Power Rangers: Mega Battle Review
Ryan Bloom / Mar 1st, 2017 No Comments
If you are a child of the 1990s, you will experience a wave of nostalgia when you first boot up Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Mega Battle. The original Rangers, along with omniscient floating head Zordon and the screeching Rita Repulsa all make appearances while the earworm-inducing tune of the TV show hums in the background. Then, you are thrust into a side-scrolling beat’ em up reminiscent of all the licensed game tie-ins of the past.
As the nostalgia rapidly washes away, you’re left with a game that is more like the lazy previous attempts to bring the Power Rangers to video games than the entertaining Ninja Turtles side-scrollers or The Simpsons Arcade. There’s no doubt that the game was released at this time to drum up excitement for the upcoming Power Rangers movie, but it instead leaves you realizing that the joys of yesterday are often best left in the past.
Mega Battle is a basic rehash of the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers series. The teens gain powers and Zordon hastily teaches them how to harness their abilities so they can defeat Repulsa and her staff of goons. It all takes place at a rapid pace that makes it impossible to inject the sentiment and innocent jest that made the television show so entertaining. The plot is expressed through text sequences that are straightforward and unimaginative — you can easily remove the Power Rangers characters and skins from Mega Battle and it would be the same game.
Gameplay is essentially a button-mashing affair that requires players to learn how to defeat new enemies that are introduced in each level. There is some depth to the gameplay with the ability to level up characters and use “Ranger Coins” to purchase skills, and there’s enough variety between characters to make it worth giving each of them a try. Yet, the boss battles at the end of each level do not let you take full advantage of your skills and mostly involve waiting for the right moment to strike your foe.
Mega Battle deviates from the standard formula by extending boss fights beyond the beat em up style. Super powered enemies grow to mammoth proportions, meaning the Rangers will need to use the Megazord to make it a fair fight. Unfortunately, each battle follows the same tedious formula, sucking the fun out of controlling the behemoth mech. You start in Tank Mode, which you might vaguely remember was used in short bursts on the show. After shooting at some weak spots on the enemy, hand-to-hand combat takes place. During these moments, a button combination that you must recreate appears on screen. Nail the combo a few times, and the Megazord is crowned champ.
This all becomes too repetitive and anticlimactic as the game wears on. Before long, you realize that you are simply going through the motions.
Meanwhile, the art style is a somewhere between cartoonish and realistic. The characters resemble Imaginext action figures, which works but it isn’t tied to the Power Rangers universe. Rangers themselves add some necessary color to otherwise drab and interchangeable worlds that only brighten up during cinematic Megazord sequences. However, the source material has an incredibly distinct feel, and the game fails to recapture it.
Playing Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Mega Battle is like when you go back to watch an old TV show and you realize that it doesn’t hold up over time. The nostalgia factor is not enough to carry the game, especially when you realize it wasn’t produced with the same care as the television show. Without the campiness and artifice of the Power Rangers series, Mega Battle feels like just another beat ’em up.
The gameplay mechanics are simple, but they work, and the skill tree system helps add variety to the game. This makes Mega Battle fun to play with friends who fondly remember the glory days of the Power Rangers, but there isn’t much value beyond that, even at the moderate price of $14.99.
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Mega Battle was reviewed on Xbox One using a code for the game provided by the publisher.
tags: Mighty Morphin Power Rangers , Power Rangers , Power Rangers Mega Battle , Power Rangers Video Game , Power Rangers: Mega Battle Review , review