Oh Whiplash, you catered to the Gex fans and for that I am eternally grateful. Crystal Dynamics has quite the impressive resume, including the Legacy of Kain and Gex IPs. Which kind of surprised me, because while Whiplash has its moments, it missteps pretty hard halfway through the game. Granted I never got to play LoK because when I was young I had one of the five families in America who actually paid attention to the ESRB ratings (until I hit age 13) and now because all the GOOD PSX games cost you an arm and a leg while games like Soviet Strike will cost you a pretty ninety-nine pennies. Seriously.
If you thought Gex was zany and weird, and you enjoyed it, you are in luck my friend. Whiplash is every hardcore fan’s dream come true. A spiritual successor from the original studio! The game also spreads awareness about testing products on animals, and finally puts humans in a bad light, like a flickering 25 watt light…yeah.
The story goes that Spanx the weasel and Redmond the rabbit get cuffed together while being tested on in the giant, huge, ridiculously spacious, Genron testing facility. I am still shocked the game came on one disc. The place is enormous, and the game should take fifteen to twenty hours to beat. There are eight giant levels somewhat attached to a hub, and each level has a secondary objective of obtaining a keycard after you beat it once. This is only available after you beat all eight levels and is required to finish the game. I regret getting burnt out so bad I stopped on the eighth cardkey and sold the game, so try not to play the entire game at once. Going back through the whole game is a pretty bad design call, and honestly the game was long enough already.
There are interesting boss battles, and loads of mechanics and variety in all the levels, and while going through them you can bankrupt Genron by destroying anything and everything with a cash value. I can’t help but think I would have enjoyed the game more if it used the Geomod engine, but with the unique visuals it lacks potential. At times it also looks a bit like an Alpha-stage game. You can cause more damage by sticking poor indestructible Redmond into fires, ice, electricity, and more. Although there is little plot dominated by gameplay, you are still motivated by a mysterious voice urging you to cut loose and destroy the place.
Whiplash feels incomplete and shaky at times, the music randomly cuts out at times and the environments can feel weightless, but it is a nice platforming game. There’s humor but it feels a bit forced, but overall the voice acting sounds good. It’s nothing if not entertaining but once you clear about four levels everything gets rather monotonous and shallow. I also felt as though I were wasting my time, that I could be playing much better games, but despite its flaws, Whiplash is a really good game. You just have to lose yourself in it, and it just didn’t grab me. But I can recommend it.
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