The Conduit has been hyped for quite a while. Announced over a year ago, the game saw delay after delay, did not get a publisher until late last year and suffered a few other minor problems. After all this time you'd expect the game to be fantastic, but is it really?
The Wii doesn't have much in terms of first-person shooters - Aside from Red Steel and Hudson Soft's two WiiWare efforts, the only FPS games the system has are multi-platform titles. It's kind of weird, really. With the Wii remote's pointer and motion controls, you'd think the genre would be a perfect fit for the system and developers would be releasing them one right after another!
Like most FPS games, The Conduit's story is nothing to write home about. You play Michael Ford, an agent in a secret North American organization who was hired after saving the president's life. Aliens, known as the Drudge, are using special portals, the titular conduits, to teleport directly to the Earth and threaten the human race, so it's up to agent Ford to stop them. Along the way he'll be involved in conspiracies and a bunch of cliché plot twists.
At all times, Ford will have two guns at his disposal. He can swap these for any others he finds dropped by enemies or lying around levels. In most cases it's handy to have a high-damage accurate weapon for small encounters and a rapid-firing weapon for large enemy groups, but you can mix and match and see what you like. He can also throw grenades, of which various types exist. Naturally you've got the regular bouncy frag grenades which explode after a few seconds, but you've also got flash grenades which temporarily stun the enemy, and radiation grenades, which explode as soon as they hit anything (Including the ground) and leave behind a temporary glowing ball of radiation which damages anything that comes close.
The main gimmick of the game comes in the form of your other "weapon" - the ASE, or All-Seeing Eye. This is basically a floating ball you can bring up at any time. It's a bit like the Scan Visor in the Metroid Prime series, and can be used for a variety of things, such as hacking computers, decoding secret messages, seeing which way you need to go and even detonating "ghost mines" from a distance. Unlike Metroid Prime though, you can't scan enemies with it, so you won't get any handy combat tips!
Sadly, most of the time the ASE feels like a chore to use. There's an animation for taking it out and putting it away, which means you can't use it any time you please without having to worry much about enemies. Scanning things takes a few seconds, and if you're hit by anything during the process the scan will be interrupted and you have to start over. This can be very annoying when you're trying to scan a secret message in an area with respawning enemies!
The game's controls are a bit odd, but you'll get used to them quite quickly. Naturally, you use the control stick to move around and the Wii remote's pointer to look around. You use A to jump, B to fire, and Z to lock on to enemies, all of which are also fairly expected. But the rest of the controls might puzzle you for a moment or two. The minus button will reload your gun, while the plus button brings out the ASE. Shaking the nunchuk throws a grenade, while shaking the Wii remote will make you do a melee attack with your current gun. The d-pad also has a variety of functions - Left cycles through grenades, right cycles through guns, and down will allow you to zoom in if your current gun has a scope function. As said, you'll get used to these controls after a while, but they're definitely the type of controls which you will have completely forgotten when you come back to the game in a year or two. If you like to mess around with control settings, it's also possible to reconfigure them as you see fit.
As you're battling both humans and aliens in the game, you can of course expect some variety in the enemies and weapons. The humans, such as soldiers and secret agents, will use all your standard FPS weapons, like machine guns, pistols, shotguns and grenades. The aliens, which have many different types of grunts, will use strange energy-based weapons which look very organic, with weird colours and ammunition which looks more like an energy ball. In the end though, the difference is mostly cosmetic - Some of the alien weapons will allow you to charge shots up, but most of the time it's a much better idea to just rapidly fire as uncharged shots have pretty much the same functions as the various human guns.
You never have to worry about running out of ammo with any weapon. Most will have hundreds of bullets when picked up, and there is an over-abundance of ammo. Every enemy you kill will drop some for the weapon they're carrying, and it will always add another 40 or so bullets to your inventory. Grenades are also incredibly common. You could probably finish some levels with nothing but grenades if you tried hard enough, as almost every single enemy will drop one! Health is similarly common, but that's even less of a concern - In most levels you'll have a suit which will automatically begin to refill your health after not taking damage for a while!
