Mustn’t. Use. Any. Pun. Using. The. Words. ‘Wheelie’, ‘good’ or ‘time’. Phew. Now with all that bad punning in the past we can get onto telling you about Midway’s Wheelman, which we got hands on with at an event in London recently. It stars Vin Diesel as Milo Burik, a driver who comes out of retirement to save a woman – these types can never just pack it up to Florida and play golf, can they?
Set in an open-world Barcelona, you get to drive around the sun-kissed streets of the capital of Catalonia shooting baddies in the face and jumping between vehicles Pursuit Force-style. Read on to find out about some of our favourite features from the game so far, including Vin squaring off against a tube train. On a bike.
1) It’s huge
Not only do you get the whole of Barca’s beautiful seaside city to drive, shoot and look all brooding in, there are also around 135 missions to get your Diesel-endorsed teeth into. Aside from the 30 main story missions – which offer alternate, branching plot arcs, bosses and endings depending on which gangs you align with – Midway Newcastle have managed to cram in a further 105 side missions.
They’ve been particularly ambitious in the scope and spread of these quests too, with seven different types of mission to occupy your time, when you’re not shooting Spaniards in the stomach. From Hot Potato, where you, literally, have to keep leaping from car to car. Rampage that tasks you with causing as much chaos in Catalonia as possible. To Contracts, which sees you trying to deliver a package as gangs from all over the city try to make sure Vin never makes it to a sequel.
2) It makes Saint Row 2 look sensible
No, really. There are parts of Wheelman that make THQ’s offensively stupid, but undeniably entertaining, open-world, transvestite-tainted adventure look tame. Sure, it lets you run around offing people while dressed like everyone’s favourite swimsuit-sporting Kazakhstan resident. But does it let you leap between vehicles - SpiderMan-style - before kicking the owner out in one fluid movement? Thought not.
3) The cyclone move is the definition of win
The cyclone lets you reverse in front of enemy cars or traffic in one gloriously over the top 180° spin. Not only does it look brilliantly flash as you reverse through traffic while facing forward and shooting enemies behind you, it’s also a vital manoeuvre in dealing with some of the harder bosses. Remember the first time you performed a takedown in Burnout or threw a car hundreds of feet into the air in Crackdown? Nailing the cyclone is an every bit as thrilling ‘punch the air’ moment.