Satisfy Your Need for Giant Monster Battles with War of the Monsters

Enjoy Kong: Skull Island & Power Rangers? Still craving more giant monster battles? Try playing War of the Monsters.

With movies like Kong: Skull Island and Power Rangers having been released recently, some may be looking to play games featuring giant monsters -- fighting games in particular. In the past few years there has been a severe lack of these types of games other than 2015's lackluster Godzilla, and 2013's Pacific Rim. Despite the scarcity of titles in this genre, a game from the distant past, which has since been re-released twice, is the game that can satisfy the need for giant monster brawls. That game is War of the Monsters.

War of the Monsters was developed by the now defunct Incognito Entertainment (Twisted Metal spin offs, Warhawk) and first released in 2003 for the PlayStation 2. As the title may imply, War of the Monsters is a fighting game featuring giant monsters battling it out in destructible environments. What makes this game unique, however, is that all of the monsters are homages to famous movie monsters of the 1950's -- from King Kong and Godzilla inspired monsters, to homages of lesser known monsters such as Kamacuras (Godzilla Franchise) and Daimajin. War of the Monsters is the crossover monster game fans have asked for, without the complications of character licensing. There are even mock up movie posters featuring each monster seen on the loading screen depending on the environment chosen, as if these monsters actually had their own movies.

War of the Monsters

A common problem found in similar games is they seem to have difficulty recreating the feel of playing as a giant monster. In other giant monster fighting games, combat can feel too slow, making it feel stiff and as if you're playing as a man in a rubber suit rather than the actual monster. The monsters in War of the Monsters are slightly smaller than monsters in other games, which may help increase their mobility but are all relatively the same speed, which helps the combat feel even and fast paced.

War of the Monsters, destruction

Another problem found in these games is that environments aren't as destructible as they should be. If giant monsters are battling it out in a populated environment, it's fair to expect that a decent portion of said environment will be demolished during the scuffle. In War of the Monsters, the environments are fully destructible, buildings can be climbed, crushed, or be toppled over and crush monsters, and plenty of different objects can be picked up and used as clubs, spears, and projectiles. There's even an option to rebuild the environment if a player feels that it has become too barren after a clashing of titans has gone on for awhile.

Despite the edge War of the Monsters has over the competition, it does still have some notable flaws. The most noticeable flaw is that the camera cannot be fully controlled and can feel awkward at times, sometimes creating blind spots without meaning too. There are also some unblockable attacks which can feel unfair, but are a minor inconvenience after getting enough experience with the game. The last notable problem is that at times it can feel like the AI is determined to survive no matter the difficulty setting, which can be frustrating, but again is a small annoyance when the player has enough experience. These flaws, although irritating, can easily be overlooked because of everything else War of the Monsters has to offer.

War of the Monsters, poster

War of the Monsters may not be perfect, but it's one of the best and most easily accessible games in the giant monster fighting genre and deserves your attention if you're seeking an enjoyable experience.

War of the Monsters is available as a digital download on PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 and is on sale often.


Writer pursuing a career in Games & Entertainment media. Specialties include coverage of non-Pokémon monster taming RPGs, event coverage, indie game coverage, and coverage of various Japanese games.

Published Mar. 27th 2017

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