TMNT 3: Mutant Nightmare has gotten horrible to mediocre reviews everywhere I have looked however, being a huge Turtles fan, I had to have it. And boy was I not disappointed! This game was unbelievable, tied with Mutant Melee and Battle Nexus as my favourite of the TMNT games. I honestly don't understand why it got such horrible reviews. The gameplay was slick, camera angles were good, and the fun factor (being the most important factor in my opinion) was through the roof. Here is what is involved with this game. First, you have the main story mode of the game. This mode consists of three episodes that contain at least 16 missions each. The episodes are all fairly different from each other but follow a storyline that has the turtles battling Triceratons, the Foot, Shredder, and a great number of other enemies. The missions are all well varied in their composition. The majority of them are regular scrolling levels where you are kicking shell hand to hand, but every once in a while they throw in a vehicle mission or a shooting mission. In these levels you get to use hang gliders and hoverboards, as well as chucking throwing stars at a great many moving targets. I found that these different missions they threw in made the game a lot more fun. As you progress through the missions you can collect 3 different items. First, you can collect DVDs that are located in certain missions. These can be played in the movie viewer under the bonus materials and each DVD focuses on different characters or aspects of the TMNT franchise. The second item you collect are Ninja Scrolls. These are scattered throughout certain missions as well and by grabbing them you unlock a certain upgrade you can apply to the turtles. Lastly, each time you defeat an enemy, he/she will leave behind a crystal of some sort. These crystals are used to upgrade each turtles fighting skills, so grab as many as you can! After each level you can go to the menu and apply the Scrolls and crystals to upgrade each turtle. You can use the crystals to unlock new combos or buy new fighting skills, and you can equip each turtle with whatever Ninja Scrolls you happen to have unlocked. By the end of the game when you have everything available, the fearsome foursome truly are a fearsome foursome! As you progress through the game you will unlock "Free Battle Areas". These are just certain missions in the game that become available to you to just stroll through and collect bonus items and crystals. You can try them as many times as you want, but a warning to you, many of them are pretty tricky. They are very much worth it though as the amounts of crystals you can gain certainly allow for faster upgrading of the turtles. In a lot of the Free Battle Areas there are DVDs and Ninja Scrolls to be found as well, usually deep in the area, which is what makes completing some of these areas very difficult. Once you complete the game you unlock the "Nightmare Missions". These are just a few bonus missions based around the story of the turtles being sent through time to different worlds and having to complete certain missions in order to get back to Earth. There are about 12 Nightmare missions in all and most of them are pretty fun, although Raphael's are a bit frustrating! Definitely worth doing though as there are DVDs and Ninja Scrolls to be found. So, this is the basic gist of the game but there are a few bonuses to be enjoyed outside of this. First, during the course of gameplay you will unlock both the Score Attack and Time Attack modes of the game. In Score Attack you have a timer counting down and you simply have to defeat as many enemies as you possibly can within that time limit. Time Attack is similar, in it you have to defeat 30 enemies within the time limit given to you. In each mode you can unlock up to three Ninja Scrolls, if your results are good enough. So again, these are definitely worth doing as soon as you can in order to make your turtles as tough as possible. The other bonus you unlock during regular gameplay is the original "Turtles in Time" game. This game was made in 1991 and I am guessing was on the Super Nintendo/Sega Genesis. I found this to be an awesome bonus as it was really fun to go through the game and have a total blast from the past! Pretty cool. One of my favourite parts of this game that I haven't mentioned so far is that for once, finally, all 4 turtles participate in the gameplay! In most turtles' games you pick your character and off you go on a solo mission. You may have the option to switch between characters, but it's just the one turtle on screen at any one time. In this one you pick your turtle but the other 3 come along for the ride controlled by the computer! I don't know why it took them so long to do this, but it's about time they finally did. The other 3 don't destroy nearly as many enemies as the human controlled turtle does, but they do chip in with some kills and in a lot of cases serve as distractions to the enemy, which in this game is invaluable. If you are a turtle fan and enjoy the games they have made so far, do not listen to any poor reviews on this game, this is a definite must have!
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