Worms is back, nestling into the roster of games available on the Nintendo Switch, and we couldn’t be more excited. The Team 17 game, whose first instalment was originally released in 1995 for the PlayStation, PC, Sega, and Atari, continues its enduring relationship with gamers by maintaining what fans of the game loved about it more than 20 years ago. Each generation of console has seen a steady Worms release, which proves that the game has enough firepower to transcend generations and become a gaming legacy. Worms: WMD benefitted from a new console revival and a clever marketing campaign for its 2017 Switch release.
The game focuses on teams of worms at war, each taking turns on unleashing artillery fire on their opponents, much like the predecessors. WMD retains the 2D look that Worms fans know and love, and adds in a selection of weaponry that was unavailable in the first run, while adding to the arsenal and the roster of manoeuvres the worms are capable of. The game also marries up multiplayer battles across Switch, which adds a social element to the game. Plus, the random terrain generator means that no two games will be the same, adding depth to the sandbox variety of the gameplay.
The simplicity of the gameplay was a key feature in the enduring success and popularity of the franchise. The basics are easy to grasp and the scope for growing a player’s talent and skill is vast. Not only does the game require the manual dexterity of a gamer, but also the tactical and strategic thinking of a commander in war. The game is also popular enough to be the subject of many spinoffs, including a Betsafe slot game, which involves its own level of tactics and skill to play. It’s also inspired themed pinball titles and fan games, showing that the franchise is one ingrained in the gaming masses’ hearts and minds.
Worms: WMD’s success is evident in the fact that Team 17 partnered with Sold Out to create boxed versions of the game to add to the event factor of the release. The marketing strategy brought the tongue-in-cheek satire of the game to the fore, by releasing short clips that were titled around what WMD may stand for. These include: Wonderful Multiplayer Destruction, We’ve Massive Discounts and We’re Mighty Dangerous, among many others. By showing fans that Team 17 are still as invested in Worms as they were initially, fans can feel safe in the knowledge that the game is in good hands, and fan queries will be answered to keep the masses happy while playing the game.
Worms WMD continues the trajectory of success that the franchise has felt, which looks to go from strength to strength. Perhaps the future sees Worms taking advantage of VR or AR technologies, or even becoming 3D, which worked well for the latest Pokemon releases. Whatever the case, Worms will continue its enduring love affair with gamers, and will be a title on the latest console for generations to come.