Like any good FPS game in this day and age, The Conduit features both a single-player and multi-player campaign. The single-player story mode consists of 9 different missions. It doesn't sound like much, but some of them are fairly long and can take an hour if you take your time and hunt for secrets throughout the whole stage. The locations are nice and varied, and all take place in various areas around Washington D.C., such as the Pentagon and the White House. Of course, there's also the standard library, subway and sewer levels!
While the actual locations are varied, the levels themselves can feel repetitive at times. Every single level has multiple instances of rooms which look exactly the same, and of course, it does get pretty boring and/or annoying if you have to go through what is practically the same room four times with slightly different enemies each time!
If you take your time, the story mode should take you about 6 to 7 hours to finish. But of course there's also some replay value, because High Voltage has also added those things which you'll either love or hate to the game. Yes, we're talking about achievements! Sadly though, none of them are all that special. You have to find all secret messages with your ASE in every stage, kill X enemies of each type and get X kills with every weapon. No achievements for pulling off crazy stuff like beating the final stage with just grenades! There are also no multiplayer achievements. Six of the nine stages also feature 10 collectible Data Disks, which, once you've collected all 10, will unlock one of six concept art galleries.
Speaking of multiplayer, it's pretty much what you'd expect it to be. You can play with up to 12 players in a variety of modes. There's quite a lot of different modes, but a lot of them have fairly similar objectives, such as capturing ASEs, battling in teams or only having a limited amount of lives. The game also allows you to use Wii Speak online, so you can taunt your opponents - But only if they're friends of yours!
Overall the online mode is fairly solid, but what's really disappointing is that dedicated hackers have already found ways to give themselves unlimited health, ammo and those sorts of things. This means that it's best to primarily play with friends if you're gonna be playing online a lot!
High Voltage also hyped up the game's graphics quite a bit before release. It looks quite decent for a game by such a relatively small studio, but when compared to other impressive-looking top tier Wii titles like Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, it's kind of hard to see how the graphics are anywhere close to what you'd call great. They're not bad by any means, but definitely not as good as they made them out to be.
Overall, The Conduit delivers a solid FPS experience for Wii owners. You've got a nice single-player story mode, a solid online mode and a bunch of unlockables to keep you playing for a while. Coupled with the few annoying flaws, such as the repeating rooms and everything related to the All-Seeing Eye, it's a fairly solid game. There's really nothing about it that really stands out other than the fact it's on the Wii though. If you've only got a Wii, the game's worth a purchase, but if you're a multi-platform owner you can definitely do better in terms of FPS games.
My friend bought this, and was really saddened by it... He is now considering selling his Wii.
A little late but better late than never.
I love this game
I always knew this was going to be a good fps but nothing outstanding, I was considering getting it, but it end up giving me a bad motion sickness, so not anymore.
Fair review, maybe a point higher in my mind because of the customization. I still haven't made my mind up to be honest, but I play a lot of pc fps so my standards are really high. For the Wii though, this is excellent and I'm glad I got it. I have high hopes for the sequel.
Fair review, I'd say.
I'd like to see more first person shooters on the Wii, but more unique stuff. The Conduit is just another Half Life. I would like to see Epic Games working on an Unreal title for the Wii, the Unreal series always has been pretty unique and cool. Definitely fits the Wii. And my all time favorite first person shooter is still the first Unreal Tournament. But sadly enough, Epic is too busy with the 360 right now.
But right now, I will spend my money on the upcoming Metroid Prime Trilogy.
BleachFan888: tell him to sell it ASAP.
i'm tired of anecdotal people selling their wiis because of one reason or another.
just sell it!
@damascus: I second that, if you're gonna sell your Wii because you bought a game made by a third party and you didn't like it, then boo hoo. Sell it to someone who finds worth in it!
As for the Conduit, if it wasn't hyped up to be the best thing sinced sliced bread by SEGA, High Voltage and IGN, it might've seemed more impressive.
Since reading the various reviews and youtube videos I took it out of my top 10 most wanted list
I dunno why it was so hyped up, it's not like the developer had a particularly good track record.
Rum Rapture, Are you kidding they made "lego racers" and "dora the explorer" they are known for their t rates. lol All kidding aside I loved this game and lego racers
Still don't regret purchasing this game. It's an okay review, but I can bet that I will have a better and more postiive review.
