Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan was developed by Platinum Games who have been involved with a number of great games like Bayonetta, Vanquish (a must play if you haven’t) and Madworld.
Now, I remember being a young kid and arguing with my mates – you see, I was definitely a Transformers fan, but *they* all liked the Turtles. Don’t get me wrong – I did like TMNT, just not as much as I liked Transformers. However, to write this review, I had to be as impartial as I could. In five lines time, you will realise why I told all my friends from back then how right I was.
Also, I will not make this a long review. This game does not deserve anyone to spend that sort of time on it. It is truly terrible. I mean, I can’t think of a game I have played for a long time, which is worse.
Let’s start off with what is okay about it:
In places, the AI (artificial intelligence – how the enemies move and fight) isn’t too bad. As you play the game, you can unlock new stuff – this is quite common in games nowadays, but it felt correct and some of the clips you can unlock are pretty cool. The online co-op is a handy edition and suits the game well – sadly I had no friends I could play with… I wonder why. Lastly (yes I could only work out 5 things which were half decent) is the character design. The turtles all look sharp and defined, and some of the bosses looked outstanding. Oh, and maybe for a lot of people, this game will fill you with nostalgia, whereas for me it confirmed that I was truly the brightest kid out of my crew.
Time for the bad bits: The storyline is really poo and has been told so many times. Shredder is causing trouble with the Footclan and the Turtles – with the help of April and Splinter, need to save the day. Yawn. I suggested how the characters look great – well they do – but the backgrounds are disgustingly bad. They are dark, dingy and give you become an eye-ache. Even my fiancée told me to switch off the game because she was getting sick of how it looked. Saying that, she ensured I switched off the sound after around 2 minutes. The music is shocking. I mean five minutes into the tutorial, I was fed up of the same monotonous sounds and cheesy riffs. And talking about sound reminds me of the lip-syncing – it’s like they originally made the game in Japanese. At one point I was sure Donatello was impersonating the Scatman (that’s going to go over a lot of people’s heads, until you check out this video )
Now to analyse the gameplay – it reminded me of Batman but nowhere near as good. The buttons are positioned awkwardly and the moves are incredibly hectic. I suppose this has to be one of the biggest downfalls. I honestly couldn’t tell what my character was doing at times – it was insane and not in a good way. The fighting is far too quick, the camera doesn’t know where to look and I kept on switching to another turtle accidently. When I did perform a good move it was ruined by the lack of being able to see it, or even work out what I had just seen. I knew this was going to be the case during the tutorial where I found some of the standard blocks and dodges challenging, due to the lack of any clear button differentiation.
The last thing I want to talk about is the humour. Now the humour in the films is pretty poor but, at least, I laughed sometimes. In this, I was far from laughing – I would say I was actually angry. At times, during gameplay, one of the turtles would start spinning on his shell or the other would start talking about Pizza. Yes, you would have never guessed it… Pizza.
Sorry, any Turtle fans out there, but I recommend you buy Turtles in Time on the SNES because that is a great game.
In conclusion, don’t buy it. Don’t buy it for your kids and don’t even consider it. Even an overall score of 4/10 seems too high. Enough said.
Thanks to the Youtube channels featured for the gaming footage.
- Publisher: Activision
- Players: single player, online co-op: 2-4
- HDTV options: up to 1080p
- Sound: DTS 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1
Director: Eiro Shirahama
Producers: Robert Conkey, Robert Cooper and Atsushi Kurooka
Writer: Tom Waltz (based on the characters created by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird)
Music: Vince DiCola, Naofumi Harada, Kenny Meriedeth and Masafumi Takada
Leonardo / Splinter / The Shredder: Nolan North
Raphael: Mick Wingert
Michelangelo: Robbie Daymond
Donatello: Gavin Hammon
April O’Neil: Ashly Burch
General Krang / Mega Krang: Steve Blum
Bebop / Stone Warriors: Tim Dadabo
Rocksteady / Slash / Stone Warriors: Fred Tatasciore
Karai: Tammy Nishimura
Armaggon: David Boat
Wingnut / Stone Warriors: Jim Meskimen
I have been a video game player since 1993 and a music fan since I can remember. I studied Film and Journalism at university and ended up becoming a Primary School teacher. Video games changed my life and sent me on the right track and have stayed with me ever since.