Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark
Less than Meets the Eye
I've never been too into shooting games. I tried getting into Halo, with no success, and never had any interest in games like Call of Duty and Battlefield. Borderlands, which seems like it has a good sense of humor, appealing graphics, etc., never even grabbed my attention. However, I highly enjoyed Transformers War for Cybertron, and only felt as though they improved upon the formula in Transformers Fall of Cybertron. Those are actually two of my favorite games for the Xbox 360. I mention all of this because Rise of the Dark Spark is the latest entry in a series that rekindled my love for Transformers. Unfortunately, this is new entry fails in so many aspects, I knew I hated it before I ever actually started the campaign. However, the opening menu is no place to judge a game, so let's avoid that for the moment.My complaints don't just stem from the fact that they actually changed the continuity of the game, but the game was just inferior in its visuals, sound, and even its gameplay.// Alright, the first of my complaints is minor, but I still feel like mentioning it. Originally, the Transformers Cybertron games were apparently in the same continuity as the Transformers Prime cartoon. Now, these games have actually been tied in to the Michael Bay Transformers movies. It is also worth mentioning that this game takes place both after the newest movie and also between War for Cybertron and Fall of Cybertron, transitioning between the two times when the story calls for it. While there were a couple of unaccounted plot details between these games and the cartoon, there are even more now that they made this change. But don't worry, there are even plot inconsistencies in events that have nothing to do with the movies, such as Autobots that are seen in Fall of Cybertron encountering Insecticons when they were apparently unheard of before Fall of Cybertron. While I agree that the story is not necessarily what makes a game like this, it is annoying to immediately notice plot inconsistencies. Also, there are just stupid moments that don't make any sense, such as the the new bad guy, Lockedown, not firing on the Autobots from his ship, which is looking straight at them, even though they literally killed about 100 of his men simply because they "are not his targets". Good to know I can punch a mercenary in the face as much as I want as long as I'm not the one he's trying to kill. I'll admit, I didn't actually finish this game, but really, I didn't feel like looking at the game much longer to see if they fixed anything.// I immediately noticed how much influence the movie had on this game visually. In fact, the present day Earth segments are meant to look like the movies. That means generic robot designs. Optimus doesn't even look like Optimus any more. Unlike the first two games, I can't really see how my character goes from robot to care with cool, smooth animations. The enemies in the first segments just look like naked robots. And what does our new villain look like? Well... he also looks like a naked robot. I had no idea he was any powerful leader when I first saw him. Speaking of which, enemies are smaller for some reason. I guess they're discount minions. Don't worry, the Cybertron levels will look like the other games, right? Not really. The characters definitely resemble themselves from the first two games, but their colors are more faded than in Fall of Cybertron. Also, the enemies just fade into the environment in these Cybertron segments. I remember not seeing that there were still at least 3 enemies in a relatively small room until they started shooting at me. Heck, I didn't notice a guy who was actually running towards me. These Cybertron segments do look better than the Earth segments, but are nowhere near the quality of Fall of Cybertron. The less than stellar visuals match the less than stellar sound. How fashion forward!// I won't go on too long about the sound in this game, mostly because there isn't much to say. In terms of voice acting, I think the game is fine except for Shockwave. He only really sounds like an evil calculating scientist when he's making fun of Starscream for being stupid. My biggest complaint about the sounds in this game is the fact that whenever characters are talking, everything else becomes muffled as if it we were battling in space or underwater. This is actually one of the things that bugs me the most in this game. Can't I at least get some sound while I play this game?//Now for the gameplay. The controls are the same as Transformers Fall of Cybrtron, which is good. I personally prefer the Striker control scheme. I also really enjoy the dash button. It's perfect maneuverability while providing more control than driving at full speed in vehicle mode. Actually, I found that the acceleration button while in vehicle mode did not respond as quickly as in the previous installments, especially right after transforming from robot mode. The terminals return from the last game, but they are vastly inferior then when we last saw them. You don't get new guns or upgrades by purchasing them with energon chips at the terminals using anymore. You earn them by completing objectives like "kill 100 enemies" or blow up "4 gas tankers" and then you are given a gearbox. You then open up each gearbox individually and reap your rewards. This is a tedious process that doesn't feel nearly as satisfying as purchasing them yourself because each gearbox gives you too many rewards and there are no new guns or upgrades from the last game. I did notice that my character is a lot more fragile in this game too. One thing that really annoys me is that the areas where I'm not allowed to turn into vehicle mode don't really make sense, such as if I'm playing as a flyer and I'm about to fall into acid, of course I'm going to try and transform into a jet and fly out of there! But nope, I died. I've been trying to point out the positives in the way this game plays so far, but one thing I can't ignore is the glitches. I had just started playing the game and I ran into them. I have 3 personal favorites. The 1st one is killing a soldier and just having him stand there for a couple of seconds before just exploding to pieces. The second one is my controller running out of batteries, so the game pauses for me, but I was still being shot at in the campaign's pause screen and died. My favorite was a giant insecticon just standing there. I had fun punching him in the face, running into his mouth, and jumping on top of him to see if I could ride him. He stood there and took it for a while. He eventually fixed himself, but by that point it only took one more punch to the face to kill him. That was actually the most fun I had in this game.// I know I compared this game to War for Cybertron and Fall of Cybertron a lot, and I feel as though I'm justified in that. When 2 games in a series are as successful as the Cybertron games, of course the third game will be judged in the same regard. That's why Luigi's Mansion was seen negatively by the public at first. Every other Mario game was so much fun and followed a similar formula, and this one was just so different. However, Transformers Rise of the Dark Spark is nowhere near as fun as Luigi's Mansion. Even as a stand-alone game, I would still be underwhelmed by this game's storytelling, visuals, sound, and gameplay. The success of the other games just makes this game suck even more. But I got a poster and free movie tickets for preordering Rise of the Dark Spark, so... yay for me!
