Ben 10: Alien Force Vilgax Attacks
Just when you think one holiday season of video games can’t possibly be any better than the last, the industry seems to prove that statement false. One only needs to look at the releases in the past few weeks alone. “DJ Hero,” “Tekken 6,” “Grand Theft Auto IV: Episodes from Liberty City” and “Forza Motorsport 3” are only a few of this season’s titles pretty much guaranteed to be top quality. But they all pale in comparison to one monumental game, the absolute cream of the crop, the only game anyone was willing to send us a press copy for: “Ben 10: Alien Force Vilgax Attacks.”
Never has a game been quite so lousy with so few redeeming qualities. It would be difficult for even a younger child to have fun with it. The game is endlessly repetitive and consists of combat with uninspired platforming and puzzles to create one mind-numbingly boring experience.
“Ben 10’s” one redeeming feature is that you actually get to play all 10 aliens from the show and switch between them at will. While they don’t add much variety to the combat, occasionally puzzles will require you to switch to the nimble alien to climb stuff or the powerful alien to break stuff — but that’s about as complex as the game gets. Plus, the aliens look kind of cool.
Nevertheless, “Ben 10” is an assault on the senses. The game is pretty ugly, running at a smooth 60 frames per second due to having almost no geometrical detail on anything to go along with the soupy textures. The voice acting is passable, but the music can’t decide whether it wants to be overly repetitive or so bad as to make you mute the TV. The game is supposedly extremely faithful to the show, but the cutscenes are slow, ugly and boring, even for a children’s cartoon.
“Ben 10” represents the industry’s unfortunate tendency toward quick cash-ins with little effort or polish because of the lucrative market of “casual gamers” who don’t care about that sort of thing. Do they want thought provoking gameplay or a well-told story? Nope. As long as they can mash buttons and watch a big colorful alien beat up a bunch of bland, repetitive enemies in the universe of some licensed property, they’ll be happy.
So when players get tired of all the various new and exciting games destined to become classics this holiday season, let it be known that “Ben 10” is there in case they want the feeling of having wasted their time and money in one of the worst ways possible, or if they need a gift for a much younger fan of the show.