You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Wanted: Weapons of Fate

"Wanted: Weapons of Fate" is the perfect adaptation of the movie and comic on which it's based: super stylish, impeccably executed and insultingly shallow.

“Wanted: Weapons of Fate” is the perfect adaptation of the movie and comic on which it’s based: super stylish, impeccably executed, and insultingly shallow. Vidgame’s integration of the pic’s action motifs like curving bullets and slo-mo firefights, as well as its aggressively immature tone, is spot on. But with a shockingly short running time and no multiplayer mode, “Wanted” is disappointingly limited in scope and likely to get blown away on retail shelves.

Picking up soon after the film’s ending, “Weapons of Fate” finds Wesley Gibson (Jimmi Simpson, solidly impersonating James McAvoy) hunted by the French branch of a fraternity of assassins for reasons that go back to his birth. Told largely in low-brow dialogue best appreciated by a 13-year-old boy, the plot ably weaves modern day missions with flashbacks to the protag’s father, achieving a degree of intrigue and coherence that surpasses the admittedly low bar set by the pic. However, because it takes places after Wesley has become an assassin, the game misses out on its source material’s central theme: his transformation from pathetic corporate drone to confident killer.

What it lacks thematically, however, “Weapons of Fate” makes up for in fantastic action and awesome set pieces. Too often, movie-based games manage to re-create cinematic moments only by taking control out of players’ hands. But developer Grin avoids that trap here by making two key features interactive: the ability to bend bullets and to slow down time to take out numerous enemies in a flash. As the camera follows a bullet in a winding arc toward an enemy’s head, or a slo-mo sequence ends with numerous assassins splayed out on the ground, “Wanted” brings players remarkably close to living out the movie’s best action sequences.

Several levels bring a bigscreen feel to the action, particularly one set on a crashing airplane that parallels a similar scene from the film on a train. But while the settings are often dramatic, the level-design is not, consisting of tightly directed paths full of columns and waist-high barriers behind which Wesley or his father can take cover. There are a few boss fights that require precise timing, and some tedious sniping, but the basic challenges don’t vary significantly.

It would all become repetitive if not for the fact that the game is so short. The good news for “Wanted” players is that five hours isn’t enough time to get bored with its limited number of innovations. The bad news is that it’s an embarrassingly small amount of content for a full-priced disc game. Lack of online multiplayer is particularly disappointing given the potential excitement to be had in numerous competitors bending bullets and slow-mo shooting.

“Weapons of Fate” marks Universal’s first attempt to produce a big budget console videogame itself (one that, in a bit of irony, is being distributed by Warner Bros.). By releasing it seven months after the film and three months after the DVD, the studio is showing impressive faith in the importance of topnotch production values, even if it means missing out on valuable joint marketing.

Still, “Weapons of Fate’s” goals ultimately aren’t much greater than making the film’s action playable. In a market where even downloadable titles at one quarter the price offer more gameplay, that’s simply not ambition enough.

Wanted: Weapons of Fate

Rated M. $60.

Production: A Universal and Warner Bros. presentation of a game developed by Grin and licensed by Top Cow Comics for the PC, Playstation 3 and Xbox 360. Reviewed on Xbox 360.

More Scene


    Donna Karan, Mary-Louise Parker Honored at David Lynch Foundation's Women of Vision Awards

    Donna Karan, Mary-Louise Parker and Deborra-Lee Furness were celebrated for their charitable work at the David Lynch Foundation’s 2019 Women of Vision Awards. “We are all being guided to come together as one. There is so much chaos in the world right now,” Karan said, while accepting her Lifetime Achievement Award at the annual luncheon on [...]

  • Bill Hader

    Bill Hader, Greg Berlanti, Margie Cohn and Cindy Holland Inducted Into Variety Hall of Fame

    Variety’s annual Hall of Fame ceremony mixed comedy, gratitude and warmth at the annual awards ceremony Tuesday night at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills. Because the class of 2019 celebrates technical innovation and achievement across film, TV, digital, video games and music. The honorees — Greg Berlanti, Bill Hader, Cindy Holland, Dametra Johnson-Marletti, [...]

  • Billy Porter FNAA

    Billy Porter Explains Why Fashion 'Can and Should' Be Activism

    On Tuesday in New York City, a handful of fashion’s marquee names, including Kenneth Cole, Tommy Hilfiger, Steve Madden and Pete Nordstrom, and many of its muses, including Billy Porter, Lena Waithe, Adriana Lima and Paris Hilton, gathered to celebrate the annual Footwear News Achievement Awards — or, as it’s more colloquially dubbed, the “Shoe Oscars.” Activism and the potential for designers to spur [...]

  • Tiffany Haddish Black Mitzvah

    Barbra Streisand Gives Tiffany Haddish Star of David Necklace for Her 'Black Mitzvah'

    Tiffany Haddish rang in her 40th birthday Tuesday night by celebrating her black and Jewish heritage with a star-studded “Black Mitzvah” party. One of Haddish’s famous friends, Barbra Streisand, was noticeably absent from the festivities, but sent the comedian a special memento for the occasion. “She got me this beautiful Star of David,” Haddish told [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content