It's been a long wait, but finally the old faithful turn-based strategy battle game known as worms, has seen a new side to itself, literally. It's been converted to 3d! For those of you unfamiliar with worms (which is highly unlikely), it involves using a variety of weapons to inflict carnage upon your enemy.
Following the development diaries on the official Worms3d Site kept my mouth watering for a chance to play the game. I was very sceptical as to how well the game would convert to 3D after seeing a lot of failed conversions of other games. However I am delighted to say that Team17 have done an amazing job converting the game, whilst still maintaining the insanely addictive game play!
Fans need not worry about anything being lost through the conversion either; it's all there, including the quirky humour and fully deformable terrain! Being 3D has also allowed the developers to add neat touches in a few places, such as the worms facial expressions and actions. All the little additions like these keep you giggling like a little girl throughout the proceedings (or maybe that's just me). One thing that has been affected by the change is the rope. So fans of roping may be disappointed when first attempting to use it.
In keeping with the style of the last game, the whole thing has been lavished in a smooth cartoonish look that completes the atmosphere, and sets it aside from most other 3D games.
Controlling your worms is almost as simple as it used to be, however you can obviously move in an extra dimension now. The camera can be moved around your worm with the mouse, allowing you to view where you want to go very easily. The direction you move in is directly based on the way the camera is facing. This can make things tricky when navigating across narrow ledges where there is terrain covering, as the camera automatically pans so you can still see your worm. As it pans you end up moving in a slightly different direction, and drop off the edge! It just takes getting used to, once you do though it's a very simple, clean system that allows you to easily target your next worm. Not to mention there is now a first person aiming mode, as well as a blimp view for weapons such as the air strike, or just to get a view of your surroundings.
One thing that is disappointing in the current version is the lack of a keyboard redefine option. Team17 have recently posted on the forum saying they are working on one though, but it is not priority.
As in the previous version there is a single player mode and a multiplayer mode. The single player allows you 3 different types of game: Death match, Mission and Challenge. There is also a Tutorial mode for people new to the game.
The death match game type is purely just a battle between you and the CPU on a randomly generated or pre-made landscape. This game mode is more suitable for practicing in, and doesn't hold much lastability on its own. The randomly generated landscapes do mean that you will never play on the same map twice though!
The mission game type allows you to progress through stages by completing various tasks, such as killing all the opposing team, or by collecting certain objects. As you progress through the missions, it unlocks other missions, as well as extra challenges in the third game type. It offers a lot of play time, and keeps you coming back for more with all the humorous dialog and expressions encountered along the way.
The challenge game type allows you to test your skills (and improve them!) by competing in time-based rounds with a specific weapon or utility. The first one you get to attempt is the shotgun challenge in which you have to shoot targets that appear around the landscape.
Personally, I have found that the 3D element has improved the single player game so much, as it has allowed more varied tasks to be performed, which will keep you playing for quite a while!
Of course the real long-term appeal exists in the multiplayer mode. There's nothing quite like watching friends (or maybe even your enemies) expressions as you toss a grenade near 2 of their worms, sending them diving into the surrounding ocean! Unfortunately it is normally my girlfriend who does this to me, but of course it's just down to luck, as we all know that girls can't play computer games, don't we? ;)