I'd say this game officially removes my predisposition to auto-hate High-Voltage games. Every previous experience had just been awful, whereas I feel The Conduit was quite a solid effort and I had fun playing it the entire time.
Applause to you, High-Voltage.
I enjoyed it and thought it was a solid title. Great controls as well. Hope to see more from HVS and The Conduit.
I personally like this game. I cannot wait to play The Grinder!
7/10 Thats Good I loved Conduit As for Online i played for the last hour & 30 minutes & no glitches but i think it should have an 8
@damuscus and chunky_droid
It's not really just THIS game...he's been pretty much dissapointed with a lot of Nintendo games recently, because there's not enough "hardcore" games... He refuses to try "new" concepts, such as Bit. Trip Beat, and he's avoiding TWEWY because the combat looks "too hard" (Even though I explained beforehand that there was no random encounters, and all of the cool aspects of it...he even got excited) Seems to me that he just want's some decent violence, and the Wii won't offer him that...
I only read the closing comments and score. I'll go and read the full review in a bit. The score appears to be the nice middle ground I hoped for. The game is not as great as some say (IGN), and not as bad as others (Edge). The complete lack of originality other than "an fps on wii" thing stings imo.
I agree with the score. It's a decent game, but isn't anything special, and not worth the $50. The final statment wraps up my opinions perfectly.
Good Review - and honest sore, but I think a couple of your observations need clarification. If the controls feel odd you can change them and its saves your prefered configuration for when ever you return to the game. Secondly, you wont ever hear a random 12 year old on Wii Speak, only registered friend that have the device. It is still possible to hear others in you team if you dont have Wii speak but they will still be registered Friends.
"The Wii doesn't have much in terms of first-person shooters - Aside from Red Steel and Hudson Soft's two WiiWare efforts, the only FPS games the system has are multi-platform titles."
I'll grant that the Metroid Prime series is unusual for the FPS genre, but it still seems odd not to list Corruption here.
@warioswoods: I'd chalk that up to the couple of errors/oversights in the review (see Richard's post #20).
Yeah, this game doesn't really seem that special at all. Maybe I'll give Trilogy a try eventually.
Did you not know that the controls are totally customizable? That's like...one of the main reasons why this game is a big deal.
Mmm-hmm, I expected this score. Definitely giving this one a rent first.
i think the game should be experienced for the controls alone, honestly i cant deathmatch on dual analogue after playing this.. the online with wii controls are incredible
Nice review, usually i play FPS on PC (TF2), and The Conduit seems nothing new compared to other systems/consoles, but if you have only the Wii i think it's really good. I have a friend that play only with the Nintendo console, and he likes it very much.
I think for as long as it took for this review to come out, it could have been a bit more thorough. You guys are excellent at your craft, but come on... a game that takes "6 to 7 hours to finish" if you take your time, even, should not have taken this long to critique.
I think The Conduit deserves a higher score than it received here, if you consider it for what it is, and don't compare it to FPS on other systems. For the Wii, it's an excellent FPS, with almost 100% control customization, excellent graphics considering, good lighting effects (see ASE illumination on objects).
The Wii is my only console, and because my expectations are not influenced by other consoles' offerings, this game delivered to me exactly what was promised. I'd give it a higher score, personally.
@Vendetta: I haven't played the game, but it certainly looks very repetitive and derivative, and from what I've heard I'm right. Re-read the 7 in their scoring policy:
"A seven is not average in our eyes. This game will sport a few areas where the game is blatantly let down to the detriment of its overall quality and enjoyment, but it is NOT average. A seven is still a recommendation, but you might want to consider what we thought let the game down and decide for yourself if it would bother you before buying."
@pixelman: Reading that actually reinforces my opinion of the game and the score I feel it deserves. I may be an exception here in that the Wii is my only console - my expectations are utterly objective in that they were not influenced by any meaningful experience with another system. I'm extremely satisfied with this game, which, in my opinion, offered no blatant letdowns to the detriment of its overall quality and enjoyment. It should go without saying (but never does) that your mileage may vary. Cheers all. -V
This review took a while, but I feel it's pretty consistant with what I've heard elsewhere (from other reviewers and posters) about the game.
