Transformers: Devastation is pretty much exactly what I imagined as I played with my Transformers toys as a kid. All the action, all the carnage and way easier transformations with a press of a button.
It might be fueled on nostalgia instead of Energon, but PlatinumGames’ latest is 80s soaked greatness in a 2015 presentation.
Transformers: Devastation is a perfect for anyone old enough to remember watching the Transformers every weekday. Before all our good Generation 1 fun ended with Transformers: The Movie.
Devastation is all about the mayhem with full-on destruction and Decepticon-murdering right from the jump. Optimus Prime leads a squad of Autobots to stop the Decepticons from terraforming Earth. And over the course of seven stages with multiple chapters, Prime, Bumblebee, Sideswipe, Grimlock and Wheeljack take the fight to the Decepticons.
Fighting is easy enough to grasp with three main attack options, a jump button, super attack and Focus mode that slows the action down around your Autobot. It is incredibly satisfying unleashing a series of combos and obliterating another Decepticon. Stay on track with your combo and you can finish off your foes with a special transforming move.
To break up the bash and smash main gameplay, Devastation includes some racing elements, search and retrieve and endurance events. They’re a brief distraction from the standard gameplay, but I appreciated the variety even if the action gets somewhat repetitive.
The games looks great thanks to dynamic cell-shading style graphics that offers a strong throwback to the beloved cartoon. At times the shading on some characters, like Megatron, is a little overdone.
Easily one of the highlights of the game is hearing the original cartoon voice actors voicing the game characters. Peter Cullen (Optimus Prime), Frank Welker (Megatron and Soundwave), Dan Gilvezan (Bumblebee), Michael Bell (Sideswipe and Scrapper) and Gregg Berger (Grimlock and Long Haul). That gives Devastation a deeper level of authenticity than the graphics alone could provide.
The camera proves more challenging than any Decepticon though as it constantly puts you in disadvantageous positions during fight sequences. I wish the upgrade system was more intuitive either with a less obvious system of weapon enhancement.
My biggest ‘gripe’ though was the limited Autobots roster. That’s a direct result to how well PlatinumGames handled the included roster to make each Autobot play more than skin swaps. I greedily just wanted to see how they’d tackle Autobots like Jazz, Ironhide, Hound, Brawn, etc.
Hopefully a sequel would expand the roster. Fortunately, the Decepticons have much better representation with all the classic G1 characters appearing in various boss battles.
Have an afternoon or long evening to spare and you’d likely beat Devastation in one setting. What it lacks in length it makes up for with classic, Transformers fun. You can get the game now for under $20 and is definitely worth the investment.
Rating: 8.5 out of 10
Image Credit: PlatinumGames