The only good thing about Celebrity Deathmatch is that it makes your other games look better by comparison.
(-) shallow and tedious fighting; all the fighters fight exactly the same; all the arenas look nearly the same; hideous visuals; the unlockables are a joke; the game can be beaten in less than two hours; all attempts at humor fall out the window; this game somehow passed Sony's approval process
In case you haven't heard of it, Celebrity Death-Match is an animated television show that runs on MTV that features clay-mated celebrities fighting each other to the death. It features some pretty brutal KO's and some pretty obscene jokes, and a wide cast of celebrities, and once on a rainy day could be good to watch. But if you see it somewhere on your TV catalog, you'll probably pass on it because something better happens to be on, like say Family Guy, True Blood, Spongebob, I don't know. And what can be said about this video game? Good Lord, thinking about it makes my head hurt, but I feel pressured to continue on from here.
15 of the television show's celebrities have made appearances on the game, like Carrot Top, Marilyn Manson, Anna Nicole Smith, and Justin Timberlake. There are others you can unlock, but all I've seen was an alien, hillbilly, and Frankenstein. Was it too much pressure on the developers to at least offer a few more celebrities? Just calling the fighter roster limited would be a little too generous.
The game-play is devoid of any slim excitement from the television show. Every single fighter will fight essentially the same. You have four basic attack buttons. This game is a true-to-heart button masher, that's all you need to do to excel against any opponent. Seriously, you can very easily tap the same button continuously and win in a fight. This horrid combat system is shallow to the bone and boring enough to cure insomnia. It also doesn't really matter which arena you choose, they are all practically the same as well. There are small weapons and power ups in the level, but those aren't even near enough to offer some kind of variety in the fighting. The finishing kill scenes once you drain the health bar is without a doubt the most exciting thing the game has to offer, but each specific character only has one and you'll only get a kick out of it the first time you see it, so that was another opportunity washed down the drain.
The game has a very bad lack of content. There is only a basic single player mode and basic multiplayer modes for two people. All the single player mode offers is six episodes with three fights in each, and it only took me two and a half hours to completely unlock all the content and beat the game. You don't even get to choose your fighter, they choose. Worse yet, all the fights were painfully easy. I could literally hit one button on and on again for the next two hours and beat everyone. That is until the very last fight, which is between two NSYNC members, the difficulty level spikes from two-year-old with down-syndrome to hyper-maniac-computer-geek-trying-to-solve-a-rubix-cube.
And after you've completed the single player, and you have a friend who you want to get revenge on for every thing they have done to you in the past, there is a multiplayer mode that way the two of you can suffer together with the bland and shallow game-play. This would make a better inside joke with your friend than a deeply engage game, then you'll both quickly move over to Super Smash Bros, Soul Caliber, Mortal Combat, or any other fighting game under the sun. The only attempt at adding something similar to extra content is the Create-a-Celebrity, which you only have a few faces, shirts, pants, and fighting styles to choose from which makes the feature a novelty at best.
The graphics are absolutely dreadful. There is also a PS1 version of this game, and I looked at footage of that version through Youtube, and the only notable difference I've seen is the characters don't interact with each other as they do in this version. That's right. All the celebrities are easily antiquated with a polygon look, as are the boring environments with no personality or texture to be seen, and somehow the frame-rate struggles to keep up with the action as slow paced and simplistic as it is. The finishing moves aren't even that great from a visual perspective. The only good thing I can say about the graphics is you get plenty of colors, mostly red for that matter. But all and all, the graphics do absolutely nothing with the Playstation 2's hardware capabilities and only serve the purpose to make the system look much weaker until you put another game in.
The sound isn't much better than the visuals either. The commentators have a very thin scope of voice work that gets repetitious after a short while, as do the fighters and although some jokes may cause you to smirk your first time hearing them, most of all humor runs flat and you're left with a lifeless impersonation of a fighting game. Other than the voice work you'll hear poorly mixed sound effects from incredibly stupid attacks and weak impacts. The sound is forgettable and the only music that is to be heard is the theme music you hear only in the main menu.
The only good thing about Celebrity Deathmatch is that it makes your other games look better by comparison. The game is short, the unlockables are a joke, the combat is shallow and boring, the graphics are terrible, the sound is dull, and there is no lasting value whatsoever. I've spent way too much time reviewing this game, but I feel the need to really cover the details in dept every game I review, even if they don't deserve it. This game is an absolutely forgettable experience and a rip off at any price. I'm warning you right now, if it makes its way into your home, it'll be played for a few short minutes then wind up collecting dust behind an old DVD case somewhere never to be searched for or stumbled upon again, along with the old chewing gum rapper or Pepsi cap and any other garbage that happens to be lying around in your room.