Thu, Aug 09, 2007 - Page 14 News List

Video Game Reviews

AGENCIES

And it should be noted that the Wii version of Transformers does afford a much better auto-lock-on-target than that found on the PS3 and 360 versions. As opposed to "push a button and hope," the Wii's targeting is guided manually using the Wii-mote. It is "semi auto-lock," but still with a sense of randomness as it picks the innocent taxi cab near the kneecap of the intended target rather than the intended target. Besides which, the Wii-mote, along with some "Wii-wag" fight and swipe gestures, is also used to manually adjust the game-camera view with edge-of-screen finessing. On its own, it is totally unwieldy and nearly useless when trying to both aim and manipulate your view of the action simultaneously. The Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions at least have the decency to allow for independent camera-view control with the right thumbstick. Too bad the game doesn't have the decency to provide one single usable camera angle to begin with.

Regardless, you'll soon realize that it's just a cookie-cutter game with great looking robotic goliaths that basically drive (or fly) around, stand up, beat up, (lather, rinse) repeat. It's the same old, maddening movie-based same-old; another action-hero game of wander and bash and "didn't we just leave this party?"

Invariably, hard-core Transformers fans are going to forgive "The Game" its flaws, because there is a huge wealth of Transformers kitsch in it too - "more than meets the eye," as it were. Unfortunately, what does meet the eye is pretty bad.

FANTASTIC 4: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER

Activision

PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox

As a game Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer might sell better by its box-art association with a blockbuster summer movie of the same name. Critics and fans might like it better as "The Thing: Button Mash and Break Stuff" because that is basically the only fun to be found; tying it in with the movie is just pretentious. Sure, you can also play as the Invisible Woman, the Human Torch and Mr. Fantastic, swapping out control of each character on the fly as they travel together, but with the four of them wandering around, fighting everything and everyone that comes along, solving rudimentary, hold-your-hand, grade-school puzzles and searching for tokens and baubles that might "upgrade" their powers, it is only The Thing that offers any sense of clobbering catharsis. And since when do super heroes need upgrades?

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