Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011) – Video Game – Review

1 1/2 Stars

Like all video games based on movie franchises, I approached Transformers: Dark of the Moon with a bit of caution. Although last year’s Transformers: War for Cybertron was surprisingly well polished, this year’s effort falls short in several categories. The title suffers from bland level design and repetitive combat. Rather than relying on smooth design to move the player through the game, Transformers: DOTM chooses to send waves of enemies while you wait in virtually fenced-in arenas. After just a few minutes of playing I knew I was in for a long night. It’s not that Transformers: DOTM is horrible, it’s just that the game did absolutely nothing to impress me on any level.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon’s gameplay is a mix of third-person shooting and combat racing. Essentially you can switch between robot form and vehicle form with the tap of a button at almost any time throughout the campaign. Unfortunately, the lack of balance between the two forms creates some severe issues with the overall gameplay. When in vehicle form your Transformer is also in Stealth Force, enabling you to take more damage and dish out more punishment. In robot form, however, you get no benefits besides maybe looking a bit ‘cooler.’ When I say no benefits, I mean NO benefits. As a robot you’re forced to reload constantly and the amount of damage you can take is pathetic when compared to your vehicle form. I would have no problem with the differences between the two forms if the game didn’t try to presently them as equals, because clearly they are not. The faster, better armored, unlimited ammunition vehicle is the superior choice for all battles, unless of course you enjoy dying or fighting handicapped.

Unlike last year’s War for Cybertron you no longer have the option to pick up new weapons for your Transformer. Instead each Transformer has its own unique weapon type. Giving each Transformer something different to bring to the table is not a bad idea, but when you combine it with all the other limiting aspects of the game it makes you question the developer’s choice. I just kept asking myself when does the real fun start? The answer was never.

Bottom Line: Transformers: Dark of the Moon is mediocre at best and boring as hell at worst. There are so many good games on the market these days, I would caution against even wasting your time renting this. If you want to play a well-designed entertaining Transformers game, then pick up Transformers: War of Cybertron. If you already have War of Cybertron then play through it again because it is superior to Dark of the Moon in every way, shape, and form.

Published by: Activision
Developed by: High Moon Studios
Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, Nintendo DS, Nintendo 3DS, iPad
Reviewed on: PlayStation 3

2 thoughts on “Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011) – Video Game – Review

  1. This game was not that good. The game should follow the movie because this game I didn’t understand. The format of the game should be like the first Transformers game, now you wanna talk about a good game. Buy the first Transformers game. If Transformers Dark of the Moon video game followed the movie, I would buy it for all the game system I have.

  2. Thank you for the great game review! You may have saved me a wasted rental. I have been a Transformers fan since I was a kid. I had always wanted a video game that really gave me the feel of controlling my favorite Autobots and Decpticons. I normally stay away from video games based on movies due to poor experiences in the past. I think I will try War for Cybertron instead. Its not a direct movie port and I have heard a lot of good things. That’s kind of the reason I have the Blockbuster Movie Pass. They offer streaming as well as DVD rentals, blu-rays and video games all for just $10 per month. However, it’s the game rental I was really after. I got tired of buying new games only to find that they are either very short or very bad. I save a ton of money this way and don’t get stuck with bad games.

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