saw took me through the game's tutorial, which was set amid a massive invasion of Asgard by trolls (described as the rats, kobolds, or bandits of the Thor universe). As I got reacquainted with the god of thunder for the third time that day, I was relieved to see that the game had steered away from including gimmicky touch-screen controls. After routing the fiends, I skipped ahead and faced off against the frost giant Ymir. This was the game's first, and certainly not last, dual-screen boss encounter. Down on the bottom screen, I had to fight off Ymir's frozen fiends while dodging a barrage of icy boulders before leaping up to the top screen onto the giant's shoulders and introducing his face to the backside of my hammer.

The action spans across two screens.

Every version of the game had something different to bring to the experience, and it was refreshing to see developers given more creative liberty in how they adapt these licensed games. You can find the whole set just in time for the cinematic release this May.

Written By

Want the latest news about Thor: God of Thunder?

Thor: God of Thunder

Thor: God of Thunder

Discussion

24 comments
raith616
raith616

this might be even worse than the home console version, now that is impressive

poststillmatic
poststillmatic

@ the author, you mean Sega is trying to lift some of it's negative stigma for making really sloppy superhero games. It is like we get amnesia each time they make a game for marvel. The last 5 were really bad, but this one they say will be good.." hmmmmm

night-dreamers
night-dreamers

@worelynn1 Oh, please don't let me start about saudi arabia. P.S. I'm Saudi. :S

bababoss
bababoss

the game game is good but it need to work on the graphics bababoss from trinidad

worelynn1
worelynn1

@survivor9712 Other than oil and some horses, Saudi Arabia has contributed to the rest of the world how?

Georg_Maximus
Georg_Maximus

I was hoping that Thor would somewhat resemble that brutally underappreciated game Viking: Battle for Asgard, but it seems that SEGA missed the opportunity of improving one of it's earlier titles and went instead for some generic buttin-mashing bore galore.

WhatsY0UTUB3
WhatsY0UTUB3

This looks terrible. He's on the Frost Goliaths chest smashing him over and over and the Frost Giant just stands there looking at him with his hands raised. Doesn't even try to get him off except once. I'd say a 4.0 - 6.0 rating.

Kaunte
Kaunte

How are thunder and lightning different powers?

Srykor
Srykor

still another movie game, why bother

BelmontWolf
BelmontWolf

those frost giants are tiny in the comics they can hold thor in one hand

cr1m50ndr4g0n
cr1m50ndr4g0n

the ds version looks to be the best. looking forward to it after this preview.

ReaversRevenge
ReaversRevenge

think the movie will be better than the game.....unless its not. then im wrong.....unless im not. :S

Tremere10
Tremere10

It looks okay but Thor will always be a comic book and nothing more

shad0w83
shad0w83

From What I saw on youtube, this game sucks like a 2.5 in ratings.

Avaddon8
Avaddon8

@survivor9712 haha, well mr.saudi, how bout you shut your face. The Vikings had a much better history and mythology then the dirt dwellers. I'm sure they made the name of the God's mean stupid things. But if you ever read Norse Mythology, you'd crap in your pants because it is so amazing. I'am happy to be a Norse Pagan. I have good hopes that Thor the game wont disappoint too much, but as for his name, Asator/Thor, it is not a name that sounds stupid; in norse mythology, the ice giants,world snake, and even the mightiest of all beasts feared him with his voice alone!

dannyatkinson
dannyatkinson

The problem is that every movie game adaption ever made is the same stupid action game rehashed over and over.

survivor9712
survivor9712

THOR means in Arabic "a stupid , foolish person" . I could hear the jokes when this game is released in Saudi .

MrDouglas
MrDouglas

Sounds like the Wii version will be the one to go for, since from what I've seen of the movie so far, don't really like what it looks like (the main actor, the sets etc) and would prefer a more comic-inspired Thor game. Hello the Wii version then and perhaps the DS as well, the dual-screen action sounds like fun also.

berebd
berebd

I'm getting tired of people saying they COPIED A GAME OMG IT sucks!.... I mean common... there's going be a time where everything has been thought up and made... Of course there are going to be elements which have been used in other games... It does not have to mean its a rip off or its going to suck! Give it a chance and play it. same goes for Dark siders it used allot of elements from zelda which made it a awesome game. so id say wait and see instead of bashing the game because it has some elements of this or that. >.

hwrdstrnsbals
hwrdstrnsbals

Looks like a rip-off of God of War. Is that good or bad? I don't know, but it doesn't look as good as GoW 3 in both style and graphics. meh...

Barighm
Barighm

Oh, so this isn't a movie licensed game? Ah, okay. Like how Arkham Asylum and War for Cybertron turned out. This one may actually be fun.

emirblade
emirblade

I like how each version is somewhat different. Thor fans that have all console must be dancing.