REVIEW: Avatar from Movie to Game

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James Cameron’s movie Avatar was released to theaters Dec. 18, 2009, and later to DVD Oct. 16, 2012. To my surprise, before the movie was released, a new game called Avatar that was based off the movie was released. I was looking forward to playing it, but I wanted to see the movie first. When I did give the game a try, I was amazed.

James Cameron’s “Avatar: The Game,” is a 2009 third-person action video game. The game was developed by Ubisoft Montreal and released on the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, Wii and Nintendo DS and PSP. The game acts a prequel to the film bringing forth the game version Avatar world before the movies version. Before the game begins, you need to choose the soldier and its Avatar you want to play as and you’re given a list of both male and female soldiers to choose from. What makes the campaign unique is that after the first part of the game, you get to choose the side you want to fight on.

The game has both an RDA and a Na’vi to play and your character’s name is Able Ryder. Each side offers different gameplay, weapon sets, skill sets, and environments. As a soldier, the player is equipped with firearms such as assault rifles, shotguns, grenade launchers, and flamethrowers. The soldier generally has to eliminate the enemies, which are fast and resilient and usually charging towards the player, from afar.

Playing as an Avatar limits the player to only one Avatar-issued machine gun and various primitive weapons such as bows, crossbows and melee weapons. The Avatar player usually has to charge the enemies since ranged weapon are either weak (the machine gun), have slow rate of fire (bows and crossbows), or have limited ammunition; however, the human enemies are generally weak and the basic foot soldiers can die after getting hit once with one strike of a club.

The environment also reacts differently to the character, many plants will attack the soldier, while the Avatar can walk past said plants unharmed. A variety of vehicles or mounts are also available to each race.

The game opens up the same way the movie does with you arriving at Hell’s Gate on a shuttle. First you enter the base and meet your leader, Commander Falco, to get debriefed and then your sent to try out your avatar body.

Once that’s done, you return to Falco and get sent on your first mission at the Blue Lagoon. After arriving at the Lagoon Base you have a few objectives to complete and then you get use your avatar body again and have a few more objectives to complete. Once that’s done, your then faced with a tough decision, choosing sides.

Falco orders you to follow a Na’vi ally named Tan Jala, because there’s a mole in the RDA. You find out the mole is Rene Harper. Once you catch up to Harper, Falco arrives on a scorpion and Harper encourages you to join the Na’vi, but Falco orders you to shoot him. That’s where you have a choice, fire at either Harper or Falco.

Honestly, I’ve played both sides and I didn’t care which side I chose, but the first time played, I chose to play as the Na’vi and then second time played I chose the RDA.

The goal of both campaigns are 100 percent the same. The goal is find an ancient tree called the Lost Well of Souls. To do this, your job in each mission, aside from the tasks, is find three crystal shards, locate a willow tree and place the shards in certain spots around the tree to obtain the harmonics of the map. As you complete mission objectives or eliminate opposition, your character gains experience points and levels up.

The leveling up process is quite linear, with no way to customize the character. Each level rewards the character with better versions of the weapons, armor and skills they already have. Your character can have only one armor and one type of combat gear at a time, though with higher levels, different types become available, which may be selected instead of the original.

There are four skills and four weapons equipped into a quick slot at any one time. The skills can be offensive such as boost damage, summon air strikes or wild life. As for defensive there are skills like boost damage resistance, heal or tactical purpose like boost speed or invisibility.

These skills give you an advantage regardless of who’s side you’re on. Some of the objectives in this game will be challenging which definitely makes this game worth playing.

Now it’s your turn to join the fight. Choose your side and fight for it, and find the Well of Souls before the enemy does.



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