Can you believe it’s been 21 years since those crazy worms started their battling? I still remember the calls of ‘incoming!’ from the first game as if it were yesterday.
Of course, there have been plenty of sequels and Team 17 have always tried to add something new, even going as far as an ill-fated 3D version (though I still have a soft spot for Worms Forts), but W.M.D. really does feel like the best of both worlds; the old and the new.
At its most basic, Worms W.M.D. is pure old school turn based combat with the same crazy weapons. Each team has a set amount of worms at their disposal and each worm takes a turn to move and fire, all set against a ticking time limit. Weapons are available from the off, but you can also add to your arsenal by picking up crates dotted around the landscape.
Add in some wonderful hand drawn art, a few new features such as crafting and mechs, but all tastefully done, and you have a fully up-to-date classic.
Crafting is the biggest new addition and can take place at any time during the game. Players will need to find parts dotted around the landscape to build the devastating weapons, but it’s well worth it for the resulting destruction they provide.
Likewise, the vehicles, from tanks to mechs, can be a game changer. Each has a powerful weapon or feature that can turn the tide in a battle. Thankfully, they’re limited in their availability, so getting one feels like a treat.
Single screen co-op is still my favourite mode and a reason in itself for these games to exist. Passing a controller negates the issue of not having multiple gamepads, especially when the hardware is so expensive these days, though you can choose either option. Team 17 have had many years to practice their multiplayer skills and it shows, the online multiplayer games run smoothly and I had no issue finding a game. Options can be tweaked to your liking, too, so there are plenty of different ways to play online.
It’s only the occasional camera issue during the impressive destruction that can let the side down and a few niggles with over-sensitive controls when aiming a weapon to fire, especially as the timer ticks down to zero on your go. There are a couple of different settings for controls, though, so there’s the chance of finding one that works better, but I found both of them had their pros and cons.
Many Worms fans talk about Armageddon as the high point in the series history, but for my money, W.M.D. is on a par with the best Worms game out there and the fact that it’s on current generation consoles is a big plus.