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Game review 16 November 2019, 16:10

author: Michael Pajda

Terminator: Resistance Review – It's Not Perfect, but It's Definitely Not a Crap

The new Terminator is surprisingly satisfactory. And we're not talking about the average film by Tim Miller, but about a fresh game from Krakow's Teyon – a developer who became notorious in the gaming industry with the infamous Rambo: The Video Game.

Phased plasma rifle in the 40-watt range

Teyon's new production – aside from a solid storyline – deserves praise for a number of improved gameplay elements that make for a crisp and well-balanced gameplay. Gunplay is one of the most important mechanics. Performing story missions yields new guns and equipment, and we soon switch from conventional weapons to plasma rifles.

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The new guns (maybe save for the rather inaccurate sniper rifles) Terminator: Resistance turn out very good – shooting feels nice and the power is really tangible. At first, even as much as a couple clips are required to destroy opponents. Then, just several bullets.

But things get really interesting during bigger battles, focused on storming enemy positions – then, true mayhem unfolds, and the fierce fight for survival of mankind is right there in front of you – and that's the essence of Terminator. This is also one of the highlights of the game – shooting the humanoid robots and watching the human shells fall apart, revealing their artificial skeletons.

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The improvements of weapons also works perfectly – it's enough to install chips dropped and collected from the defeated androids. Some increase the rate of fire, others – the capacity of the clips, and others still – the damage. However, you can't install the mods without giving it a though – each chip has two appendices that have to be combined the right way to make a full circuit. It may sound weird on paper, but it works like a charm – this is one of the best weapon modding mechanics in video games right here!

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In addition, we can use all sorts of gadgets in combat, and even craft our own pieces of equipment, including first-aid kits, lock picks, and explosives. However, crafting requires not only raw materials, which we stumble upon at almost every step, but also the appropriate level of ability of the protagonist. By advancing to new levels, we can expand things like endurance, stealth, or picking locks. On top of that, we have hacking skills (via a minigame similar to Frogger) and the lock-picking mechanics (almost straight from Skyrim). And although the plurality of options can be overwhelming at first, they all become very intuitive in no time.

The developers also deserve praise for solid level design and the depiction of a city in rubble. There were some locations that felt underwhelming, but the wrecked Pasadena downtown is a masterpiece. By the way, the creators also did a great job utilizing the rubble in creating real mazes that I was only able to navigate with map markers. The entire game gave up corridor structure of levels for a quasi-open world divided into smaller bits – so that you're able to reach the same spot via different routes.

There was a nuclear war

Not everything in the game is equally compelling, unfortunately, and some of the shortcomings are flagrant. A big drawback are the framerate dips – occasional, but still. I was playing on a computer able to cope with games much more demanding that Terminator: Resistance. The game wasn’t stuttering terribly, but the it would lose fluency in pretty random moments – it could be a big battle with a dozen terminators, or simply turning the flashlight on.

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The animations are also not making anyone at the studio proud – they work well for the terminators, but in case of humans, we get some sub-Andromeda-level stuff. It is hard, but possible, to swallow – unlike the excessive recycling of distinctive assets in various parts of game, which includes entire rooms. Going through the very same room in three different moments of the game makes for some unpleasant deja vu.

Then, there are the random dialogs you can hear in the game. The conversations of the main characters are ok, although can be pretty dry sometimes; the conversations of the background characters, though, are a different pair of shoes.

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Battles with terminators are great.

I remember looking forward to overhearing random conversations of NPCs in Kingdom Come: Deliverance – in Terminator: Resistance, the dialogs are neither funny, nor engaging, and they fail to introduce anything interesting. To make things a bit worse, the NPCs that speak are predetermined; the rest of background characters only appear to be having conversations – the animations and gestures of talking are there, but they don't say a word, and that looks grotesque.

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First-person sex scenes? Why would anyone want Cyberpunk 2077 if there is a Terminator: Resistance... ;)

I'll be back

Teyon redeemed themselves after the pathetic Rambo: The Video Game. Their Terminator: Resistance is not just decent – it's the best game set in the Skynet-ruled universe to date. The game has all chances to capture not only fans of the franchise, but simply fans of shooters in general. So my best advice is – give this game the benefit of the doubt. And if you're keen on the movie original, then don't think twice – this is a game you should love. Dismembering the terminators is surprisingly satisfying, and the game itself is one of the biggest surprises of 2019!


It took me 17 hours to beat Terminator: Resistance – during that time I completed all the side missions and main plot tasks, as well as I checked two optional Jacob Rivers story endings.


We received a copy of the game for this review free of charge from the developers. Thanks!

Michael Pajda | Gamepressure.com

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