Ah, mini-games. This is a Wii game, after all. But it's also MadWorld, so they're not called mini-games - the official name is Blood Bath Challenges. Apparently there are many different types in the finished product, but we're only getting to see one today: Man Darts. This involves using the baseball bat to smash enemies into a giant dartboard. Certainly looks more fun than PDC Challenge. Naturally, you'll be able to compete in the mini-games with other players.
One journalist pipes up to suggest chopping each other into bloody messes isn't most Wii users' idea of social gaming fun. Isn't MadWorld a bit hardcore? "It might seem a little niche or a little core, but actually when you play it's a pretty simple action game," says Inaba . "Anyone can pick it up and play. It's perfect for Wii, because Wii is the perfect social console."
Watching Inaba play, the controls do look intuitive - you swing the remote downwards to chop off a head, for example, and make a forwards thrusting movement to impale people on pointy sticks. However, there are also more complex moves; pulling the remote and nunchuk away from each other horizontally causes Jack to perform an upper-cut. It'll be interesting to go hands-on with the game and find out just how many extra options there are for those who can be bothered to learn the moves.
No matter how accessible MadWorld's control system is, there's no doubt it's an extremely violent game. The likes of Keith Vaz and the Daily Mail aren't likely to be keen, and SEGA may come to regret putting things in the press release like, "Features ultra-violent mini-games designed to push you over the edge."
But there's also no doubt it's comic violence - much more Itchy and Scratchy than Bundy and Gacy, as SEGA is keen to point out. There's much talk of how the tone is "irreverent" and "humorous", and how the violence is "over-the-top", "fun" and "upbeat". All of these terms are appropriate. And although there's plenty of blood splashing around, you couldn't describe the action or the cartoon-style black and white visuals as realistic.
But wait till the Daily Mail gets wind that MadWorld also features an angry hip hop soundtrack and two commentators who do swearing. They tell each other to "F*** off", describe giant bosses as "Motherf***ers" and refer to things like air stewardesses being "poked" and thrown in dumpsters. As a prelude to Man Darts one commentator declares, "It's time for the BBC." The other replies, "Big breasted chicks?" "Blood Bath Challenge, you 'tard." The commentators seem to repeat themselves a lot, which could prove highly irritating, but hopefully that'll be sorted out for the finished game.
Otherwise, there's little to complain about so far. To sum up: swearing, rap music, comic books, violence, blood. Who cares what The Man says, Tha Kidz are going to love this game. And MadWorld could be the perfect solution for those who didn't just buy a Wii to get fit and play tennis. Let's just hope it's as much fun to play as it is to watch.