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Monster Madness: Battle for Suburbia

Labeled With  monster madness xbox360 southpeak interactive
Written by DM on Friday, July 13 2007

Monster Madness: Battle for Suburbia has been on the collective radar screen of gamers since well before this next-generation of gaming began. At first, it reminded me of the likes of old school ¾ shooters such as Loaded for the PSX and even Hunter for Xbox. You know, just some mindless kill everything in sight fun. Throw in a overly exaggeration Halloween type theme and you’ve got Monster Madness. Is the game able to mesh all these parts into an engrossing title? Let’s find out.

Monster Madness has the usual mode setup, with an online and offline mode, as well as the usual options, etc. The thing about this though is that usually the single player mode is beefed up or there is some special benefit to completing it before you hop online. Unfortunately in MM, the single player mode is basically just all five maps from the online mode (the online mode has arena versions of the maps) with a thin storyline used to keep you going until they are all completed. The biggest disappointment is that the single/adventure player mode only supports multiplayer offline. In this day and age there is really no excuse for non-online co-op play. The single player mode does have the standard collect tokens, upgrade weapons, and achievement grab that most Xbox360 single player modes provide, so it is not without value.

MM is clearly designed for multiplayer enjoyment, pretty much throughout the entire game. This is why the lack of an universal online mode, like in Crackdown, is such an omission. The sheer size of the maps in single player mode, combined with the sheer number of hidden, hard-to-reach, and power up items, are begging for Live play. Of course, there are still many who play local multiplayer with a roommate or a sibling or even a child. Above all else though, remember, with local multiplayer, the camera is always going to be an issue. You can expect many: “wait for me,” “dude I’m stuck!” “Ugh dude u ran me off the cliff” type problems. There is also no substitute for bashing a real live person’s skull in, as opposed to the A.I.’s much less satisfying bone crush.

There are four characters to choose from in Monster Madness, each of them fitting into one of four high-school archetypes. The nerd/geek, the hippie stoner, the perky annoying cheerleader, and the ever-popular goth girl. Of course, each character has player-specific powers and unique starting weapons, as with any top down slasher. All four do play in a similar fashion in the end, but there is always a limit to how different you can make the characters in a game such as this.

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