Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles GBA Review

The (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) TMNT have been everywhere lately. Their recent surge in popularity brings Konami back into the mix for some more gaming goodness. While not on par with their 16-bit and arcade efforts, this recent edition to the GBA's library is a more than welcome return to the past. Unlike past efforts, the Game Boy Advance rendition mixes platforming and fighting, much like the first Turltes game back on the NES (just add combos). Each of the 4 amphibians has their own set storyline and their own set of 4 stages. Their stages are made to take advantage of their individual abilities (such as Raph's wall climbing abilities). At least one of the 4 stages presented before each character is a sort of mini-game including a nifty sewer surfing segment (Michelangelo), motorcycle racing (Raphael), on rails shooter (Leonardo), and a standard horizontal shooter (Donatello). This adds some variety to the otherwise mundane and basic beat-em-aspects. Once you have completed each of the Turtles individual stages, you'll have one more stage to conquer (unless your playing the game on easy). Any of the TMNT's can be selected for final showdown with Shredder, a vicisous level that throws EVERYTHING at the player. Sadly, unless your playing the game on it's hardest level, this is the only challenging segment. The short individual stages can be beaten in a matter of minutes and getting hit is only a matter of not paying attention. The harder difficulties only increase the amount of damage the enemy does, not the AI. The cinemas also drag on for far too long and the stories are far from compelling enough to warant reading everything. Still, with amount of moves and the battery backup, your sure to come back. The four heroes look fair on the small screen, but their animation is sure to pull the player in. The numerous combos you can perform with a bit of practice is sure to impress and everything looks ripped right out of the latest cartoon series. The intro takes still clips from the shows intro and puts it under a fully voiced theme song. Asthetically, this one is nearly perfect. Though I'm sure the hardcore crowd would've preffered an update to the classic "Turtles in Time," you really can't go wrong with this new addition. It's far from perfect, but it captures the spirit of the show (and to a lesser extent the comic) more-so than the majority of the other liscened junk on the GBA. If you can accept the relatively short length, your bound to get some enjoyment form this title.

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