Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan | My Review
"The Craziest Ones Are Usually The Most Dangerous." - Leo
"I'll Say." - Raph
"W-what are you lookin' at me for?!" - Mikey
One of the best things about the game, aside from the T-rating, is that the game isn't really connected to anything. All of the characters are already established. Beebop, Rocksteady, Karai, etc. And even though Nickelodeon is credited in the game, since they own the License, it has little to nothing to do with the current series and the movies. My fear was that I was going to have to deal with Megan Fox as April.
It has different character designs. So, no yellow channel 6 jumpsuit for April. Uhg, I miss that design.
The game is made by PlatinumGames. Star Fox Zero, Bayonetta, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, Vanquish, Transformers: Devastation, so of course I had to play Mutants in Manhattan. Nolan North as Leo was a huge plus to me, as I'm a huge fan of his.
Heroes in a Half-Shell
"Enough of your meddling, Turtles!" - Wingnut
And of course, the four main playable characters are Leonardo, Raphael, Donatello and Michelangelo.For those that are like me and don't feel like dealing with Co-op or Online play, then the AI can take control of your brothers. What I like, is the fact that you can give them orders. Mainly 'Protect me', 'Follow Me', 'Wait' and 'Go All Out'. Trust me, you don't know how or when they will come in handy until you find yourself actually yelling, "Dammit Mikey, quit attacking! This is a stealth mission!" Then some mission when Raph walks into the sight of a sentry, and reinforcements appear, etc, etc, and don't get me started on that freakin' helicopter that keeps appearing and shooting me.
As you play, you will find that switching between the turtles on the fly are essentially a must. There is a 'Continue' screen after all. But don't fret, if all but one falls, then the remaining turtles can rest up and heal... by pigging out on pizza. But if all fell to their enemies, then that's where the mission will restart from where you died. Before you choose a level, you can choose a turtle loadout. Which includes some nice Ninjutsu, some can heal, and some can destroy. Some even have Combo moves to use with one of the other turtles. Best part is that the Ninjutsu can be leveled up, while some can be bought by collection gems scattered throughout the level.
Spoiler Alert! Maybe. Not sure. Does it count?
Anyway, there are 9 Stages to battle throughout, each has a Boss battle at the end. Start with Beebop and end with Shredder. My favorite boss was Karai. Not a fan of her new voice actress, or design, but hey, it's Karai! But still, the game feels like an arcade game with some good graphics. In each stage, you are given several missions by April. Some include finding enemies by using the T-Glass, which feels like using Batman's Detective Vision in Arkham. Sometimes you have to disarm bombs, collect them, get to point A to B, etc.
I do enjoy the Cel Shaded look of it. Which oddly fits the turtles. Or perhaps the old turtle games based on the 2003 series popped into my head, giving me Nostalgia. ...I really need to watch that series again. While the cinemas look great, I just wish they were longer. It still has that arcade feel. You have a cinema before the level starts, and before and after the boss is defeated, then repeat.
And finally, once again similar to the Arkham games, stealth 'kills'. Do the turtles kill? Even if the enemies are aliens bent on world destruction? Well, that would explain the T rating. The stealth kills are initiated when a character has a question mark over their head, which means he doesn't sense a mutant turtle with a blade in its hand. And cue the screen bleeding black and white when the deed is done. Seriously, really wish they had a better animation for the stealth sequences. Almost made me want to avoid that hassle. Almost. The stealth kills are pretty much one hit kills, and saves me the trouble of using up my Ninjutsu on him.
"One Way, or Another."
"Be careful of the lightning. You're not wearing in metal are y-- oh, wait." - April (Wingnut level)
The quote has nothing to do with each other, but I like it. It's on the Wingnut level in which you dodge lightning, and fight small Krang UFO's.
Story: As a writer, I do enjoy the story. And, needed some motivation for my future TMNT story that I shall work on soon. The story to the game starts with the gang following a group of Foot soldiers, and soon, they discover that Krang and Shredder have join forces and are planning to create an inter-dimension portal.
Levels: The levels aren't that repetitive as I feared. They each have a different design. Some simple, some insane. The General Krang level has a Mass Effect style level.
Controls: The game is essentially a Beat 'Em Up game. But the control do take some time to get used to. Press select to get a list of orders to issue to your teammates. R2 dodges, blocks and evades. L2 pulls up the Ninjutsu list. Light hit (Square), Strong hit (Triangle), Revive/Action (Circle) and Jump (X). So far, the controls are responsive, and works well. One you get used to the controls, the timing, AND upgrading your ninjutsu, then the Boss battles will be less frustrating.
Music: The score isn't really memorable or anything.
Gameplay: As I mentioned before, there are a variety of stuff in it. I still haven't found the secret bosses and the rest of the cinematics. Currently finishing the game now, then I'll replay it. The turtles can also glide. Which is helpful to reach those pesky buildings further away, with a helicopter circling above just waiting for you to get close.
The graphics are good, which I mentioned before, but sometimes, when you are required to search for enemies, you will teleport right to them. Sometimes they would be on the aforementioned building. But I am a TMNT fan, haven't watched the new movies or new series yet. But the game brings back that nostalgic feel.
I'd probably give it an 8 out of 10. The game probably isn't for everyone, especially those that think it's an open world adventure game. It isn't. But, c'mon, Beebop with a chainsaw that's literally on fire! Gonna give it a few more plays before I return it to Gamefly. The game still has plenty of collectibles. Not perfect, but worth playing if you love TMNT. Haven't tried the Online modes yet.
Also, I loved the interactive scene during the credits, where you play as a turtle and fight hundreds of enemies. Not much I hated about it, aside from the 'Arcade Feel'.
Update: After beating the game, I took notice that the Krang are in areas where they weren't even suppose to be, since they appeared later in the game. Now the very first stage has different missions and enemies. Feels like New Game Plus with different bosses.