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4.5 out of 5
Transformers is a franchise that I have grown up with, and no I’m not talking about Michael Bay’s butchering of the Transformers. I’m talking about Generation 1 – the start of it all - The Holy Grail of Transformers. So it’s nice to see a video game giving homage to something that I hold so dear to my heart. The first installment, “War for Cybertron”, showed us all how a true Transformer game should look and feel, but it still suffered from a few minor flaws. Were the flaws fixed? Or are we just given another rehashed sequel? (**cough** call of duty **cough**)
“Fall of Cybertron” starts off extremely well, but it failed to impress me off the bat. I still cannot get past the visuals, sure they are impressive, but I strongly feel that this game franchise will gain a lot of well deserved respect if they only used Cel Shading (the art of making it look exactly like a cartoon). They have everything else: The storyline, the characters, Peter Cullen (Optimus)… why not have it look like the cartoon itself? But at least the visuals were a little more appealing this time around. I did have some issues with the first game when it came to the visuals – you found yourself trapped inside too many corridors that all looked the same, but that wasn’t much of an issue this time around. A lot of the levels seemed different from previous levels, which definitely kept me into the game. And you didn’t feel as trapped this time around.
In the game you play as both the Autobots and the Decepticons – a feature in games that usually turns me off because I like playing as one character throughout a campaign, but it truly worked in this one. You play as a diverse selection of characters – all with special and fun abilities that keep this game fresh and exciting. One level you may be flying and in another you may be driving – one level you may be a Decepticon and in the next you may be a Dinobot. And the important thing is – it worked! Changing from one character to another – changing from one team to another – it all meshed well with the story. The best example I can think of is during the very last battle sequence in which you play as multiple characters at one time. I really don’t want to give anything away, but one second you can be Jazz (Autobot) then all of a sudden a jet flies by in the background and you become Starscream (Decepticon). And then of course there’s the climactic showdown between Optimus Prime himself and Megatron – YOU get to decide who you are and who you want to beat into the ground. I’m not going to lie – I got goose bumps during most of this final level.
And it’s not just the final level, each level was fun and interesting. Some only taking minutes to beat and others taking an hour or so to beat, but the important thing is that it kept my attention and I liked it. It fed me just enough during each level that I was starving for more. Actually the worst part of the game comes during the credits. The game ends beautifully – Peter Cullen’s voice closes out the cinematic and the credits start to roll – then we get dancing Transformers? And Transformers giving fist bumps? Ok, that being said – this is still a sexy game.
If you were a fan of the original Transformers cartoon from the 80’s, this game is for you.
Tim (from Saturday Morning Rewind) will be appearing at the Reno Pop Culture Con this November! (Nov 8-10). Visit their SITE for more details.