Thursday, July 21, 2016

Transformers Devastation: Game Review (PS4/Xbox One)

Transformers Devastation has been out a while now, and I was lucky enough to grab a digital copy for under $20 in one of the recent PS4 online sales. Platinum games have a pretty good track record in making games which are fun, and this is no exception. While the story is quite standard, the setting is close to my heart. As a huge fan of the 1980 cartoon series, it was great to play a game that perfectly represented these designs, and transforming and battling is everything I could have asked for from a Transformers title. The nostalgia of seeing my favorite characters added to the experience, from Soundwave, Starscream, Optimus, Bumblebee, and the Constructicons. The experience is made even more immersive by using the original 1980s voice actors.
The cell-shaded art style really captures the essence of the original Transformers; the backdrops however are a different story. While the world design looks great, buildings and backdrops are repeated so heavily I sometimes felt like I was running in circles, with no help from the map which only shows the small area you currently inhabit. Combat however is where this game shines. Occasionally you will run into a swarm of enemies, or a boss battle. The action is hectic, and you will be transforming back and forth mid-combo, firing while driving, smashing head first into enemies in vehicle form, unleashing special attacks and generally having a great time doing all of this. While combat is the main driving force here, I never found it repetitive, as the challenge really keeps you on your toes, especially during boss battles. One particularly neat trick is the ability to dodge roll at the last second, which if done in time causes enemies to enter stasis, giving the player the opportunity to unleash devastating combos.

The combat is complimented by a level up system and weapon enchantment. The weapons enhancement is kind of complicated and if you don’t start merging or selling your weapons, the menu can become a little cluttered. I spent a lot of time trying to create the best weapon; however in the end all you really need is to power any old C grade weapon to level 10. In my 10 hours or so with this title I never found a weapon above C grade.

The main adventure is around 7 hours long, and an extra mission mode helps extend the experience. I would recommend this game to anyone, especially those old enough to have loved the 1980s cartoon. The combat is truly special and finds the perfect balance between challenge and frustration. Transformers Devastation is more than meets the eye.


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