REVIEW – PlatinumGames have cranked themselves up to a higher gear this year, and the first result of that was leaked a day early. That would be Transformers Devastation, which is a short, but a tasty treat in my opinion… While Transformers 5 is nowhere near in the movies, let’s check out Devastation!
The game had the usual pre-release story: it was leaked before the official announcement that PlatinumGames were working on some certain transforming robots fighting each other. So, when Activision finally revealed the game, it wasn’t a surprise. For me though, the producer was: it’s Atsushi Kurooka, whose previous game was The Legend of Korra. That game was okay, but I think Transformers Devastation is better!
Transformers Devastation is taking the Generation 1 (or G1 for short) Transformers, so if you were a kid in the eighties, you might probably remember the Autobots and the Decepticons’ original look! It’s alright, if you haven’t heard of the franchise yet though. The game throws you right into the middle of action, which is quite regular with PG games: Max Anarchy/Anarchy Reigns, Vanquish, Metal Gear Rising, Bayonetta – if you have played any of these, you know what to expect right from the getgo.
In Devastation, we can take any of the five Autobots for a ride (most of the time literally, because they transform into vehicles): Optimus Prime, Sideswipe, Bumblebee, Grimlock and Wheeljack are the playable characters. The absolutely surprise move is that the original voice cast is present! Very nice work, it’s easily one of the best points of the game!
But back to the characters – there is a clear difference between their styles. While Optimus Prime is really working best with melee combat and his finishing move as transforming into a vehicle and ramming into them Decepticons, Wheeljack is optimal (no pun intended!) in mid, high range attacks, because his wrenches can cause some havoc, making him a good choice for careful players.
Hit them hard
Light and heavy attacks, dodging, combos, insane pace, variatons in combat with guns. This is pretty much how I can describe Devastation‘s combat system – the battles are really fluid, and this is applied to the transformation animations too! This is probably because of the cel-shaded graphics, likely allowing the devs to make the game for the PS3 as well. Still, it somewhat suits the game nicely! TF Devastation was never meant to be an AAA-title, so the game doesn’t cost 60 bucks, it’s just 50.
What about defense though? You can dodge, and if you time it nicely, you get some good slo-mo effect into action – however, sometimes I found these a bit short for my liking. Several times I found my combo ending early as I ran out of this bullet time.
There is looting in this game. Completing side missions can allow you to own more and better weapons – and honestly, you will need some heavy weapons, as well as those upgrades. You can have a maximum of four on you, some of them has some great stats – if you want to go for stunning, you can find some great weaponry, especially because some of them can affect those bosses (some very familiar Decepticons!) as well!
You can also throw away guns to improve other guns. You can also get some passive stats for the Autobots with the T.E.C.H upgrades. Spend some credits for them, get minigames – I needed time to get used to these, but you will need upgrades, especially on higher difficulty. (But then, you will also get better loot, a la Diablo 3…)
Good, good, good, wait, it’s over already?!
The game’s biggest issue is the length. For me, it took around 5 hours and 23 minutes to get through, and… that’s really not a lot. Thankfully, there is some replayability in the seven chapters, because you can get into them again with the other Autobots. That’s another problem: you cannot play as Decepticons, probably for a good reason – a sequel?
You can also get into some challenges, these can also expand the length of your game. But, even the story doesn’t help the length of TF Devastation: while it’s the usual G1 storyline with Megatron finding some energy and trying to convert Earth into a new Cybertron, it doesn’t warrant that much of a length. And even then, sometimes the battles are chaotic, especially if the Insecticons enter – really insane here and there…
Wait for it
Still, I have to say that this game is okay… but not for this price. Wait until drops to half price, so if you can pick it up for 25-30 dollars, it’s absolutely worthy of getting Transformers Devastation! The stylish graphics and gameplay (which really takes cues from other PG games – there’s even a rage meter present!), an excellent audio segment is pushed down by the length and the noticable lack of places within the game.
Still, going for the S ranks (we are ranked in the same way as in say, Metal Gear Rising after each stage), and the harder difficulty can get Atsushi Kurooka’s game back on your screen though. The team improved after Korra – if this keeps up, their third game will kick some major ass!
+ From the fans, to the fans!
+ Classic voice acting cast!
+ Stylish, quick, enjoyable
– …but it ends quickly
– A bit chaotic at some points
– Lacks areas in my opinion
Genres: Hack ‘n’ slash, beat’em up
Release date: October 6, 2015
Gameplay - 6.9
Graphics - 7.2
Story - 8.6
Music/Audio - 9.3
Ambience - 7.5
Transformers Devastation is short, but very sweet. For TF-fans, it's an absolute must have, for others, wait for a price drop. For hack 'n' slash fans, it's a game you should get on your shelves!
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