Movie franchise games are rarely successful and previous Transformer movie games are no exception. On the other hand the Fall of Cybertron and War for Cybertron games were very good. This game combines both which could be a great idea.
I'm a HUGE Transformers fan; since the original G1 cartoon. I thoroughly enjoyed Transformers WFC & FOC - my favorite being FOC. The campaign mode was great. I find myself going back to it just to play through the story that it tells. But what really keeps me going back to it is the online multiplayer PVP action. It can be hot & heavy and very enjoyable. So thinking that ROTDS would follow suit I waited until I bought an Xbox One (yesterday) to buy the latest installment of Transformers. I feel like this game was rushed and the 2 franchises (Cybertron series & live-action series) were just smashed together seemingly for no reason at all. It's like Hasbro needed a game ready to launch in time for the live action movie but neither "Cybertron" or the live action games were complete so they decided to lump them both together just to have a game on hand for consumers to buy when the movie dropped. The campaign mode gets very boring and tedious after a couple of chapters and I was appalled to find out that there is no multiplayer PVP mode!!! No Headhunter. No Capture The Flag. No Deathmatch...NOTHING!!! Only Escalation mode which I was never a fan of. I'm not finished beating the game but as soon as I do I see myself trading it in to get another game. I'm glad I kept my 360 and FOC game.
Took a good thing and ruined it
I wanted to like this game, but I can't. If you are thinking of purchasing this because you played War of Cybertron or Fall of Cybertron, you too will be disappointed. The campaign feels thrown together compared to the previous games. There are loading pauses in random places during campaign missions. The lockbox unlock system is a complete joke/waste of time. Escalation mode, which is your ONLY form of multiplayer is even worse. There is no challenge and it feels like a complete waste of time to play. Edge of Reality was basically handed a game and all they needed to do was tweak the graphics for next gen systems and add a couple new features and they would have put out a great game. Instead they took a great game franchise and destroyed it. Don't waste your $ on this game!!!
Graphics Look Like Junk.
This is not next gen... this looks like SEGA GENESIS For Crying Out Loud ! I Get More And More Disappointed with the graphics every time I watch.
I love Transformers and was a big fan of War for Cybertron and Fall of Cybertron, so I hope the trend keeps and this one is awesome too. That said transformers games had have major failures so it is a judgment call for those who are interested. However I have already pre-ordered and paid for this because I am a fan and I want the bonus.
Not as good as Fall of Cybertron
My son is 10 and loves Transformers, so this game was a must for him. It has lots of Transformers. The gameplay is linear, the difficulty is okay, load times are a little long, backgrounds are PS2 quality. Transformers models are PS3/360 quality, okay but not great. The game is fun enough for a Transformers fan, if you are looking for a great game steer clear, stay away. The Xbox One version is by far the worst looking game I have on the console. If you missed the day one movie tickets and bonuses there is no way I would spend $60 on this game. That said, my 10 year old loves the game and Transformers and your kids will likely love it too.
A bit of a disappointment
Ok, first off I only bought this game as I was running out of new things to play waiting on Destiny to come out. So I wasn't expecting an A+ game. However the graphics are not what I expect for a next-gen game. I don't really care for the game play. But worst of all I've ran into too many bugs/glitches where the game just gets stuck and I have to start a chapter over to be able to get past certain points.
This game is very fun but the campaign has a horrible story line. The characters are fun to play but the graphics on them sometimes fade out then come back to normal. And Grimlock is the worst character to play in the campaign. He looks so weird and when he transforms, it just doesn't look right. But on Escalation all the dinobots are from Cybertron. Anyway you could get it just for the Escalation, cause it's the most funnest part of the game.
I've been burned before
I have no faith in Transformer games anymore. The ones I've bought have been terrible and led to friends making fun of me for buying licensed games. This is a vote of no confidence, if this is the first truly awesome Transformer game you have my apologies but there shouldn't have been so many bad ones.