I loved your comment; you certainly can't blame the Wii for sudden mood swings. Maybe it was that time of the month, huh?
it sounds as generic as the Halo games (which I don't like). I think I'll wait for The Grinder. LSeems more intertsting.
everyone complaining the review took so long to come out remember the euro version is actually very recent, and the reviewer is european!
to me, it's a solid 7.5.
That's fine, KrazyKain, but they have US-based reviewers also. For a game as hotly anticipated as this one, I'm a bit surprised that NINTENDO Life didn't allow one of them to do it in order to stay relevant to people seeking reviews early on.
to me,its only 5/0
only 5 hours playtime to beat this game,not solid story,monotone style.
Definitely not the epic game we've been hearing about.
That's too bad.
I can heartily agree with the score. It's a decent game, but certainly nothing earth-shattering. I didn't really expect it to be either.
Customizable controls are great and all, but aside from the dead zone and look configuration the default is plenty good enough for me. I did try moving some actions around, but they were noticeably awkward to perform then so I switched it back.
Fair enough review. I like the ASE and how it was implemented, and the weapons and single player mode is great. Some glitches, but over-all an enjoyable experience. Would have personally given it closer to, or an even 8. Since we don't have a fractional point system, fair enough. Good job.
Stop it right there everyone! I have played red steel and metroid prime corruption and this game is the best of the three for what it was ment to be. Let me explain...
First, red steel was supposed to show what swordplay and gunplay would be on the Wii. The experience was, well, rarely superb.
Secondly, metroid prime was supposed to improve control and finish the trilogy like being the best of the three which didn't happen perfectly. The control were ok, but not as perfect as expected and the story was better than the second one, but not the first one which was so awesome.
Lastly, the conduit which isn't perfect, perfected the thing that they have claimed so much, the control, they are, in my opinion perfect... well almost, because you can always improve. The graphics show some nice detail never seen on the Wii which they have claimed, but the artistic side is missing this is why the graphics looks dull. They said that the online would be great and it is. They never argued that their story would be long and deep and all that... The single player is just a practice for the online... I would give it a 9/10 to this game for reaching their goals. The 7/10 would be good, if the controls were dual analog and that the goals would have been higher.
@Vendetta - As it happens we did have a US reviewer lined up to cover this, but something came up so he wasn't able to complete the review. Drake is our resident FPS fan so we decided the best plan was to wait for the Euro release. What ya gonna do?
"but if you're a multi-platform owner you can definitely do better in terms of FPS games."
I never expected to hear that from you Drake. Everyone here has a PC, and based on the fact you have as many Steam games as Gabe Newell I thought you would never call PS3/360 a great FPS console. Looks at console TF2
Probably the worst review I've seen from you Drake. It seemed very rushed and barely covered the facts well.
Firstly, the controls are completely customisable, secondly human enemies are not limited to basic human weapons (the orange suited guys have advanced guns right from the start)
You also make the game sound overly easy due to the abundance of weapons but I found it to be far from the case in certain missions.
As for the aesthetics, Prime 3 might have been prettier but Retro should be able to produce the goods considering they've had plenty of cracks at thew whip by now.
Overall the Conduit is not, nor should it have ever been expected to be, a great FPS. The market is already flooded with low-grade over-rated shooters so it would have take a miracle and a hell of a lot more time and effort for HVS to produce something so spectacular that it would shut the 360 fan-boys up.
For once, the only thing I do agree on is the score but even then i'd be more inclined to add 1. Certainly using a game like Prime 3 as a benchmark is laughable (I'm not arguing over its true genre) - especially considering for the most part it was as dull as ditch water.
@ people talking about Metroid Prime: Metroid Prime is a first-person adventure, not a shooter, so it's hard to compare!
@ Kim Jong-Il: True, but not everyone's PC is good enough to run recent new games, you wouldn't believe the amount of people I know that can't even run Half-Life 2 decently! PS3/360 both have good FPS games, but as you said, yes, obviously PC is still the king
@ calculon: I never said humans exclusively used human weapons Also, I only referred to Prime 3's graphics, I agree that the game itself is fairly boring and the worst of the trilogy.
