Sunday, July 26, 2009

TMNT (Wii, 360, PS2, PSP, GCN, PC) Review

Capping off this weekend of TMNT action in anticipation of TMNT: Re-Shelled, here's a classic review of the TMNT the movie the game the review. Hey, there's our old friend the recap section!

It's a shell of a time for a rental.

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With the movie already in theaters it was only a majesty for their to be a complimentary game for it. TMNT brings the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles back into the spotlight with both the game and to a lesser extent, the game. Having not watched the motion picture, I cannot really tell you what the hell the story was about as the game really didn't have anything cohesive. Something about some rich guy who has apparently allied himself with the Foot Clan. It's a frivolity anyway. What is coherent of the story is told through comic book panels and the occasional CG cutscene most likely from the movie itself.

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I love being a turtle.

Gameplay is broken into two camps-- platforming and fighting. The platforming has your turtle hop, run across and up walls, trapeze flag poles, and various other acrobatic feats. These are all akin to Prince of Persia's aerial actions. No surprise there as the developer of TMNT is the same studio that did PoP. Leo or whichever turtle will leap across rooftops, climb scaffolding, shuffling along ledges, and navigating around dangers such as deadly smoke, fire, falling platforms, and other environmental hazards. The fighting portion is divided up within these platforming stages, so you will never be platforming and fighting at the same time. This portion of the game has you facing off against the Foot, street thugs, soldiers, and other henchmen. Most of this action is simple button-mashing. Sure each turtle has a different ability-- Leo can phase through certain objects, Raph can scale some walls with his sais, Don can pole vault over gaps with his bo, and Mike can hover by twirling his nunchuks around like a helicopter to cross gaps-- but there's really no strategy in normal fights.

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Mike can use his nunchuks to act as
a miniature helicopter to cross chasms.

One important thing to note is that this game is incredibly forgiving. There are generous amounts of continue points throughout the game's long levels, so when you die you just restart at one of the points with one of your infinite lives. In later levels you'll have all four turtles meaning a lot of health which regenerates over time. Even when you lose all your health you can jam on the A button to have your turtle rise to their feet. TMNT is short as well. I received all of the achievements in less than six hours. Why some of the achievements didn't include getting all A ranks in levels, beating all of the unlockable challenge maps, or buying everything in the "shop" is beyond me. It would have added longevity to an admittedly short game.

Graphically TMNT is beautiful on the 360. I really dug the art style on most levels save for the two monochrome levels that are annoying-- one of which has a shameless Rayman Raving Rabbids plug. Sound-wise the dialogue is mostly humorous and has all the turtle banter you'd expect. During the action though dialogue is repeated. Raph, I get it already. Johnny is here. Enough!

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Leonardo would like to see the famous
painter he's named after try that.

Ultimately TMNT has a lot going for it. The platforming is fluid and fun, I imagine it follows the movie well, and it looks gorgeous. Unfortunately all the fun and beauty lasted for me but six hours. Unacceptable for a sixty dollar game which honestly played great except for the button-mashing fighting parts. TMNT is a rental at the very least and a bargain-bin buy at most. Sorry, turtles, but the only green that matters besides you guys is money, and frankly, you aren't worth anyone's.

Story: Something about Turtles and a rich guy. I dunno. Watch the movie.

Graphics: Pretty, cartoony, and delightful to see. Not bad at all.

Sound: Mostly well-done. The music is orchestrated and epic.

Gameplay: Platforming is fun and very PoP-ish, but fighting is pretty boring and only fun for button-mashers.

Replay Value: Maybe if you wish to play through the game more than once, but there really is little incentive.

[SuperPhillip Says: 5.25/10]
- A rental for any turtle fan.

1 comment:

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