Review – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Portal Power

Did you even know that someone released a brand new TMNT game at the end of last year? No? Yeah, me neither, and that’s probably for the best. This new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game, Portal Power, can easily be considered the entire franchise’s lowest moment. Good grief, what a waste of my time this game was. Let’s get this over with.

Feel the tension

The game can basically be summed up as the most generic and uninspired beat-em-up you’ll ever see in your life. Imagine Turtles in Time, then remove the awesome soundtrack. And the combos. And the original TMNT art style. And the fun. Make sure the entire combat system is revolved around one weak attack, one strong attack, and a special move. Oh, add in some bland costumes that add next to nothing to the gameplay and that’s what you get.

Fighting enemies in this game is so mundane, so boring, so uninspiring, I actually made an experiment and tried to beat some combat sections with my eyes closed, mindlessly mashing the only two attack buttons available. Guess what, not only did it work, but I still left the fights without a single scratch. And not only is the combat bland, but the controls are horribly unresponsive. There are many instances in which the game simply ignores your commands and does absolutely nothing. Do you want more? Have I told you the menus aren’t even compatible with a normal controller? Though the button prompts are shown onscreen, the menus are only controllable with a mouse. That shows how much effort has been put into the game, don’t you think?

Meet our zeroes in a half shell

Visually speaking, there’s nothing to brag here. Portal Power looks worse than the Ninja Turtle games for the Gamecube, which also featured cel-shaded visuals. The levels are blandly designed and uninteresting. Same can be said about the incredibly subpar soundtrack, which features a whopping amount of very uninteresting tunes. I should commend the game for featuring voicework from the current TV show’s cast, but even they don’t provide the best job they could this time around. Either that, or the cast for this current iteration of the Turtles is just inferior to the original show, or, heck, even the one from the early 2000s.

Is this how Rocksteady and Bebop look nowadays? Oh geez…

Portal Power is easily the worst Ninja Turtles game I’ve ever played. Worse than the original, literally impossible to beat game on the NES, yes. It’s so boring, rushed, devoid of creativity and care it hurts. There used to be a time when a new TMNT release meant that an instant classic was on its way; it’s incredibly sad to see how low the franchise has reached ever since. Just stick to anything else from the franchise if you want something better. Yes, even the recent movies.

Graphics: 3.5

While the turtles feature above-mediocre animations, the overall graphics are subpar and the framerate is inconsistent.

Gameplay: 2.5

The controls aren’t responsive, the combat system is as shallow as a puddle, and the menus can only be controlled with a mouse.

Sound: 3.0

The soundtrack is as uninteresting as it can possibly be, but there’s average voice acting at least.

Fun Factor: 2.5

While this game is obviously targeted towards a younger demographic, even kids will get bored with it after half an hour.

Final Verdict: 3.0