The year is 2027. The machines of Skynet have risen, reaping a bloody harvest of human flesh across the globe. You are a soldier of Tech Com, a ragged team of human resistance fighters inten... Read allThe year is 2027. The machines of Skynet have risen, reaping a bloody harvest of human flesh across the globe. You are a soldier of Tech Com, a ragged team of human resistance fighters intent upon stopping the overwhelming onslaught of cybernetic assassins in post-apocalyptic Los... Read allThe year is 2027. The machines of Skynet have risen, reaping a bloody harvest of human flesh across the globe. You are a soldier of Tech Com, a ragged team of human resistance fighters intent upon stopping the overwhelming onslaught of cybernetic assassins in post-apocalyptic Los Angeles. Your ultimate goal is to reach a time travel device in time to send Kyle Reese b... Read all
When you pop it in your PS 2, things seem promising. The presentation is nothing short of amazing; everything has that distinctive dark Terminator "feel," more reminiscent of the first movie than the second. The classic Brad Fiedel music is there. The epic future battles lit up with blue plasma rifle fire are there. The terminators themselves are there. It's too bad that once you get past the amazing intro cutscene, you soon find the gameplay ISN'T there.
At its heart this is a mindless action game, a shooter/beat-em-up where you run around either blasting Skynet's metal monsters or beating the crap out of them with a "plasma baton." To sort of give the impression that there is some skill involved, you have to complete certain tasks as you progress, like escorting someone to a checkpoint, using a turret gun to defend a base or planting explosives.
While that doesn't sound very innovative, it wouldn't be so bad except for one critical flaw; the camera and controls. I can say sincerely, with no exaggeration, that this game has the worst interface I've ever seen in a video game. The control is directional, meaning that whichever direction you push the analog stick in, the character moves in that direction. Problem is, the camera is always - and I mean ALWAYS - changing position, and every time it does the directional control changes with it. It's hard to explain; play it and you'll find out what I'm talking about within about five minutes. The result is you never quite know where you are or what direction you're going in, and you end up fighting the controls more than the enemies coming at you.
Normally camera problems aren't enough to completely ruin a game, but what amazes me is that in Terminator: Dawn of Fate, the terrible camera ruins the entire experience. What we have here is the result of a creative decision in the design process that went for "style" over "practicality." So what if the constantly changing camera makes the game seem like a movie? It isn't a movie, it's a game, and it needs a decent, stable camera that follows the character.
It's hard for me to hate it being the die-hard fan I am, but this thing just isn't worth more than a rental. There are a ton of extra features and neat little easter eggs which I'm sure would be a fan's delight ... problem is, you have to play through the game to unlock them. I can only hope cheat codes will appear to force open the extra features, because they're the only reasons you'd ever bother with this game.
- Oct 2, 2002