The last Transformers game I played was the brilliant Fall of Cybertron, so I was looking forward to getting stuck into the latest ‘Formers title, Transformers Prime.
Transformers Prime is the game based on the cartoon of the same name, featuring the same characters and voices from the show. The game focuses on five Autobots as they try, yet again, to stop the evil Megatron and his gang of Decepticon ruffians.
The campaign is split into five levels – one for each Autobot, with a few animated cut-scenes thrown in for good measure. You’ll start off with Optimus Prime as the tutorial level, learning the combat mechanisms and so forth; you’ll end up with Bumblebee with Arcee, Bulkhead and Ratchet thrown into the mix along the way.
Combat is a very basic affair, you have a standard attack and a power attack, each assigned to their own button. Then you have a lock-on and range attack, should you wish to dispatch your foes from a distance. As it’s a kids game it’s very easy so you can get stuck in and mash the buttons until your heart’s content. Of course, this does mean that the game gets quite dull quite quickly.
Each level has you controlling a different Autobot and even though each Autobot has their own weapons and abilities it’s still a very repetitive button masher. Nowpro have tried to mix it up a bit with some vehicle sections but to be honest I wished they hadn’t as these are just annoying. On the Wii U you’re required to use the gyroscope inside the Gamepad to turn the vehicle and as you can imagine it’s not the most precise thing in the world. Add this to the fact that the driving levels can get quite confusing, you’ll die a fair amount in these sections – you won’t die anywhere else in the game though.
The game will take you about 90-120 minutes to finish and the only replayability is to go back and try to increase your ranking on each level but to be honest there isn’t much point. Of course, you could get stuck into the multiplayer mode but you’re unlikely to hang around for long. It’s all local and basically involves you picking a Transformer and shooting your friends, which sounds awesome but unfortunately it doesn’t really deliver.
Graphically the game isn’t the most appealing out there, it’s basically a HD version of the Wii title, which definitely fails to impress. However, it does capture the cartoon’s feel and atmosphere, which is nice, I suppose. The animations also feel a bit clunky, or robotic if you prefer, maybe they’re supposed to feel robotic since they’re robots, who knows.
Transformers Prime is enjoyable for a little while as you slice and dice your way through the evil Decepticons but it becomes stale quickly, especially considering the game will barely take you two hours to finish. Transformers games that allow you to change between robot and vehicle always deserve a thumbs up but even so it does little to help this title. If your kids are crazy about the cartoon then this will keep them entertained for a couple of hours. If you’re a Transformers nut then go play ‘Fall of Cybertron’ although you probably already have.
As far as Wii U specific features go, if you’re playing on the TV then you’ll have stats on the Gamepad screen. If you prefer you can play the whole game using the Gamepad with the press of a button, freeing the TV up for someone else.
- Review: Transformers: Fall of Cybertron
- Transformers: Fall of Cybertron demo now available to download
- Review: Transformers Dark of the Moon
- Wii U Review: Assassin’s Creed III
- Hands-On Preview: Awesomenauts