#708 God Hand

Posted: 10th November 2019 by Jeroen in Games
Tags: , , , ,

824th played so far

Genre: Fighting
Platform: Playstation 2
Year of Release: 2006
Developer: Clover Studios
Publisher: Capcom

God Hand‘s lineage becomes clear when you look at the other games. Clover Studios made both Viewtiful Joe and Okami and a part of its creative team went on to make Bayonetta. All of that defines what we’re going to get – a highly polished 3D beat ’em up with crowds of enemies, developed characters and shorter areas to explore and fight in, rather than large areas. Some exploration, not too much.

With God Hand, we specifically get a mix between Japanese martial arts, as you’d expect from the genre, and westerns. It’s a combination that comes up in movies every once in a while, and it works, so I’m looking forward to seeing how it plays out here.

Our Thoughts

I’m not quite sure the western setting of God Hand was used to its best ability here, although I guess this is more a fighting gmae with some western elements than a western setting with other elements like we see in other places – see something like Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath for that. While there are the western-seeming village you start off in, there are also the magic globes that give you abilities and scrolls with further techniques. Even the enemies are more Japanese magic, with demons rather than outlaws fighting you, and some offensive-seeming Japanese gay stereotypes. While the world is vaguely interesting, it’s not as interestingly laid out as the story would suggest, and using more tropes from cowboy movies would have helped sell the world – and create a more unique story.

The fighting itself is quite interesting. It’s decent at it’s core, but there are loads of additional moves to buy, find and use, allowing for a lot more customization when fighting. The specific twist here are your god hands, arms that contain a god inside them, and that’s what their powers revolve around. You need to build up power to be able to use your big moves, but you get a few good goes for bigger fights. For the most part, it’s quite satisfying.

As I said, the game is divided into smaller areas – a few arenas to fight in, some places with secrets and generally enough for a bit of exploration without it dominating the game. It’s good for the game, keeping up the pace, although I wish there was a bit more to it myself – I felt I might have been spending a bit more time looking around than I should have.

Final Thoughts

God Hand is an in depth fighting game that pushes its moveset and challenges you quite a bit. In that sense, it fits in its lineage. However, its setting isn’t as engaging after the first few areas and the levels are fine, but not amazing. I can see the appeal, but I feel this could be pushed a bit further.