A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Classic good-vs.-evil plot, but game is centered on combat.
Positive Role Models
Unless you're already familiar with the characters, their back stories from other Transformers fiction, very little known about the protagonists you play as. You do play on the side of the good guys who want to stand up to, defeat evil.
Ease of Play
Simple controls; easy to learn.
Violence & Scariness
Players slash, stomp, shoot enemy robots. Weapons include swords and blades, laser blasters, stationary turrets, vehicles. Finishing moves are dramatic, including close-up views, slow-motion cameras, but no blood, gore.
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Products & Purchases
Based on popular Transformers franchise, which includes movies, TV shows, comics, action figures, apparel, video games. Supports downloadable content (DLC) for real money purchased inside the game.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Transformers: Devastation is a cartoon brawler that pits Transformer robots against one another in a fight to the finish. Players choose which Autobot they want to play as, and, while roaming around a city to take on missions, you'll face off against Decepticon enemies. Players will use swords, blades, futuristic guns, and vehicles to smash, slash, and fire at enemy robots. There's no blood or gore but plenty of violence. This game also is the latest title in a popular franchise, covering merchandise, cartoons, books, and more, so players may be tempted to investigate these items after playing. They also may find themselves interested in purchasing downloadable content for the game.
Is It Any Good?
Fans of the franchise -- especially the classic TV series and Hasbro's classic Generations action figures -- will no doubt fall for the charm in Activision's anime-inspired brawler. The controls are tight and responsive, the high-definition "cel-shaded" graphics make it look as if you're playing an interactive Saturday morning TV show, and the voice talent is great, which adds to the high production values. (Transformers voice actors have returned and include Dan Gilvezan as Bumblebee, Peter Cullen as Optimus Prime, Frank Welker as MegaTron, and others.)
More importantly, the third-person fighting is surprising deep, with many moves, countermoves, combos, and special attacks to execute at the right time. Each of the noble Autobots has specific skills you'll want to unleash, and the environment must be taken into consideration on when, how, and where to do this and which weapon to use to defeat enemies and boss fighters (yes, those epic boss battles are gratifying and memorable). But on the downside, Transformers: Devastation is a relatively short game at about six hours, and many of the gameplay objectives are the same (race here, fight that). Though there hasn't been a lot of buzz about this game -- especially compared to many other blockbusters coming out this season -- Transformers: Devastation is surprisingly fun and somewhat deep, and it has high-quality visuals and sound to satiate even the most finicky fans of the franchise.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.