GAME NAME: Thunder Wolves
DEVELOPER(S): Most Wanted Entertainment
PLATFORM(S): PlayStation Network, Xbox Live Arcade, PC
GENRE(S): Action, Adventure, Piloting
RELEASE DATE(S): August 13th, 2013
Most Wanted Entertainment proudly presents bitComposer’s helicopter extravaganza, Thunder Wolves, which has now landed on the PlayStation Network. Strap yourselves in and prepare for a wild aerial arcade-style action shooter. Along your flight path of destruction you will also experience varying modes of gameplay, keeping the campaign fresh and exciting as you progress including some rail-shooting and sniping segments, as well as piloting a few other vehicles. With relentless action, a never ending supply of ammunition, and massive amounts of property damage, Thunder Wolves manages to deliver a very old school, somewhat pure, arcade shooter experience.
Thunder Wolves features thirteen different missions, with an arsenal of nine different choppers, piloted by a extremely well organized group of mercenaries that truly love to blow things up. This title does come with a Mature ESRB rating, which is rightly deserved, as the obscenities fly around as much as the choppers do. This actually ends up being one of biggest contributing factors to the high energy levels maintained throughout the entire campaign, as the pilots are continually trash talking their enemies while screaming and rejoicing at all of the carnage left in their wake. Coupled with the adrenaline pumping soundtrack cranking out at all times, and the combo-indicating phrases like “HELLA SICK”, Thunder Wolves instills an incredible desire to destroy absolutely everyone and everything. And I mean everything. I literally spent more time blowing up all the structures in the game then I did raining hellfire down upon my foes. For some reason, Thunder Wolves was able to awaken in me some nostalgic compulsion to leave nothing standing, and believe me, I sure as hell didn’t.
There are three difficulty settings available for every mission in Thunder Wolves: Casual, Normal, and Expert. Each difficulty then has a one-to-three star ranking, awarded upon completion of the mission, based on points acquired and time taken. To earn all nine stars per mission, you would have to complete a three star run on each mode individually, which gives the game a lot of replay value, and makes me want to keep playing until I accomplish exactly that. I will say that Expert mode was my favorite, as this game is not really all that challenging on Normal. This in no way is meant to suggest that Thunder Wolves is not super fun, or even that you won’t fail and have to retry a few of the ‘timed’ or ‘protection’ sequences. I did however, only die once during my entire Normal campaign and it was in the very beginning of the game before I discovered the ever helpful Boost move, which I apparently missed during the tutorial. The health and ammunition both operate on a recharge system, which allows the player to rapidly return to full status by simply leaving the combat area for a moment, providing ample advantages for success. The thirteen missions are also all relatively short and for the most part each one can be beaten in under fifteen minutes, provided you don’t spend too much time testing the boundaries of the maps and searching for the three secrets hidden inside of every mission(which of course I did). These three secrets, two of which are small crates to be located and picked up via your choppers wench by hovering directly above them, and the other being this weird little male figure you have to find and destroy, only ever have to be discovered once per mission regardless of the difficulty, and are just some more reasons that you will find yourself eager to replay each of the missions in an attempt to collect them all.
Thunder Wolves also offers a Local Co op option allowing for a friend to join in on the action. Unfortunately though, it does not support online multiplayer. I really would love to play online with a friendly chopper as my wing-man, and not just with a buddy on the same screen taking over the machine gun on the same chopper. The game does feature however, an online leaderboard, as well as 20 trophies – no platinum – but a nice list of extra challenges to work on. This is by no means a long or deep game to immerse your self into, but instead, Thunder Wolves is an awesome retro feeling arcade shooter to have a blast with, while wreaking loads of devastation with some badass helicopters. For being a $9.99 title on PlayStation Network, it is all you could expect and hope for, and there is really no good reason not to add it to your collection.