Review: Roll Out with the Autobots in ‘Transformers: Devastation’

GameStop, Inc.

image04Transformers: Devastation is a third person action game developed by Platinum Games and published by Activision. The game is one part hack and slash and one part shooter. It’s look and feel is based off of the Generation I designs and continuity. The main premise of the story is that a Cybertronian ship crashed on Earth. Inside the ship are Insecticons and plasma energy. Megatron plans to use the Insecticons and plasma energy to cyberform Earth into a new Cybertron.  It is up to the Autobots, Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Sideswipe, Wheeljack and Grimlock, to stop them.

As said earlier, the game is based off of the Generation I designs, so Bumblebee fans might wonder why he isn’t a slick looking Camaro. The Generation I designs are faithfully recreated in a 3D, cel shaded format. The game looks and feels like the old 1980’s cartoons. Speaking of the 1980’s cartoon, several of the actors reprise their roles like Peter Cullen and Frank Welker as Optimus Prime and Megatron. Even the transforming sound was ripped straight from the cartoon. One of the composers for the game was Vince DiCola, who composed the the score for Transformers: The Movie. This game feels like it is Activision and Platinum’s love letter to old school Transformer fans.

image01

 

If you’ve played any of Platinum’s other games then you know how difficult and frustrating they can be. The game starts with three difficulties, Scout (easy), Warrior (normal) and Commander (hard). For someone like me, someone who is more than a casual player but not quite a hardcore gamer, Warrior mode’s boss battles kicked my ass. The main parts of the levels gave a bit of a challenge but the boss battles were just brutal. Scout mode makes the game easier, but depending on your skill level it may be too easy. Each chapter is broken down into multiple missions and there are seven chapters in total. It really isn’t a particularly long game, but it seems like it is meant to test your skills as you can keep your Autobots levels and weapons through each playthrough. Also, scattered throughout each mission are numerous collectibles and side missions and challenges are unlocked after completing each mission. Using items and dodging are an absolute must. Also, throughout the chapters are spots where you can return to the Ark. The Ark is where you can change Autobots and synthesize new upgrades and weapons. When you return to the level you health and ammo is replenished, useful if you run out of health and ammo reserves.

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Gameplay wise, the game is a third person hack and slash and a shooter. you can equip up to four different weapons on each Autobot which you can select using the d-pad. You have various melee weapons such as swords and hammers and different types of projectile weapons. You can also transform at will between vehicle and robot modes. This is useful in combat because, if you drive towards an enemy at full speed, you can trigger a vehicle attack and break enemy shields.

As a whole Transformers: Devastation is an enjoyable game. It does test your skills and can be brutally hard at times, but its story is what keeps you pushing on. From its Generation I influences to the core of its story, this is a game Transformers fans will enjoy.

Transformers: Devastation
  • 9/10
    Story - 9/10
  • 7/10
    Gameplay - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Mechanics - 8/10
8/10

The Verdict

Transformers: Devastation is a love letter to the original cartoon series, but its steep difficulty curve might leave casual fans frustrated.

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