I just don't play games on my Mac any more, so The Conduit is my sole FPS now and I'm enjoying it. After a few matches with lag I've had a few without. Last night was a nice 4-player match with 3 other folk from NL; all with Wii Speak. No lag; great interaction.
Whilst most of the time I didn't have issues with ammo, I did have a few levels where I did run out towards the end before facing two giant invader things; that was tense! There are 5 difficulty levels as well; the default one is one up from easy, so I'm looking forward to trying the more difficult ones and of course I still have to find all the secrets.
I do wish the twists in the game weren't so obvious or at least took more time to become apparent, but not bad for an FPS story wise. Looking forward to The Grinder!
@Dazza: Thanks for clearing that up. There were more than a few people wondering why the review was so delayed (relative to the US release). I trust all is well with the individual who was set to review it originally?
@Vendetta - Sure he's alright, it just didn't work out on this occasion. It all turned out good in the end. There was no way we weren't gonna review this bad boy!
Terrible review! he makes it sound like any FPS,LOL fps games are generally for fun not to be a golden experience.There are planty of games out there that really go a long way and are master piesced to be the best but to try and rate this game on that level like the review is written,just aweful.The conduit is a fun game as i know cause i own it and im glad i bought it,what could you ask for from such a small dev who is not even in house.But my advice learn more about the game industry before you try and write reviews or just learn instead of pretendidng cause that was extremly weak.
but if you're a multi-platform owner you can definitely do better in terms of FPS games
Sod multi-platform! Just buy a copy of Timesplitters 2 or 3 for Gamecube!
I still think the Wii has a potentially brilliant control scheme for FPS games, but it doesn't look like we're quite there yet.
@JRAPOCALYPSE - Your ability to use the English language is extremely weak! Just face it mate, this FPS did not manage to live up to High Voltage’s hype (quelle surprise!). I’ve played it through to completion and it really isn’t a very good example of a FPS. It's not a patch on Halo 3 or Call of Duty 4. It's too easy and the level design isn't amazing either.
Drake knows more about the games industry than you’ve had hot dinners sunshine. I’ve read enough of his reviews to have confidence that he knows what he is talking about. At least he can spell for a start.
Probably more of an 8 for me, but its no where near as enjoyable as it was hyped up to be, Still, not bad.
I agree that the single-player mode is merely average, but the multiplayer is where this game becomes a masterpiece. The multiplayer in this FPS is actuallty better than any FPS on 360/PS3, because it's on the Wii. All of the reviews keep saying that nothing stands out about the Conduit's multiplayer, but they're forgetting the best stand-out feature of any FPS: Wii IR and motion controls! IR and motion controls, especially with the prefected and fully customizable controls in this game, completely blow away dual-analog controls! This game is currently the only FPS with fully featured online multiplayer on Wii that uses Wii's controls well other than Water Warfare, which doesn't compare in overall quality, therefore it has the best online multiplayer for any console FPS (I don't like using a mouse and keyboard for FPS controls, but I understand those who do). This is a must-buy game not just for exclusive Wii owners but for any Wii owners!
@Drake - Metroid Prime 3 is an adventure game and a shooter. It has FPS controls, so you should be able to compare those, which I hear are about even outside of Conduit's customization. Therefore, the question becomes whether you prefer MP3's story/adventure or Conduit's multiplayer.
I play The Conduit often. It's fun and the controls are done well. It's not perfect, but it's a SOLID FPS entry on the Wii. I've beaten the single-player campaign and there is so much story contained in the radio transmissions and the hidden graffiti that you uncover. It's easy to miss this stuff as it's not in-your-face or spoon-fed like most game content has become.
I'd give the single player adventure a 7. It you dig the online multiplayer (which I certainly do), I'd say this is an 8.
7/10...hmm...I would have given it more or 8 but then again I don't play much FPS and I tend to cling on to the ones I do.
The reviewer should learn the game better before reviewing it, infact the whole review almost sounds like a copy/paste of other review sites, ones that mention "respawning enemies" but fail to mention they only respawn until you destroy the eggs/pods they are coming from and with the ASE if you get hit, of course you have to rescan as the link is broken when you are all of a sudden moved from the hit.
Don't forget about the online glitches. For some people this game is completely broken due to it's random re-spawning design. Even with a great internet connection and luck on your side you'll have to reset the console at least once a day.
