Published Aug 21, 2010Scott Pilgrim may be targeting today's 20-something hipster, but the videogame-inspired book-turned-movie-turned-videogame franchise is embedded with references to creator Bryan Lee O'Malley's late '80s and early '90s youth.
So no surprise then that the game adaptation, which follows Pilgrim's epic journey to defeat his manic-panic'd girlfriend Ramona Flowers' seven evil exes plays like an 8-bit homage to the beat-em-ups of yore, like Double Dragon and River City Ransom.
It's a little more complicated than the old-school brawlers, with some added RPG levelling up; the graphics are gorgeously old-school pixel-art spit-shined to a glorious 1080P; and the kick-ass classic-sounding soundtrack from NYC chiptune punks Anamanaguchi along with plentiful retro-gamer in-jokes should cheer even the most backlash-y of hearts.
One concern, though, is the local-only multiplayer. Even with every member of Pilgrim's indie rock group Sex Bob-omb playable, as well as Ramona, you can't battle the game's robots, ninjas, piggybanks and, of course, seven ex-lovers with your buddies unless they're in the room. This lack of online co-op can be an issue because the game's also old-school difficult and friends really help make it through the levels since death sends you back to the Super Mario-style overworld map to start over.
But while a legit complaint, it's still a relatively minor one. Set in a pretty, pixilated Toronto, complete with TTC buses and bad guys exploding into loonies and twoonies, the Scott Pilgrim game is a fun, franchise-faithful combination of cutting-edge culture and warm cozy nostalgia.
Oh, and if that's not awesome enough, there's also a secret code that unleashes a horde of zombies, a fine tribute to director Edgar Wright's own classic Shawn of the Dead. (Ubisoft)