Review: Ugly Americans: Apocalypsegeddon (XBLA)

Review: Ugly Americans: Apocalypsegeddon (XBLA)

I’ve never watched Ugly Americans. I had no idea what the show was about, what kind of show it was, and if it was anything I’d even be remotely interested in. Having played Ugly Americans: Apocalypsegeddon, I can now say without hesitation that I’m going to give the show a try. Ugly Americans is the kind of game that just opens your eyes to what gaming could be with its innovative implementation of never-before-seen mechanics and jaw dropping visuals.

Of course by that I mean Castle Crashers did it already. And before that, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and The Simpsons did it in the arcades. Ugly Americans is Castle Crashers, X-Men Arcade, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Simpsons, and more with a wonderfully crude skin. This is not necessarily a bad thing. Yes, there’s the question of originality. Yes, there’s the question of creativity. Yes, there’s the question of why people should buy something that they have already bought in different forms before. Well, frankly, there’s a reason this kind of game is generally so successful. The basic mechanics of Ugly Americans are fun. Yes, it feels like playing Castle Crashers, but what if you don’t want the story or art style of Castle Crashers anymore? What if you enjoy the mechanic, but want something to make it feel new again, or different in some way? When viewed in that light, Ugly Americans is a successful game.

Up to four players can get together and make their way through the incredibly odd streets of the New York City of the Ugly Americans universe (which is, in fact, far more odd than the New York City of our current universe). It is a basic run and gun style game with twin-stick shooter controls. I believe I’ve mentioned in the past my disdain for twin-stick shooter controls, and while this hardly redeems the mechanic in my eyes, it at least does not fail in the way certain other twin-stick shooters have failed. Suffice it to say, I can look past this being a twin-stick shooter, because at least it’s not a BAD twin-stick shooter. Along with the well implemented mechanic, the rest of the game is treated well. The original voice actors are all accounted for, the script and story were written by the show’s writers, and the new characters introduced in the game were created by the show’s creator. A lot of time and effort went into this game to make it something the fans of the series would really enjoy and relate with, which is always laudable.

Yes, you’ve probably played this kind of game before. Does that devalue it? A little, sure, but not enough to kill it. If you’re a fan of the series, I have no doubt that you will be a fan of the game. If you’re a fan of classic arcade games of this nature, I have no doubt that you will enjoy this entry into the genre. It’s funny, it has classic gameplay that you can pick up and get into, it has great multiplayer, and you have to figure, the 800MSP / $9.99 you’ll be spending on it is probably what you would have spent in quarters at an arcade.


Fun multiplayer arcade game
Crude humor and imagery
(Yes, that does belong in the pros)
I already have Castle Crashers, etc.
80 out of 100

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