Destroy All Humans! Path of the Furon - hands on

Being a human-abducting, DNA-stealing, everything around you blowing-upping alien invader can take a lot out of a guy. Luckily, revenge, intolerance and indignation are wonderful motivators, so it’s business as usual for our interstellar overlord Crypto in Destroy All Humans! Path of the Furon. In other words, you’re in for dark humor and a huge amount of death and destruction, courtesy of Crypto’s superior mental powers, vast collection of ray guns, and very heavily armed flying saucer.

The bombastic third-person action is sticking closely to the series’ established mold, but there are several tweaks and expansions that brought devilish smiles to our faces during our hands-on playtest. The story lampoons the ‘70s now, with Crypto leaving his job as a Las Parody (Vegas, basically) casino manager to figure out why his fellow aliens are now trying to kill him. And obviously, the graphics have improved with the move to PS3 and 360 - the weapons blasts and Crypto’s shapeshifting ship are especially pretty. But our favorite addition is a slew of new weapons, especially an awesome new mental ability called the Temporal Fist.

Basically, Temporal Fist enables Crypto to freeze time for perhaps 30 seconds. While time is paused, he can rearrange the world however he sees fit. Want to just make a quick getaway? Okay, fine. But wouldn’t you rather use your Psychokinesis to stack a mountain of cars and then mentally heave an unsuspecting human over, or maybe directly into it? The moment time unfreezes, the person is catapulted to his or her comical doom - they’ll even get an extra strong push. Temporal Fist showcases the more robust open world nature of Path of the Furon, and we’re told it has really opened up the gameplay for more sophisticated missions. Plus, it’s just stupidly empowering, especially if you’re at least a little twisted.

Other additions are almost as intriguing. The Super Baller is a heat-seeking, basketball-sized projectile that leaves a rainbow trail as it bounces, actively following its chosen target. The Venus Human Trap summons a carnivorous plant about 25 feet tall. And the Black Hole Gun does exactly what it sounds like, with awesome effect. The saucer is hot-rodded too, which will help it fend off army helicopters - threats come from the air now as well as the ground.

Many returning devices have been beefed up. The Zap-o-Matic chains now, the Disclocator can be used to car surf, the Abducto Beam is easier to use, and Anal Probe is heat-seeking. The Ion Detonator, Disintegrator, and Quantum Deconstructor are all back too, and look fabulous. They burn scars in the ground - you can actually write your name with the Death Ray - and leave buildings all across the new locations, which include comedic versions of Hollywood and Hong Kong (Crypto ends up seeking enlightenment) cracked, crumbling, and often completely collapsed. There’s not a ton of multiplayer info yet - though we do know it’s offline split-screen and one mode involves Ion Detonators and a huge soccer ball - but “more of the same, only better” is definitely working for us in the single player mode. Sometimes you don’t need to reinvent the wheel - it’s satisfying just to blow it to pieces.

Apr 4, 2008