The Wanted Dead reviews are in, and despite its PS2-style graphics and hack-and-slash RPG combat, Soleil's neon-bathed Hong Kong is plagued with flaws and is simply not long enough to keep players interested.
Dead's narrative isn't too different from that of Square Enix's Forspoken. Awesome graphics? Check.A stunning setting? Check.Horrible reviews and terrible performance? Check.
Metacritic gets a resoundingly poor 60 (on PC, of course, we're PCGamesN after all), but critics say it's a janky mess that plays more like a PS2 game rather than just reliving that nostalgia.
The situation on Steam isn't much better. Some players have described the game as "magnificently mediocre," while others insist there's "very little to see." Others, however, describe it as "a fine title for serious gamers and old school game lovers," and that "it's a shotgun/slasher I've always wanted."
Players have also stated that the game is only five missions long in the Steam discussion forum, which seems to be quite extreme considering the high price tag ($59.99 / £49.99).
All of this is quite disappointing. Having seen a few scenes of Wanted: Dead at Gamescom last year, I fell in love with its neon graphics, screeching zombies, and seemingly perpetual, ever-evolving combat. For me, it was the sleeper hit of 2023 – made better by Stefanie Joosten's involvement.
While she admitted on PCGamesN that she wanted to stay true to her sultry sniper role, it seems like she should have stuck to what she knew. Reviewers have labeled the dialogue as "crap," and given the bizarre in-game cooking show, I agree.
I have yet to play the game, and given that it is aesthetically pleasing right up my street, I'm probably still going to. The torrents of negative reviews have more than dampened the excitement, though, so maybe I'll just stick to that FFXIV Valentine's quest that I raved about.
If you want to give Wanted Dead a pass, here are a list of some of the best games like Dark Souls. We also have a list of the best cyberpunk games, too, if you want that glowing futuristic feeling.