Deformers is a multiplayer combat arena game, consisting of three game modes in which you roll around as strange characters known as ‘Forms’. Should you be rolling around the floor at the though of playing Deformers? Read our review to find out…
Deformers is the new game by Ready At Dawn, the studio behind Playstation 4 exclusive, The Order: 1886 and this new game is very different to what you would expect from them. Deformers is a multiplayer only arena battle game where you take control of a funny looking customised blob to compete in an arena deathmatch environment and try to take out the enemy using boosted ram attacks and power ups. On paper this game sounds like it could be a lot of fun and it should be but unfortunately it is riddled with problems and shortcomings that left me feeling quite unforgiving of the developer.
The first thing that surprised me about this game when I first loaded it up was the lack of a tutorial, in fact there wasn’t anything that gave me any information on what I had to do. I eventually had to go into the options menu to find out what the controls were so I had some sort of idea on how to move these blobs around at least. I find it rather ridiculous that a new IP that is multiplayer only, hasn’t got any kind of tutorial that introduces the player to this new multiplayer experience, but there is literally no information whatsoever on how to play the game, no information on how you eliminate your enemies, no information about what power ups there are, what they do or how you use them, no information on the levelling up system and XP rewards, there literally wasn’t any information on anything which to not have in there anywhere is a very strange decision to say the least. There was plenty of promotion about the micro transactions though, but I’ll discuss that in more detail a little bit later.
There are only three game modes in Deformers which is very disappointing especially for a game that is multiplayer only, but the modes consist of Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch and Form Ball, with the latter being a bit of a Rocket League clone where the aim is to get the ball in to the oppositions goal while taking out your enemies in the process but it’s nowhere near as good or as fun as Rocket League is. The aim of the deathmatch modes is to take out your enemies and you have to do this by ramming them, shooting them, blowing them up or knocking them off the edge of the map. Of course this is all dependant on if you manage to actually get a game, as the servers and matchmaking were very poor throughout my time with Deformers, with it taking up to 15 minutes to get into a match sometimes. Once you have some sort of idea of what you have to do and you’re lucky enough to find a match, it seems to play ok and can get quite frantic in match, especially in the team deathmatch mode but as much as it plays ok, the gameplay overall isn’t much fun with the camera system being far too inconsistent to keep track of where you are and without knowing what each power up does or knowing how to even get them, made the gameplay infuriating and ruined the experience considerably.
The levelling up system acts the same way as similar XP systems in other games, with the XP being earned by matches won, enemies eliminated and how many power ups you use. It’s all a bit hit & hope when it comes to trying to level up and it all becomes a bit of a grind to level up your character as it’s frustratingly slow to do so and doesn’t reward you much for doing it either. Visually Deformers isn’t too bad, it’s certainly not a bad looking game but it’s not amazing looking either as it seems to lack a bit of polish overall, but the characters are nicely detailed none the less. The developers have gone with a cartoon art style with the blobs being a mixture of cute and nasty depending on how you customise them and the maps themselves being bright and colourful too, but it all just feels like there’s something missing with the visuals and I can’t quite put my finger on what it is. The audio and soundtrack certainly fit the art style, with the sound effects being humorous and quirky to add some kind of personality to your Deformers and the chirpy soundtrack is pretty good too, fitting this style of game really well.
The sheer lack of modes in this title is worrying especially as this game costs £29.99 so it isn’t a cheap price point and the amount of content or lack of, that you get here is pretty insulting. The developers have promised more free updates and content coming soon, but it all should of been in from the start and if it’s because the modes weren’t ready then the game shouldn’t of been released in its current form in my opinion. To add to the rather insulting amount of content is the micro transactions that the game promotes, with different coin packs that you can buy which allows you to spend them on unlocking custom cosmetics items for your Deformers. There isn’t any tutorial but there is certainly an emphasis on getting you to throw more money at this game so you can get that dazzling pair of new glasses or a funny hat for your character. The bottom line is that Deformers is an incredibly disappointing experience that should of been a Free To Play model which I believe would of been a more viable option for the consumer and would of given the developers a lot more breathing space, in terms of adding more modes and would have possibly justified the micro transactions a bit more.