Twisted Metal is one of the most stand-out exclusives of this year, and one of my personal favorites. It's about time the ol' ice cream truck rolls out, I've been dying for a fix of napalm and homing missiles since 2001. A demo for the game was released earlier in the week, and you'd think it would hit a home run -- but it didn't. Lots of people complained about the controls, which have been specifically tailored to the standards of the original PlayStation games. Is that a major developer no-no? Maybe, but you can bet your minigun that David Jaffe is looking into it.
David Jaffe, Twisted Metal's Designer, has been flooded with requests to make the controls easier to grasp, and decided to comment on the worldwide distress using his infamous Twitter account. He posted the following:
checking on new control configurations for POSSIBLE PATCH. Tbd
I spent a few hours with Twisted Metal at E3 2009 and 2010 and quickly noticed that nearly everyone on the show floor, including myself, struggled with the control layout. Gameplay has evolved substantialy over the past decade, and if you had to play Metal Gear Solid 4 with the controls Metal Gear Solid had, you'd wish you were freezing to death in Shadow Moses. Circle and X reversed? No thanks. After a lot of practice, it was less of a hurdle, but in a game where multi-player is a major focus of the game, player retention is important, and making sure that people aren't scared away by the controls is essential to a healthy online environment.
To add insult to injury, Twisted Metal is a more complex game than many give it credit for. It's not just point, aim, shoot, and occasionally use a killstreak. You're driving a vehicle around at 150 miles per hour with an army of weapons, obstacles in your way, and several special abilities at your disposal. It's chaotic, and being thrown right into the action is a sink or swim scenario. Thankfully, there is a "racing controls" option available in the demo, but it suffers some issues of its own.
If you've played the Twisted Metal demo, let us know what you think so far. Will you be buying the game when it releases in just two weeks?