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Mixed or average reviews - based on 63 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 54 Ratings

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  • Summary: Wheelman takes gamers on a white knuckle thrill ride that unfolds throughout the streets of Barcelona. Featuring car chases inspired by Hollywood's most famous action-sequences, Wheelman delivers powerful cinematic moments throughout the game's compelling storyline. Vin Diesel stars as an undercover agent and highly skilled driver who must infiltrate the Barcelona underworld to gather intelligence surrounding a covert heist. Posing as a driver-for-hire, he ends up caught in a crossfire of corruption and chaos while trying to stay one step ahead of local law enforcement and rival gangs. [Midway] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 63
  2. Negative: 4 out of 63
  1. Wheelman has enough explosive thrills that you’ll be yelling and laughing the whole time.
  2. 80
    Its arcadey addictiveness and cinematic style successfully lands it in a sweet spot right between those two genres, taking players for a ride that's totally on par with the summer movie excitement it emulates.
  3. 75
    If you're looking for just having some dumb fun driving in a big sprawling city, smashing and shooting every last thing in your way, then Wheelman is a great pick. However, it never even attempts to reinvent the wheel from any other free-roaming action-adventure.
  4. Wheelman draws influence from a number of other titles, and fails to provide anything really new to the mix. Some initial excitement is offset quickly by repetition, and ultimately the game suffers for it.
  5. This could have been an inspired game, and it certainly contains some original touches and good ideas. However, just when it should be hitting top gear it is knocked back into neutral by inconsistencies and average execution.
  6. We couldn’t really recommend purchasing Wheelman – not at full price anyway. For the sheer fact that it isn’t necessarily painful to play, you might want to chuck some cash in Wheelman’s general direction when it inevitably hits the bargain bins, but that, as they say, is your whack.
  7. It’s like an ironic mustache or mullet. Like having a Steven Segal DVD in your collection. You’ll never get any real use out of it. You just have it in with your other games to show you friends you have a sense of humor.

See all 63 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 11
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 11
  3. Negative: 1 out of 11
  1. billyj
    Apr 2, 2009
    10
    Way better than gta. more smooth gameplay, better weapons, better ... jokes. the game doesn't take itself so seriously like GTA did. in fact, because of this it comes off as more of a serious game. i would say that GTA is more comprehensive, but for what you wanna do with this kind of game, ubi has just executed rockstar, i believe. stupendously done. Expand
  2. PhilL
    Mar 29, 2009
    10
    Between this and the upcoming Chronicles of Riddick, Vin has been pumping out some quality stuff. Chronicles looks like it
  3. ArnoF
    Mar 31, 2009
    9
    Car combat at it
  4. RandyJ
    Mar 25, 2009
    9
    A great choice for anyone looking for an action game. It's not perfect but it's flaws are easy to overlook as you are having so much fun playing. The driving is about the best in the genre and the vehicle combat is incredibly intense. A return to classic form for Midway this time - they've managed to bring that classic gaming feel right up to date. Expand
  5. [Anonymous]
    Apr 2, 2009
    9
    Regardless of what critics are saying (screw IGN btw), this game is out right FUN. it's what a video game should be like. crazy fun, not super realistic but still great graphics, a surprisingly decent story. Expand
  6. Petergriffin
    Dec 10, 2009
    9
    Fantastic game provides the thrills u expected from a game like. Car gameplay is one of the best while on foot gameplay is one of the worst.
  7. Jan 3, 2011
    4
    Food critics will usually review a restaurant a few days after opening as the first night will have a show put on by the owners, a method which could not be more apt for Wheelman. While the demo will suck you in, the game from then on will spit you out and desecrate you for good measure. Naturally, there are a few aspects of the game that deliver on its promise of the over the top action we've all come accustomed to from Vin Diesel films of late. You can attack other cars with your own vehicle using the right stick, which is useful for ousting enemies and police alike. You can also "air-jack" a car, in which you hold down circle/B, and when an arrow on top of your desired car turns green, you will leap from your car and get into the other person's. While this seems incredibly ridiculous, it is actually fun. Once you've sped enough (or something similar, I haven't touched the game in the past year and a half), you get points which you can use to slow down time while driving, and you can physically aim where to shoot through the wind-sheild, which is aided by an overly simple auto-aim. A more advanced version of this turns the car 180 degrees, which is incredibly useful for taking cars out behind you. And of course, there's a heap of cheesy lines from Vin to keep you going. And those are the good aspects. All of them. There are absolutely no more.This is a GTA clone if someone mixed up the embryos with a game from 5 years ago and created some mutant offspring. You'd think that if a game is entitled "Wheelman", there would be a great emphasis on driving. Not so, unfortunately. Most of the game will be spent on foot, with truly abhorrent controls. It's difficult to aim, and the cover system is beyond clunky. There are limited weapons, which Vin magically stores on his back. They could've just gone for the old-school GTA method of switching guns out of nowhere, but an invisible adhesive is used for some reason. The game focuses too much on explosions, with exploding barrels everywhere from an abandoned metro station (understandable), to a church graveyard, which is not. And what do you do if you want a car to escape this on-foot madness? You just press triangle/Y, and the nearest car magically stops, waiting for you to steal their car. And how many cars do you have to choose from? This may be an exaggeration, but my guess is 14. For a driving game, about 14 cars. GTA is both shooting and driving, and has over 200 cars. 14 is pathetic. And I'm not a car expert, but I counted 2 licensed cars, something which GTA will never have. What are these cars? A Vauxhall/Opel Astra, the embodiment of mediocrity in cars, and the Smart Car, one of the slowest on the planet. Awful, truly. The story is instantly forgettable. You're some sort of undercover agent infiltrating the infamous underbelly of Barcelona for some sort of agency. My guess is Interpol. But you still get pulled over by the police. Anyway, you get involved with each of the three gangs that control Barcelona, one with an African-European, who is the most obese character in a game I've seen since Big Smoke, one old school mafioso family and another gang, who I don't know for the life of me who they are, although it hardly matters. You'll do missions for one gang against one of the others, yet you'll be able to continue missions for the others. I remember doing a hit against an armed convoy, and going to the family on the receiving end the next day, at which the boss knows that it was you, but he lets you continue working for him due to you saying "I'm just a Wheelman". And you continue with your business. I'll be honest, I didn't finish the story, but I doubt it mattered much. I also didn't do any of the side missions, because I wasn't pushed to do them, they meant nothing. I didn't wonder around as you do in a free roaming game, Barcelona is such a nondescript city for a video game that you'll be bored in 2 minutes. The graphics could easily have been lifted from a PS2 game, and no one would know the difference, with glitches more common than not. Apart from Vin Diesel, the voice acting is terrible, and the soundtrack is dreadful, with radio stations called "Hip-Hop" and "American". There's no replay value with the absence of multiplayer, which would be accepted if the single-player was anything close to focused. Saying that, there's not much play value, either. Gameplay: 4
    Story: 3
    Graphics: 4
    Sound: 3
    Replay Value: 1
    Verdict: If you want to, play the demo, nothing more.
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