As any gamer knows, movie games are bad. Generally speaking, movie games tend to be a piece of crap. And it’s not always because the developers didn’t put in an effort. Sometimes it’s lack of funding, or a fairly miniscule time frame granted for development. But the fact is, games of this category rarely turn out to be good.
Terminator Salvation is, unfortunately, not too different in this respect. It does have some redeeming values, but is ultimately just decent. In fact, given the amount of content in the game, I would say Salvation would have been better if it had been a PSN game.
I say that because there’s really not that much variety in the game. Not counting the occasional mounted turret, there’s only 5 weapons in this game, and only 4 regular enemy types. And though the game put’s a spin on the situation and environment, you essentially do the same thing over and over again.
That is, you walk into an area with lots of cover, get ambushed, beat the machines, continue on for about 30 seconds, then do the same thing over and over again. This makes up pretty much the entire game, though it is broken up by occasional rail shooting segments.
That’s not to say the game is horrible. It is a mildly fun experience, if you enjoy 3rd person shooters. Like most current gen third person shooters (i.e. Uncharted, Gears of War, Rainbow Six Vegas), you won’t last very long in battle if you don’t learn to spend most of your time behind cover (especially since your character apparently lacks the ability to roll or crouch independently). The game has a cover system similar to Wanted and Gears of War 2, where you can run directly to another piece of cover quickly and efficiently, useful for flanking enemies. However, I do have a problem with the system. For a game that relies so heavily on cover and does not give you the ability to manually crouch, you would assume the developers made an effort to make sure you could “stick” to every wall or object that could possibly serve as cover. While this is true to an extent, I still found myself dying more than once simply because I ran to an object expecting to be able to use at as cover, but ended up simply standing there taking bullets as the game refused to recognize that as a cover spot. As a result, flanking enemies (a vital tactic, since two of the four enemy types are difficult to take head on) is occasionally more difficult than it needs to be.
The game is also pretty short, and to further cement that I think it would have been better suited as a PSN title, get this; it only has 12 trophies. Twelve. Granted, they’re ALL golds (except the Platinum), but still. Yep, you could walk away with a gold trophy just for beating the first level of the game. I got the Platinum in a single evening, beating the game a single time on Hard. So for you trophy hunters out there, here’s a gem. Hard isn’t actually that hard as long as you plan your attacks. There are some parts that are frustrating, but the game never felt impossible.
One final redeeming quality of the game is that it does have local co-op. So you can make the experience a bit easier with a buddy by your side. Besides that, however, there is no reason whatsoever to return to the game once you beat it the first time, since there are no extras to unlock, and you’re guaranteed to have gotten 95% of the trophies on your first playthrough. 5.5/10.