Thursday, October 21, 2010

Ben 10 Ultimate Alien: Cosmic Destruction on DS Impression

A gamer’s look at Ben 10 Ultimate Alien: Cosmic Destruction for the Nintendo DS

Licensed games are 100% created with the goal of targeting and reaching that core fan base. Give them an interactive experience with the characters and worlds they love. Another goal of these titles is to reach non-franchise fans, those gamers interested in the genre from fighting games to action games. Dragon Ball Z introduced fighting fans to a great anime gaming experience while the recent Batman: Arkham Asylum takes the Dark Knight into the realm of Game of the Year, but there are the others. Ben 10 Ultimate Alien: Cosmic Destruction for the Nintendo DS falls into the first category as an action game. Fans will dig many of the features and story but for those unfamiliar with young master Tenison and his past, well what is there to love? Let’s take a look.

Gameplay – Ben has the new Ultimatrix with 15 new alien forms and plenty of bad guys to test them out on. Run right, left, jump/fly up and down and use a variety of powers to move through levels and beat said bad guys. This is old school gaming that utilizes the DS touch screen to change and activate powers/aliens. The story centers around moving around the globe to collect Galvan artifacts that (wait for it) will help save the world. It’s like playing an episode of Ben 10 Ultimate Alien.

Graphics – Images pulled from the cartoon look sharp but the 3D on 2D in-game characters and bad guys do resemble their on screen counterparts but lack detail and move awkwardly. The environments have some cool depth effects but are generic even in the globe spanning locations of Tokyo, Paris and Rome.

Sound – Limited voicework from the cartoon with not spectacular but not bad sounds adds up to a blah and bland soundtrack. Put on the earphones and enjoy some MP3 tunes instead of this audio experience.

Design – Fairly basic level design that does a good job making the gamer utilize Ben’s various powers. The overall look and feel of the game is already established so no design notes there.

Miscellaneous – For fans it’s gotta be the new storyline penned by the same folks responsible for the cartoon. Can’t go wrong with new content in a series fans love.

Overall Ben 10 fans, the young ones, will enjoy this extension of the franchise. There are enough DS touch screen uses to keep the hand movement is interesting and the unique story is like a bonus episode. Non fans should not bother as there is not back-story on established characters and the real juice in this cart is taking control of Ben and seeing familiar faces from the cartoon.

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