The folks over at Platinum Games must be huge fans of the 80s Transformers cartoon series because Transformers Devastation is a wonderful homage. Transformers Devastation follows the story of Optimus Prime and four fellow Autobots as they work to fight against The Decepticons and The Insecticons from cyberforming the Earth and destroying all organic matter. That's the entire plot. It's not hard to follow and fans will enjoy the ride.
You can only choose to play with the Autobots, but there are only five to choose from, each with differing stats: Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, SideSwipe, Wheeljack, and my personal favorite Grimlock. Optimus Prime is the most balanced character in terms of attack and defense; he can also use every weapon in the game. Bumblebee is the fastest but has low defense and low attack. Sideswipe is best paired with ranged weapons. Wheeljack is best with melee weapons. Grimlock is the slowest of Autobots but hits like a tank.
Devastation is your basic action hack-and-slash game but it borrows elements from previous Platinum titles. Each chapter is in a large sandbox and players navigate the sandbox looking for missions to complete until they progress to the next chapter. There's a small degree of exploration involved as items and loot chests are hidden throughout the sandbox and it is possible to miss a mission.
Transformers Devastation is also a hard game. It is extremely unforgiving even on the standard difficulty. Basic enemies that fall to the normal light/heavy attack scheme are a cake walk, but you can find that you can quickly become overwhelmed during boss battles. A lot of boss fights pit you against two to three bosses at a time. Sometimes the boss you encounter may even be ten times your size. On the bright side if you should fall in battle you will respawn at the most recent checkpoint. With large bosses, checkpoints tend to be dependent on their health.
Characters can't be customized physically but you can choose what weaponry to equip your Autobot. You can also speak to Wheeljack to enhance weapons and create Autobot enhancements. The combo system has some depth to it as well since you can mix and match light or heavy attacks to break down any enemy in your path. Your Autobot can also have guns for ranged attacks. Dealing damage to enemies fills a bar that allows you to unleash a devastating super attack. Of course it wouldn't be Transformers if you couldn't transform. With a simple push of a button you can change your giant robot into a super speedy vehicle. While in vehicle mode you can ram into enemies and morph back into robot form with a simple attack.
Transformers Devastation looks exactly like the cartoon it's attempting to imitate. It's a blast from the past and Platinum Games was even able to get the surviving voice actors to reprise their respective roles. It's all an amazing nostalgia trip. Transformers Devastation is a love song to the glory that is that old 1980's cartoon. If you're a fan of the Transformers game/cartoon/franchise then you should not hesitate to purchase this game. 4 out of 5 TOV stars.