Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
Marc "DjinniMan" Allie
Activision- 360, PS3
First things first: I am a big Transformers fan from way back. I loved the first movie, but hated the game. This time around, its the opposite. The second movie is a real dog (pun intended), but the tie in game is quite satisfying, and fixes most if not all of the first game's flaws.
Revenge of the Fallen consists of a story veryloosely based on the movie. The roster of playable characters includes mostly robots from the first film, with just a few newcomers. Autobot and Decepticon campaigns are both selectable from the beginning. These campaigns consist of a series of two or three level romps through different locations ranging from Shanghai to Cairo. Objectives for each level vary, but usually consist of blowing the other guys up, and often a good portion of the environment as well.
Each Transformer feels unique, with different weapons, stats, and special abilities that have a real effect on gameplay. Optimus Prime is extremely tough in close combat, and with his invulnerability power up, he can really cause some trouble. Bumblebee, on the other hand, lacks in melee, but his paralyzing EMP pulse, good speed, and impressive ranged weapons make him the perfect hit and run robot. For most missions, you can choose whichever robot you prefer, a definite improvement.
Every time you play through a level, you earn medals based on your time. In addition, you collect Energon from fallen foes, which can be used to upgrade your own squad in various ways. This adds quite a bit of replay value to the game. Both campaigns are on the short side, but being able to try to improve your time, earn energon, and fiddle with different characters will keep you coming back,
Adding to the value is the addition of online multiplayer over Xbox Live. A handful of different skirmish types are available. The Live experience makes for some fast paced, action packed, but "lite" class based competitive multiplayer.
Revenge of the Fallen is a surprisingly good game. It is quite polished and light years beyond the original. Fans of the Transformers will definitely find lots to enjoy here. For everyone else, it's a quick, casual game that still manages to be fun. Blowing stuff up as a giant robot has never felt so good.