It’s been a while since I last played Terminator: Resistance but I was fully committed to diving back in with the Annihilation Line DLC – though I didn’t know that I would be diving back in at the deep end. If you’re looking for a new Terminator challenge; then this is the DLC for you. (spoilers ahead)
First of all, I need to talk about the difficulty. We were provided with a review copy of the game, and it was cited that it was a beta version, and that means that things could be changed in the final version that people will experience on the official launch (10th of December 2021). I played this on normal mode and, well, unlike Terminator: Resistance’s main campaign, the Annihilation Line DLC on normal mode felt kind of brutal. Some of this is by design (due to the nature of the gameplay), and as with most games; any potential future patches could fix some issues with scenarios involving a lack of ammo, drops, or health pickups.
As stated, I played this on normal, but it felt closer to hard mode. At times I felt I died unnecessarily and got thrown to a checkpoint a little too far back for my liking.
I did notice lag starting to effect the gameplay, most notably on a specific map – but again; if this is a widespread issue then Teyon will no doubt patch it at some point. It didn’t effect the whole game, or cause any crashes but something was obviously wrong, I subsequently dropped some of the games settings down from ultra to high and it was still happening, though other points in the game ran fluidly and as they should. My pc wasn’t struggling in any way and its temp was extremely cool throughout.
If you don’t like stealth games, this one may not be for you. Admittedly, I am more of a run and gun player who prefers to just go in all guns blazing. The original Terminator: Resistance campaign had stealth aspects to the first part of the game, and had stealth side quests in the form of optional SkyNet outposts but mostly the stealth was avoidable. This isn’t the case here, if you decide to go in all guns blazing you are likely going to die a lot, and I experienced this first-hand.
Teyon implemented a number of stealth aspects to Terminator: Resistance and with Annihilation Line, they’re utilizing these mechanics more and making the player conform to them. For the first time I actually got Termination Knife kills through necessity,- something I didn’t bother to do in the main campaign. The Silverfish are also more troublesome, and anyone who doesn’t craft some sound decoys will suffer. You will need to tread carefully, pick enemies off at a distance and sneak through the future war terrain more often this time around.
Anybody who has complained about the AI of enemies in the main campaign will be welcomed by more brutal adversaries in game. I know this was patched for the Infiltrator mode DLC but I feel they are even more hardcore this time around. I don’t have any complaints about that. I still encountered a couple of ‘dumb’ machines in the game but mostly SkyNet is smarter this time around, though, sometimes perhaps too smart and you’ll feel that as you are riddled with constant plasma rounds (especially from dual-wielding Terminators), but for a normal difficulty I still felt like some of the enemies, or, at least, the volume of enemies was a little overbearing at times. You’re under constant threat and I wouldn’t expect any less from a ‘TERMINATOR‘ game and the nightmarish future of 2029 – but I do feel like the game needs some balancing, maybe an adaptive difficulty option might work to suggest the player increase or decrease the difficulty based on the amount of times they die… ? I personally feel other balancing needs to happen.
There’s plenty for Terminator Fans including the easter eggs like the environments ie, the Cyberdyne Systems building, or the Galleria corridors where the T-800 and T-1000 smashed each other into the walls in Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
The story, which takes place half way through Terminator: Resistance’s main campaign, also contributes to the prequel story and inclusion of an infiltrator storyline. Corporal Ferro‘s inclusion was welcome but her character sadly felt a little underdeveloped. The writers and team have clearly sat inside the Terminator franchise and have absorbed, and listened to, what fans wanted to see in the movies and utilized it for this game: the HK Centurions inclusion is an example of this, as well in the addition of an origin story for one of SkyNet’s best machines.
As someone who doesn’t mind Terminator Salvation, I was also happy to see that movie’s iteration of a T-600,- although calling them ‘rubbers‘ just made me think of contraception… um, ‘skin jobs‘?
Kyle Reese doesn’t have the voice, or likeness of original actor Michael Biehn but I personally don’t feel like it took away from the experience. Thus far, the team have managed without Arnold Schwarzenegger and have still been successful at delivering something fans should appreciate.
The AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution really does take the graphics to the next level and everything has more atmosphere, is sharper and is generally much nicer to look at.
On retrospect; I wished I’d have payed more attention on my first playthrough of this DLC, I made some mistakes that had me running around confused, or using an ineffective weapon on Terminators. To be fair though, my eyes were focusing on the laser dot of the AMT Hardballer or simply looking for easter eggs, and normally in past Terminator: Resistance missions leaving an areas confines ends missions and moves the game onwards – something that didn’t happen in one area of the game and which I do feel was a implemented as a means to extend the game time.
The DLC claims to have 4+ hours of content, and with the addition of all the side quests, I managed to rack up nearly 6 hours. So, for the DLC’s price point; that’s really not bad value at all.
Although at times I didn’t have fun playing Terminator: Resistance Annihilation Line, I did feel a sense of accomplishment for overcoming the challenge, and combining those tough times with all the times I did actually enjoy myself, mixed in with a story that wasn’t quite perfect; it still satisfied a Terminator itch better than Hollywood’s last couple of attempts.
I’d love Reef Entertainment and Teyon Games to consider a Terminator: Resistance Online – utilizing all the assets they’ve made thus far and creating a Battlefield-esque conquest mode / capture the flag that pits Resistance forces against SkyNet.
I do also feel like there is no reason not to bring this DLC to XBOX, I believe a Series X release should be prioritised, and if they do bring it to Series X, Xbox One players will also be able to play it on the cloud, should that be made available (providing that Reef and Teyon haven’t made a hush hush exclusivity deal with Sony Playstation already).
Overall, developer Teyon have come a long way from on-rails-shooting Rambo: The Video Game. Terminator: Resistance Annihilation Line should definitely keep them on the map as a developer to keep an eye on, and I’m sure that RoboCop will be their next step in the evolutionary ladder of growth as a company.
I do believe Teyon will patch any issues, so providing they iron out the few minor issues I experienced with the BETA / review copy, I’m a happy gamer and Terminator Fan.
Terminator: Resistance continues to be the game of the fans.
If you’re looking for more spoilers and to see some of the gameplay in action. Check out the video below. Or you can wait to buy the game from Steam (PC) or the Playstation Store (PS5) on December 10th, 2021.