It's not too late to press eject

I can only think of three possible reasons why you would play all the way through Beowulf. Perhaps you are a fan of the movie starring painstakingly accurately digitized yet dead-eyed actors. Maybe you only have an Xbox 360 and want to play a God of War style game and can’t find Conan, Darksiders, or Bayonetta. Or maybe you feel the need to punish yourself with a terrible experience.

 

Sale on gray pixels at Ubisoft

The game opens on a gray pebbled beach with gray surf pounding on gray rocks. I was instructed to race another Viking over the gray sand toward some gray cliffs. After I mastered the clumsy climbing mechanic, I was rewarded with a fight with gray crabs. Nothing says I’m a Viking warrior like beating up some seafood.

 

Beowulf fights gray sea monster rising from gray ocean against gray sky

I couldn’t take much more of this race, and apparently neither could a sea serpent, which came out of the ocean and drug me down to the depths. I wish I could say the game was over at this point, but then a golden woman rescued me, whispered I was her hero, and deposited me on the shore to fight the sea serpent again.

 

A fight against a sea serpent should be an epic struggle, but with Beowulf’s sluggish control, lack of jump or dash buttons, I could seldom connect an attack with it. I got bored and left the room at one point, but whatever glowing red power Golden Girl had given me wouldn’t let me die no matter how many times the sea serpent slapped me with its tail. I finally slayed the serpent, and after an incomprehensible cutscene found myself piloting a Viking Galley through a treacherous storm.

Beowulf wrestles his one eyed monster

Now before I go any further, let me ask you a question. When you think of Viking activities, what comes to mind? Pillaging, burning, consumption of mead? How about rhythm games? No?

The only way to get through the terrible storm is to tap the buttons in time with a prompt on the screen. Successfully matching the timing rewarded me with a unified grunt from the crew, which I translated as, “We feel so manly rowing in rhythm, let’s celebrate by killing some more crabs.”

Beowulf has crabs

Sadly for me, but happily for my crew, after landing on another dark gray beach, that’s exactly what we did. This time, I was able to grab a sword, and send crab shells flying everywhere. This seemed to excite my crew, because with every strike, they cheered for me. They should see me at a seafood buffet.

After killing the gray crabs, I stumbled around on the gray sand looking for a way up the gray cliffs so I could…wait, why am I doing this to myself?

Click “game over” symbol for rating explanation. Beowulf was played on Xbox 360 for about an hour, which is all that I could stand.

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27 Responses to Beowulf

  1. filmsteve says:

    I haven’t seen a game you’ve hated in a while. This seems appropriate.

    • Tim B. says:

      I try to be somewhat picky in games I buy. Sometimes I might see what they were going for, even though I didn’t enjoy it. This was just a steaming pile.

  2. louiedog says:

    I love a good scathing review when the subject deserves it, and this one certainly seems to. I have to say, I enjoy bad games just like I enjoy bad movies and I wouldn’t mind putting a couple of hours into this to see just how awful it is.

  3. Joseph Maggard says:

    The game looked like it could be fun i have never played it one day i will have to try it.

  4. Andy says:

    This game actually looks kinda neat in my eyes 0.0

  5. Zach says:

    Beowulf by no means looks like a great game, but it looks enjoyable in my opinion. It always reminded me of the game: Golden Axe: Beast Rider, everyone always seems to dislike it, but in my opinion it looks like an enjoyable game, though mediocre.

  6. Joe Cammisa says:

    I want to punish myself with this game. I’ve never had the chance to pick it up cheap and I don’t have the desire to actually walk into a store and ask for it, but I will gladly play through this if I win it. I will force myself to play the entire way through and submit my gamertag to be checked as proof.
    Let me be your guinea pig…

  7. Janna-Marie says:

    Thanks for the candid review. Gleaning from what you said and what others have said I think I want to give this game a go.This game definitely seems to have a nostalgic feel to it. I also agree with what reader Zach’s comment stated. Who knows until you really play a game for yourself and either, 1) lose track of time or 2) toss your controller at your TV.

  8. Brian says:

    What I’m reading is telling me nooooo, but Angelina Jolie’s body is tellin’ me yea-aa.

  9. Element says:

    actually i played a demo of this and i found it fun 😛

  10. Dan Du says:

    Can it really be that bad. Willing to test and review it if I win. If it’s that bad I will destroy it for the good of mankind.

  11. Andami says:

    Apparently I have terrible taste as I’ve played games with terrible reviews but thoroughly enjoyed them regardless. I wonder if this is that kind if game.

  12. FL1PSID3 says:

    Want to play it to experience it for myself.

  13. Snookie says:

    Congratulations on making it as far as you did, playing a game without any enjoyment can drive people insane. But I’m always up for a new experience, even if it’s a terrible one.

  14. Justin Botts says:

    I’d play through it, same with conan =)

  15. George says:

    Beowulf a bad game? Never played a game that didn’t give me enjoyment for 5 minutes.

  16. jay says:

    conan was actually good i thought.

    on topic, this movie sucked to, so go figure that the game would suck extra hard.

  17. Pink.bunny says:

    Maybe the game is not so great,but hey I would still play it.Sometimes the really bad games can still bring me a good laugh and I can always use a good laugh ^_^

  18. Darklurkr23 says:

    O man I can’t wait to put the beat down while I’m bare-ass. They DO have that fight in the game right?

  19. Brad Berrier says:

    Ohh I just want to play it so I can hate it too!

  20. Andy K says:

    Would love a chance to to check out this truely awful game fo rmyself. What can I say….I’m a glutton for punishment.

  21. Justin Johnson says:

    I’m willing to give it a shot.

  22. Eric Kromenaker says:

    A awful game but a easy 1000G for my gamertag.

  23. mowmow says:

    I would try it. You never know this might be easy achievements

  24. Mike says:

    It looks a little generic and cheesy, but shit, I’d give it a shot.

  25. kyle says:

    Last two times i intentionally picked up “bad” games, i ended up with EDF 2017 and Deadly Premonition, both of which turned out to be unpolished gems.

  26. Paul K says:

    Thanks for the contest!

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