Terminator Resistance released back in 2019 to somewhat mixed reviews from the press, but has since garnered itself a quite cult following – especially amongst Terminator fans for its atmospheric portrayal of the future war. In a surprising turn of events we now have new DLC for the game that features a new mission led by the one & only Kyle Reese. Worth heading back into the fight? Let’s take a look
The Resistance has just defeated their first Infiltrator unit, but there’s no time to rest up as orders have come down from John Connor himself to investigate the civilian settlement of Northridge Outpost, now mysteriously radio silent. Is this just a simple unannounced evacuation, equipment failure, or the work of Skynet? To find what happened to the civilians and get some answers, the small team of Resistance soldiers led by Kyle Reese must head into the land beyond the Annihilation Line.
First things first, you’ll need to have reached the part of the base game where the first infiltrator terminator is captured. The DLC starts it’s main story there in the game so may mention things not seen yet if you haven’t got to that point. After a brief introduction which sees you sneaking around as a kid Jacob Rivers with his father, you wake from your slumber and head into the sunset with Kyle Reese and his squad to check on outposts that have gone quiet. Whilst the story is good, franchise fans will get more with plenty of fan service moments taken from Kyle’s flashbacks in the original movie, as well as a boss taken from T2 concept art. Altogether it’ll last about 4-6 hours depending on how much you soak it all in, with a surprising amount of story and set pieces packed into that runtime to keep one happy.
As long as you keep expectations in check with regards to graphical quality then you’ll find much to appreciate. Some aspects of the game are average, like the human characters and general textures for the environments, but that doesn’t stop it from nailing the look and feel of the future war. The world really does look post nuclear as burnt out buildings with cars & debris cover the landscape. Occasionally a HK light will flicker across some rubble and you’ll swear there was skulls in it. It’s here at night when the game is at its most atmospheric as you clamber through rubble in the misty moonlight avoiding HK searchlights as they beam through gaps in your cover.
Sound is another area of the game you can appreciate for its atmosphere building. The thud of terminators and weapon fire sounds straight out of the ‘future war’ parts of the movies, with the distant weapon fire giving the impression its not just you fighting for survival in the ruins. You won’t have to fight for performance tho, as the game can be balanced out easily enough due to its grainy look. With my system (R51600/16GB/RTX2080 ti) the game was pretty much locked at 60fps with 4K max settings. Even so I did make use of AMD’s FSR feature here as the Ultra Quality mode is indistinguishable and it ironed out any drops I may have had. Seems a nifty feature to further boost performance if you can’t quite lock things down or wanna bump up settings a notch.
As we’ve already had a meaty review on the base game from Andi that covers everything, I’ll just leave some of my thoughts on the gameplay here to round off the DLC review given it doesn’t differ much from what was already offered. Unsurprisingly the game takes a more grounded route with its shooter gameplay. Generally this means the Terminators pack a punch and can drop you quickly if not careful, the DLC goes against this a little at times – the beginning as you blast your way into the outpost and also features more action focused sections later too. At this point in the game tho you’re equipped enough to have a choice when it comes to most standard skirmishes, sneak around or open fire.
Sneaking around is always safer, the downsides obviously being its slower and can make resource gathering difficult, but it’s not always the way. IF confident enough you can take on the Terminators and if victorious you’ll get resources to trade or craft with, maybe even get some ammo and microchips to customise weapons with. The skill tree and crafting isn’t exactly the most in-depth you’ll find, but it adds enough to the gameplay and the crafting in particular is certainly useful for medi kits & ammo – those Terminators do pack a punch, even the ‘obsolete’ T-600.
Annihilation Line doesn’t really add much to the gameplay, if anything at all, playing like an even more atmospheric extended side mission of the base game – especially as it falls in during Resistance instead of before or after. What it does offer tho is Kyle Reese and how he was during the war with some insights into his relationship with John Conner, also a little added backstory for Jacob Rivers. Given it is effectively more of the same, those that enjoyed the base game will find plenty more to enjoy here, Terminator fans in particular will get their moneys worth as you fight alongside a good portrayal of an iconic franchise character.
Still fighting the same war you were before, only now with added Kyle Reese