Transformers: Dark of the Moon

6.0 Overall Score

Written by on July 12, 2011 in

 

by Brandy Jordan

Transformers: Dark of the Moon is the third game based on the movie trilogy by Michael Bay. It takes place around three years after the second film ends, the humans think that the Decepticons have left Earth defeated but the Autobots know that it is not so. Wheeljack discovers that satellite transmissions are being monitored and being transmitted to a Soviet relay facility. Which Decepticon could be responsible for monitoring the Autobots? In return the Autobots upload a virus into the Decepticon network to monitor them and use the information collected to located Decepticons around the globe.  The Decepticons are ravaging the cities on Earth, while the Autobots are trying to repair the faith the Decipticons have caused humans to lose in the Transformers. One mission takes place in Detroit, the city is being ravaged by Decepticons. Ironhide  is sent to locate and destroy Decepticons within the city while Ratchet works with NEST to evacuate civilians. As a result of the Decepticons negative impact NEST has concealed the lunar landing information from the Autobots. Megatron’s play is to destroy the NEST facility that holds the lunar landing information and locate the ultimate Decepticon assassin, Shockwave.

The campaign felt slightly rushed and short even though  it is seven chapters long. The upside to the campaign is that High Moon used telling the story from both factions as War for Cybertron did,  however it doesn’t  have a separate campaign for Autobot and Decepticon it splits the campaign between them. So relish in your inner bad boy or girl while you can and be just as ruthless as the Decepticon leader. I experienced loading issues randomly throughout the entire campaign usually while I was trying to evade or go fast in vehicle form but I also noticed it happening when I would move to the next area. It is truly infuriating to have a game stop to load while you are playing a slow paced section or in the middle of racing through a section like the volcano playing as Soundwave. The drifting feature is a little wonky to control and the vehicles can take some getting used to but the armor and weapons in your vehicle form are a little tougher than your robot form. You will also notice that certain characters move faster than others, even in their robot form. Mirage and Bumblebee are quick in both forms while Ironhide and Megatron are infuriatingly slow in both forms. Vehicle form can be a blast, especially when you can lock onto enemies and you can ram into enemy robots but not enemy vehicles. While in robot form your ability on the left of your screen will recharge but the one on the right will only recharge if you kill enough enemies to replenish it. There are two different chapters in which you are forced to play with melee and abilities only, on Easy this would be no big issue but even on Medium it was tedious and frustrating at times.

The graphics of this game aren’t overly spectacular but in certain areas there are pretty environments: the Mayan temples and coastal jungle, for example. The ocean water and the lava  look continuous and unchanging, no waves or bubbles to spice it up a little bit. The Transformers themselves look great as do their vehicle forms, and transforming from one to the other is fluid and you can do it on the fly. I liked the addition of the vehicle weapons being visible but when you start driving faster they go into full vehicle mode.

When you play as Laserbeak he is difficult to control at times but a very unique twist, it is the only time I have seen a game have Soundwave dispatch Laserbeak in a game. As Laserbeak you are supposed to be able to hide from enemies by scanning holographic objects and stunning them, but more often than not the enemies are between you and the object you can scan. Sometimes the only way to get to it is to fly as high up as you can but they may still see you. You may also not notice the object because the way they glow doesn’t stand out as much as it probably should. As Laserbeak you can use his Ram ability which works well if you’re close or have stunned them and are able to fly in a straight line. It’s really your best bet as Laserbeak to stun and then shoot, your weapons with him aren’t as powerful as a regular Transformer.

The multiplayer offers four different classes of Transformer for you to choose from, they are: Scout, Hunter, Commander, and Warrior. Scouts will be the fastest on the ground but people rarely look up for the Hunter (buildings are also no longer obstacles) while the Commander and Warrior are slow but can take and deal a lot of damage. You can customize your own Autobot and/or Decepticon for each class in multiplayer, including their name or you can keep the defaults. As you level your online classes you unlock additional abilities and upgrades for your characters, however you cannot change their primary weapon and ability. The primary abilities of the Autobot chassis and Decepticon chassis differ but not enough to make one side better than the other, it all comes down to your preference of abilities. The bigger characters are really slow and while this isn’t really a huge deal in Deathmatch/Team Deathmatch games you are very slow getting to objectives in Conquest matches unless you’re in vehicle form and spam boost until you get the Leg Servos upgrade. You can unlock three character slots for each class, if you have played War for Cybertron multi-player it isn’t entirely different from that and you will more than likely have an advantage over the others playing.

The one thing I was extremely disappointed in was that unlike War for Cybertron this game did not have a “horde” mode. This aspect alone would have made me replay the game more than I have. Multi-player would have been just as good for the replayability factor if more people had purchased the game, finding a match can be difficult. If your team happens to quit out on you (this happened to me) the empty spots will more than likely not be filled anytime soon so you’ll have to tough it out or quit also. They added in 27 hidden Transformers symbols in the campaign for you to find and there are achievements tied to getting high scores with each main character in the chapters.

There really isn’t a soundtrack to this game and it usually consists of music playing during the cut scenes and menus. The game seemed to lack momentum and suspense buildup because it lacked a soundtrack. The commentary and banter between the characters and when you defeat enemies is pretty comical. The vehicle audio doesn’t sound right but I’m not sure how much they relied on it being correct for that vehicle and what it’s doing. Drifting especially sounds off, it shouldn’t sound like rubber on pavement when you’re actually on dirt. They did however add in background audio fitting for the level, such as monkeys and birds.

This game could have had the same potential that War for Cybertron had if it didn’t have a set storyline and High Moon were allowed a little bit more creative leeway. If they could’ve made it a longer campaign and supported its release it may have gotten over the “movie game” curse. It was definitely better than the second movie game but I was nowhere near as in awe as I was with War for Cybertron. The game only makes you feel like a giant powerful robot if you play it on Easy. Boss fights are rare and not to mention tedious, I didn’t really feel triumphant after I defeated them. I like being able to run over to my fiancé and more than a little enthusiastically state that I beat a boss I had been working so hard on, or a game I had been working so hard to beat.

A copy of Transformers: Dark of the Moon was given to TMG for the purpose of evaluation and review.

SHARE THIS POST

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Myspace
  • Google Buzz
  • Reddit
  • Stumnleupon
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • Technorati
Author: Guest Editorial View all posts by

Leave A Response