Terminator Resistance Enhanced
Don't Be So Quick To Terminate This One
Let it be known that I had no intention of playing Terminator Resistance outside of the required "unbox this game and play for a few minutes." How this game landed on my lap is an amusing story as I received a German copy of the game. It's always interesting to unbox games from different regions, but usually, they happen to be Asian region games. Unfortunately, I couldn't understand the content of Terminator Resistance as I've never played the game before and I'm not fluent in German so I couldn't read the game case...
While embarrassing to admit, I felt it was exciting to dive into a game I have known nothing about. Despite the IP, Resistance isn't directly tied to a specific movie in the Terminator franchise. It instead takes place between the events of Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgment Day. The protagonist this time is Jacob Rivers, a member of the Resistance who was tasked, revealed later by John Conner, to look for survivors. Along the way, he meets a small group of individuals including a doctor, a woman and her younger brother, a hot-headed fighter, and the "leader" of the group.
Survival Of The Fittest
The gameplay for Resistance is similar to other "survival games" like the Metro series. Ammo and resources are severely scarce depending on the difficulty, to the point where it's beneficial to avoid combat than engage. Rivers is an average human, a member of the Resistance who happens to be a survivor. There aren't any qualities that make him stand apart from someone like Conner or Reese and it shows in the game's gunplay.
As to be expected, the main enemies are the terminator robots, ranging from versatile bugs, mechanical spiders, and scout robots. The player can choose to fight and salvage their parts or avoid combat altogether. Completing quests will gain experience so the player doesn't lose out on gaining levels. Entering abandoned buildings and salvaging resources is one of the main ways Resistance provides equipment to the player. Combat is smooth with a generous aim assist and a satisfyingly "punchy" feel thanks to the PS5's DualSense.
Relationships Mean Life Or Death In Terminator
Prolonged combat isn't recommended because as mentioned before, Rivers isn't the best sharpshooter. Reloading in Resistance is the slowest endeavor I've ever experienced in an FPS, taking almost 20 seconds to do so. If you've played Call of Duty and ever used the Light Machine Gun, the reload animation is slower regardless of the weapon used. An M16 didn't feel different from a 1911 in terms of reloading but that's not the biggest offender. For some reason, each gun is separated into three classes, "small," "medium," and "shotgun" shells. While the latter is obviously exclusively to shotguns, the "small" ammunition is shared between anything that's not a rifle.
This means for some reason a handgun and an SMG share the same ammo pool. I wasn't aware of this until I realized I was running out of ammo faster than usual. Once the player gets used to the cover system of Resistance, it becomes apparent that the game isn't meant to go "Rambo" but rather it's meant to pick apart enemies one by one. Hiding and running away are valid tactics as getting swarmed by enemies equals a quick death. Another important aspect is how much Rivers' peers trust him. This is done by answering favorably to his teammates and doing favors for them. Not only is it beneficial to do so for experience, but this also affects how the game progresses.
While Resistance Is Not "Open World," It Tries Its Best
Gunplay aside, Resistance's gameplay is based on exploring wide-open maps that give the player an illusion of an "open world." The game is fairly linear, but there are enough secrets to discover that will help the player's progression. As the only shop in the game is located in the hideout, players will need to rely on crafting for ammo, medkits, lockpicks, and other equipment. The player can also learn skills based on their level although I'd recommend leveling crafting and lockpicking first. In the first open area, there are many locked doors that reveal hidden and beneficial items. Plus, having the ability to craft your own emergency items is always welcome.
Overall I was pleasantly surprised with Terminator Resistance, especially how it plays on the PlayStation 5. The framerate remained consistent although the graphics do appear dated. Regardless, ignoring the interesting facial animations aside, the story and overall feeling of being hunted were captured quite well. What was originally meant to be something I was immediately going to toss aside as "just another tie-in" became an enjoyable experience. And yes, despite the game being German, everything from the text and voices was all in English.
Terminator Resistance Enhanced is available on the PlayStation 5.