MWN Reviews: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time Re-Shelled

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The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Those 4 guys have been in my life for almost as long as I can remember. I watched the television series from the first episode up until it was no longer produced my Fred Wolf Films. One of my earliest gaming memories was playing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game with my mother when I was 4, and TMNT IV: Turtles in Time was one of my favorite SNES games apart from Chrono Trigger and the Donkey Kong Country series. Needless to say, as soon as I heard that Turtles in Time was coming to XBLA, I was more excited than a pedophile at a playground. Now that the game has been released, the question is, does it hold up to a die-hard Ninja Turtle fan’s expectations? Hit the jump to find out.

The most obvious difference in Re-Shelled, one that has been talked about since the first screens came out, is the graphics. TiT Re-Shelled’s graphics have been updated to be less cartoonish and more realistic in accordance with  the “true” 3D the game is now in. And…it kind of works. The backgrounds look fine, and the Turtles and Foot Clan themselves don’t look too weird. But remember when a real-life Mario was created and it looked creepy as fuck? Well, that’s what happened with most of the non-Foot Soldier enemies, in particular the Pizza Monsters, Stone Warriors, and Baxter. Their cartoon depictions are just so abstract that the attempt to realistically render them comes off as awkward.

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As I said before, the this version of Turtles in Time is actually 3D now, as in you can face and attack upwards and downwards, as opposed to just moving up and down the screen while constantly facing left and right. I was worried about this when I heard it was going to be that way, but it doesn’t fail as much as I expected it to. It’s easy enough to face and attack in the direction you want, but for some reason enemies in the air, like the Pizza Monsters, Baxter, and Krang in his spaceship, are much harder to attack.

Another complaint I have with the game is the new soundtrack. And when I say “new soundtrack”, I mean “fucking garbage”. Re-Shelled doesn’t even try to recreate the old levels’ music, replacing it with some generic rock bullshit. Hey Ubisoft, did you see what Capcom did with Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix? You don’t even have to lift a finger, just let OCRemix create the soundtrack. It will be a hundred times better than the shit you tacked on.

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What else negative can I say? I ran into a few glitches through the course of the game. Twice my turtle (Leonardo, obviously) froze in a corner for about 4-5 seconds, and in the Sewer Surfin’ level, a couple of times after I got hit I would be floating above my board for a second. Nothing major, but definitely noticeable. There are two other modes besides Arcade Mode, which are Survival Mode and Quickplay, which are dumb and for achievement whores, respectively.

Despite all the shit I’m talking about TiT Re-Shelled, it is Turtles in Time online, which for some people will be good enough. The bottom line is, If your friend with a terminal illness who lives in a different country as you, and his dying wish is to play through Turtles in Time with you, go ahead and pick Re-Shelled up. If you have any other means to play it with your friends however, stick with that.

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