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PS3 Game Review

Termination Salvation


Format: PS3
Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
RRP: £39.99
5 051892 005364
Age Restrictions: 16+
Available 01 June 2009

Based on the new Terminator: Salvation film the game takes you back two years before the film commences, placing you in the role of John Conner, battling his way through a devastated Los Angeles, with only your wits, friends and a handy supply of weapons to hold back the rising tide of Skynet...

Terminator: Salvation - The Video Game could and should have been a real event game, it had it all, a deep back story, a rich mythology and some of the coolest villains to destroy. It could have told the story of how Connor started to gather together groups of survivors, it could but it didn’t. Instead the makers have inexplicably gone for a quick Gears of War game, which is a little less than the “cinematic gaming experience” which was promised by John Quinn, executive vice president at Warner Brother. I presume that Christian Bale felt the same way as he refused to have either his voice or likeness used in the game.

This third person shooter game is sadly nothing special. In place of an in-depth story the game follows the format of cut scene, a bit of Terminator killing, then another cut scene and so on until the end of the game. For the majority of the game you’ll find yourself hiding behind debris shooting at the enemy. When taken by itself, this part of the game works well. Dodging from cover to cover, trying to get near or behind the target so that you have a chance at destroying the various Terminators, a task which is easier than it should be. This is unfortunately not helped by your squad, who you have no control of and whose AI insists on behaving in a fairly stupid manner. The bottom line is that you feel you're pretty much alone in most battles.

I found that the controls were not intuitive and their layout made controlling your fake Connor difficult and at times unnecessarily cumbersome, especially in the middle of a fire fight. This partially may be explained by the bane of every reviewer, a game disc with no instructions, but after playing the game through - which took me less than half a day - my gut feeling is that it is just badly laid out. The game has other annoying limitations. When you first enter a new arena, there's loads of cover and debris, but you quickly realise that not much of the environment is interactive, even to the point of jumping over obstructions, the game knows where it wants you to stand and restricts your movements.

Graphically the game is on par with contemporary games, but there is little here to raise it above the competition. Of course you get to destroy the various iterations of Terminators and there is some fun in this, but enough to buy a whole game? Probably not. The waves of flying wasps soon become tiresome, the spider terminators are easy to kill if you get behind them and there are not enough hunter-killers or Arnie Terminators to keep your level of interest up.

The game does have an option for a two player game. The screen splits to allow you both to play at the same time, but the inclusion of another human being makes the game even easier, even with the unimpressive range of weapons at your disposal.

Good points? Well the menu with the T-600 head is pretty unnerving, but it’s not saying much for the game when the best part of it is the menu. It’s difficult to see this game as anything other than another weak cash-in with its almost nonexistent story, the poor AI, the underwhelming choice of weapons and non-interactive environments.


Charles Packer

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