I thought it was an 8 but not the second coming of Mario Bros 1 as many were suggesting. Way way too hyped this game was
I've played it for three consecutive days in online matches; other than some lag I've never had a glitch or had to reset the machine. Of course I don't play more than an hour at a time!
I like this game. Its funny though, after all the focus upon its 'hardcore' intended audience the written intro acompanying the special edition states they were going for low brow pop entertainment with high production values... It plays well, reminds me of Virtua Cop 2 in an odd way, its quite an arcade style game - I've had a couple of glitches online, spawned beneath a map which was pretty weird...
There's really nothing about it that really stands out other than the fact it's on the Wii though. If you've only got a Wii, the game's worth a purchase, but if you're a multi-platform owner you can definitely do better in terms of FPS games.
Which is basically what I've been saying about it right from the get-go. I'll still get it once it hits clearance, but for now, I'll stick with my Xbox 360 shooters(and I'll have plenty o' those - there are a lot of great ones on clearance these days...more than I can keep up with.).
Yeah, graphics are quite nice - except for the disapointingly low res, flat looking outdoor backgrounds. Sounds and artistic direction are pretty derivative Sci-fi stuff... Still, I found it a lot of fun to play in short bursts. Intuative controls add a lot to this game for me, certainly worth trying out at good price!
Good review. I want this badly, but I'm going to blow all my money on Wii Sports Resort tomorrow, so I'll have to wait. Also, I have a quick question. Is it possible to turn blood off in the options?
you cant really see the blood the game is rated T
what are you talking about the only reason i got game was for its online play, which i think runs really well and i haven't experienced any lag at all
if i have found it very brief and hasn't ruined my experience
yeah story mode is short but with the achievements there plenty room to replay. But the bulk of the game is in its online play and thats were i spend most of time!! and i think you will to
it last for months.
Awesome5 what are you doing dont buy wii resort just yet try hand at conduit and find it joy to play:)
as 4 wii sports resort it looks good and be fun in short bursts! but again its just other tech demo showing you what wii-motion plus can do! Nintendo need to start branching out with the game adding online and little more depth which i think its lacking in:(
Too late, I already got it.
Kind of tough this review. I think it deserved 8/10 but that's just my opinion.
awsome game i recommend it to all wii users. personally i think it should atleast got a 8/10 or a 9/10 its also abit anoying if u cant hear a damn thing coz people have the either there mics up to high or the speaks to high so it echo's back like hell so u cant hear anything at all which piss me and probally other gamers playing
I returned my borrowed copy not long after I got it. I'd actually say 7/10 is just about spot on. Very uninspiring.
i really am surprised by some of the like 5 and 6 review......i absolutely love this game becase it fills the void for an online FPS game and its great for an online Wii FPS imo id give it a 8.5/10 for some black screens online and short and not worth it sp
Hmm, pretty low score, looks like I'd better borrow my cousin's copy and play it first before I spend money that I don't have on this...
This game is awesome the online is perfect whats there notto like
Bring on The Conduit 2!
I'm buying this today. Nice Review!
I LOVE THIS GAME!!!!!
I just ordered this game for $16.99 so im not going to be that mad if its not as great as i liked. But I enjoyed Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 for the wii so im sure i would like this game quite a bit.
WTF? Did you really use screens of the games alpha?
can some 1 add me on the conduit so we can play online together my friends code is 1463-5158-3187 thanks add me please
I just picked this game up for $10 new at Walmart and for that price I feel I really got my moneys worth.
@Sean_Aaron: the fact that you use a mac, coupled with your comment about not playing more than an hour a day, fills me with disgust and makes me not want to ever take any of your gaming-related opinions seriously. hippy wuss.
Imo, this game would be less of a let down if it hadn't been made out to be the second coming of the messiah. its a poorly made fps that leans on its multiplayer for support, which the world has an overabundance of. it happens to have motion controls, some customization, and a weird little gadget which is way overused, but its extremely average. and @anyone who says they like this game solely because of customization, shut up, you're obviously not a serious gamer. if you were you would base your opinion off of things that actually matter, like the gameplay itself. with enough hacking any game can have customizable controls.
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