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Army Men: Major Malfunction

Their subtitle, and ours

The Army Men titles are legendary among gamers for their badness, but with developmental duties for this episode shifted to Yorkshire-based Worms creators Team 17, we were hopeful that this rather suspectly named outing would change the tide. What false hopes we foolishly harboured. It was like seeing your dog being squashed by a steamroller and somehow clinging to the chance that the little fella might pop out intact on the other side.

Army Men: Major Malfunction is hilariously basic. But its almost cretinous level of simplicity is the least of its concerns: everything - everything - it does do is implemented with woeful incompetence. Take the in-game camera as one such example: it steadfastly refuses to allow itself to point in the direction of the platform you want to jump on, which isn't helped by the inept level design, which, in turn, forces you into making leaps of faith.


In fact, it's hard to imagine how this brain-frazzlingly awful series ever came to see yet another instalment. While this isn't the low-point of the series, the Army Men games traditionally hover so dangerously close to rock bottom that it's impossible to limbo underneath these barriers and muster some entertainment from them. Let's pray that this really is goodbye for the uncontrollable plastic men of doom - a 360 update, where enhanced in-cruddy-visuals ensure you can actually see the stink-lines emanating from the screen doesn't bear thinking about.

The verdict

An infuriating and risible title, that was surely designed with only malice and spite in mind. Worst Xbox game ever? Nah. But it's near enough, damn it.

Team 17
Action, Platformer