Playing through Ubisoft’s kiddie-oriented Battle of Giants: Dinosaurs Strike, we couldn’t help but recall the old Atari fighting game Primal Rage. Like this brawler, Rage had you playing as dinosaur characters as they battled it out in a world teetering on the apocalypse. However, where Rage offered some appeal with its quick (though mildly confusing) gameplay options, Batlte of Giants slips into the mundane. Or, better yet, the Stone Age.
In the game, you’ll be able to choose from a few characters with the option to unlock more as you proceed through it. These include a T-Rex, raptor, triceratops and a variety of other familiar dinos. You can choose different options and colors, then enter into the fight. There’s a story mode where you try to fight off a raging cataclysm (you can only do so much as a dino though), along with a tournament mode where you can compete against others, as well as traditional versus. You can power-up your dino as well in a number of areas, increasing their health and power to make them more effective in battle. (It doesn’t really matter that much, tho. A dino with one damage bar can inflict as much pain as one with a full damage bar.)
Battle of Giants might’ve been a good game had it adapted at least some of Primal Rage’s fighting tactics. Unfortunately, it fails to capitalize, relying too much on waggle tactics. To charge up special attacks, you’ll need to actually shake your remote, rather than striking with skill. This takes a lot of challenge out of the game making it more boring than it deserves to be. The rest of the gameplay is all right, but the fights themselves lack the kind of complexity you’d expect in a contest. Kids will eat it up, but serious fighting fans will merely scoff and turn to a better fighting game, like Tatsunoko vs. Capcom or the default Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
There’s also not much to do outside of the fighting, despite the appeal of the apocalyptic storyline. You pretty much fight, fight and fight, with little to come back to, aside from a few new dinosaur breeds. And they simply aren’t worth it.
The game looks all right, with decent dino animations and a few settings to fight through, including some impressive landscapes. However, there are fewer backgrounds than we expected, making us think that Ubisoft cut corners to ship this in time for the holiday season. The audio is okay, with above-average dino effects mixed in with yawn-inducing music. C’mon, guys, THIS IS THE END OF THE DINO WORLD. Pick it up!
We can only recommend Battle of Giants: Dinosaurs Strike to kids or those of you who can’t live without dino fighting. The simplistic fighting and sporadic options probably won’t bother you guys that much at all. Everyone else, though, should probably track down a Primal Rage machine at their local arcade. You can thank us later.