Comparing MadWorld and No More Heroes – K_Smoove
Let’s face it, this sort of comparison was inevitable. MadWorld and No More Heroes are both over-the-top, bloody action games on Nintendo’s family-friendly Wii. Both games have a twisted sense of humor, an eclectic cast, and cool motorcycles. So which one is the better game? That’s entirely up to the reader, but I am going to present my argument on the topic.
Seeing how gameplay is the most important aspect of games, let’s start with that. Both MadWorld and No More Heroes are action games that make use of button presses and Wii Remote motions. No More Heroes’ action is almost entirely based on mashing the A button, and occasionally the B button. Finishing moves are performed with a directional swing of the Wii Remote. Meanwhile, MadWorld features a better balance of mashing A and swinging the Wii Remote, as many regular attacks are performed via the Wii Remote, including Jack’s chainsaw, uppercuts, and backhanded smacks. In terms of controls, both games work just fine, but they vary in depth and move lists.
No More Heroes’ battle system is just slightly deeper than MadWorld’s. In No More Heroes, players can make use of two fighting stances per weapon, based on the tilt of the Wii Remote. By tilting the Remote upward, players strike enemies in the higher regions of their bodies, and the same relation exists for tilting downward. This system is enhanced by the fact that enemies can block higher or lower hits, so players will have to swap styIes on the fly. No More Heroes also features wrestling moves that are unique to different enemies and bosses. No More Heroes offers players a total of four different beam katanas, which can be unlocked and upgraded as players progress through the game. Each beam katana has a unique set of attacks and finishers. Along with multiple unique weapons, NMH also features several special moves and side missions that become unlocked as the game progresses. These add more and more things for the player to do while they progress, something that MadWorld does not.
MadWorld on the other hand, relies more on the environment than the actual character for attacks. Jack only has punches, his chainsaw, and weapons that he picks up throughout the levels. Instead, most kills are performed by using tires, signposts, and trashcans in conjunction with environmental hazards such as spinning saw blades, spikes, and speeding trains. Several optional weapons are made available in MadWorld, but each weapon only has two attacks, and they are only temporary backup items. Similar to No More Heroes’ side missions, MadWorld features a few minigames called Bloodbath Challenges to mix things up a bit. But these segments only last about two minutes, and a couple of them repeat by the end.
In the end, No More Heroes trumps MadWorld in the gameplay department for one reason that was mentioned before: it actually has a sense of progression. No More Heroes continues to bring more to the table while MadWorld sticks to the same formula the entire time, just with a different skin.
Both No More Heroes and MadWorld sport a unique art styIe that make them stand out from the rest of the Wii’s library of games. Both games also happen to be cel-shaded, creating a cartoonish look that fit both games. However, MadWorld stands out more so than No More Heroes, as it only sticks to about four colors: white, black, grey, and red. MadWorld is also more technically proficient than No More Heroes, or at least it appears to be. Honestly, MadWorld is so styIized that it becomes hard to tell just how technical it is. But No More Heroes goes for an intentionally angular appearance, with solid shapes defining most of the world. Therefore, MadWorld wins in the graphics department.
Not surprisingly, MadWorld and No More Heroes both feature some great soundtracks. No More Heroes keeps its theme by sticking to a funky techno soundtrack, while MadWorld maintains its brutal appearance with an original hip-hop soundtrack with murderous lyrics. Many of MadWorld’s artists outdo the big names of modern hip-hop, although that doesn’t carry as much weight as it should. Really, MadWorld has a professional-sounding tracklist, and that’s where it outdoes No More Heroes. Adding to MadWorld’s audio experience are two hilarious commentators played by Greg Proops of Whose Line fame and John DiMaggio, the voice of Bender on Futurama. The lines spoken by these two announcers are about as low-brow as they can get, yet they still entertain and add a lot to the game.
While MadWorld features a wild cast of characters and enemies, No More Heroes actually takes the time to flesh out its characters. Bosses in MadWorld only get a brief introduction by the announcers as well as a one-liner before battles, where NMH’s bosses have backstories told through dialog and cutscenes. Many bosses and NPCs even have relationships with Travis, be they rivalries or romantic interests.
Ultimately, the actual value of these two games are what should influence your decision on which one you should buy. I’m going to be direct and say that No More Heroes is the better value of the two. First of all, it’s literally over four times as long as MadWorld. I took my time on both games, and I finished MadWorld in three hours and thirty-nine minutes; whereas No More Heroes lasted around seventeen hours. Also, No More Heroes is cheaper than MadWorld, priced at $30 or less, while MadWorld is a full-priced, $50 game.
In the end, I say that No More Heroes is the better ultraviolent Wii game. It’s got a ridiculously higher value than MadWorld, and its gameplay is simply better. MadWorld may have better presentation, but that’s not enough in the long run. Keep in mind, though, that both of these games are truly great, and should please any gamer looking for some over-the-top action. But, if you’re only going to buy one game, I suggest No More Heroes.