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Review – Transformers: Dark of the Moon | Level Up News - Part 2

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Review – Transformers: Dark of the Moon

 

What’s Hot: Dark of the Moon’s control scheme is pretty straightforward.  This is great for those who like to jump right into the action without having to figure everything out.  The driving mechanic and the feel for the new boost ability while driving will take a little bit of getting used to, especially when you’re given the task to drive through a level in a specific amount of time.

The auto-lock while in vehicle mode is a godsend.  Not only can you quickly dart out of the way of oncoming fire, but you’ll be able to hold that auto-lock on to the enemy of your choosing.  It’s great when you have quite a few enemies coming your way and want to focus on knocking them out one at a time.

The audio experience in the game is also well done.  Most of the voice talent that was a part of War For Cybertron seems to have returned to lend their voices for Dark of the Moon.  Add in an awesome auditory experience between character banter and explosions as you play and you’re pretty much set in the sound department.

What’s Not: Unfortunately, there isn’t much in terms of length when it comes to the main campaign in Dark of the Moon. In fact, you could probably plow through the main campaign in anywhere between four to six hours.  After you complete the campaign, there’s really no other point to replay it unless you want to get all of the achievements.

It is also a shame that the story in the campaign is pretty lackluster.  A few short cutscenes setup a level either before your start or after you finish it.  However, the plot is so thin in the game that it almost seems a bit pointless to have them in.  It’s only until you get into the later chapters that the setup for the main plot element comes into play.

War For Cybertron allowed you to pick up ammunition and different weapons as you battled through each level.  In Dark of the Moon, you’re pretty much stuck with whatever your stock is and ammunition regenerates automatically.  That’s disappointing, as I would rather have the opportunity to pick up new weapons and ammunition through the course of a level.

Wait, did you just say you’d rather scavenge for weapons and ammunition?

Yes, I did.  I did have a minor complaint with it when I played War For Cybertron. But given the choice between regenerating ammo for just two weapons or having a smorgasbord of weapons available with some ammunition scavenging, I’ll take the latter every time.

Dark of the Moon’s multiplayer offering is a bit disappointing, as well.  In fact, it’s almost an exact carbon copy of War For Cybertron’s multiplayer.  There’s only three modes of play:  Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch and Conquest.  The same perk and reward system is present here, as well.  However, it seems like a big missed opportunity to stretch out some of the multiplayer offerings to make up for the lacking single-player content.  It will keep some busy for a while, unless you had your fill of multiplayer from War For Cybertron.

Graphically, the game is on par.  The character models and effects are done pretty well.  When it comes to the scenery, things get a bit rough.  It’s a real hit or miss effect when you’re visiting some levels.  I also ran into a handful of instances of pop-in and odd textures when I was playing the campaign.

The Bottom Line: Dark of the Moon seems to be a title that is a victim of the quick movie tie-in monster.  There’s just not a lot of improvement from War For Cybertron and it doesn’t justify spending $60 for a title that has a very short campaign and a multiplayer component that not only wasn’t particularly improved, but lost a mode of play as well.  However, I have not lost faith in High Moon Studios.  I am sure that, given a better timetable and more resources, we’ll be seeing the true sequel to War For Cyberton in the near future.  Transformers fans will probably get a kick out of the prequel elements of Dark of the Moon, but it’s best suited for a good weekend rental.

Review - Transformers: Dark of the Moon, 4.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating

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