Worms: Reloaded

On a Saturday morning, 14 years ago, I sat in front of my Amiga 1200 and prepared for war. Only my instruments of battle weren’t rock-hard SAS soldiers or US Marines, they were 1/4 inch-high worms.

For those unfamiliar with the concept, Worms is an accessible but deep turn-based strategy game, Team17’s unique take on tactical-classic Tank Wars. You guide the titular worms across a bumpy landscape, attempting to wipe out one or more opposing teams with a number of destructive items. Random elements, such as wind resistance, item drops and even the nature of the landscape itself, mix-up how each and every match will play out. After an unsuccessful venture into 3D, Team17 have brought the series back to its 2D roots on the PC for the first time in nearly a decade.

As always, there’s a vast array of creative and humorous weaponry to aid you, from air-strikes which home in on multiple players, to items like the holy hand grenade which decimate entire areas with ease. Mastering these tools in the rough terrain provides much of the game’s depth; there’s nothing more satisfying than pooling together your limited resources to take out another team with only one worm remaining.

By participating in battles, campaign missions and even the tutorial lessons, you’ll earn in-game currency which can be exchanged for lots of goodies, including new weapons and voice-packs for your teams. While it’s a little annoying to not have immediate access to classic weapons such as the banana bomb and the super-sheep (especially for a game with such a heavy multiplayer focus), the shop rewards do offer a lot of incentive to play and progress.

Although the game includes the requisite level editors and team customisation options, there are some odd omissions and limitations. For one, each team of worms is constrained to four soldiers. This was probably set in stone for game-play balance, but the mania of eight-man bouts is missed. More puzzling is the removal of the weapon editor that’s been around since Worms 2, and that was released in 1998. Thankfully, even in the age of always-on network connections, the game has retained its one-computer hot-seat multiplayer mode.

Worms: Reloaded does add some twists to the formula in the form of new single-player modes. Warzone pits a team of worms against a set of increasingly difficult deathmatches, with dwindling weapon supplies forcing the player to be strategic in order to survive. More interesting is Bodycount, a Rambo-style one-worm-stand against endless waves of enemies. It’s great for some quick solo-action, and it’s addictive to boot.







2 responses to “Worms: Reloaded”

  1. Leon avatar

    I’ll never understand why Team 17 can never seem to create an ultimate worms game since Armageddon (Not Worms 2: Armageddon :P). It had a huge selection of weapons, 8-player gameplay, a really good mission mode and even fun cheats and stuff to unlock. Some of my best multiplayer gaming moments happened with that game.

    I can see why they need to balance online play, but they could simply do what they did with Armageddon, add more stuff, and just restrict the options a little when it comes to non-friendly type online matches.

    I was so disappointed with Worms 2: Armageddon – the engine was there, but the content just wasn’t. When they release the real Armageddon on XBLA I’ll be happy.

  2. free games avatar

    Marry Crismas ans Happy New Year!!

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