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TRANSFORMERS: DARK OF THE MOON Review

By , on July 11, 2011


TRANSFORMERS: DARK OF THE MOON
Download on the AppStore
3 out of 5

PROS

  • Smooth action; jump between twin-stick robot fights to racing as a vehicle with ease.
  • Simple control scheme; easy to switch between shooting and brawling.
  • Unlockable weapons; adds some variety to the game.

CONS

  • Repetitive action; sections broken in to walking with lots of enemies or driving with lots of bombs.
  • No voice acting; story told through pop-ups, easy to skip (though not much lost in the process).

VERDICT

Transformers: Dark of the Moon is exactly what you’d expect it to be - a shallow excuse to shoot bad-guys in the face with your space-robot.


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To paraphrase a movie reviewer I respect, if you’re willing to accept a film just because it’s not as terrible as the last one, then you’ve let your standards seriously slide. Sadly, what is true for the film of Transformers: Dark of the Moon also seems to carry through to the App Store game and while Electronic Arts has done a better than average job in the conversion, it fails to hold up thanks to its repetitive gameplay.

Repetition is something you’d almost expect of a dual-stick shooter, however once you’ve experienced the first few levels you’ve basically experienced it all. Whether you control Optimus Prime or Bumblebee, you have the option of either walking around in a robot-form, blasting enemies with one of two weapons (limited in their use by a rising heat gauge) or smacking them around with a melee strike. Two special weapons are also available to dispatch groups of enemies, either by an area-blasting shock wave or a large homing-missile attack.

Those familiar with most basic twin-stick shooters will recognize the move and shoot control setup, though a dodge button is also available for avoiding large attacks from boss fights and during certain sections of levels you’ll be able to make use of transforming in to a vehicle (complete with an alternative ‘stealth’ mode).

While there’s some attempt to mix up the experience over the 13 currently available levels, the game’s only real challenge comes in the form of a handful of enemy types and the occasional air-strike to force you to move around quickly. Upgrades and unlockable weapons provide the only real variety available to players, though the usual mix of weapons (shotgun, rifle, etc.) can’t be obscured by their science fiction names.

As a movie tie-in game, Transformers: Dark of the Moon remains at least somewhat faithful to its source material. The combat can be fun at first, but stretching the same fight over and over for multiple levels becomes a dull chore with no reward or reason to replay once you’re done. In this way the game understands its intended audience and if you’re after a mindless, but occasionally pretty action title, this one’s for you.

Screenshots

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